How To Factory Reset your Samsung Galaxy S4 (Easy Way)

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Aug 2, 2013, 3:17:45 PM via Website

The easiest way to perform a Factory Reset on your Samsung Galaxy S4 is from within the menu settings:

Settings > Accounts > Back Up and Reset > Factory Data Reset > Reset Device > Delete All/Erase Everything.

Please remember to back up any data you want to keep first! In the Factory reset screen you also have the option to Backup My Data and Auto Restore. These are good options to tick before you Factory Reset if you're not too sure how to do this on your own.

If you're at all paranoid about your SIM card or SD card contents just take them out before you do the Factory Reset. Attention: if you reset your device to the factory default with SD card encryption setting enabled, the device will not be able to read your encrypted files. Disable this setting before resetting the device.

Alternatively, you can type in *2767*3855# on the key pad and that will do the same thing.

Remember sometimes you don't need to go even this far to solve problems. First of all try just turning your phone off for a while, or removing the battery entirely. Sometimes something as simple as that is enough to clear up some simple problems.

But if you've tried all of these methods and are still having problems, you can try a Hard Reset, the instructions for which are here.

— modified on Jun 11, 2014, 9:25:10 AM by moderator

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Albert Cardona II

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Dec 4, 2013, 12:53:16 PM via Website

Hi there, I'm having a problem with my galaxy s4, I moved from Canada to South Africa about a month ago, I then had to have my phone unlocked in order to work here.
Well since then my OS system has had major problems and is now disabled some of the OS apps.
Can I do a factory reset without having to get my phone unlocked again...
Thank you for t the help

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Dec 4, 2013, 2:37:31 PM via Website

Hey @Kim, resetting or updating your device won't affect its unlocked status. Once that's done it's done.

Which apps are disabled? It could be that some of those apps are disabled because of the region you're in. I'm not sure what the situation is with specific apps where you're living but some services are not available everywhere. For example, China can't access the Play Store, Vietnam can't access Facebook and so on. So if there's some blocking in South Africa that might be the cause? You could also try clearing the cache and data from the affected apps in case they're holding onto some old data that isn't meshing with your new location.

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Val Yoakum

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Dec 4, 2013, 4:23:28 PM via Website

Hi Kris it's actually my update software, context providers, and App installer.
Im not really sure which other ones but I think there is a few more. I have gone and cleared all my cache and data.
So this was the last on my list
Thanks again for your help I appreciate it.
Cheers

Aar
Kris Carlon
Hey @Kim, resetting or updating your device won't affect its unlocked status. Once that's done it's done.

Which apps are disabled? It could be that some of those apps are disabled because of the region you're in. I'm not sure what the situation is with specific apps where you're living but some services are not available everywhere. For example, China can't access the Play Store, Vietnam can't access Facebook and so on. So if there's some blocking in South Africa that might be the cause? You could also try clearing the cache and data from the affected apps in case they're holding onto some old data that isn't meshing with your new location.

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Dec 4, 2013, 5:52:22 PM via Website

Hey @Kim, here's an article I just wrote about the new Play Store. It has the direct download link for the APK, which you could try reinstalling if you're having problems downloading apps. I'm not sure what a context provider is though! And updates should come from your new carrier. How do you know the update software is disabled?

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Dec 16, 2013, 2:02:26 AM via Website

Hi There

I set a password today on my Samsung S4. The first time I went in to try and unlock it, the password didn't work. It was a very simple password that I use all the time, but I obviously did something wrong when setting it for the first time. I now cannot unlock my phone!

Is there any way I can factory rest my phone while the screen is locked? I'm pretty up set that this has happened. I have phoned both my phone company and Samsung call centres and neither are very helpful. They keep bouncing me between each other "you need to phone Samgsung to reset it" and then I get "you need to phone the cell phone company to reset it". Is there anything I can do myself.

Feeling a little down :(

Thanks

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Dec 16, 2013, 9:17:03 AM via Website

hi @Katy. All you need to do is (from a powered off state) press and hold Power, Home and Volume Up buttons to enter fastboot mode. When you see the Samsung Galaxy S4 screen let go of Power but keep holding the other two. Once you see your options pop up with the Android on its back you just use the volume buttons to scroll through the options, select wipe data/factory reset and use the Power button to confirm. Again, scroll down with the volume buttons to highlight Yes, delete user data (or whatever it says, I forget exactly) hit the Power button to confirm. Then select Reboot system now and the phone will do its thing and your password will be gone when it reboots.

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Jan 6, 2014, 11:57:53 AM via Website

Hello,
After a fall which cracked the screen, my Samsung Galaxy S4's screen is still usable, but the device keeps crashing. The only way to restart it, even with the battery at 100%, is to plug it into the main. While plugged, it is not crashing, but the moment it is off, any attempt at doing anything--boom!

Would a factory reset help? I have to mention I encrypted it--would factory reset brick it? I am reluctant to cash out for screen replacement in case the damage is more substantial.

Most grateful for any advice you might have,

Ana

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Jan 8, 2014, 12:53:39 PM via Website

Hello sir, i accidentally deleted my System Gallery App from my phone, is there a way to get the gallery app back? do i need to restore factory settings my phone to get the system gallery app back? thanks :)

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Feb 26, 2014, 8:49:26 AM via Website

HI,
i am having Samsung Galaxy S4. From last few days whenever i am ending a call suddnly Setting notifcation pop up on the screen.
I don't how it comes. But on every call when i drop pop up come on screen to change the setting sound.
Please help

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Mar 10, 2014, 3:45:15 AM via Website

I hard reset a device with an encrypted SD card. Any way to get the pictures back?

They're still on the card but not showing up properly in the gallery.

— modified on Mar 10, 2014, 3:45:39 AM

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Mar 20, 2014, 12:06:26 PM via Website

hi, i am from india and purchased samsung galaxy s4 in bangkok now problem is when i inserted my sim card it not at all showing network and says it cant connect why ???

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Mar 22, 2014, 3:40:30 AM via Website

I had the problem of my s4 randomly resetting and inability to unintelligible apps and slow response and a full factory reset so far has fixed my problem.

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Mar 23, 2014, 6:10:25 PM via Website

@naga To use any Sim, you will need to have an unlocked phone. Are you sure you bought an unlocked GS4? If your carrier offers the Galaxy S 4, buy one of those.

— modified on Mar 23, 2014, 6:11:21 PM

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Mar 23, 2014, 6:14:24 PM via Website

@ana If you dropped it with enough force to crack the screen, you could have caused other damage as well. Normally, I would just recommend trying to get a replacement phone, but since that is expensive and if you had insurance I'm guessing you would've already gone that route, I would try a factory reset. Best of luck! -Jack

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Mar 23, 2014, 6:16:38 PM via Website

@john That isn't a code, it is simply how you enter the stock android recovery. It works on every phone but some have slightly different buttons, usually due to the lack of a home button.

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Apr 30, 2014, 10:44:33 AM via Website

Hi, may I know how long it takes to reset the factory setting ? Because I had wait for around 30 minutes.

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Lalit
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Apr 30, 2014, 10:57:19 AM via Website

@naga it is not connection because the frequency of network signals is different than the Indian network, your device is locked to the Bangkok mobile network frequency it means that your phone is searching for network in different frequency which is not there. Well , what you can do is try going to the local shops I think they might help you in unlocking your device to get the network signals at India. :O

couture muniz

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Lalit
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Apr 30, 2014, 11:01:16 AM via Website

Biglou Wcchin

Hi, may I know how long it takes to reset the factory setting ? Because I had wait for around 30 minutes.

Well, I think the factory reset should be complete in around 10-15min max 20min. It looks your device got stuck in the middle of factory resetting.:( I would say try waiting a for some more time as some users have reported that it is taking longer than usual and after a while it completes. :) I am hoping this will work out for you .

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May 30, 2014, 11:13:30 PM via Website

hello kris.I have some problems with my i9505 s4.In my lockscreen menu the shortcuts menu doesn't appear(simply it isn't there),on the phone it only says made by samsung without mentioning the country where my phone was made(this makes me thing it is broken or something.can you help me please?

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May 31, 2014, 7:39:27 PM via Website

Hi @Cosmin, what do you mean by shortcuts menu? Do you mean the swipe-to-app shortcut option (like music, messaging etc)? Could you send me a screenshot or pic to explain the problem?

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Jun 3, 2014, 10:21:42 AM via Website

Hello, my phone screen went black for no reason overnight, then intermittently came back on as if someone had painted the screen with a paint brush (badly), and now has gone black again. Orange are sending me a new phone, but I am unable to factory reset my old one, thus all my stuff remains on it. The screen is completely black again now, so I just can't navigate to do a factory reset. Is there any way of doing a factory reset with a blank screen? I've plugged it into my computer and taken off my photos. I haven't been able to save my contacts and I haven't ever backed my phone up, but I'm very concerned about all my data still being on my phone and getting into the wrong hands. Can you assist? many thanks. (Samsung Gal S4)

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Lalit
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Jun 3, 2014, 10:28:36 AM via Website

@Eliza as the screen is turning black and ...... then I am pretty much sure that the problem is with the display itself and I am afraid but without seeing the display you just can't factory reset your device. Well do one thing as try going to the orange support and tell them that because of the... you aren't able to factory reset your device and it has still your data inside it ! I am sure they will figure out something for you on this .... :)

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Jul 6, 2014, 3:11:49 AM via Website

What is the hard way? I now have TWO S4's (m919) that are on the black screen upon boot.

I've tried EVERYTHING! ugh.

Please help me... Edit: You are not permitted to share your email address

— modified on Jul 7, 2014, 6:02:21 AM by moderator

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Jul 6, 2014, 4:40:40 AM via Website

SaraNoid

What is the hard way? I now have TWO S4's (m919) that are on the black screen upon boot.

I've tried EVERYTHING! ugh.

Please help me... Edit: You are not permitted to share your email address

looks like you need to reinstall your firmware.
can you post the black screen screenshots ?

— modified on Jul 7, 2014, 6:02:31 AM by moderator

Ready To Help You.

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Jul 7, 2014, 10:37:21 AM via Website

@Eliza, if you're able to connect to your PC and grab files then at least you know your data is not corrupt, which means it's probably a problem with the display drivers, some connection, the graphics card or something.

I'd suggest getting some free backup/recovery software and grabbing as much of your data as you can before returning the phone.

You can factory reset via ADB command if you are comfortable doing that? Let me know and I can walk you through it.

The other alternative is to check out a YouTube video on resetting through recovery and try to follow the steps even if you can't see the screen. It's tricky (and a little silly), but it does work (sometimes!)

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Jul 8, 2014, 1:28:38 AM via Website

I downloaded the stock firmware. I can connect through Odin, but it will not install the md5. It says that there is a "mismatch" in the md5 that I have. So then I downloaded the stock firmware from other sites, and same thing. I tried emergency firmware update with Kies 3, and it wants a password from the recovery computer. I don't have a password, as I have only used this computer. Can you advise me at all?

Thank you,
Sara

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Jul 8, 2014, 4:17:14 AM via Website

SaraNoid

I downloaded the stock firmware. I can connect through Odin, but it will not install the md5. It says that there is a "mismatch" in the md5 that I have. So then I downloaded the stock firmware from other sites, and same thing. I tried emergency firmware update with Kies 3, and it wants a password from the recovery computer. I don't have a password, as I have only used this computer. Can you advise me at all?

Thank you,
Sara

you are flashing the wrong firmware
can you post the carrier network name and country . this will help me in finding the rom
also post a screenshot of the black screen. some time it can cause due to hardware problems(download mode will work even if the screen is damaged)

— modified on Jul 8, 2014, 4:17:31 AM

Ready To Help You.

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Oct 4, 2014, 10:08:20 PM via Website

Hi Kris,

I did a factory reset and even wipe the partition on my samsung s4 and did a reboot. But my phone is just getting a dark screen, the samsung logo wont even come up and turn off itself after 30 seconds. I have read your comment down below that we have to reinstall the rom for my samsung, my question is, how to reinstall it and what tool should I be using? my pc wont even detect my phone now. and im sure that samsung driver is installed in my pc. thanks in advance!

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Oct 5, 2014, 8:03:30 AM via App

April May Concepcion

Hi Kris,

I did a factory reset and even wipe the partition on my samsung s4 and did a reboot. But my phone is just getting a dark screen, the samsung logo wont even come up and turn off itself after 30 seconds. I have read your comment down below that we have to reinstall the rom for my samsung, my question is, how to reinstall it and what tool should I be using? my pc wont even detect my phone now. and im sure that samsung driver is installed in my pc. thanks in advance!

you can download the firmware from sammobile and flash it with odin(flashing tool)
also try reinstalling the samsung usb drivers or update it.

can you enter download mode by pressing vol down + power button + home key
while the phone is turned off

— modified on Oct 5, 2014, 8:04:00 AM

Ready To Help You.

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Oct 27, 2014, 12:44:02 AM via Website

I did a hard reset and now it is not opening it to anything. It turns on with Samsung logo but after stays on the att globe and goes no further. I wanted to delete my contents and files as I was giving my phone to my son for his use and wanted it clear. I kept the Sim card and SD card installed. What should I have done? What should I do now? Thank you.

— modified on Oct 27, 2014, 12:44:43 AM

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Oct 28, 2014, 10:36:19 AM via Website

unlocked status has nothing to do with factory reset!

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Dec 15, 2014, 11:59:31 AM via Website

Kris Carlon

The easiest way to perform a Factory Reset on your Samsung Galaxy S4 is from within the menu settings:

Settings > Accounts > Back Up and Reset > Factory Data Reset > Reset Device > Delete All/Erase Everything.

Please remember to back up any data you want to keep first! In the Factory reset screen you also have the option to Backup My Data and Auto Restore. These are good options to tick before you Factory Reset if you're not too sure how to do this on your own.

If you're at all paranoid about your SIM card or SD card contents just take them out before you do the Factory Reset. Attention: if you reset your device to the factory default with SD card encryption setting enabled, the device will not be able to read your encrypted files. Disable this setting before resetting the device.

Alternatively, you can type in *2767*3855# on the key pad and that will do the same thing.

Remember sometimes you don't need to go even this far to solve problems. First of all try just turning your phone off for a while, or removing the battery entirely. Sometimes something as simple as that is enough to clear up some simple problems.

But if you've tried all of these methods and are still having problems, you can try a Hard Reset, the instructions for which are here.

Hi,

I have restored the factory settings on my samsung s4.
I have now lost all my sim contacts.
I foolishly have not backed them up (I think).
Is there any way I can restore just my contact list???

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Mar 4, 2015, 9:36:13 PM via Website

Hey, I have a s4 and the lcd is broken but someone is buying it and going to get it fixed. Is there a way that i can wipe it on my computer? I dont really want someone else having my information once they fix the screen.

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Mar 5, 2015, 3:13:46 AM via Website

I guess you can get the contacts back if they are not overwritten by new content.
admin edit: External links are forbidden

— modified on Mar 6, 2015, 7:57:28 AM by moderator

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Mar 28, 2015, 8:43:11 AM via Website

Hi, Will a factory reset restore my galaxy s4 to kitkat? I accidently updated to lollipop and don't like it, I want kitkat back. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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May 5, 2015, 7:09:54 AM via Website

I have same problem. But thanks for sharing.

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Jul 28, 2015, 4:12:14 PM via Website

Hi Kris, I also have an S4mini and it has started to fail. It blocks itself all the time, turns the screen on and off and it ends with turning itself off.. What can I do to make this stop? Battery is running just fine.

I would really appreciate an answer

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Sep 27, 2015, 10:40:25 PM via Website

Hi. I wonder if you might be able to help me. My father passed away a few months back and he had an S4. I rang his provider today and explained that I would like the unblocking code to release his phone. I explained I had sent confirmation of his death ie a scanned copy of his death cert only to be told that they would only speak with the account holder. Again I explained that he had passed away. But after 30 mins of an extremely upsetting call they said they would only speak with the account holder. Now I have a brand new phone that's locked to a network none of his family use. And it's locked with a pin number which he had not written with the other passwords before his passing. Is there anything I can do to at least get it back to factory settings to remove the asking of a pin number. I know it will always be locked to that network. The sim in it has been removed now as it's deactivated.

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Sep 28, 2015, 12:22:01 PM via Website

AExpert Fernando

I have try this *2767*3855# and it works perfect.

Can i ask is that when it is on the screen where the PIN is asked or does that have to be on the main screen

Thank you so much for your help.

Very much appreciated

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Mar 6, 2016, 8:34:28 AM via Website

Im having problems with my Samsung. So the problem is that ads keep showing up out of nowhere while im doing something and apps keep installing by themselves. I tried installing apps that will help get rid of this problem but it shows nothing. I don't know if its a virus or something it won't go away. Do i do a factory reset?

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Mar 6, 2016, 8:41:43 AM via Website

Thanks for posting! This really helps a lot of people using this stuff.

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May 18, 2016, 12:10:58 PM via Website

Thanks a lot for this idea. Very helpful. :)

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Aug 14, 2016, 10:37:05 AM via Website

okay so the problem im having with my sisters phone is it wont reset. its stuck at android version 4.2.2 and wont let me update it to a higher version., my housemate had an S4 as well and hers is updated to the current version yet my sisters wont.
i did a little reading on it and it says the problem may be caused by going between 2 companys (it has) or custom OS parts and certain security programs being put on it (it quite possibly has, the last owner of the phone liked screwing around with that kinda stuff)

would a factory reset help this at all? ive been trying to solve this damn issue for a week now.
some help would be greatly apreciated

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Oct 16, 2016, 2:39:37 PM via Website

Hello! I'm not sure how to start a new question, so will just reply to a main one. I am SO happy to have found this thread, as it sounds like you have helped so many people with numerous issues before deciding if a factory reset is actually needed or not. Hope you can help me too! So I was using my phone like normal yesterday. Then midday, completely out of the blue, the screen was black. Seemed the phone was still on though, and I know it hadn't just died from charge as it had been 60% last I looked. I have seen inexplainable stuff or black screen at least a couple times in my general phone experience, so I did the usual restart phone and then also remove/reinsert battery techniques. But neither helped. Interesting observations that may help: 1)I can hear the phone "responding" to me, i.e. when I push the side button to restart I can hear and feel the usual noises and quick buzz it does for that task, and seems to happen, I just can't see anything because screen is black; 2) the blue notification button still flashes! 3) The back button and the other button on the left (settings? looks like a rectangle with 2 horizontal lines in it) actually light up in white when I click the side buttons of the phone or push the middle hard home button; 4) The phone lets me charge it (I know this because it made the little noise it always makes when I plugged the charger in and then when it was done, the green notification light (non flashing) was showing.
FYI, I DID drop my phone about a month ago and it's got several tiny scratches and cracks in the top and corners; and now a month later, even some actual chucks (but very tiny) have come off in the top corners. Truly, these had not messed with the operations before, but just in case it's relevant.
I was going to go to VZ today and also try to figure stuff out, but when I saw this thread, I thought I would post here too.
Thanks so much if you can advise whether a FR will help or I just need to buy a new screen (expensive and not desired, but cheaper than buying a new phone!), or going to VZ to see if the techs in person can help (hopefully easily and for free/cheap!).

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