Every time I edit a file in /, /sbin, or /system/bin it overwrites on restart (device is rooted and in r/w mode). I assume this is because Android mounts a temporary root? Or maybe it's just a problem on my device?

How do I make a permanent change to root files? Can I do this through adb? Do I need to edit the system image, and if so can anyone point me in the right direction on where to start on this?

  • Give us the details of the whole list of instructions you used to edit a file in /system/bin. As for files in / and /sbin - they are loaded from the kernel on every boot, so it's not worth editing them out if you intend to make changes persist across reboots. What device are you using?
    – Firelord
    Jan 12, 2016 at 21:26
  • I'm using a rooted LG G Pad 7.0 running 4.4.2. To accomplish what I want, I think I can get away with either replacing /sbin/chargerlogo with a copy of /system/bin/reboot, or replacing the contents of /sbin/chargerlogo with #!/system/bin/sh /system/bin/reboot However it needs to survive a reboot or it is not of any use. As for list of instructions... I was trying to do it through ES File Explorer with root explorer on, system in r/w mode.
    – Alan
    Jan 12, 2016 at 21:30
  • Does this answer your question? Any changes to files in root directory (/) are gone after reboot Feb 17, 2020 at 13:13

1 Answer 1


The root file system (/) and the files therein (plus several more in some sub-directories) are overwritten at boot time from the so-called InitRd ("initial RAM disk", or "boot image"). So if you must change/add stuff there, you will have to modify that image.

If you just want to store some additional binaries/scripts, you should rather do so in /system/xbin (which usually is also contained in the $PATH) – though files in /system/bin should survive a reboot as well (/system is a separate partition usually mounted read-only, and thus not touched except for OS updates).

  • OP says he modifies /system/bin and it gets restored.
    – SarpSTA
    Jan 12, 2016 at 22:19
  • 1
    @SarpSTA I've read that – and somehow (at least partly) doubt it. As to my knowledge, neither shutdown nor boot tamper with /system except to (un)mount the partition (read-only that is). Not sure what's behind that. I've done such manipulations several times on different devices – so I'm pretty sure what sticks and what does not. Though I admit different devices/ROMs might have specifics I've not yet encountered – thinking e.g. of those always replacing /recovery with stock when flashed with something else, as I've read.
    – Izzy
    Jan 12, 2016 at 23:45
  • @SarpSTA It might not, sorry for the mistake. The files I want to edit are in / and /sbin, the file I want to copy is in /system/bin, so my bad on that. Izzy, thank you for this! Any resources to point in the right direction to modifying the InitRd?
    – Alan
    Jan 12, 2016 at 23:59
  • @Alan Sorry, that's the part I didn't do yet (modifying the InitRd myself). I've replaced it sometimes, but the replacement was built by someone else. As this would be off-topic here anyway, I'd recommend checking these posts at SO :)
    – Izzy
    Jan 13, 2016 at 1:25
  • 1
    Anytime, Alan. A quick Google search just found this little tutorial: Android boot.img manipulation – which should answer your previous comment.
    – Izzy
    Jan 13, 2016 at 15:49

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