When you buy a phone, its internal system has some restrictions, so you can’t make any changes to it. Fortunately, afterwards, you can perform a few operations which can remove the “chain”, with the risk of losing the handset warranty. Anyway, don’t worry, because if you know exactly what and how to do it your device will be in safe hands. Therefore, in today’s step by step guide I will show you how to safely unlock the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray bootloader. The concept is explained and detailed below, go and take a look and see if your Xperia Ray need (or not) to have an unlocked bootloader.
The most important aspect you must consider is that you have to perform this task if you want to root, install a custom recovery image, or flash a custom ROM (like CyanogenMod) on your smartphone. This means that you have to unlock your Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray bootloader if you want to customize and improve its operating system, or if you want to power up its performances. As you will see, the procedure is easy to follow and to understand, all being done in just a couple of minutes.
Now, let’s see what is with this bootloader. First of all, each phone has one pre-installed. Also, in most of the cases it is locked, being something like a carrier restriction. And your Xperia Ray doesn’t make an exception from this rule. Anyway, you can avoid this, but only if you get an unlocked phone straight from Google, which is extremely rare.
The bootloader which is running on your smartphone is similar with the one you have on your computer. Each time a device is powered on, it usually does not have an operating system loaded in ROM or RAM. That’s why it must execute a small program stored in ROM and a few data in order to access the nonvolatile devices from which the operating system programs and data are loaded into RAM.
As you can tell, this so called “program” is in fact the bootloader (also known as bootstrap loader). Its purpose is to load other data and programs which are then executed from the RAM memory. The software is not the same for all the platforms out there; therefore the one featured on an Android powered device will be completely different from the one included on iOS, MeeGo and so on. That’s also why the unlocking procedure is different from on smartphone to another (for example, the process used for unlocking the Xperia Play bootstrap loader will not work on the Xperia Mini, or as in our case, for the Xperia Ray).
But, before we begin, here is what you need to know and do. First of all, I recommend you to backup the Xperia Ray data, contacts, messages, apps and everything else you need to (including the info stored on its SD card) because the process might wipe the data out from it. Then, as already stated, unlocking the bootloader will make you void the phone’s warranty, so if you’re not comfortable with this you should probably stop here. If something goes wrong, you are on your own.
The tools need in order to succeed are: a Windows / MAC / Linux running computer, the phone’s USB cord and fastboot installed on the PC. If not, you should check our previous posts and install Adb on Linux / Mac or install the Android SDK on Windows. After competing this, you can turn back and follow the rest of this step by step guide.
Make sure you do all as explained below; if you are having problems in understanding something, or if you can complete one of the steps, share the issues with us so we can help you through.
How to unlock the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray bootloader
- At the first step you must find the smartphone’s IMEI. This can be done by opening the “Phone application”. There type “#06#” and that’s it; write down the IMEI as you will need it later.
- Turn off the device.
- Now turn it back on and while connecting the device with the computer, press and hold the Volume Up button.
- On your PC, open terminal (Start -> Run -> cmd) and type the following commands:
- If there are no errors, go to this page.
- There, click on the red “Continue” button located on the bottom of the page.
- Follow the prompts.
- When asked, enter in the first 14 digits of IMEI of the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray (dropping the last digit) along with your name and your email address.
- A code should be provided; write it down.
- On the computer re-open the terminal and then type the commands from the image:
- That’s it.
- How to unlock the Sony Ericsson Xperia Arc bootloader
- How to unlock the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play bootloader
- How to unlock the Sony Ericsson Xperia Mini bootloader
- How to backup the Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray data, contacts, apps and everything else
- How to install CyanogenMod 7 on Sony Ericsson Xperia Ray