Hello loyal Readers! Welcome to another post for our Samsung Galaxy S4 troubleshooter series.
If you have other concerns regarding your Samsung Galaxy S4, don’t hesitate to shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to get back to you as soon as we can. We will appreciate it very much if you can provide as many details as possible. If you are getting error messages on the screen, or have observed unusual phone behaviors, kindly include them in your email. The more information you can provide, the easier for us to assist you.
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How to unroot a Samsung Galaxy S4 (i9505)
Problem: Hi guys. Recently my Samsung Galaxy S4 (i9505) has started randomly restarting. It sometimes isn’t a proper restart its more like a bricked phone i.e. wont show charge light and screen won’t turn on. It is fine when i do a battery pull but still that’s not the point. The other problem is about 30 minutes after restarting all sounds cease to function from phone i.e. phone calls + microphone, music, YouTube sounds….basically absolutely everything even Bluetooth music speakers and external aux speakers. I need your help guys. I’m a river rescue diver and phone calls are a must! All my stats are down below and i know that it’s a red flag to be rooted but it never happened until few weeks ago. (Plus I can’t find the firmware anywhere for unrooting). Thanks guys — Liam
Troubleshooting: Hi Liam. Rooting a device can be a double edged sword. It offers more features that are not officially available to users but also exposes the device to more risks and software problems.
Note: we have been suggesting this thread to our readers with similar problem to yours and the steps have proven effective.
Let us know if these steps won’t work so we can help you further.
Unable to delete pictures in Gallery app using Samsung Galaxy S4 | No pictures saved in Gallery app of Samsung Galaxy S4
Problem: Hello. I have a Samsung Galaxy S4. I have 2 problems which may or may not be related.
Deleted photo keep coming back. I have tried the following:
Deleted photos directly from the Gallery app
Deleted photos from SD card directly
Cleared the data and cache from the Gallery app (connected and not connected to the internet).
I am completely at a loss as to why this is happening. The only thing I can think of is my use of Dropbox. My understanding is Dropbox uploads photos I take when on a Wi-Fi network via a sync feature. However I don’t believe photos on my Dropbox would download to my device – am I wrong?
I have searched the web and cannot find a solution that works. I do not use Google+ or Picasa (that seems to be brought up a lot on forums). I have read that you are supposed to turn off sync feature, but wouldn’t that disable Dropbox from being able to upload my photos? (besides I wasn’t even able to disable sync for Dropbox).
Photos I take disappear. At first I thought it was lack of memory, but I have 32 GBs available on my SD card out of 64 GB, and 4 GB available on 16 GB internal memory. Pictures I take while in a Wi-Fi environment will upload to Dropbox (thankfully), but will be lost otherwise.
I thought deleting my Gallery photos would help, but I can’t even do that.
Please help! Thanks. — Alex
Troubleshooting: Hi Alex. The answer to your first question depends on the location of the files you are trying to delete. If there are photo folders in the Gallery app that just won’t go away, they may be tied to the Gmail account you are currently using on your phone. Try to review the settings of your Google account and see if there are particular sync options that you can turn off.
Your Dropbox account cannot cause the issue because the pictures you have stored on your phone are simply reflected to your cloud storage, not the other way around. That means that if you have a 1000 pictures stored in your phone’s Dropbox app, the same exact number of photos should be stored in the Dropbox cloud.
For your second question, please check if the media storage has been disabled. To do that, go to Settings>More>Application manager>All>Media Storage. Make sure that Disable button is NOT greyed out because that would mean that that app is currently enabled.
Problem: Hi. Me and my husband both had a Samsung S4 together on Vodafone contract a couple of months ago. I have no trouble with mine but my husband’s seems to have trouble picking Wi-Fi up. It says it has connected and the connection is strong but it is slow loading and off more than on. We can both be on Facebook at the same time, sitting side by side and my phone is connected and working brilliant and my husband’s phone is buffering all the time and not loading properly even though it says it has a strong connection. We have gone through all the settings and cannot find anything to improve this. We have tried switching phone off and then on, the router off and on but it does not seem to improve but my phone is working fine. We have recently had fibre optic broadband and thought maybe this would improve his phone connection but it has not. I cannot understand when we both have the same phones and one connects and works fine on Wi-Fi and the other does not. Wondered if you may have any solutions that we do not know about that we could try.
Thank you. — Sharon
Troubleshooting: Hi Sharon. Our main task here is to isolate what’s the real reason for the other phone’s problem. Wi-Fi problems can either be caused by software bugs or hardware malfunction.
To identify if we have an on-going software issue on your husband’s S4, please do the following:
Boot the phone in Safe mode. Third party apps may be interfering with the phone’s Wi-Fi function so we want to confirm via safe mode. When in this environment, the phone is forced to run stock, first party apps only so it’s a good method of isolating the problem.
Turn the phone off.
Press and hold the Power button to turn the phone back on.
Once the Galaxy S4 logo appears, press and hold Volume Down button.
Continue hold Volume Down until the reboot is finished and you can see Safe Mode at the lower left corner of the screen.
While in safe mode, you can try to replicate the problem by using an app that requires Wi-Fi connection. If the phone responds normally, that means that you must start uninstalling third party apps starting from the most recent one to identify the culprit.
To go back to normal mode, simply restart the phone.
Perform a Factory reset. If the problem remains, wiping the phone’s data via a factory reset might help. To do this, do the following:
Turn off the phone.
Press and hold the following buttons: Power, Volume Up, and Home.
Release the buttons once the Android logo appears.
Highlight Wipe data/factory reset using the Volume keys and select it using the Power key.
Scroll down to Yes – Delete All User Data and select it.
When prompted, select Reboot System Now.
Doing a factory reset deletes all personal data so make sure that you create a backup copy of your husband’s files like contacts, photos, videos, etc.
If we cannot establish that there’s a software issue after doing safe mode and factory reset, we suggest that you call Vodafone for a phone replacement.
Samsung Galaxy S4 showing white boxes in lockscreen
Problem: Hi. I have a Samsung Galaxy S4 in Canada and my provider is Telus. I recently updated to the Lollipop 5.0.1. Since my buttons that appear on my lock screen occasionally change to white boxes.
The buttons still work and if I enter my code the phone unlocks. I need to restart my phone to change the boxes back to the correct characters. I attached a screen shot my lock screen. Thanks. — Rod
Troubleshooting: Hi Rod. This is definitely a software issue so please follow the steps given to Sharon above (Safe Mode and factory reset).
Samsung Galaxy S4 showing “Unfortunately, TouchWiz Home has stopped” error
Problem: I did the update and issue is with my Samsung S4. I had alarm on my page and after update it was gone. I finally located the widgets but when I try to pull it over to page I get an error message that “Unfortunately, TouchWiz Home has stopped.” I searched and found that there are other issues with alarm but not this. Assistance is appreciated. Thanks. — Barb
Troubleshooting: Hi Barb. Please clear the cache of TouchWiz Home.
From the home screen, tap Apps.
Scroll to and tap Settings.
Tap the More tab.
Tap Application manager.
Swipe left to view the ALL tab.
Scroll to and tap TouchWiz Home.
Tap clear cache.
If available, you can also clear the application’s data.
This should resolve the problem.
Pictures getting corrupted when saved on Kingston SD card in Samsung Galaxy S4
Problem: Hi. I have a problem with my Samsung Galaxy S4 (i9505). When I take some photos and save them in the SD card (Kingston 32GB) memory, they become black or corrupt, and now I’ve lost my pics so i just need a solution for this error, and thanks for help .
P.S : It’s under Lollipop official Touchwiz ROM. — Oussama
Troubleshooting: Hi Oussama. This issue normally happens if you have a malfunctioning storage device. Try to save the pictures in your phone’s internal storage instead of using the Kingston card. You may also want to consider testing a different SD card to see the difference, or simply replace the current SD card you have.
Samsung Galaxy S4 performance issue (slow keyboard response when typing)
Problem: Hi. I have a problem with my S4. It glitches every time I press it goes blank for a second and it shows me the time in bold and back again to the screen I’ve been busy on, it’s as though it’s blinking.
Secondly, it is very delayed I would type a message and it vibrates as though it is typing but not then seconds later the letters would start showing on screen.
I hope I have been details enough to help curb the problems I’ve been experiencing.
Looking forward to your assistance. — Zanele
Troubleshooting: Hi Zanele. The phone may have a corrupted system cache. Please delete the device’s cache partition by doing these steps:
Turn off the device.
Press and hold Home and Volume Up keys.
Press and hold the Power button while still holding the other keys.
As soon as you see the Samsung logo, release all buttons.
Press on the Volume Down to highlight Wipe Cache Partition and press the Power button to select it.
Press the Volume Down button to highlight Yes and press the Power button to select it.
Wait for a few minutes for the phone to clear the data.
Then press the Power button to select Reboot System Now.
Wait for your phone to reboot.
In a worst case scenario, you can do a factory reset.
Problem: Hi, guys. Please bear with me, as this message will be extremely long (but detailed).
Firstly, I just wanted to thank you and express my appreciation for the charitable work you guys are still doing by helping thousands of people with their phone problems; the Galaxy S4 has been on the market for over a year now and to be constantly updating everyone on the issues is a noble deed.
That being said, I have several issues with my device that haven’t seen any improvements upon performing many, many troubleshooting tactics; nothing seems to work. I’ll start off from the beginning in order to fill you in adequately, since I am experiencing so many problems and so frequently. The actual problems with the phone will be listed towards the end of this email, along with the troubleshooting techniques I have tried.
I own a factory unlocked AT&T Samsung Galaxy S4 (SGH-i337) on a MetroPCS plan. It is a used phone and was purchased from someone else on 2/4/2015, so only 3 months ago.
The first month I had the phone, everything seemed to be working fine, as usual. The only thing I could complain about was the lackluster battery life (which was about 18 hours on standby). Fast forward to 3/20/2015, in an attempt to fix this, I rooted the phone using the TowelRoot App; to flash the kernels back and forth, I used the Odin tool. I figured perhaps I could delete some bloatware that may be causing the phone to drain the battery relatively quickly. As instructed, I also installed SuperSU, Titanium Backup, and all the other necessary apps.
The root was a success and I’m almost positive nothing went wrong during the process because a family member and I rooted both of our Samsung Galaxy S4’s at the same time, using the exact same methods. The only difference is that his phone is still rooted and never showed any signs of trouble. I on the other hand experienced a plethora of problems and still am.
A few days after the root, I started noticing minor problems that would occur infrequently (lagging, randomly disconnecting and reconnecting to WiFi, etc). I figured that I’d eventually run into some problems, so I brushed it off. Days later I installed a framework for modules called Xposed, followed by the GravityBox repository in order to get a custom ROM to change certain features like the status/notification bar. After doing so, the problems became a little more common, to the point where I decided to unroot my phone.
A couple weeks pass and I unrooted the phone using the SuperSU app and flashed the stock system back on, removing all traces of a root (I believe). Even after doing so, the issues persisted. About a month later, on 4/8/2015, I activated a new cellular service plan (still with MetroPCS), with a new number. Ever since that day, not being able to make/receive calls properly has been added to the long list of issues. Prior to activating this new plan, I’ve never ever had a problem with actual phone calls. I do not know whether the new plan bit is relevant to the rest of the problems I’m facing, but I wanted to include it anyway in attempt to get a fix (MetroPCS has NOT been helpful).
Fast forward one more month to 5/6/2015 (2 days ago), the problems are becoming unbearable to the point where I cannot go an hour without facing some kind of issue. On this day I performed a factory/hard reset on the phone through the Galaxy S4 “Backup and Restore” option as a last-ditch effort, still to no avail, unfortunately. In fact, I am now currently experiencing even MORE issues than before, and more frequently, too. It’s become quite bothersome to the point where I don’t even want to use the phone anymore.
I have visited just about 50 to 60 different webpages trying to fix one problem after another and you guys are basically my last hope.
Here is every problem I can think of that I am currently experiencing on this phone, in no particular order:
Phone takes quite long to wake up/respond after pressing the lock/unlock button
Lock screen pattern does not respond until after about 5-10 seconds
Freezes often on many different apps
Many apps take much longer than usual to open and work properly
Phone freezes often, especially when my hands are sweaty, or when there is even a minuscule amount of moisture/water on the screen of the phone
Mic does not function during calls. I can make and receive all calls, no problem. When dialing, phone does not ring, but rather makes a short tone, followed by no sound. The call is ongoing, as indicated by the call timer, but neither the receiver, nor I can hear anything. When receiving calls, the same thing happens, minus the short tone. This happens 8 times out of 10, regardless of how strong my service is. Adding/deleting a “1” in front of the number does not work either.
Phone lags and freezes after making a call and shows the error: “Process com.android.phone is not responding”
Videos on all apps play in slow motion, without sound
Music player does not play sound, even though it shows that the song is playing
Battery drains fairly quickly. It will go from 100% to 0% in about 12 hours with light use. Nothing seems out of the ordinary. Screen uses about 30% of the battery life (even though I have reduced every and ALL screen settings to the lowest setting possible). Android System and OS use up 30% of the battery life combined. Power Saving mode is ALWAYS on. Phone is always on vibrate. Location and Bluetooth are used once a week or less. Screen rotation, multi-window, reading mode, smart stay/pause/scroll, blocking mode, air view/gesture, hands-free mode, S Beam, NFC, and screen mirroring have never even been activated.
System UI fails to respond
As you can tell, so many issues occurring so frequently gets extremely frustrating. I have tried many things to fix it. Following is a list of troubleshooting tips I have tried, to no avail:
Performed a factory/hard reset (ALL above problems still occur even after this)
Cleared cache in Contacts app, Phone app, SIMToolkit, Music Player, and several other apps
Wiped cache partition
Ran multiple antiviruses
Booted in safe mode, to no avail
Deleted all extraneous apps. Only have 17 downloaded apps from the App Store.
Removed battery and SIM card many times
Rebooted phone even more times
I am out of options and don’t know what to do; frankly, I am close to just trashing the phone entirely. The problems have been increasingly more frequent and serious. I’m almost positive that the phone has gotten to the point where a fix does not even exist in order to correct all of the problems. Alas, I am in no situation to purchase another phone and was wondering if you could help me. I have attached a screenshot of the technical details of the phone (model #, kernel #, version #, etc) if it helps.
I don’t expect a reply/fix any time soon, but anything would help. I thank you so much for your time and help in advance.
Please get back to me when you get a chance. I cannot appreciate your help enough.
All the best. — Atul
Troubleshooting: Hi Atul. We appreciate the effort of giving a detailed description of your phone’s troubles. They sure are a lot! Taking them all into consideration though, it appears that the main reason is software in nature. Rooting a smartphone opens the device to problems Samsung and Google don’t usually anticipate. As you may have noticed, our troubleshooting advices are more geared toward helping customers who have unrooted devices because they tend to be common and easier to fix. This is not to blame you for rooting the phone. We have people in TheDroidGuy who have rooted their phones as well and we fully support the practice. What we’re saying is as a user, you have done EVERYTHING to try to fix this issue. We are not much wiser and frankly speaking, we would have suggested all the things you already did. The only thing that seems missing from the list of troubleshooting steps done is by letting a professional re-flash or check the phone’s software state. Have you considered bringing the phone to a Samsung shop or your local electronics shop? We are not saying there is a 100% guarantee of a fix by doing so but it surely won’t hurt. We can only do much as end users so please let a professional check it before thinking of doing something else.
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