How to Install Ubuntu OS Version 13.10 on Your LG Nexus 4 Smartphone

By @Seju_Juni on

The latest Ubuntu OS for mobile phones is now possible to be installed on your LG Nexus 4 handset, and it features the showcased interface at the MWC 2013 event in Barcelona, Spain. Ubuntu OS for mobile runs the latest version 13.10 and will get future updates with 14.04.

 Wikicommons/Marcus Qwertyus
Credit: Wikicommons/Marcus Qwertyus

Ubuntu OS Occam LG Nexus 4

It is possible to install Ubuntu on the Nexus 4 using the official firmware via manual flashing. It includes the following functionalities:

1.      Linux kernel 3.11

2.      Upstart 1.10

3.      CUPS 1.6.2 and cups-filters 1.0.34

4.      Python 3.3

5.      AppArmor

6.      LibreOffice

7.      64-bit ARM architecture

8.      Ubuntu core applications

9.      Browser, telephony, messaging, multimedia and more

10.    Various system optimisations


Before flashing Ubuntu OS on your device, fulfil the following necessary requirements on the Nexus 4:

1.      Backup all personal information and data files stored on your smartphone. Flashing Ubuntu OS will erase everything stored on the device.

2.      Make sure that the battery level is at least 50 percent.

3.      Enable USB debugging mode. Go to "Settings > Applications > Development > USB debugging."

4.      Your device should be unlocked.

5.      Download the ADB toolkit from Web site to your computer.

6.      Download the Ubuntu OS for mobile phones to your computer.

Warning: Flashing Ubuntu OS manually may damage your device. We are not liable for any bricking, damages or errors which may occur on your LG Nexus 4. Do some research and understand everything to prevent damaging the handset. Do this at your own risk.

Flashing Instructions

1.      Launch and configure the ADB toolkit according to your Nexus 4.

2.      Connect the Nexus 4 smartphone to the computer using a USB cable.

3.      Open a command prompt window as an Administrator on your computer.

4.      Enter the following commands:

         sudo add-apt-repository ppa:phablet-team/tools

         sudo apt-get update

         sudo apt-get install phablet-tools android-tools-adb android-tools-fastboot

5.      Create an Android backup of the current OS, apps and data on the Nexus 4:

         adb backup -apk -shared -all

         (For restoring OS, enter this command: adb restore backup.ab)

6.      Place the Ubuntu OS files you have downloaded earlier to the ADB folder on your computer which may be named as "adb-tools" or "adb-platforms" folder.

7.      Disconnect your Nexus 4 from the computer and then turn it off.

8.      Reboot into bootloader mode by pressing and holding Power + Volume Up + Volume Down keys.

9.      Open a new command prompt on your computer and then enter the following command: sudo fastboot oem unlock

10.    Accept the terms of unlocking your device and then press the Power key to switch on the Nexus 4.

11.    Now enter the following commands to begin image installation:

         phablet-flash ubuntu-system --no-backup

12.    Wait for up to five minutes till the installation is complete.

13.    Once the installation has been completed, follow the instructions provided to you on the screen.

If you have any questions or issues with Ubuntu OS installation, send your feedback to Ask Ubuntu community site.

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