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How To Fix OEM Unlock Missing on Android? [4 Methods]

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Jun 14, 2024 • Filed to: Remove Screen Lock • Proven solutions

Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) Unlock is a function on Android devices. It allows you to unlock your phone bootloader. A bootloader or bootstrap loader gathers the operating system files, loads them into memory, and hands over control, essentially starting your device. Unlocking the bootloader assists you in installing custom ROMs, flashing custom kernels, and rooting your phone.

However, this freedom comes with some trade-offs. Most manufacturers will void your warranty if you unlock the bootloader, and it can also make your phone face higher risks of malware and other security threats. Additionally, it can be difficult to relock the bootloader once you unlock it.

If you encounter the OEM unlock missing on your Android phone despite wanting to unlock your bootloader, this article can help. You will learn the step-by-step guide for the different methods to fix the missing OEM unlock option. Before diving into solutions, let's explore why this option might be unavailable in the first place.

using a phone at work

Part 1: Why Is OEM Unlock Missing on Your Device?

Finding that OEM Unlock is missing on your Android phones can be frustrating, particularly if you plan to modify your software or install a custom ROM. But don't worry. There are several possible explanations for this. Let's explore some of the most common reasons:

Manufacturer Restrictions

The Missing OEM Unlock option can often be due to restrictions imposed by your device's manufacturers. They may intentionally remove this option to safeguard device security and compatibility. It is common with carrier-locked devices. As a result, the OEM Unlock option may not show.

Bootloader Already Unlocked

In some cases, the Android OEM Unlock Missing issue arises when the bootloader has already been unlocked. Relocking the bootloader might make the option reappear. But exercise caution as this process can erase device data.

oem unlock option greyed out

Developer Options Not Enabled

It might seem obvious, but sometimes the simplest things get overlooked. The OEM Unlock option can only be accessed from within Developer Options. If this menu isn't enabled, you won't see it.

Carrier-Locked Devices

The OEM Unlock Missing issue can also occur if your device is carrier-locked. Carriers often impose restrictions to prevent users from switching networks, and bootloader unlocking is one way to do that. Unfortunately, the missing OEM Unlock option is usually intentional, and unlocking your device can be more complicated.

Security Features

Enhanced security features, like Samsung's KNOX, can sometimes conceal the OEM Unlock option. Temporarily turning off these features might show the option, but it's crucial to be aware of the potential security implications of doing so.

Corrupted Bootloader

A corrupted bootloader can also lead to the Android OEM Unlock missing problem. The bootloader plays a role in the boot process, and if it's damaged, it might not display the necessary options. This can be caused by software glitches, failed flashing attempts, or even hardware issues. In this scenario, you might need to consult your device's manufacturer or a technical specialist to help repair or re-flash the bootloader.

Connectivity Issues

A poor connection between your device and computer can also prevent the OEM Unlocking from showing up. Check your cables and try using different USB ports to ensure a stable connection.

Part 2: How To Enable Missing OEM Unlock Without a Password?

Unlocking your phone's bootloader (OEM Unlock) varies across models and brands. Some need a passcode or PIN after rebooting the phone, while others don't. Even if your phone doesn't require a separate password, your existing screen lock (password, PIN, pattern) will usually be needed to enable the missing OEM unlock option.

But what if you forgot that, too? Wondershare Dr.Fone - Screen Unlock can help bypass forgotten passwords and unlock your phone even if you don't have the technical knowledge. Here's a quick breakdown of its key features in this area:

  • Success Rate

High success rate for bypassing various lock screen types, including PIN code, pattern lock, passwords, and fingerprints.

  • Ease of Use

Provides a concise and intuitive interface that guides users with clear instructions and on-screen prompts.

  • Comprehensive Features

Dr.Fone - Screen Unlock tool can remove the Android phone lock screen without resetting your Samsung or LG device. It can also help you bypass Google Factory Reset Protection (FRP) on mainstream Android brands.

  • Extensive Device Compatibility

Aside from Samsung and LG, it covers a wide range of popular Android brands like Vivo, Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo, etc.

Regain control in minutes with Dr.Fone. First, download the app to your desktop and install it. Once it's up and running, launch Dr.Fone and prepare to unlock your device with ease. You'll find detailed instructions below – even if you don't know your phone's lock screen, Dr.Fone has you covered.

  • Step 1: Select Screen Unlock from the Toolbox homepage. Then, establish a connection between your locked Android device and your computer using a USB cable.
  • dr.fone homepage interface

    safe Downloadsafe & secure
  • Step 2: Specify the device type for screen lock removal.
  • select device type interface

  • Step 3: Select Unlock Android Screen to proceed.
  • dr.fone screen unlock tools

  • Step 4: Choose the brand of your phone from the supported brands.
  • dr.fone screen unlock supported brands

    Note:

    The following steps will vary based on your device's manufacturer. Please refer to the instructions on your screen to proceed into Download or Recovery mode.

  • Step 5: The screen unlock process is underway. If it encounters trouble, click Try Again. Once Dr.Fone successfully unlocks your Android device, tap Done.
  • screen lock successfully removed

    Now that you've regained access to your device thanks to Dr.Fone - Screen Unlock, you can move forward with enabling the OEM unlock missing option. Next up, we'll guide you through the steps in several ways. Let's start with the Developer options.

    Part 3: How To Enable OEM Unlock Missing From the Developer Options?

    Developer Options, a hidden menu in Android, offers advanced features like app debugging and custom ROM installation. But if the Android OEM unlock option is missing, you can't unlock your device's bootloader. Below is a step-by-step guide for you so the OEM unlock missing option will show in the Developer Options. Remember, this process may erase your device data, so a complete backup is essential before proceeding.

  • Step 1: Open the Settings app on your Android phone.
  • Step 2: Navigate to About Phone at the bottom of the list, then tap Software information.
  • software information settings

  • Step 3: Tap on the Build number repeatedly (7 times) until you see a message saying, "You are now a developer!" or similar.
  • Step 4: Go back to Settings > System and find the Developer options menu.
  • Step 5: Scroll down and tap the toggle switch next to Enable OEM Unlock to turn it on.
  • enable oem unlock developer option

  • Step 6: A warning message explaining the risks of turning on the OEM unlock will appear. Read it carefully and tap Enable if you want to proceed.
  • turn on oem unlock

  • Step 7: Enter your PIN or password to confirm the unlock when prompted
  • Step 8: Your device will reboot, and OEM Unlocking will be enabled.
  • Part 4: How To Fix OEM Unlock Missing by Adjusting Date and Time?

    Some manufacturers intentionally delay the availability of the OEM unlock after a software update for security reasons. Changing the date to a past date before the update rolled out can trick the system into displaying the option, as it thinks the update hasn't happened yet. It is a temporary fix, and the option will likely disappear again later when the device automatically syncs the correct date.

    If you intend to try this method, follow these steps to enable OEM unlock missing or greyed out after an Android update:

  • Step 1: Open the Settings app.
  • Step 2: Go to System or General management, depending on your Android version.
  • Step 3: Tap on Date and Time.
  • Step 4: Turn off Automatic date and time.
  • turn off automatic date and time

  • Step 5: Tap on Set date and choose the desired older date from the calendar.
  • Step 6: Tap on Set time and choose the desired time from the clock.
  • Step 7: Tap on Done to save the changes.
  • Step 8: Go back to the Developers options and turn off the Auto update system option.
  • turn off auto update system

  • Step 9: Go to Settings > Software update, then turn off Auto download over Wi-Fi.
  • turn off auto download over wi-fi

    This method should enable the OEM unlock missing issue. Otherwise, proceed to the next section for another solution.

    Part 5: How To Fix OEM Unlock Missing by Removing SIM Card?

    Certain carriers restrict bootloader unlocking on their devices to ensure compatibility and prevent unauthorized modifications. For these phones, unlocking the SIM card becomes crucial before you can toggle the OEM unlock option. Here are the steps to fix the OEM Unlock missing or greyed out using SIM card removal:

  • Step 1: Use the SIM ejector tool (often included with your phone) or a small pin to push the tray out.
  • Step 2: Go to Settings > General Management > Reset, then select Factory data reset. Enter your PIN or password if needed.
  • android factory data reset

  • Step 3: Review the warning and tap Reset to confirm.
  • Step 4: Once the reset is complete, your phone will restart. Connect to Wi-Fi when prompted.
  • Step 5: Skip any prompts to log in to your Google or email account. Then, repeat the process to open the Developer Options in the previous sections.
  • Conclusion

    Having the OEM Unlock missing or greyed out can leave Android users feeling locked out of customization possibilities. Fortunately, this article has outlined helpful solutions like enabling the Android OEM Unlock missing option via the Developer Options. You can also try other methods above, like adjusting date and time settings or even a sim card removal trick. For those facing forgotten lock screens, we've offered guidance on bypassing them using the Dr.Fone - Screen Unlock tool to access the necessary phone settings.

    While these methods provide a solid foundation, it's always wise to research steps specific to your phone model. And never forget – caution is key. If things get technical, don't hesitate to seek help from online communities or professional repair services.

    Tips: Forget your device password and can't get access to it? No worries as Dr.Fone is here to help you. Download it and start a seamless unlock experience!

    screen unlock

    James Davis

    staff Editor

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