The other day we reported that root access was now available for the Google Pixel 2 variants and gave you step by step instructions on how to do it. At the time there was no reliable custom recovery available but now there is, albeit still in beta form.
Why do we need a custom recovery? There are many reasons why we might need one including backing before tinkering with the system partition in case of a soft brick, easily flashing custom kernels and ROMs and to flash system tweaks to name a few. For these reasons it is important for anyone who wants to hack around inside their phone’s software a custom recovery is essential (unless you don’t mind flashing factory images continuously and starting from scratch each time a mistake is made).
While to many it may not seem like a big deal but each year, with Google’s new encryption and other security measure it has been increasingly difficult to get fully functional custom recoveries. After learning a lot from the creation of the TWRP recoveries for last year’s Pixel phones the team have managed to already build a functional TWRP.
While still in beta form (Beta 2 for the Pixel 2 XL and Beta one for the Pixel 2) the custom recovery can now fully decrypt the system partition allowing a lot of extra functionality. At this stage the lead developer, Dees Troy, says that they are not sure whether the monthly security updates will reak some of the functionality they have achieved but time will tell.
For those interested int he nitty griity of how the new functionality is achieved and why it was difficult to achieve head on over to Dees Troy’ Google+ post and read away. For everyone else who just wants to hack away at their phones with the ability to easily restore head on over to the Pixel 2 or the Pixel 2 XL thread and follow the instructions.
We are yet to test this out on Ausdroid’s Pixel phones so proceed at your own risk but if you follow the instructions on XDA closely you should be fine — worst case you can always flash the factory image to restore your phone to a workable nature should something adverse happen to it.