How I back up my stock, unrooted Galaxy Nexus

I get this question a lot: If my Galaxy Nexus is unrooted and running the stock ROM, how do I back up it via a custom recovery?
It's pretty easy, actually, and it goes back to our method of manually applying a stock update. You're going to need a few things (and chances are you've got them already):
  • You need the Android SDK
  • You need fastboot saved into your Android SDK folder (I keep mine in /platform-tools
  • You need a custom recovery (I use ClockworkMod)
  • Your Galaxy Nexus needs an unlocked bootloader
  • You need to plug your phone into your computer
So here's what you do:
  1. Download the custom recovery into the same folder as your fastboot file. (I like to rename mine just to keep things short.)
  2. Reboot your phone into the bootloader, either by turning it off and holding vol-up/vol-down+power, or reboot from the command line (adb reboot bootloader).
  3. Plug your phone into your computer if it's not already. (Type fastboot devices to make sure your computer sees it)
  4. In the command line, type fastboot boot xxxxxxx.img (where xxxxxxx is the name of the custom recovery you saved).
And that's it. You'll have booted into the custom recovery, and from there you can do a full backup, or restore a backup, or wipe the phone. All without rewriting anything. If you need a little more hand-holding, there's some video after the break.

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