I wanted to share this information regarding a Factory Reset and how it is used for Gingerbread - both the what, why, and how - in case anyone is interested in the details. If you embark on this process, this thread is worth a close read. thanks to d.harris for writing this up for the SOAK group. good luck everyone and remember, YMMV.
First, what does a "factory reset" do? The short answer is: it will return your phone to the condition it was in when you first purchased it EXCEPT the Android version will match your phone's latest update. For example, I had Android 2.2.1 (Froyo) on my phone before the "soak". My phone was updated to Android 2.3.3 (Gingerbread or "GB") during the "soak". I had some trouble with video performance in the Fox News app and missing album cover art in the Google Music app. So I decided to do the factory reset. After the reset was finished, my Droid X still had Android 2.3.3 on it but all of the settings had been restored to their factory defaults. And presumably, all Android operating system (OS) caches had been flushed. All of the data that was stored in my phone's memory was cleared. So my contacts were all gone. And I had to reactivate my phone (*228 1) just like a new phone and reenter my Google account info.
Does a factory reset actually clear the entire contents of the phone's memory and re-install Android from scratch? (That's what I wish it did.) But I'm not sure that it does that because the entire process seems to go too fast for that. However, a factory reset does seem to do a better job of cleaning out the remnants of the previous OS (Froyo 2.2.1) than a standard "update" does. But that's not all.
The factory reset also clears all of the apps that were installed in the phone's memory. And it clears all of the app data that was installed in the phone's memory. So you will have to reinstall all of your apps from the Android Market (or wherever they came from). Normally, you do not have to pay for them again because the Android Market remembers your previous purchases as long as you register your phone with the same Google account.
However, the Android Market does not remember the free apps that you installed---so you should make a list of all your apps before you reset your phone so you won't forget the free ones. The reason I wrote "installed in the phone's memory" above is because a factory reset gives you a choice whether or not to clear your phone's micro SD memory card. If desired, it will leave it alone. So any apps or data will still be present on your card after the reset. However, your phone will not be aware of the apps on the memory card because all "knowledge" of them will have been erased from your phone's internal memory---you'll still have to reinstall ALL of your apps. But the data files will still be there. Regarding the "built-in" apps that come pre-installed with Android, they will also be restored to their original state and version when you do a factory reset. So you'll need to update some of them (like updating Google Maps and updating Adobe Flash from 10.1 to 10.3).
Before you do a factory reset, you should have a fully charged battery becaues you do NOT want to run out of power in the middle of a reset---that could "brick" your phone. I always take an extra precaution: in addition to a fully charged battery, I also connect my phone to AC with the Motorola AC-to-USB charging adapter that came with it. Not only does it insure that I won't run out of power, it also keeps my battery fully charged so I have a 100% charge after the factory reset (you'll have a lot of work to do afterward to reinstall your apps and restore all of your Android and app settings back to your preferences).
Here's a pre reset checklist:
• Export your contacts to your SD card so you can easily restore them later (Contacts/Dialer menu > Import/Export > Export contacts to: SD card).
• Make a list of all of the apps that you installed (Android menu > Manage Apps > Downloaded tab).
• Get a copy of your Google account login info (user name and password).
• Get a copy of your Verizon Backup Assistant PIN (if you use this service).
• Turn off your phone and pull its battery. Wait 30 seconds or more and reinstall the battery and turn the phone back on. This will make sure that there is nothing hinky in your phone's volatile memory as the factory reset begins.
• Fully charge your phone's battery and plug the AC charging adapter into the phone.
Now you're ready to do the deed. Follow these steps:
1. If it's not already on, turn on Google's "back up my data" option with Android menu > Settings > Privacy > Back up my data. This is required for the next step.
2. Turn off the "automatic restore" option with Android menu > Settings > Privacy > Automatic restore. This will prevent your phone from trying to download every paid app that was previously on your phone all at once. It is much better---especially if you have a lot of apps---to install them one at a time. Plus, you may not want some of them to be reinstalled right away if you are trying to determine if one of them is causing trouble under GB 2.3.3.
3 If you do not want to use Google's "back up my data" service to restore your wi-fi passwords and such, then return to Step 1 and turn it off.
4. Begin the factory reset with Android menu > Settings > Privacy > Factory Data Reset. You'll be asked to confirm that you really want to do a factory reset and you'll be given the opportunity to clear your micro SD memory card as a part of the process. I chose not to clear my memory card because I have a 32 GB card with "tons" of music and other files that I do not want to have to restore (it would take hours).
When should you do a factory reset? Everyone should do it before they give their phone away, sell it, or discard it. You don't want someone else to have access to your personal data! And, a factory reset can be a helpful troubleshooting tool when faced with problems.
By the way, my factory reset did not help the video problem I was having with the Fox News app nor did it enable Google's Music app to find all of the album art on my micro SD card. Both problems persisted after the reset under GB 2.3.3.
Finally, there are other things you can do to flush old data from your phone such as clearing the cache partition of your phone's built-in memory. This requires the use of its "Android system recover" menu. Even though I expect this cache data to be cleared during a factory reset, I did it after my reset just to make sure. Clearing the cache partition is usually what folks try before a factory rest so they can (hopefully) avoid the factory reset. I'll leave it to a Motorola staff person to go into that.
I wanted to add something to this -- I have been unable to actually get to the Factory Reset procedure using the "Press & Hold the HOME button, then the Power button" ... It only comes up with the Triangle & Android guy ... after that, none of the buttons work to bring up the MENU - like it used to using the Up and Down Volume keys. Not sure if something changed in GB ...
Has anyone had success in bringing up that Menu using the HOME & Power On method?
OK, got it ... the Power ON Factory reset procedures
might have changed with GB ...
To get to a Factory reset using the Power up method:
1. Power Off phone
2. Press & Hold the HOME Button
3. Press and Hold the Power ON button.
You come up to the Triangle with the Exclamation mark & android guy.
Press BOTH the Up and Down Buttons at the same time. This brings up the Blue menu of options.
use the Up/Down arrows to scroll thru the choices. Press the POWER Button to Select the menu item you choose.
You can harmlessly test this and just choose to Reboot without doing anything, just to see how it works in case you ever need to do this in the future.
edit: It was concluded in the test group that they changed this process to align it with the new DX2 as the camera button isn't hard-wired like it is in the DX. So likely they just wanted to make this process the same for both platforms. At least it sounds like a good reason...
Cody21, you are doing a very noble thing, stepping up to the plate in the apparent lack of guidance by our service provider. Kudos. Everyone: Here is a link to the tips the Moto forum manager posted about the update: https://supportforums.motorola.com/thread/51612
We're all here to help each other ... glad to be part of the 'group' ...
PS - I am fortunate to be one of the Gingerbread with literally no major issues ... Some "quirks" and things I dislike? Yes. But have not had to do the dreaded Factory Reset either before or after. I'm prepared if it comes to that. Only like 2 app issues needing fixed.
good luck everyone.
@artj - "Anyone use AppBrain? I wonder if that could be used to quickly or easily re-install apps after a factory reset."
Yes - I do ... it does NOT keep track of your free apps you have installed .. you need to make a "list" before the F.R. -- or use some other APP ($) that backs up everything...
I can't tell whether my phone is on or off. It's just black. But neither reset option has done anything at all. It looks like it's off, but it was on and stopped at the graphics screen before this.
Check out this..
Android version 2.3 (Gingerbread)
My question is do I need to do a factory reset? My 2.3.3 upgrade went pretty well. No big issues. Should I do a factory reset anyway, to really clean the phone out?
me neither ... I did a "CLEAR SYSTEM CACHE" just for the heck of it the other day, and it hosed over 1 of my SWYPE options that I can't get back. So, yes, what Wildman said and I previously suggested.
Cody I forgot to point that out, that clearing cache sometime can cause issues like that, if you have a backup app you can restore the settings for swype to fix the issue because I have to do this any time I do a cache cleaning of device...
This is one of the downfalls to clearing cache it clears data for several apps not just one most of the time..
Well, I don't know .. sort of like throwing the baby out with the bathwater. How old is the phone? more than 14 days and less than 1 year you end up with a refurb, not a new one.
- Which camera APP are you using? (If not the stock APP, you could uninstall and reinstall the APP).
- You COULD start with the simpler "System Clear Cacher"
- Then if that doesn't work, the "Factory Reset" - but make sure you undertsand what it does and the "cleanest" approach to doing that ...
I just got the GB update for my droid x and i'm noticing issues. My camera and camcorder apps freeze up and when i try to adjust settings the apps close on their own. Should i do the factory reset here? Please reply Idk if i should reset or send it to verizon!
Clear data at Settings/ Applications / Manage Application / All Tab and Media Storage and restart may resolve this, keep on mind this will clear ringer settings and all custom ringers need to be reset after doing this.
Great thread Cody! To help with your apps, you can use Astro File Manager. It's a free app in the market. It has a pretty good app backup/restore feature. I backed up all of my apps, but if you directly restore them, they won't show up in the market as being installed. If you long press on the app, it will bring you to another screen asking if you want to install it. If you hit the menu button, it will say app market. Tap that, and it will bring you to the direct market link. Writing down all of my apps is a pain because I have over 200 apps installed, and I install new apps all of the time. A good 30-50 of them are font packs, icon packs, etc for my launcher. It's still QUITE time consuming to do it this way, but you will have a list on your SD card of all of your apps, and you can update them on a regular basis. To get to the app manager from Astro, you have to hit the menu button, then tools after you open the app. I hope this helps...
PS - If you brick your phone, all hope is not lost. There is a way to unbrick the DX, and it's pretty easy to do. If the worst happens, just google, how to unbrick your droid x, and read up on it. I had to do it the day before the OTA because I made a stupid mistake and bricked my phone..
" I always take an extra precaution: in addition to a fully charged battery, I also connect my phone to AC with the Motorola AC-to-USB charging adapter that came with it. Not only does it insure that I won't run out of power, it also keeps my battery fully charged so I have a 100% charge after the factory reset...."
Dude, what if the power goes out? In addition to the handset, I also make sure my laptop is fully-charged before undertaking a ROM upgrade. Instead of hooking the Android device up to its AC adapter, I leave the laptop plugged in and keep the handset charged via one of the laptop's USB ports. That way even in a blackout you've got a fully-charged intermediary between highly-vulnerable Droid and dead AC mains--a nine-cell UPS, if you will.
Of course, starting with a fully-charged handset is sufficient by design, so if the process isn't complete before the power comes back on, you're definitely doing it wrong. What I mean by that is--there's absolutely no reason to be scared off if you can't be bothered to take as many precautions as your most paranoid peers. Google has clearly devoted a lot of resources making the upgrade process painless for the lay device owner--while it makes sense to be careful, you'll find whatever efforts you make to be immediately rewarding.
Ooooook here we go dumberthanpalin..
Mostly all your question are against site rules to answer and also will void whatever device you gets warranty..
Installing unauthorized software or modifying the stock setting or kernel will void your warranty so fast you might just buy the phone of the street because Verizon will not have nothing to do with it and wont support the device once you have modified the device in a manner that wasn't authorized and distributed by the developer or service provider..
I really do not see you getting the answers you want on the carriers forum...
the Storage-->Erase SD card
privacy-->Factory data reset-->Erase SD card checkbox
Neither button wipes the SD card (The external memory card).
It doesn't take any more time for it to 'erase' a full 8GB SD card versus a nearly empty 1GB SD card.
I plug the 'erased' card into my computer, and it has done the equivalent of a format. The partition on the SD card is nearly empty except for a few default folders that the phone created.
I load up my recovery software called "Recover My Files" and do a full scan and it finds all the files that were on the card and I'm able to copy them off to a folder on my computer's hard drive.
Erase? Nope. Wipe? Nope. But perhaps the factory data reset does wipe the internal phone flash memory, though I'm guessing not since it does it in 1 minute or less. I'm sure it's not a DoD 5220.22 government level wipe at any rate.
So before you give away your SD cards, use "KilDisk" or similar to really wipe the card! Doing "Erase SD card" on the phone does nothing to destroy the data on the card.
And beware that the new owner of your phone might root it and then possibly use recovery software to recover some of the data that was on the phone when you owned it!
This is with a Google G2, Android 2.3.4. Perhaps Android 4.0/4.1 actually wipes, who knows.