How To: Restore the Nook Color to Stock

I. Before You Begin

1. This will erase everything off of the Nook Color and return it completely to stock (the way it was out of the box).

Thanks to Samuelhalff for the stock nook images! Original post can be found here. Please thank him/donate to him if you appreciate his work!

II. Create a Recovery Image SD Card

1. Download the Clockwork Recovery image FOR YOUR MEMORY CARD SIZE and save it to your computer (original post found here).

Clockwork Recovery Bootable SD Card Image

2. Extract the file somewhere on your computer. (You may need to download WinRar to extract it, Google it).

3. Take your MicroSD card and put it into an external sd card reader then plug that into your computer.

4. Open WinImage (the flashing program from our How To Root procedure) and select Disk > Restore Virtual Hard Disk Image on Physical Drive and select the SD Card/SD Card Reader and then select the Cwm .img file that we unzipped earlier and wait for it to finish.

III. Flash the Stock Firmware

1. Download the latest Stock firmware ROM from here and save it to your computer.

2. Copy the stock ROM (and leave it as a .zip file) to the sd card you just flashed using WinImage. Put it on the root of the SD card, NOT inside any folders just on the sd card itself.

3. Once it is done transfering, remove the sd card from the computer.

4. Turn off the Nook.

5. Put the SD card inside the Nook while it is off.

6. Turn on the Nook.

7. You should be greeted by the Clockwork recovery screen, on that screen select mounts and storage and select format system, then select format data.

8. Now make sure system and data are NOT mounted (they will say “mount system” and “mount data” if they are NOT mounted).

9. Push the power button to go back, then select Install zip from sd and then choose zip from sd and then select the stock nook ROM we put on the sd card earlier and wait for it to finish flashing. It will take a while.

10. Once it says install from sd card complete, turn off the Nook.

11. Remove the sd card and then turn the Nook back on.

IV. Reformat the SD Card Back to Normal

1. After the Nook has booted back to the normal homescreen, put the sd card back into it.

2. Then on the NOOKColor, go to Settings then Device Info then SD Card then click Unmount and then Format. Once it is done, it will remount the SD card and you will be good to go!

110 thoughts on “How To: Restore the Nook Color to Stock”

  1. Another way to do this is to do a “hard re-boot.” I learned this from B & N. 1. turn off NC, then hold down power button and home “N” key at the same time for 25 seconds. A re-set to factory settings should appear and ask you to confirm by pushing home “N” key. If it doesn’t appear, do it for another 25 seconds with the “N” and power key. It it still doesn’t work, turn on power like you normally would and it should prompt the re-set to factory settings. Again, you confirm with “N” key and it will ask again “are you sure…” and you confirm with the “N” key again. This worked quite well form with the B & N tech support person. Its much easier and I was ready to go (starting over again).

  2. Another way to do this is to do a “hard re-boot.” I learned this from B & N. 1. turn off NC, then hold down power button and home “N” key at the same time for 25 seconds. A re-set to factory settings should appear and ask you to confirm by pushing home “N” key. If it doesn’t appear, do it for another 25 seconds with the “N” and power key. It it still doesn’t work, turn on power like you normally would and it should prompt the re-set to factory settings. Again, you confirm with “N” key and it will ask again “are you sure…” and you confirm with the “N” key again. This worked quite well form with the B & N tech support person. Its much easier and I was ready to go (starting over again).

    1. Hello,

      Unfortunately that is how to hard reset a stock Nook. It won’t actually work when you flash a custom ROM (like Honeycomb for example) onto the internal memory.

      But thanks, that is an easy way for people that just want to reset their Nook if they haven’t flashed a custom ROM onto the internal memory!

      1. Hello, thanks for your response. Not only am I sure you are right, but when he did the hard reset, it reset, but something wasn’t right. It would even upgrade from 1.0.0 to 1.0.1. So thanks again for getting me on track again! Your website has been invaluable to me!

  3. This is a different ‘Clockwork Recovery Bootable SD Card Image’ than you used to install Honeycomb. Is this a better version or is there a difference between them?

  4. Your instructions say that it will take a while for it to finish flashing. How long is a while? My nook is basically bricked and I am trying your method. After multiple restarts, I finally got the the “choose zip from sd” part, and the status bar has been about half way for the last 20 minutes. Is this normal, or do I have to restart again?

  5. “Download the Clockwork Recovery image FOR YOUR MEMORY CARD SIZE”:
    If you are getting a message that there is no more room on the card when you try to add the stock firmware check that you used a large enough Clockwork Recovery image – it formats the card to look like the size of the clockwork image (128mb, 1gb, 2gb, 4gb, 8gb). For example the nook-complete-restore-1.0.1.zip is about 164 MB in size and will not fit into the 128 MB clockwork image even if you have a 4 GB SD card!

    1. so what size do i use? ive got a 4gb card with the 4gb clockwork pack, and i still need another 43.5mb of space. honeycombs not polished enough and i cant even get apps on it so i want to go back to stock rooted.

      1. EDIT: i tried formatting the sd card through windows explorer, and now it seems i cant even write the image to the sd card. WinImage puts me through all the steps, but doesnt ever seem to write it(i get no progress bar after selecting clockwork)

  6. I followed the directions and upon rebooting, I am stuck on the Touch the Future of Reading screen. Any ideas?

    1. This link should help to return to stock:

      http://forum.androidcentral.com/barnes-noble-nook-color/66748-how-return-your-nook-color-1-1-0-stock-re-root.html

      Basically though, in step 2, do this after writing the stock firmware to flash and powering off.

      To restore to factory – power off. Then hold “power + N (upside down N)” for 6-7 seconds. If it powers off you did it wrong. Try again. When you let go, it should still be on the welcome screen. Let go and then it will go to a screen that reads “installation fail.” Power down and do the same again. This time, it will ask you to restore to factory. Hit “N” twice and it will start clearing and restore to factory!

  7. EXCELLENT! I have to say you have the BEST resolution as far as starting from scratch and to recovery, nice job

  8. The restore worked and I am back to stock ver. 1.0.1. I downloaded the 1.1 0 update from B&N and moved it over to the NC as directed but so far it hasn’t updated the NC as described in the B&N instructions. Has anyone else had this problem after unrooting from a flashed ROM root?

  9. The restore worked and I am back to stock ver. 1.0.1. I downloaded the 1.1 0 update from B&N and moved it over to the NC as directed but so far it hasn’t updated the NC as described in the B&N instructions. Has anyone else had this problem after unrooting from a flashed ROM root?

  10. Soul Coughing

    After using Winimage twice, the CWR worked perfectly. I then copied the .zip file to the uSD and the Nook Color is back to its original self. I am now going to try Honeycomb and see what happens!

    Thanks!

  11. How long does it take the NC to get past the ‘n’ Screen after this process? Mine is stuck and moving no where

  12. Lucky Charmz508

    when ii go to disk.. and click ”restore virtual……”… like my sd is not popping up =/… what should ii do? any suggestions?

  13. Is there a complete restore for stock firm ware1.1? If not, how can I make the curent one work with my Nook runing 1.1?

    1. My NC restored to 1.0.1. I couldn’t get the manual update from the B&N site to update to ver. 1.1. A call to B&N tech support did not help. They said to take it to a B&N store (3 hrs away) and have it done there. Then, about two weeks later the NC was sitting on the table and it suddenly lit up with a message saying that it was updating software and not to be turned off. When it finished I had ver. 1.1.0 installed. I assume this came automatically from B&N via WIFI.

  14. The video is great with steps easy to follow but when I choose nook-complete-restore-1.017, I am presented with another menu asking to choose a zip to apply
    -media/
    -meta-inf/
    -recovery/
    -system/
    -charging.zip
    -romrestore.zip

    Any sugestions??????

  15. It worked perfectly. Restored back to B&N 1.0.1, then side load 1.1 to get back to most current firmware. Thanks.

  16. wow this was a bad night finaly got my nook to be android did a rom it completely screwed up my nook and then i restored the old software doing it this way and it messed it up even worse my nook wont work now it keeps flashing hopefully this is fixable

  17. hi i download a file run it through winzip and get 3or4 folders on my desktop,none that have/are zips recognised by winimg or win32img. and im left with one “zip” and 3or4 foldersHELP im going batshit here

  18. Trying to restore my rooted Nook to factory settings so I can get the Nook update. I’m having the same issues as a previous post but didn’t see a fix. I’m on the last step: “Install Zip from sdcard”, “choose zip from sdcard”, then I choose “Nook Complete Restore”. But the following options come up:
    -media/
    -meta-inf/
    -system/
    -charging.zip
    -romrestore.zip

    I went through the process 3 times with no success.
    PLEASE HELP!!

  19. It worked wonderfully for me. I had it rooted and was also using it with Honey Comb via SD card and this was as easy as it can be. Thanks a million

  20. Perhaps I missed it in the instructions, but I would have saved an hour or so or frustration if I knew that to navigate up and down on the Clockwork Recovery screen, one needed only to tap the up./down volume keys on the NC. Once I stumbled across that I had no further problems.

  21. Tried this. I have a later NOOK that came with 1.1 I think. I any case I followed this explicitly and it fails to boot to the stock, says failed to install to power off and try again. I am dead.

    It dislays Read Forever and then Install failed.

  22. The Roy Jackson post about restore to factory choice did not work for me either. Not surprised, seems it really does just the same thing done with CWR, which failed. Not sure why ever rooted it. I did have it working with CM7. I tried to install a new CM7 using ROM Manager. That killed it dead. Not a good reading experience anyway as compared to factory 1.2, just gives a tablet that does not compare with iPad.

  23. Apology and thanks. I simply did not wait long enough for it to come up. This did work and I even down,.loaded the 1.2 update and now it is at 1.2 again. Thanks to all.

  24. I have tried this every way that I can find on the net and it just sticks on the n screen after “touch the future of reading” I had CN7 installed but couldnt get the B&N app to work so we want to take it back to stock nook. I have been working this issue for 2 days now and I can not get it past the n screen.  HELP!

    1. Les, did you get this fixed?  I am stuck at same “n screen”.  kindly reply what you did if it is “fixed”.. I have to get my kids their nookkids books

    2. Les, did you get this fixed?  I am stuck at same “n screen”.  kindly reply what you did if it is “fixed”.. I have to get my kids their nookkids books

      1. I used clockwork to flash ultimate droid then was able to go from that back to stock rom. SAME THING when I put cm7 on my phone I had to flash a different rom before I caould take it back to stock.. WHen you get the stock rom on there do a backup so you will have that to revert to if this happens again.

  25. I have just enough interest in this tech stuff to get myself in trouble. I found a site that showed me how to load honeycomb rom (i unlocked through your wonderful guidence) but then it wouldn’t reboot into recover. someone over at xda said i should treat it like it’s “bricked” and go back to stock (the unlock it again) SOOO i was super confused by their instructions..who knew that the clockworkmod recovery had to be for the size of your sd card? I didn’t, adn they didnt say…ugh. ALL that to say thanks for making this simple…i should’ve just come here first.

  26. Terrancefairley

    I am having trouble formatting data when in recovery.  I get error formatting data.  Any ideas on what I should do?

      1. you probably need to download the clockworkmod img for blue dot version. It only has a 1gb image but you can still write it to any size card without issue. Thats what I did and my card still reads 2gb after formatting.

  27. You saved my life! I just bought my husband a nook color for his birthday and after being able to successfully root mine months ago, I thought I’d go on and root his for him so he could experience the awesomeness of it. Unfortunately, it didn’t go as well as it should have and I’ve spent the last couple of hours worrying that I had just ruined his gift. Thanks to this walk through, you’ve helped me to make sure I can fix things even after I thought I had broken it all to hell! Thank you so much!

  28. When writing the 16GB image using WinImage I get 99% complete and then get a “Error in writing disk Disk 4, error 23: Data error (cyclic redundancy check).  I downloaded a new copy of the file 16gb_clockwork-3.0.2.8.img.gz and extracted with 7zip. Ran through the procedure again and got the same message. Any suggestions or help would be appreciated.

  29. My son bricked his brand new NC within a month of owning it.  Not sure what he did however going through this seemingly fixed it.  Until I tried to Register it.  It won’t let me get past the “enter your account/create account” screen.  Turns itself off after giving me an error.  When I turn it back on I am back to the beginning with the video.  Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  30. i keep having that problem and i still do it but then my nook turns on and crap but when it comes to nook color by b&n it keeps flashing to the same thing. 

  31. Make sure you’re extracting this archive twice! Some smart guy decided to not only archive the .img file into a .tar, but then archived the .tar archive into a .gz archive. Smart, dude. VERY smooth. Maybe you should let them all know you done goofed and that they need to extract twice.. *facepalm*

  32. Oh, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!! After trying for hours and weeks to restore my nook from trying everything from 8 failed boots, to using ADB and reformatting, this is the only and EASIEST thing that has worked.  God Bless you!

    1. mine errored when trying to format data, and since would not go back or turn off, tried factory reset/wipe, it said wipe complete but then froze at the cm7 menu.  wouldn’t turn off.  finally got it to shut down after about 20 min. or so. now turns back on and frozen at the “n” logo for about 20 min. now too.  how did you get it back to functioning?  i’m trying to turn it off again and same thing. unresponsive.  i’m starting to get a bit worried i killed my NC. would appreciate if you have any ideas how to bring it back to life. thanks!  ~A~

  33. what di i di if i froze on the black and orange screen at  reboot system now and nothing will work do i have to wait for a dead battery just to get it to turn off?

  34. After restoring the NC to stock, is everything that was previously on the device (purchased books, music, videos, etc) deleted? I imagine it is. I just wanted to confirm this before I sell it.

    1. I found out that you need to use clockworkmod 3.2.0.1. Here’s the link. http://www.techerrata.com/file/teamwin/1gb_clockwork-3.2.0.1-eyeballer.zip

    2. hey did you get it figured out? i’m having the same problem. actually worse now.  after it wouldn’t format data, i couldn’t get it to go back or turn off so went for factory reset/wipe option on it.  was frozen on the cm recovery menu for like 20 minutes, finally got it to turn off, now, it finally came back on, and stuck at the “n” logo before going to desktop.  looks like i scrambled it good.  wondering what you did after the format data error.  i read it’s really hard to brick a NC, but i’m starting to get a wee bit concerned now..it’s stuck on the “n” logo for about 10 min. now…freakin frustrating.

  35. Hey, thanks!  This (mostly) worked.   However, I started with a new nook which had 1.3 originally.  When flashed back to 1.0.1, it didn’t work so well, as the storage was full because 1.3 has different partitioning.  So, if you are trying to restore a nook which came with newer software, you need a newer image than 1.0.1.  I got 1.3 from here: http://www.mediafire.com/?jp2px3y4bp41613

  36. For those who are having a problem with “error formatting data” you just need to use the updated clockworkmod 3.2.0.1. Here’s the link to find it. http://www.techerrata.com/file/teamwin/1gb_clockwork-3.2.0.1-eyeballer.zip

  37. PPPLLLLZZZZ HELP ME!!!!!!!!! i tried this and now when i turn on my nook the home screen flashes on and off but all the other screens act normal, also my “n” button doesnt work any more.  does any one have any suggestions?

  38. PLEASE HELP!!!!!!  After restoring my nook color to 1.0.1, all went well until I tried to register. It returned with an error messages and referred me to customer support.  I redid the entire restore process again using CM7, and 1.0.1 and the same thing happened.  What did I do wrong? I followed your instructions to the letter.

    cmbruno41@yahoo.com

  39. PLEASE HELP!!!!!!  After restoring my nook color to 1.0.1, all went well until I tried to register. It returned with an error messages and referred me to customer support.  I redid the entire restore process again using CM7, and 1.0.1 and the same thing happened.  What did I do wrong? I followed your instructions to the letter.

    cmbruno41@yahoo.com

    1. Ok, I found the answer to my own question, but for those of you who have a similar problem here’s the answer.
      If after restoring your nook you’re unable to register it during sign up it’s because it was never deregistered in the first place. You’re gonna have to find the original email & password used when the nook was first purchased or whatever account it was associated with prior to your restore. If you don’t have it the only way I know to fix it is to contact B&N and have a good story ready.

      I hope that helps

  40. PLEASE HELP!!!!!!  After restoring my nook color to 1.0.1, all went well until I tried to register. It returned with an error messages and referred me to customer support.  I redid the entire restore process again using CM7, and 1.0.1 and the same thing happened.  What did I do wrong? I followed your instructions to the letter.

    cmbruno41@yahoo.com

  41. PLEASE HELP!!!!!!  After restoring my nook color to 1.0.1, all went well until I tried to register. It returned with an error messages and referred me to customer support.  I redid the entire restore process again using CM7, and 1.0.1 and the same thing happened.  What did I do wrong? I followed your instructions to the letter.

    cmbruno41@yahoo.com

  42. Mark in Alabama

    I am one of the many grateful ones who appreciate the very simple guidelines that helped me return my nook to its original condition.  After several attempts from other websites I’m very glad I came upon this site…you simplified it and made it a breeze.  Everything worked perfectly.

  43. my computer says the disk space on my 16GB sd card is only 115MB. so it wont let me paste the ROM zip file…any ideas?

  44. I rooted my Nook color last March and I am now having trouble getting online; I found your video on how to unroot and restore to the original and downloaded the 8gb_clockwork-0.7.tar.gz from the Index of /nookdev/clockwork/0.7/downloads and tried to extract it and save to my pc as well as a Win Zip to extract it but it doesn’t seem to want to open, I also tried a WinRar download but nothing happens when I extract; any suggestions how to proceed? I am also not sure what you mean by “4. Open WinImage (the flashing program from our How To Root procedure) and select Disk > Restore Virtual Hard Disk Image on Physical Drive and select the SD Card/SD Card Reader and then select the Cwm .img file that we unzipped earlier and wait for it to finish.”Where do I get the WimImage flashing program?

  45. Got the Nook back to 1.0.1.  How can I get it to the latest update from B&N (1.4.1)?  It’s not working per the instructions from B&N website.

  46. My attempts to make this work seem to be stopping with WINIMAGE.  When I click on “Restore Virtual Hard Disk Image on Physical Drive,” absolutely no choices are displayed in the box below.  Zero.  Zip.  Nada.  It appears to cost $29 to buy WINIMAGE and perhaps it is because I’m using an evaluation copy that I’m not getting the performance everyone else is getting.  I will grudgingly pay $29 if need be, but I want to be assured that is the reason there’s an issue.  Anybody else have this problem?

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