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How to Create the Backup System of your Android Device with TWRP custom recovery mode?

Written by B Johnson June 25, 2016
TWRP icon
Having a reliable Android device that can work normally everyday without any problem is definitely everyone’s dream. However, in reality, there will always be problems that occur out of the blue to any of Android devices out there, including yours.

The most common problem is the one called "bootloop" or error that could happen in the boot-up process (the process when you just turn ON your smartphone/tablet). So any smartphone or tablet that is plagued with "bootloop" usually refuses to enter to the system (homescreen) and keeps rebooting or gets stuck on the logo screen over and over again.

Usually, the cause of this problem is the virus that "silently" attacks the smartphone or tablet through web browsers. And this could happen if a user browses some insecure sites and then click the random links on the page without any caution.

This virus can also happen when a user installs some 3rd party apps or games not directly from Google Play Store, but from other websites.

So this is why it’s really important for you to have the backup system of your device before anything bad happens to your smartphone or tablet.

By creating the backup system, if something goes wrong with your device in the future, you can easily restore your device back to normal again by using that backup system you've already created earlier.

But the question is, how to create the backup system of our Android device?

The answer is by using a custom recovery tool called TWRP.

Well, if this is your first time knowing about TWRP, so TWRP, which stands for Team Win Recovery Project, is actually similar just like CWM (clockworkmod) I’ve already explained to you in my previous post. So you might want to check it out first before learning more about TWRP.

So with TWRP, you can do a lot of things that the STANDARD RECOVERY MODE cannot do. But basically, just like CWM, the main feature of TWRP is its ability to create the entire backup system of your Android device, so later you can restore your smartphone or tablet back to normal again if something wrong happens.

What is so great about TWRP than CWM?

However, despite being the same custom recovery tool just like CWM, there are actually tons of cool things about TWRP that in my opinion make it better than CWM.

So first of all, on TWRP, you can use the touchscreen as the input method. So you can easily select every option on TWRP by tapping directly on the screen. And this is totally different with CWM that allows users to control everything on the screen only by using volume UP/BOTTOM and power buttons.

And second of all, there are many awesome features on TWRP that cannot be found on CWM, from file explorer, cutting/copying/pasting and many more.

So this is why if you’re still confused about which one you should install on your device, CWM or TWRP, I strongly recommend you to pick TWRP because this custom recovery tool is more sophisticated and more advanced than CWM, especially in features and visual presentations.

Let's the get party started!

Well, without further ado, if you want to know how exactly to create backup system of your Android device using TWRP custom recovery tool, below I’m about to share to you the step-by-step guide from installing TWRP on your device, creating backup system and finally, moving the backup file to your PC or flashdisk for further use in the future.

Anyway, even though this process is pretty safe to do, I have to warn you to do this tutorial below AT YOUR OWN RISK! So I’m not responsible for anything wrong that might happen on your device.

WARNING!! Do this at your own risk!! I will not be responsible for anything wrong that might happen on your device!

1. Clear up some room on internal storage for backup file

The first thing you need to do is clear up some space on your internal storage or external microSD card in order to give some free room for the ‘backup system’ file which later will be generated by TWRP.

And if your device currently has installed a lot of apps and heavy games, then the backup file generated by TWRP will be really BIG in size, probably around 4 to 5GB.

So this is why I strongly recommend you to remove some heavy games on internal storage in order to give some room for the ‘backup’ file and also to keep the 'backup' file small in size.

However, if your device supports USB on-the-go, you can also use empty 8GB flashdisk and has TWRP create the backup file on that flashdisk. So later you can easily move that ‘backup’ file to other places, like your PC or laptop. This is actually highly recommended.

2. Root your Android Device

Okay, after clearing up some space on internal storage or preparing an empty flashdisk, the next thing you need to do is replace the STANDARD RECOVERY MODE of your device with TWRP custom recovery tool.

However, in order to be able to install TWRP, your device must be rooted. And this is really important because you need to firstly install an app called "Rashr" that will be used to install TWRP. And this "Rashr" app requires root permission of your device.

If you don’t know exactly to root your device, you probably might want to read my previous post about "how to root your Android device?". But if you can't find your device on that page, you can also go straight to XDA-developers.com and find the rooting method of your device.

XDA-developers.com is actually a forum that has the most complete rooting methods on internet of all Android devices in the market, including yours. So I believe you'll find no problem finding about how to root your device on this forum.

3. Find the right compatible TWRP image file for your device

Right now I assume that you have successfully rooted your Android smartphone or tablet. And you also have validated the root access of your device by using “Root Checker”.

Well, if that’s true your device has been rooted, the next thing you need to do is find the right TWRP image file that is compatible with your device.

But where exactly is the place to find the right and compatible TWRP image file for your device?

Well, you can actually find it on also the specific thread/post at XDA-developers.com dedicated to your device.

For example, if you own NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet, you can find the right compatible TWRP file for this Nvidia tablet on XDA-developers.com by typing this on Google: “TWRP Nvidia Shield Tablet XDA-developers.com”.

4. Download TWRP image file and rename it to “recovery.img”

If you manage to find the right TWRP file on that XDA-developers forum, now download it and then extract the image file to your microSD card. But remember, try to put it right in the root directory of your external microSD card, NOT INSIDE ANY FOLDER.

After that, rename the file into:


Anyway, besides downloading TWRP image file, I strongly recommend you to also download the stock/standard recovery image file from the same page (if you can find it) in case if you want to switch back to the normal STANDARD recovery mode in the future.

You can also backup the stock/standard recovery tool of your device by using Flashify app which you can get it from Google Play Store.

5. Flash TWRP with Rashr

After putting the TWRP image file in the root directory of your external microSD card, now download an app called “Rashr” on Google Play Store and install it on your device. And then, open the app, update the app (with internet connection activated) and select “Allow/Grant” on the prompted window to grant root permission for this app.

Next, select “Recovery from Storage” and scroll down to the bottom to find the TWRP file (recovery.img) that you’ve just downloaded earlier. If you can find it, now select that file by tapping on it.

The small window will be prompted to you: “Choosing recovery.img? Are you sure?”.

If this window pops up, select “Yes” to let Rashr flash your device with TWRP custom recovery image. It usually only takes a few seconds to complete. If the flashing process finishes, it means TWRP has been successfully installed on your device.

6. Go to TWRP recovery mode (Teamwin logo)

Now go to TWRP custom recovery mode by pressing “Reboot Recovery” on Rashr.

You can actually reboot to recovery mode manually by turning off your device, turning it ON again by pressing VOLUME UP + POWER BUTTONS at the same time. But I think it’s much easier and more efficient to do with Rashr.

7. Select “Backup”

Okay, I assume that right now your device has rebooted to TWRP custom recovery mode. On the screen, there will be a bunch of options presented to you here. Now select the option “Backup” because you want to create the backup system of your device.

8. Check off ALL of the boxes in “Select Partitions to Backup”

After pressing “Backup” on the previous screen, on the new screen, you will be given the choices of partitions that you would like to backup. I strongly recommend you to choose check off all the boxes here because they are gonna be really important in the future.

Many tech websites I stumbled upon on the net are mostly only asking you to tick off 3 partitions: Data, System and Boot. But I think it's much safer to keep all of the partitions in the backup so you won't lose anything in the future.

9. Select Storage

Below the screen, there is a button called “Select Storage”. Now press it to choose which one between internal or external storage (microSD card) that you would like to use as the place where you want this backup system to be created.

If you have an empty flashdisk, I strongly recommend you to use it because later, it’s gonna be much easier to move the 'backup file' to PC or laptop. But if you don’t have flashdisk, it’s alright, you can use internal storage of your device to create the backup system with TWRP.

But of course, you firstly have to make sure that your device has sufficient space either in internal/external storage because the 'backup file' generated by TWRP will be relatively huge in size (around 2GB to 4GB).

10. Swipe to Backup

Okay, on the bottom of the screen, there is a slider that you can swipe from LEFT to the RIGHT. Now make the full swipe WHEN YOU'RE READY to start creating backup system.

Once you do it, the backing up process will start. It’s gonna take a while depends on how many games or apps you have installed on your device.

I mean, if you have installed many apps and heavy games, the backing up process usually will take around 20 minutes. But if you only have a couple of small apps and games, then the process can be a lot faster.

Anyway, in this backing up process, you might want to put your device on the table alone without any interruption because your smartphone/tablet currently is doing a really heavy task, which is creating the backup system of your device.

So don’t press any button during this process!

11. Congrats, the backup system has been created

Okay, once the process of creating backup is complete, the new message usually will pop up at the end of the line confirming that your backup has been successfully created.

Well, congratulations, you just created the backup system of your device. Now go back to the system by selecting “Reboot to System”.

12. Copy the TWRP backup folder to PC or flashdisk

After booting up to the normal system and entering to the homescreen, the next thing you want to do is move the ‘backup’ folder you just created with TWRP to your PC or flashdisk.

This is really important because the backup file usually takes a lot of space internal/external storage. So the best advice for you is move that backup file either to PC/laptop or flashdisk to free up some space.

Now open file manager and then scroll down to the bottom in internal storage. In the root directory, there will be a new folder named “TWRP”.

Now copy this TWRP folder (remember, the entire "TWRP" folder) and then paste it in your PC or your flashdisk.

But if you cannot find this "TWRP" folder, you can probably find it inside the folder on the top named "0".

If you have successfully copied the TWRP folder to your laptop or flashdisk, now delete the existing TWRP folder to clear up some space in internal/external storage of your device.

Anyway, if you want to know how to restore the backup system to your device, you should check out my other tutorial about "how to restore the backup system on TWRP?".


Well, that’s all for now guys. Hopefully, my step-by-step guide here will be helpful for you in the future if you’re planning to create the backup system of your Android device using TWRP.

Anyway, if you feel that this article is informative to you, then don’t hesitate to share it to your friends or family on Twitter or Facebook. I would totally appreciate it!

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