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Following the link taken from this question, I got the following error.

$ ./freenexus
[*] Android local root exploid (C) The Android Exploid Crew
[*] Modified by ak for HTC Nexus One
[+] Using basedir=/data/local/tmp, path=/data/local/tmp/freenexus
[+] opening NETLINK_KOBJECT_UEVENT socket
[+] sending add message ...
[-] sendmsg: Connection refused

Does this mean that method is now outdated?

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A fully-updated N1 won't have any of the previous vulnerabilities that were used for rooting. The rooting question has a link specifically for the N1 that uses fastboot oem unlock instead. – eldarerathis Feb 12 '12 at 21:01
@eldarerathis: that guide is very much confused, it takes many things as granted, and after all it's not even a guide, it's just one guy having a problem on a forum. Isn't there something better written? – o0'. Feb 12 '12 at 23:09
Try one of these, maybe:… – eldarerathis Feb 13 '12 at 1:21
Ok thanks, looks like it's really hopeless: can't be rooted without wiping. – o0'. Feb 13 '12 at 8:09
@eldarerathis: would you post both of your comments as an answer, please? – o0'. Feb 13 '12 at 8:09
up vote 1 down vote accepted

As far as I know, a fully updated N1 won't have any exploitable vulnerabilities to allow you to root the device. Most of the older "one click" and similar methods used things like Gingerbreak, which were holes in Android that eventually got patched. I have not seen a root exploit on vanilla Android since Gingerbreak.

XDA's wiki has a couple of different options regarding the N1 which work but require unlocking the bootloader, and unlocking will perform a factory reset automatically. They can be found here and basically amount to:

  1. Unlock the bootloader from fastboot mode with fastboot oem unlock
  2. Flash a custom recovery (usually ClockworkMod)
  3. Flash a zip file from recovery that will install su and Superuser for you
  4. Reboot
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