When using a high-end Android based device it doesn’t mean that you won’t experience any software related issues. Because Android is an open-source platform that can be easily and quickly tweaked in different ways and by using mostly third-party apps and programs it’s quite easy to mess things up within the default Android core system. Well, if something similar happens on your new Samsung Galaxy Note 9 it’s important to know how to smartly fix the problems that are causing the actual Android malfunctions. Thus, that’s why we should now discuss about the ‘unbrick’ methods that can be manually applied on this device.
So, let’s clear out an important aspect before detailing other things. This tutorial tries to offer dedicated troubleshooting solutions for the Galaxy Note 9. However, these troubleshooting methods will work only for software related problems, so for Android issues and malfunctions. If your device is not running or performing as it should because of a hardware issue, we cannot help you – in that case you should send your device back to service and ask for technical assistance.
Therefore, we’re going to see how to unbrick a software damaged Samsung Galaxy Note 9. In term of possible problems that can be addressed we can include the following ones: boot loops, lags, hangs, screen freeze, battery drain, heating issues, signal strength problems, total blackouts and similar other malfunctions. As we all know, such issues are usually caused by unresponsive programs, malicious apps, inappropriate tools, malware or by some tweaking procedures such as enabling root, installing a custom recovery image, unlocking the bootware, removing bloatware or overclocking / undervolting CPU frequencies.
Now, for being able to fix such problems we will try to partially, or fully, restore your Samsung Galaxy Note 9 back to factory state. In that way you can remove the malfunctions and the apps or processes that were causing the problems in the first place. We will be showing you different troubleshooting methods and you should try them until you manage to fix the issues that are running on your Note 9 – for some, the first solution will be enough while others will have to apply more solutions for being able to address their issues, depending on the severity of the actual problem.
Anyway, all the unbrick methods explained during this tutorial are showing official ways in which software related issues can be fixed. So, you don’t have to worry about tripping Samsung KNOX or about having to use risky apps or complex programs. From this perspective we will keep everything safe and secured all the time.
However, a backup must be completed first – if that’s still possible, of course. Since we’re going to restore the Android system back to its default state, a wipe might be required: your personal data, info, accounts and files might be lost. So, initiate a backup on your Samsung Galaxy Note 9 for being able to save contacts, call logs, texts, images, videos, audio files, market apps, internet settings, calendar info, saved passwords, EFS folder, IMEI / NVRAM data and everything else you might still need to use afterwards. On your smartphone you can use built-in cloud storage services, you can choose to sync certain files with your Google Account or you can download and use dedicated and already tested backup and restore apps from Google Play.
Also, you should charge your Galaxy Note 9 before starting to apply the steps explained below. If there isn’t enough power left on your handset its system can get turned off in the middle of the unbricking process which can only cause additional problems. Therefore, try to avoid such unpleasant situations as much as possible – our recommendation is to plug in the charger if the power left is currently lower than 50%.
Do note that if you will have to reinstall the stock Android firmware on your Galaxy Note 9, just as showed during the last section of the step by step guide, you will fully restore your device back to factory state. Among others it means that any recently applied tweaks will be revoked – thus, in the end you will manage to revoke root access, reinstall the stock recovery image, relock the bootloader, re-apply bloatware and so on.
How to Unbrick Samsung Galaxy Note 9
Access Android Safe Mode
Like when using a Windows based computer, the safe mode can help you identify the problem that is causing the general malfunctions. In safe mode your Galaxy Note 9 will initiate and run only built-in apps as third-party tools and processes are disabled by default. So, in a few words, if the issues were caused by third-party processes, in safe mode your device will run without problems – in that case you should choose to uninstall or remove recently installed apps and features that are not coming straight from Samsung or from Google. Therefore, in safe mode you can identify the problem, you can isolate the issues and you can also address the malfunctions, if the actual problems are related with third party apps and software. Anyhow, here is how you can enter safe mode on your Samsung Galaxy Note 9:
- Power on your device.
- Then, bring up the Boot menu: press and also hold (for a short while) the Power key.
- From the options that will be displayed, tap and hold the Power off entry.
- After a few moments that ‘restart in safe mode’ message will appear.
- Confirm and select by tapping on it.
- Wait a few seconds until the reboot is completed.
- That’s all; in the end your Galaxy Note 9 will boot into safe mode.
- For going to Android mode just reboot your device.
Make a hard reset
Another way in which you can easily and quickly unbrick your Galaxy Note 9 is by making a hard reset. This operation will remove everything from your device – everything that wasn’t there from day one, so in the end you will manage to partially restore your handset back to its factory state. Thus, with a full wipe you will manage to remove malware, unresponsive programs or inappropriate apps and processes which might cause Android malfunctions. A full erase is also helpful if you want to speed up your smartphone or if you want to get rid of useless apps and tools. Of course, before choosing to perform this operation you shouldn’t forget about the backup process, which shouldn’t be optional – otherwise you are going to lose your personal files, so be careful. Anyhow, follow our dedicated tutorial and learn how to successfully complete a hard reset on the Samsung Galaxy Note 9.
Clear app data cache
Sometimes the hard reset will not be enough – so, additionally, you will have to choose to clear app data cache in order to remove even the most hidden processes that might be still running in the background. And, for doing that you will have to follow the next steps:
- You have to reboot recovery mode on your Samsung Galaxy Note 9 – one way in which you can do that is by pressing and holding the Power, Volume Up and Bixby buttons together, for a few moments.
- In recovery use the Volume rocker keys to scroll up and down and the Power button to select.
- So, from main menu of recovery, after performing the hard reset process, choose ‘wipe cache partition’ followed by ‘wipe dalvik cache’.
- When done, return to main menu of recovery.
- From there pick ‘reboot system now’.
- That should be all.
Flash a Nandroid backup package
If you recently applied a new update package or a custom ROM firmware that turned out to be the source of various software related problems, you need to consider a downgrade operation. And that can be easily applied if you can flash a Nandroid packaged – that’s a package that contains a copy of the Android system, just as it was before the update was applied. Of course, for being able to do that you must have access to the Nandroid backup file – you can search for it on xda-developers.com for example. If you can use such file, all you need to do is to go to recovery mode and perform the installation process (from recovery choose ‘install zip from SD card’ followed by ‘choose zip from SD card’).
Reinstall the stock Android firmware package
If a Nandroid backup isn’t available and if the problems are still there even after trying all the methods explained above, it’s time to apply a more drastic measure: reinstalling the stock Android firmware on your Samsung Galaxy Note 9. By doing so you will fully restore your device back to factory state which means that if it was tweaked, now all the tweaks will be revoked. Also, the recently applied apps will be removed, your data will be deleted and everything will be restored back to default as it was when you first used your handset.
Of course, this troubleshooting solution will remove any software-related problem that is currently causing issues on your Galaxy Note 9. So, from this perspective it’s a great way for resolving problems that are hard to fix.
The Android installation process can be completed if Odin is used. This is the official flashing program developed and offered by Samsung, so you won’t have to use third party apps or risky tools. Samsung Knox won’t get tripped so you won’t lose access to built-in apps.
A computer will be required and there you first have to install the Note 9 drivers – you can do it by using the Samsung KIES utility. Also, on your phone, if possible, you have to enable the USB Debugging feature, which can be found under ‘Menu - > Settings - > Developer Options’. Note: if you cannot find the Developer Options entry (within general Settings) you should first go to About Phone from where you have to tap repeatedly on Built Number until the ‘you are a developer’ message is returned.
Then, on your computer you have to download the stock Android firmware package that’s available for your Samsung Galaxy Note 9 – you can get the full firmware package from any source you prefer (for example sammobile.com). Then, run Odin, put your Note 9 into download mode and use the flashing program for completing the downgrade / update procedure. You can use this dedicated step by step guide for checking out the detailed steps that can be followed in this situation.
So, the guidelines from above should help you fix the software related issues that are running on your Samsung Galaxy Note 9. If, however, you are still facing the same malfunctions, don’t panic. Try to explain in detail the problems and the errors that you see displayed on your smartphone and based on the info you provide we will try to assist you as soon as possible with new troubleshooting solutions – you can easily get in touch with us by using the comments field from down below. Also, if you managed to address the issues, share your experience with us and with the other users – tell us the solution that worked for you and how you ended up in experiencing the issues in the first place.
Also, stay close for further tutorials and Android related tips and tricks available for your Samsung Galaxy Note 9 – or just search through our dedicated ‘how to’ section. We will, among others, show you how to take full advantage of update opportunities and how to properly tweak your device in order to obtain better results and upgraded performance. Enjoy.