Full Guide for Xiaomi Recovery Mode

Xiaomi Recovery Mode is created for recovery of Mi, Redmi, POCO smartphones and operating system update. It allows not only to install the firmware on the phone, but also to return the device to the working condition after the failure, resetting the phone to the factory settings.

What is Recovery Mode and Recovery ROM

Recovery Mode on Xiaomi, Redmi and POCO is a special mode of system recovery, through which you can install the firmware Recovery ROM or restore your smartphone to a working state, if it does not boot.

There are two types of Recovery Mode:

  1. Official (stock) — this recovery is pre-installed on all Xiaomi smartphones, Mi, Redmi, POCO. It contains only the basic functions. It can be downloaded from our website and we will talk about it further in the text.
  2. Unofficial (custom) — this is a recovers from third-party developers with enhanced capabilities for flashing the smartphone, installing patches and modifications. It is often understood as TWRP custom recovers. To work with the custom recovers you need to have certain skills.

To work with the device in Recovery Mode, it is recommended to have at least 60% battery level. If the smartphone runs out of power during the update, all the data may be lost.

The menu of the official stock Recovery Xiaomi, Mi, Redmi, POCO has a multi-level structure. You can navigate through it with the volume buttons. To select the desired menu item, press the power button.

Recovery Main Menu

Recovery Menu structure:

  • Reboot — reboot menu offers two options: Reboot to System (normal reboot in MIUI, data is not deleted) and Back to Main Menu.
  • Wipe Data — used to reset to factory settings. All your files will be deleted from the phone: photos, videos, music and apps. Wipe All Data will delete all data and Back to Main Menu will return you to the home screen.
  • Connect with MI Assistant — connects your device to your PC to restore your operating system. You need a USB cable, Mi Flash Pro installed on your PC and the downloaded firmware file.
    We have understood what Recovery Mode is. Now let’s look at what Recovery ROM is.

Recovery ROM — is the firmware intended for updating MIUI with the help of the stock recovery mode on Xiaomi. The firmware is available for download as a ZIP file, just like the OTA update. You can download the official version for your device from miuirom.org.

recovery rom download

What’s the difference between Recovery ROM and OTA

The main difference is that an OTA update is not a firmware version but just an update. OTA only contains the necessary files for upgrading your MIUI. Recovery ROM is a full-fledged firmware.

The difference between OTA and Recovery ROM:

  1. Recovery ROM does not arrive “by air”, the firmware can only be downloaded. The OTA can be downloaded or installed “over the air”.
  2. Installation of the Recovery ROM is possible only via the stock recovery mode of the phone – Recovery Mode. It’s much easier to download and install OTA.
  3. ZIP file with Recovery ROM takes much more space because it contains full fledged firmware for your smartphone. The OTA ZIP file is much smaller because it only includes the files needed to update MIUI.
  4. Recovery ROM is installed on any version of MIUI. Each OTA update is released for a specific version of MIUI.
  5. OTAs only come in official versions. Recoveries can be custom, i.e. from third-party developers. Our website miuirom.org only allows you to download official Xiaomi firmware, we do not have any custom firmwares.
  6. In case you get stuck or the phone doesn’t boot up correctly after installing the firmware update (OTA), you can use our Recovery Menu to perform a factory reset or install the firmware through Recovery ROM.

Installing the firmware through the recovery

To update firmware through the recovery it is necessary that the version of MIUI in Recovery ROM was higher than the one installed, as in the new smartphones Xiaomi developers have blocked the possibility of lowering the system version.

When installing the firmware through the stock recovery, the user data is not deleted, but there is a possibility of losing it due to an accidental error during the installation process. Make a backup copy of your data in advance!

How to install Recovery ROM on Xiaomi, Mi, Redmi and POCO in recovery mode:

  1. Select your phone or tablet model in the catalog with MIUI firmware and download Recovery ROM in ZIP format for the desired region.
  2. Rename the file to Update.zip (if its name is different).
  3. Move the Update.zip file to the root of your microSD card.
  4. Press the power, volume up, and volume down buttons at the same time.
  5. If the file is correct, the update will start right away. After the firmware is installed, the phone will reboot and go to MIUI automatically. User files and applications will remain in the internal memory.

For older versions of stock recovery you should additionally select Install update.zip to System One in the Recovery menu (there will be no update.zip unless you rename the file to update.zip). After installation, you need to exit Recovery Mode and boot into MIUI.

Recovery ROM install
Recovery Menu in older versions of Recovery Mode.

How to enter Recovery Mode

As you can see, you don’t have to enter the Recovery Menu to install the Recovery ROM. However, if you want to reset your phone to factory settings or have entered the recovery menu by accident, read on.

How to unlock Xiaomi recovery mode:

  1. Turn off your smartphone.
  2. Press the power and volume up buttons.
  3. Hold them down until the Android logo appears on the screen.
  4. After about 10 seconds, the Recovery menu will appear on the screen.

MIUI 11 allows you to enter Recovery mode from the system settings. To do this, launch the Settings app, go to “About phone” → “System update“, tap the three dots in the upper right corner of the screen and select “Reboot to Recovery mode“. Starting with MIUI 12, this menu is not available at the initiative of Xiaomi developers.

How to exit the Recovery Menu:

  1. Select RebootReboot to System from the main menu. The smartphone will reboot to the familiar MIUI interface.
  2. Alternatively, press and hold the power button on your smartphone. It will turn off, then turn on and start loading MIUI.

Recovery Menu Xiaomi

Hard Reset via recovery

Warning: All your data will be deleted after the reset! Make a backup copy.

How to hard reset your phone via recovery to factory settings:

  1. Hold down the power and volume up buttons to enter recovery mode.
  2. Choose Wipe DataWipe All DataConfirm.
  3. The device reset process will start and the message Data wiped successfully will appear once it has finished.
  4. Return to the main menu Recovery → RebootReboot to System. First boot up after resetting the phone to the recovery may take about 5 minutes.

We recommend reading about MIUI update installation errors and their solutions.

MIUI ROM
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