I've had ubuntu touch working on my Nexus 5 for some time, however the latest update has made it so it no longer boots. It just comes up with the dots lighting up, and hangs like that indefinitly. I can put it into recovery mode/access the preboot menu. Is there any way i can flash it back to android if touch is this broken, or is there a way i can reflash a working version back to my phone?


If you're able to get to access the preboot menu, you ought to be able to reset your device in either direction.

If you were interested in keeping Touch on your device, I've found that reinstalling the OS loads the most recent version with all OTA updates. I had trouble with Touch on my Nexus 7 where attempts to install OTA updates would result in an error upon reboot but continually offer the OTA update and reinstalling fixed that issue.

Since you can access your preboot menu, you can simply follow the official instructions given at https://developer.ubuntu.com/en/phone/devices/installing-ubuntu-for-devices/#install-ubuntu for installing Touch to your device. I don't believe the Nexus 5 has ever been an official device so you've probably gone through this before but just a reminder that you will need to specify the ubuntu-device-flash script with the --server="<url>" and --device=<board name> parameters.

I'd hope that Ubuntu would keep that information online since it is the offical instructions but, just in case, the steps you ought to go through are:

  1. Connect the device to your PC via USB cable and get to the preboot menu.
  2. Run the command ubuntu-device-flash --server="https://system-image.ubports.com" touch --channel=ubuntu-touch/stable --device=hammerhead --bootstrap from the terminal.
  3. Wait until the reboot is over.

That should be it; fairly painless.

If that doesn't work or you want to reinstall Android, you could follow the below steps (and then go through the steps you took the first time to install Touch, if you wanted to reinstall that):

  1. Download the factory image you want to install on your device; in general, aim for the one that came on your device when you bought it but installing the most up-to-date version of Android to my Nexus 7 didn't seem to harm it, any.
  2. Connect the device to your PC via USB cable and get to the preboot menu.
  3. Extract the factory image you downloaded in step 1 to your computer and go into the extracted folder via a terminal.
  4. On Windows, run the file “flash-all.bat”; on Mac, run the file “flash-all.sh”; on Linux, run the file “flash-all.sh”.
  5. Wait until finished; the device should reboot – at the end –, automatically.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.