Android: "Your device has been modified."

 2013-08-05    Off topic    0    96

Today my Samsung Galaxy Note 2 had unexpectedly turned off. I pressed the Power-button for a few seconds and the phone started normally. Curious about why this had happened I wanted to check if the phone had received an over-the-air update, since "everyone" is talking about the next upgrade to Android 4.2 or 4.3 and Google pushing out the Device Manager update. I pressed Settings, About device, Software update, Update and waited. To my big surprise I got this message in return: "Your device has been modified. Software updates are not available". Rather strange since the phone is running stock Android 4.1.2, and has never been rooted or modified in any way by me, and it was brand new when I started using it. I pressed Settings, About device, Status and scrolled all the way down to Device status and could see that it said Modified. I did some googling and found lots of suggestions on how to reset the phone device status back to normal, most of them involved factory resetting, flashing ROM or rooting the phone. In the end I tried what seemed to be the simplest solution:

  1. Turn the phone off.
  2. Remove the phone back cover.
  3. Remove the MicroSD memory card.
  4. Restart the phone.
  5. Insert the MicroSD memory card.
  6. Replace the phone back cover.
Again I pressed Settings, About device, Status and scrolled all the way down to see the Device status, now it was saying Normal. I also pressed Settings, About device, Software update, Update and waited. Got a disappointing, but not unexpected, message saying: "The latest updates have already been installed". So starting the phone without the MicroSD memory card inserted brings the phone device status back to normal. More googling revealed that lots of people seems to have this problem using the same type of MicroSD memory card that I have in my phone: SanDisk Ultra 64GB XC1. I'm not sure why this problem occur, maybe it is a faulty memory card, a software bug somewhere or because my memory card is encrypted. The main thing is that I now know how to restore my phone status back to normal so that it will be able to receive any future over-the-air software updates.


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