How to Root the Samsung Galaxy Tab A

Please note: This guide was initially published back in 2015 and some of the software it references is no longer available and/or no longer functions. Attempting to root your device using these instructions may result in a “bricked” (non-functioning) device.

This step by step guide will take you all of the way from start to finish through the process of “rooting” your Samsung Galaxy Tab A tablet.

There are all kinds of reasons you may want to root your Samsung Galaxy Tab A – whatever yours may be, this is the tutorial for you!

What you’ll need:

  • A Windows PC running Vista, Windows 7, 8.x or 10. Note to Mac users: If you’re going to try this in a virtual environment, using VirtualBox or Parallels Desktop, it’s probably not going to work. It did not work using VirtualBox running Windows 10. You may have more luck with Parallels.
  • Some free software, all of which can be downloaded via this tutorial
  • Your Tab A and a USB cable
  • About half an hour
    1. Start out by downloading the Samsung Android USB Driver for Windows (link opens in a new window/tab). If you have any problem downloading the file from the previous link, here’s a alternate download.
    2. After the download has completed, open the zip file and run the SAMSUNG_USB_Driver_for_Mobile_Phones.exe driver installation package.
    3. The installation might seem like it ‘stalls’ – don’t worry, just give it a few minutes. Click Finish when you’re done.
    4. Now download Odin3 – a small program that’s used to root your Tab A. This tutorial uses version 3.10.6. There has since been a newer release (3.10.7) – we still suggest you use 3.10.6 since we know for certain it works. If the previous link doesn’t work, here’s a direct download for Odin3 v3.10.6.
    5. Now grab your Galaxy Tab A and tap the Settings button.
    6. android settings button

    7. Locate and select About device
    8. Now scroll to the Model number section and make note of yours. Based on your model, you’ll need to download one of two files.
    9. If you have the SM-T550, the SM-P550 or the SM-P555 – download this file. If you have the SM-T350, the SM-P550 or the SM-P555, download this file. Save the file in your Downloads folder. Note: many thanks to ashyx for creating these files!
    10. Now extract the contents of the Odin3 file, and then open the (just created) Odin3 v3.10.6 folder.
    11. Run the Odin3 v3.10.6 app.
    12. Welcome to Odin3! Select the Options tab and then make sure there are ‘check marks’ in the boxes labelled Auto Reboot and F. Reset Time. Make sure there are no check marks in all of the other boxes/options. Then click the AP button.
    13. Navigate to the .tar file that you downloaded back in Step #8 (above). Select it by clicking on it once, and then click the Open button.
    14. Grab your Galaxy Tab A again and power it completely off.
    15. At this point we’re going to boot (start up) your tablet into Download Mode. Press and hold the Volume Down, Home, and Power buttons at the same time.
    16. You’ll know you’ve successfully booted into Download Mode when a blue screen with a large Warning message is displayed. Tap the Volume UP button to continue.

    17. click to enlarge

    18. Once again, grab your Tab A and this time use your USB cable and plug it into your Windows PC/laptop.
    19. Back in Odin3, click the Start button.

    20. In the left column of Odin3, you’ll see a bunch of text appear.
    21. At some point your Tab A is going to reboot. When it comes back up, don’t be at all surprised if there’s (unintelligible) text on the screen etc.
    22. Eventually (doesn’t take that long) Odin3 will display a large green PASS! notification (see screenshot below).
    23. Congratulations, your Galaxy Tab A has now been rooted!
    24. To completely confirm everything went successfully, download and install Root Checker from the Google Play Store (it’s a free App).
    25. Launch it from your Tab A and click the “Green Circle” button in the bottom right corner of the App.
    26. Tap the Grant button to check to see if your Tab A was rooted correctly.
    27. Close the Ad that probably appeared right after you tapped Grant, and in the upper-left corner of the Root Checker App, confirm that the Status is Rooted.
    28. You’re all done!

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