How to Root the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen)

Arguably one of the most popular budget phones, the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen) is one of the smoothest phones you can get for the money. With a decent camera, decent processor, no bloatware (just pure Android for the most part), water-resistance body, and a price tag under $200, you’d be hard pressed to find a better equipped phone on a budget.

With all of that in mind though, the Motorola Moto G is also quite popular in another sense: rooting. Rooting the Motorola Moto G can allow you to overclock the processor, flash custom ROMs (customized versions of Android with performance enhancements and different UIs), among other benefits and because of it’s low price tag, it’s a prime target for this kind of tinkering.

Rooting, by the way, is the process of gaining root access (aka administrative rights) on a device and that allows you to change any part of the firmware (including the system files and even the operating system loaded on the device). And thanks to Motorola’s more lax attitude on people rooting their phones, it’s pretty easy to do as well.

If you are interested in giving it a try (it’s not hard to unroot the device either), here’s how to root the Motorola Moto G (2015):

I. Before You Begin

1. This could void the warranty of your device. We won’t be held responsible for anything that happens from doing this tutorial so please proceed at your own risk.

2. This should first unlock the bootloader on your device which will erase all the data stored on your device. So, backup anything that’s important for you before going ahead.

3. This procedure should only work on Windows based PCs.

4. Download and install ADB drivers on your PC, if you haven’t done so yet.

5. This should also flash a custom recovery on your device.

How to Root the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen)

Moto G 2015
Photo Credit:

To root the device, you’ll first unlock the bootloader, flash a custom recovery, and then flash SuperSU to obtain root on the device. Here’s how:

II. Downloading Required Files

1. Download Fastboot and save it to your desktop.


2. Download TWRP Recovery and save it to your desktop.

TWRP Recovery

3. Download SuperSU and save it to your desktop.


SuperSU for Marshmallow (Download this if you’re running Marshmallow)

III. Unlocking the Bootloader on the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen)

1. Unzip files from Fastboot over to your desktop by right-clicking on it and selecting Extract here.

2. Head to Menu > Settings > About phone on your device and tap on Build number for 7-8 times until it says you’re a developer. It’ll unlock developer options for you.

3. Head to Menu > Settings > Developer options and enable Allow OEM Unlock.

4. Head to Menu > Settings > Developer options and turn on USB debugging.

5. Plug in your device to your PC using a USB cable.

6. Launch a Command Prompt Window on your desktop. To do so, hold down Shift on your keyboard and right-click anywhere on your screen and select Open command window here.

7. Type in the following command into the Command Prompt Window and press Enter:

adb reboot bootloader

8. Your device should reboot into bootloader mode.

9. When in bootloader mode, type in the following command into the Command Prompt Window and press Enter:

fastboot oem get_unlock_data

10. Copy the string of text that appears on your screen removing any spaces from it.

11. Head over to the Motorola Bootloader website and get yourself logged-in. If you don’t already have an account there, create one first and then log-in.

12. Follow the bootloader unlock procedure on the site. When you are at step-6, paste the string of text that you have copied to your clipboard.

13. Follow the on-screen instructions to get an unlock key delivered to your email.

14. Copy the unlock key from the email that you have received from Motorola.

15. Type in the following command into the Command Prompt Window replacing KEY with the actual key that you copied in the previous step.

fastboot oem unlock KEY

16. It should unlock the bootloader on your device.

Your bootloader should now be unlocked and your device is ready to be flashed with a custom recovery. Here’s how you can do that:

IV. Flashing a Custom Recovery on the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen)

1. Head to Menu > Settings > About phone on your device and tap on Build number for 7-8 times until it says you’re a developer. It’ll unlock developer options for you.

2. Head to Menu > Settings > Developer options on your device and enable USB debugging.

3. Plug in your device to your PC using a USB cable.

4. Launch a Command Prompt Window on your desktop. To do so, hold down Shift on your keyboard and right-click anywhere on your screen and select Open command window here.

5. Type in the following command into the Command Prompt Window and press Enter:

adb reboot bootloader

6. Your device should reboot into bootloader mode.

7. While your device is in bootloader mode, type in the following command into the Command Prompt Window and hit Enter. Make sure to replace recovery.img with the actual name of the recovery image file.

fastboot flash recovery recovery.img

8. Wait for it to flash TWRP Recovery on your device.

9. When it’s done flashing  TWRP, reboot your device by issuing the following command:

fastboot reboot

10. Your device should reboot.

And there you go.

TWRP Recovery was successfully installed on your 3rd Generation Motorola Moto G. The following is how you can use this newly installed custom recovery to root your device:

V. Rooting the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen) Using SuperSU

1. Connect your device to your PC using a USB cable.

2. Copy SuperSU .zip from your desktop over to the internal SD card storage on your device. Make sure to place it on the top of the directory and not inside any folders.

3. Open a Command Prompt Window on your desktop by holding down Shift and right-clicking anywhere on your screen and selecting Open command window here.

4. Type in the following command into the Command Prompt Window and hit Enter:

adb reboot recovery

5. Your device should reboot into TWRP Recovery.

6. When your device enters the recovery mode, tap on Install.

7. Select SuperSU .zip file to be installed on your device.

8. Tap on Swipe to Confirm Flash to confirm the flash process.

9. Wait for it to flash SuperSU on your device.

10. When it’s done flashing SuperSU, reboot your device by selecting Reboot followed by System.

11. Your device should reboot.

Your Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen) should now be rooted. You can now head to my how to load a custom ROM tutorial and use ROMs from the ROM repository to change out the device’s OS until you find a version you love.

Hope that helped some people and let me know in the comments if it worked for you!

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115 thoughts on “How to Root the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen)”

  1. These instructions didn’t work for me. First, Ben is correct that the Fastboot link is bad. I had to find my own on XDA forum. Second, I made it all the way to step 5 of the root process, “adb reboot recovery,” and got the dead android screen – NO COMMAND with the alien on his back.

    1. Hi inge,

      Sorry for the dead link. It has now been replaced with a working one.

      As for you having issues at step-5, did you successfully flash a custom recovery in the Section-IV before using the command “adb reboot recovery”?

      That command is supposed to take you into the recovery mode and not cause any aliens to show up on your screen. Please try again and see if it now works for you.


      1. I did successfully flash TWRP and rebooted as instructed typing Fastboot Reboot. The dead alien appears if I try to reboot using adb reboot recovery. Google tells me that other people have had a similar problem, so I spent hours trying all the different workarounds, but nothing worked for me. 🙁

        1. Hi inge,

          Can you do one thing on your phone? Instead of “fastboot flash recovery recovery.img”, can you please use the “fastboot boot recovery.img” command and see if that gets you into the TWRP Recovery mode?

          Let us know how that works for you.


          1. it got worked on recovery mode (“fastboot boot recovery.img”)!…but after flashed the superSu. it hangs on motorola icon~!….still it shows the same page

  2. Hi Mahesh,

    First, thanks for the step-by-step.
    I’m having a similar issue than Inge. When I try to flash TWRP it finishes very quickly, so not really flashing it, below what I get after >fastboot flash recovery recovery.img

    >sending ‘recovery’ (8006 KB).
    >OKAY [ 0.265s]
    >writing ‘recovery’…
    >OKAY [ 0.140s]
    >finished. total time: 0.406s

    When into recovery mode and found the dead alien again, so I tried your suggestion >fastboot boot recovery.img
    This got me into TWRP recovery screen and was able to install SU. How can I flash TWRP permanently? so far I’m doing the temporarily boot everytime I need TWRP.


  3. Hi Joe,

    You’re welcome!

    It seems the device isn’t allowing the recovery to be flashed on it. Can you let me know if you could successfully unlock the bootloader? Is your bootloader unlocked?

    Let me know.


  4. Hi, my name is Sojwal. I’m trying to get my Moto G3 phone rooted by following your steps. after I reboot in recovery mode, it shows red triangle and no command. I’m unable to do anything after that. Please help for the next steps.

        1. Hi. This tutorial helped me a lot. I appreciate it. And that’s why I believe, you’ll be able to help me with few problems I’m facing.
          I want to install cyanogen mod of android lollipop in my moto g3. And I have few questions.
          1. Will I lose my data, like contacts, msgs, apps etc. ??
          2. Is there any tutorial guided by you for installing cyanogen mod?
          3. If not, please provide a link you trust which can guide me so that I won’t do any mistake. Any tutorial link would do, which you trust the most…

  5. Hi and thanks for the nice tutorial.
    But there was an issue for me with step V and “reboot recovery”. This doesnt work for me. Got every time the dead alien screen after reboot and no twrp screen. After different ADB-Driver installations, and many twrp flashes, I found a hint in an Youtube-Tutorial:


    vor 1 Monat

    +Jan Knoester (El Yeti) Flash twrp again, after when the screen asks you to reboot your device, click NO and your phone should still be in fastboot mode, go into recovery from there and it’ll fully install twrp.

    so I just not rebooted per cmd…

    This helped me and now it fully works.
    Maybe you could give a hint in your tutorial too.

    cheers and a happy new year

  6. Trying to download “twrp-osprey-2.8.7-r5.img” on to my computer from your link at xda. I keep getting “Couldn’t Mount File The disc image is corrupted” Trying to root my Moto g 3rd gen. but I’m stuck at the point where I need the twrp img. file to continue. Any help?

  7. Hello Every one,

    I have moto G 3 Gen i want to do custom recovery but i count able to turn on USB debugging mode because that phone is all ready some had done factory restore and now it is showing welcome screen but not starting after putting SIM card all so when i unlocking this device with fastboot command it also giving me error “allow OEM to unlock”

    please help me how to i unlock USB debugging.


    1. Head to Settings > About Phone and tap build number repeatedly until it says you are a developer, then hit back and go into developer options and turn on USB debugging and OEM Unlock from there.

  8. Hi,

    I am from India and recently the marshmallow update was available. Now that I have my Moto G3 boot loader already unlocked, rooted and currently on 5.1.1, how should I proceed to upgrade the device to marshmallow? Would the above rooting process also work with marshmallow? Please guide. Thanks!!

    1. Hi Rajiv,

      If the Marshmallow update is available, you can go ahead and get your device updated with the same.

      Once the update’s done, you can do the above procedure to gain root on your device.

      Hope that helps!

      1. Hi Mahesh,

        I read somewhere that the device needs to be unrooted prior to updating to marshmallow. Is it the case? Also there is an option to unroot in superSU itself when there is a seperate lengthier flashing guide given for unrooting moto g3 in this forum. Which one to follow?

        Also would the super SU 2.46 given here work with marshmallow as few people in other forums stated its not working on it? Please reply. Thanks!!

  9. Hi Mahesh/David,

    A quick question. Would unlocking the boot loader cause OTG to stop working? I didn’t test the OTG prior to unlocking bootloader, but I recently tested it and no pen drives got detected. Not even mouse. However, with OTG troubleshooter it displays that the chip has support but it is disabled at someplace which I am still not able to figure.

    Could you please check whether OTG is working for you on G3 after unlocking bootloader / rooting? Thanks.

    1. Hi Rajiv,

      Well, that’s a strange issue. I’ve never heard of OTG not working after unlocking bootloader/rooting the device.

      I don’t think unlocking or rooting has anything to do with the OTG system on your device, and if you think that these are the causes of the issue, please try unrooting your device and see if that solves the issue.

      Let us know if that works for you.


  10. hi I have followed all these steps and rooted my phone but when I touched “reboot system” in twrp my phone has got stuck on the “WARNING BOOTLOADER UNLOCKED” screen

  11. Hi, I did this process on my Moto G but when I rebooted, it got stuck on bootloader unlocked screen, what do I do now? Thanks

    1. When I was rooting my phone the same thing happened to me, to fix it I entered recovery mode and flashed CyanogenMod, then my phone booted up fine after this.

      1. Thanks for the answer, please, can you tell me how you did that? Because I am trying to turn it on on fastboot but I can’t do it. Thank you so SO much

      1. Hello, I unlocked the bootloader, then I installed TWRP, then I installed SuperSU, but when it asked me to reboot the phone, it got stucked and it’s unresponsive. Thanks for any help.

          1. Erick de Braal

            Hello i am not a native speaker but i will try to explain my problem. it is just the same as rodrigo but when i am in twrp and trying to install supersu the program says “this operation may install incompatible software and render your device unusable” this message is sent with any supersu. Any help would be welcome. My antivirus is set off so that cannot be the problem.

  12. I have the same problem as Rodrigo on my Moto G 3rd Gen.

    I succussfully unlocked the bootloader, loaded TWRP and then installed SuperSU-2.46 but after pressing reboot in TWRP all I get is the ‘Warning Bootloader Unlocked’ screen.

    I can get back into TWRP but can not get a different result by re-installing SuperSU. I have tried twrp-osprey-2.8.7-test1.img and twrp-osprey-3.0.0-r2.img. My phone is currently looking like it is a brick! Can anyone help please?

  13. Even if I unroot later, I think warranty has already been void because we have submitted that code. Is there any other way of rooting and which is reversible?

    1. Hi eshant,

      Yeah, you do submit your phone’s information to unlock the bootloader but how would they know you have actually used the code to unlock the bootloader? That procedure remains only on your PC.

      So I don’t think you should have any issues with warranty if you unroot the device.

      1. Hi Mahesh,

        If you check clause number 5 in the agreement, it clear states that:-

  14. Have problems when I try to flash the recovery. It says “Partition Size Mismatched” and I can’t boot TWRP nor even install it. Can’t flash the phone with the SuperSu .zip file. I need help 🙁

  15. Happened this:

    I followed the whole procedure for root my Motorola Moto G 3rd. Generation. When I flashed my device with the TWRP file, nothing seemed to happened, I mean the recovery didn’t change at all. When I started the recovery mode pushing the power button + volume down button it says “No commands available” and doesn’t do anything. I have to push the two buttons to restart fastboot mode. Then I tried something that I saw in another video on YouTube. I did the next: instead of execute “fastboot flash recovery…”, I executed “fastboot boot recovery” and then it seemed to work and I followed the fifth part of this tutorial. Succeed, I thought. NO! The white screen with the warning from the unlocked bootloader didn’t want to disappear. So I have to followed the procedure to unroot my device and all came back to zero.

    When I tried to do the procedure from the Step IV, nothing works, neither the commands as fastboot flash nor even fastboot boot. The device says “Partition size mismatched (Recovery)”. Need help, please! I really want to root my Motorola 🙁


    1. Hi Galo,

      The procedure now has the version of SuperSU that’s compatible with Android 6.0 Marshmallow and so the procedure should work fine on your Marshmallow running device.


      1. Already tried but no lick. It still didnt show any serial number of the device. And on connecting it with pc in fastboot doesnt shows usb connected.

  17. Is there a way to make this work for a Virgin Mobile MOTO G3? The MOTO site is saying my device cannot be unlocked.

  18. Hi, My cellphone MOTO G3 get stucked in MOTOROLA LOGO page. I made all the steps , with the supersu 2.65 and recovery 3.0.2-r1, please help i dont know what to do

  19. Joaquin Martinez Christensen

    Hello, I was able to unlock bootloader. However, I seem to flash, but when I reboot in recovery mode (after having pasted SuperSu in the SD card) there is a no command message. I hace already tried to different recoveries. Any help!

    1. Can you please do the following and let us know if it works for you?

      (1) Unlock the Bootloader
      (2) Copy SuperSU .zip to your SD card
      (3) Flash the custom recovery and after entering the “fastboot flash recovery” command, enter in the command “fastboot boot recovery.img” (replace recovery.img with the actual name of recovery) and it’ll reboot your device into recovery mode
      (4) Flash the SuperSU .zip package.

      Let us know. Thanks!

      1. Joaquin Martinez Christensen


        This did not work. I am running android 6.0. I tried it twice and could not get out of the bootloader unlocked after having flashed with supersu.

        Now I hace a new and more important problem! After unsuccesfully rooting, I installed a unsu package as to not have to flash a new stock firmware. It did not work. Not only that, now I can not even flash a stock firmware. The command window does not recognize my device. The phone does not appear in “My computer”. The drivers are correctly loaded. I am able to get the device intl fastboot mode manually. There is not baseband and software states “modified”. The phone does not boot. Is there any way this is salvagable (at this point I only want to get back to stock?


  20. I followed the guide step by step and after doing the I get the warning bootloader unlock screen and cant do anything.
    Adb says waiting on device with every command.
    HELP ?

  21. To anyone being stuck at rooting step 5 with “No command” message : before flashing the recovery, try renaming the .img file to recovery.img

    For some reason, it’s what seemed to be my problem.

  22. Hello, the superSU can not be installed on Android 6.0. I tryed V2.65 and V2.66, all got “failed to verify whole-file signature failed”. Any solution? My is XT1540.

    1. Problem solved, reflashed the recovery.img and start into recovery mode, there is a different screen than the original one, then choose install, select supersu file…..

  23. Hello there, I have a Moto G3 that I’m trying to install CyanogenMOD on, for a customer, and in the Developer Options there is not any option for “Allow OEM Unlock”
    It has Android 6.0 … Thanks

      1. How do I delete comments? and why can’t I change the attached picture after the comment is posted?

        Do you approve comments Mahesh?

        I posted a comment with a Motorola link and it has above it, “Hold on, this is waiting to be approved by TheUnlockr.”

  24. J.Addison Whattam

    I attempted to root my Moto G 3rd gen. from another website. Followed all same steps as your first four major procedures. & don’t remember what else. Result is device goes direct to fastboot screen. Tried to install latest Motorola “XT1540_Osprey_Retus_2GB_6.0_…………zip” ROM from micro SD card with TWRP. Result is E:Unable to mount ‘/data” Failed. Also installed SuperSU with TWRP . Got same data error but result said successful. After reboot device still goes direct to fastboot. How can this thing be recovered to be a phone again??

      1. J.Addison Whattam

        First I did the same 4 major steps(Roman numerals) as in your routine. Because I did not have Super SU on my phone I used a program called CF Auto Root.

        1. If you did the major 4 sections of our procedure, why did you not do the 5th section that taught how to flash SuperSU? You could’ve obtained SuperSU from the Downloads section of the procedure.

          So, what you’re saying is that you did the steps till 4 sections and then you used CF Auto Root to root your device. Did I get it right?

          1. J.Addison Whattam

            I was able to use a procedure to restore the Moto G 3rd gen back to stock ROM. I

            then tried your procedure again from the start. All OK until step V #2. I can NOT

            copy the SuperSU or any file over to my internal SD card (memory 0).
            I removed my SD card & copied Super SU to my SD card (mem0ry 1 ???).
            NOTE the coping gave a note that not all the attributes were able to be copied, but I

            clicked on do it any way.
            Continued on with steps through # 6. Did the install, BUT selected from SD card.

            All appeared OK. Now it boots up with the “Warning Bootloader Unlocked” AND

            thats where it stays. It won’t stay powered off. If I am very quick when it appears to

            be powered off (about 1 second), I can get it into bootloader mode. I can then again

            go through the restore to stock ROM procerure & it then needs to be set up all over

            again as a new phone. Is there any method to root this WITHOUT using SuperSU


          2. It doesn’t matter where you copy the SuperSU file to. You can copy it to any folder that you can then access from the recovery menu.

            If the SuperSU file flashed successfully, you shouldn’t see any issues on your phone.

  25. Benoit Lapointe

    So close yet so far.
    installed the latest version of TWRP as indicated. Worked all fine, I think. But when entering the command

    adb reboot recovery

    The phone rebooted, but a rather dead looking robot appeared on the screen with a legend underneath saying “no command”. Fortunately, the phone rebooted after a few minutes (the time it took to write as much as that) in normal mode. Is it something to do with TWRP not installed properly? Can I uninstall and start again?

    1. Can you send a screenshot of the command prompt with what happens when you type the flash recovery command. It sounds like it is reflashing the stock recovery on boot. Also, check the featured comment at the top of the comments here for help, as it sounds similar to what they did.

      1. Benoit Lapointe

        Sorry if I took some time (fiddling with phones is not my job). So here is what I did type in step 7:

        C:UsersBenDesktopMinimal ADB and Fastboot>fastboot flash recovery twrp-osprey-3.0.2-r1.img
        (bootloader) has-slot:recovery: not found
        target reported max download size of 268435456 bytes
        sending ‘recovery’ (7414 KB)…
        OKAY [ 0.355s]
        writing ‘recovery’…
        OKAY [ 0.682s]
        finished. total time: 1.558s

        C:UsersBenDesktopMinimal ADB and Fastboot>

        I then typed, as instructed, I entered the command
        fastboot reboot

      2. Benoit Lapointe

        If the custom recovery is going to be removed each time after a system reboot, might as well just do a temporary boot of the recovery:
        fastboot boot twrp.img

        (replace accordingly twrp.img by the name of your recovery file)

          1. Okay, so I fixed it.
            Before starting this guide I was running android 6.0.1.
            When i flashed the superSU via twrp i ran into a bootloop (Phone was stuck at the bootloader removed warning).

            To fix this problem you should flash an android 5.1.1 stock rom
            I did this via this guide

            After that your phone should reboot to android 5.1.1.
            Now your device runs android 5.1.1 you can flash the SuperSU (non-marshmallow version) via this guide.

            I’m now running a rooted moto G 2015 with android 5.1.1

            For some reason the marshmallow version of SuperSU didn’t work for me in android 6.0.1.

  26. Nearly there however when I install the zip it says
    –install /data/media/0/ …
    Finding update package …
    Opening update package…
    Verifying update package …
    E: failed to verify whole-file signature
    E:signature verification failed
    Installation aborted
    🙁 I don’t know what to do. Can someone help?

  27. UPDATE-SuperSU-v2.65-20151226141550 resulted in a bootloop which took a long time to fix by replacing the stock recovery and ROM via fastboot. BETA-SuperSU-v2.62-3-20151211162651 worked for me.

        1. Hi, I followed the steps and I’m now in the boot loop always appear the white screen with “WARNIN BOOTLOAD UNLOCKED”. Nothing happens after this. What I should do?
          Thank you

  28. Hi, I have followed all the above steps and I get this message in cmd whenever I try to use the first adb command

    error: device offline

    My device is clearly detected in windows so I don’t know what is happening

  29. i got to the point where it tells your to transferred it to sd card takes me forever for it to show up got to erase cashes power it down before it shows up. also as soon as i type the final adb reboot recovery it goes strait to no command every time

  30. Wajahat Nasim

    is there any way to recover lost data coz i have unlocked the bootloader but forgot to backup data?? Please Help

  31. Syed Shayan Ali

    (bootloader) slot-count: not found
    (bootloader) slot-suffixes: not found
    (bootloader) slot-suffixes: not found
    (bootloader) has-slot:recovery: not found
    error: cannot load ‘twrp.img’

  32. If your android version is Marshmellow and stuck in bootloop: Try this
    After successfully flashing TWRP and booting it, go to Advanced – Terminal and enter:

    echo SYSTEMLESS=true>>/data/.supersu

    And press Enter, then exit. The spelling and spacing must be exact or it
    won’t work. Then go to the main menu of TWRP and flash SuperSU
    normally, you should see the script specifically state it is doing a
    systemless install and patch the boot image (and in your case, cleanup
    an old standard root installation).

  33. Thank you very much @theunlockr !!!!!
    I was able to root my old Moto G3 and get rid of the TextNow bullcrap on it. It is now a great 13MP security camera with motion detection. Slapped a fresh XT1548 stock rom on there. Updated it fully and works perfectly.

  34. WARNING !!!
    After step 9 in Section IV my phone rebooted, and behaved like it was “hard reset”. I lost my text messages, apps, pictures, etc.

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