Magisk Root & Universal Systemless Interface – What is it & How to Install

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Magisk is a complete universal root and mod solution for your Android. It is developed and maintained by XDA Dev – topjohnwu. At some point, you might also consider it as a potential replacement to the infamous Xposed Framework. While the latter still doesn’t support Nougat, Magisk completely supports any Android device running Lollipop 5.0 or above.

Over the last couple of months, it has gained a lot of trust over from users. Since it works flawlessly and provides tons of possibilities to modify and add features to your Android smartphone. The best part about it, is that all the mods and changes are carried out on a systemless level. So your /system partition stays untouched, which ultimately allows you to receive over-the-air updates and install them without any hiccups.Magisk Root Universal Systemless Interface

Read more: How to maximize sound quality on Qualcomm devices with Hi-Performance DAC Enabler

Apart from the modifications and tweaks, Magisk also offers its own native root method known as MagiskSU. The interface however, will work with any systemless root solution like SuperSU.

Moving on from Xposed, I already feel that Magisk has everything to take it over. And the biggest plus point is that it lets you add features and make significant changes to your ROM without even touching the /system partition.

Now that you have an idea of what it is, let us move in-detail towards the features.


Magisk Root & Universal Systemless Interface


The mod, as many would like to call it, is very much identical to Xposed and also has a dedicated app for the job that brings all the features at your tips. The app is known as Magisk Manager and is available for download through the Play Store. The app has its own repo system, which not only makes it easier for users to access the available modules, but also the developers to contribute towards it.

Also read: Google Chrome Tips and Tricks: 10 things to maximize your browsing experience

  • Magisk Hide: It allows you to hide the complete interface from SafetyNet checks initiated by apps like Android Pay, Mario Run, etc. The feature is disabled by default and needs to be enabled from the app settings.
  • Install: Install, update, and uninstall Magisk in-app. This section also allows you to choose to keep or discard force encryption and dm-verity.
  • Superuser: Manage root permissions, switch logging, and root notifications for apps. This option will work if only you have rooted via MagiskSU.
  • Modules: This is where you can enable/disable modules or delete them.
  • Downloads: Browse the list of modules available in the Magisk repo and install them.

While these are the major features, there are some good amount of minor tweaks inside the app.

How To Install

Magisk works only with root, so if you already have it, great! If not, you should skip this method and follow the one below this.

Magisk 13.0 BETA Released – Supports Android O & SafteyNet Fixes

Current BETA version: 13.0 (96f8efc)
Current stable version: 12.0
Current Magisk Manager version: 5.0.0
Last updated: 2017-06-16

» Rooted devices

So, if your Android is already rooted with latest systemless SuperSU, it will be much shorter and simpler for you to get Magisk working.

Installing Magisk on Rooted devices

  1. Download the Magisk Manager from XDA Labs.
    Magisk Manager
    Magisk Manager
    Developer: topjohnwu
    Price: Free
  2. Install the app and run it. Make sure to grant root permissions when asked.
  3. You will instantly be prompted to install Magisk. Tap on Download & Install and then Install.
  4. Once the installation is complete, you will be asked to reboot your device. So tap on REBOOT.

Also read: Set SELinux to Permissive with SELinuxToggler [Android 4.2+]

» Non-rooted devices

If you still haven’t rooted, you will need to. The most simplest solution is to simply flash Magisk itself, which will not only install the mod, but also root your device with MagiskSU. Of course, your device must have TWRP recovery installed for this.

Install Magisk on non-rooted devices

  1. Download the latest installer zip: Stable (12.0) | BETA (13.0)
  2. Reboot into TWRP, either by using the physical button combo for your device, or through the ADB command below.
    adb reboot recovery
  3. Tap on Install. Browse the storage for installer zip (e.g – Magisk-v12.0.zip) and select it. Confirm the flashing process. Once complete, tap on Reboot System.
  4. Upon the reboot, go to the Play Store and update the Magisk Manager application.

That’s all, you have just installed one of the most trending mod out there. Tinker around with the app and see what all things you could do.

Wait, there are a few known issues

The current version has a few problems that you should know of. You might see them fixed and implemented in further updates.

  • Pixel / Pixel XL Support: WIP
  • Magisk Manager cannont be placed in adoptable storage, or superuser will not work
  • MagiskSU does not support multiuser: WIP
  • MagiskSU does not work on Android O preview: WIP

Drop a comment down below if you face any problems during the installation or there are any queries. You are now free to install your favorite modules and tweak your ROM.

Happy modding!

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  • Kevopolous Johnston

    Boot image location is not detected when I run the manager and when I click download &install it only downloads. When I go to the download and flash it I get an error message. Any ideas? Running rooted pixel xl

    • Seems like Pixel indeed has many issues with Magisk. Look here: https://github.com/topjohnwu/Magisk/issues/47

      You would probably have to wait for it, I believe. Anyways, Is there a specific reason or a feature for which you want Magisk?

      • Kevopolous Johnston

        I figured as much. I’m just having issues getting viper4android to work (used your guide). Trying with a new version of TWRP now, do you know if new versions of supersu are having difficulties?

        • I would recommend sticking to v2.79 SR3. Also, what sort of difficulties are you exactly having with V4A installation?

          • Kevopolous Johnston

            It installs fine, can install driver. It just has no effect. It never says “processing” for me, although it does say enabled. I tried compatible mode and normal mode. I have poweramp installed as well and turned off the DVC and still nothing (sound changes when I do that but not due to viper)

          • If it install fine and then it’s working I am sure of that. Processing says no for me too, and it works. Go to Settings > Apps and see if there’s an app “AudioFX” or “MusicFX”. If there is, kindly disable that. Also make sure that any and all sorts of equalizers are disabled including the ones in PowerAMP and Google Play Music.

          • Kevopolous Johnston

            Do you know how to disable the poweramp EQ? The only version available for donwload now is the beta version and I don’t see how to disable it. I don’t have any other music apps except spotify. I checked apps and there is nothing called AudioFX or MusicFX, gonna check it with Titanium in a sec

          • For starters, kindly uninstall PowerAMP completely. Then reboot your device and download Google Play Music (If you don’t have it already). Make sure that you have enabled V4A settings and then play music. For better, use a pair of earphones. Disable V4A then play music, and then enable them and play music. You will then notice the difference.

            Apps like PowerAMP and Spotify have their own audio processing engines that contradict with the ones present in V4A, so you might have to stick to some other music player for enjoying Viper. 😉

          • Kevopolous Johnston

            Sounds good I have a fresh reboot right now so I can check if it works

          • Good 🙂 Let me know.