Samsung Windows Phone 7 owners "bricked" after update

It looks like all is not going too well at all with the Windows Phone update, which started rolling out yesterday. Users have claimed that the Samsung Omnia 7 is having some stability issues when applying the new OS update.

The reports vary from the operation getting stuck on the backup to fully locked-out handsets, with one user saying "...(the) backup gets stuck at 100% (Step 7 of 10) and the update doesn't carry on". In this instance the phone is at least still usable, but over at Winrumors users are reporting a different scenario.

One Winrumors reader named Tom Granville wrote in to the site to share his frustrations, saying:

Basically, after plugging in my phone to receive the update, the process gets as far as stage 6 of 10 where the phone goes through the reboot process but the phone hangs on the ‘connect your phone to your PC.

The Windows Zune client displays the following error:

RESTORATION ERROR

An error prevented the restoration of your phone to its previous version.

Your phone can’t be used in its present condition and there are no restore points for it on this computer. The phone might restart and return to normal if you disconnect it. For further assistance, contact your mobile operator.

Unfortunately, if you receive this error there isn't a great deal that the can be done. So far a total of five people have reported unusable devices, while another three said the update failed a step earlier, meaning the phone was still useable.

One user, Alex Roebuck, who claims his device is “bricked”, was simply asked to return his device to the store by the Microsoft support team. Some people think that it may have to do with different Samsung firmware versions. JI9 and JJ4 both experience issues whereas JK1 appears to be fine.

Yesterday's update was the first to hit the device since its launch late last year, and while it wasn't the 'NoDo' update, which will bring among other things, copy and paste functionality to the platform, overall speed improvements, and other tweaks to help improve the end user experience, Microsoft will be hoping that future updates go much more smoothly.

Microsoft is pushing the WP7 platform with nearly everything it has with a $500 million advertising campaign in the hope they can close the gap between their fledgling phone OS and that of Apple's iOS and Google's Android.

But in this instance, if you own a Samsung WP7 device, specifically the Omnia, you might want to wait before attempting an update.

Update: According to a posting by Diego T (Microsoft Support) on the Microsoft Answers support forum, the following steps can be tried as well:

OK guys

Please follow this

  1. If backup process is in apparently prolonged state (exceeding the general 30-40 min) with no movement of progress (including stuck at 99/100%)
  2. Disconnect the device from the PC
  3. Pull the battery
  4. Replace battery and power on
  5. Device should reboot into the OSKernal
  6. We would recommend at this time, not to retry the update, as subsequent attempts will fail similarly. While we continue to investigate the issue, we would ask that you not attempt the update until your device alerts you of another update opportunity, in approximately 3 days’ time.
  7. Last resort option if battery pull reset does not work, please consult your product documentation on Hard Resetting the device to factory default.

Image credit: Winrumors

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89 Comments

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Why can't you guys just ignore Flawed and his ridiculously flamebaitish comments? Ignore the troll and he will go away.... eventually.

To all these people that have received the update: is anybody located in the US? If so with which carrier? I use T-Mobile and so far there is nothing for my HD7. I have friends with AT&T and Samsung devices and no update there either.
And yes my Zune software is updated...
Thanks.

I believe i've isolated the issue. Tried on friends Omnia 7 to see what's the deal, the only issue I saw is that he had the additional samsung drivers installed to run phone as modem. We uninstalled and and ran update with no issues (after first unsuccessful attempt). Reinstalled drivers to run as modem again (after update) with no hitch. Just my conclusion.

Nexus69 said,
I believe i've isolated the issue. Tried on friends Omnia 7 to see what's the deal, the only issue I saw is that he had the additional samsung drivers installed to run phone as modem. We uninstalled and and ran update with no issues (after first unsuccessful attempt). Reinstalled drivers to run as modem again (after update) with no hitch. Just my conclusion.

Was your friend's phone hanging at the backup, or did he get the "restoration error"?

Edited by JonathanMarston, Feb 22 2011, 7:39pm :

JonathanMarston said,

Was your friend's phone hanging at the backup, or did he get the "restoration error"?

Resoration error. They both could be related to he drivers issue.

Nexus69 said,

Resoration error. They both could be related to he drivers issue.

It would make some sense.

Also, since tethering was never officially supported in the first place, it makes sense that Microsoft/Samsung wouldn't have tested it, hence the issues.

Not surprised. It's their first time to update the phone, some issues are to be expected. Look at the iPhone: everyone I know waits 3-4 weeks to apply an update because they've all been bit by issues with iPhone updates; including bricked phones.

I always install iPhone updates the day they come out (and sometimes betas) and haven't had any issues, and I'll probably do the same with my Samsung Focus. I like having the latest and greatest, even if it is a little risky :-)

ahhell said,
It's ****ty Samsung firmware that's the problem.

Sure. It had nothing to do with a patch pushed by Microsoft? Wait, if it was working before the patch...

Flawed said,

Sure. It had nothing to do with a patch pushed by Microsoft? Wait, if it was working before the patch...

Do you not know about the new I8700 firmware that Samsung created in November that isn't on all Omnia 7 devices?

Seriously, it could be the new firmware that is causing issues. The standard old/new retail firmware differences are maybe the root of the problem?

This isn't all Microsoft's fault you know - Sammy & the carriers should be taking their share of responsibility for this screw up too. My Omnia 7 was fine BTW. I have 3UK firmware - different firmware config code in debugger.

Flawed said,

Sure. It had nothing to do with a patch pushed by Microsoft? Wait, if it was working before the patch...

Flawed, your argument makes absolutely no sense. It was working before the patch, and as far as we can tell, it's working for the vast majority of devices that have since received the patch, INCLUDING many Samsung devices!!! My GUESS is that the different firmwares were necessary because of supposedly "comparable" but different components that were used in manufacturing... an issue for which Microsoft cannot be held responsible, no matter how you feel about them. MS is setting the standard for WP7, and it's Samsung's responsibility as an OEM partner to ensure that their hardware is up-to-snuff.

Flawed... Judging by the arguments you've made here, your name seems most appropriate.

I don't know if these devices are in-fact "bricked". Did the users try powering up their phones by holding the camera, volume buttons and power button for 10 seconds? This put the device into a "download" mode where it reinstalls the OS. I had to do this last night because of the update being problematic. After that I updated the firmware and then re-sync'd my phone. Everything works really well now.

I was receiving the same error - there is no reason to return the phone to MS or Samsung. Just do what I said and you will be fine. Same error code, etc... Growing pains of a new platform.

Digitalx said,
geez would think they'd have had enough time to practice deploying this update to notice.

You know what they say about assumption don't you

My Omnia 7 update went ok this morning, here's some info:
Firmware revision number: 2424.10.11.1
No unlocks/hacks or stuff like that performed on the phone up to that point, just regular apps installed.

Update process: started Zune, connected phone, Zune notifies of the update warns not to disconnect phone at any point, Zune updates itself and closes, restarted Zune manually (my auto-start setting for Zune is off so that may be the reason), phone update begins, everything over in about 15-20 minutes with some worrying moments: after first phone reboot the phone seemed to be stuck at Samsung Omnia 7 logo "forever" - anyway longer than normal reboot, at one moment the display on the phone showed image that might be interpreted like asking the user to reconnect the phone to USB (which would obviously be against "do not disconnect your phone at any point..." displayed in Zune), backup was rather swift (only 3,5 GB data on the phone), and finally when progress reached 100% I had to enter my SIM PIN on the phone - only after I entered the PIN did the Zune say that the phone update had been successful.

So if you have Omnia 7 with similar firmware and no problems with Zune update, you should be OK so far as you just leave your phone connected to the computer at all times during update (consider having your laptops on AC so they don't hibernate on you). However if the thing lasts for more than an hour you might be one of the afflicted Omnia folk.

I have an Omnia 7 and the update worked fine. It did get stuck for about a minute on the 6th step, when the phone was rebooting and all I could see was the Omnia 7 logo on the phone's screen before Windows finally downloaded and installed some sort of driver. I'd imagine some people having trouble if for some reason this driver update failed on their computers. On the 7th step, where the phone gets backed up, it again did get stuck at 100% for about 3-4 minutes but being patient, I just waited it out and the update completed. This was on Windows 7 64bit.

Now running WP 7.0.7008.0.

Flawed said,
The BSOD returns lol. No matter which Windows you use, you are guaranteed the consistency of failure

LAWLzzz that made me chuckle...thanks.

Flawed said,
The BSOD returns lol. No matter which Windows you use, you are guaranteed the consistency of failure

Do you masturbate while you bash Microsoft?

C'mon it's Samsung their software, especially low level software (drivers etc) is always crappy. Look at Samsung Galaxy i5700, Galaxy S updates, laser printer drivers, feature phone's OSes and so on - fail after fail. I'd say they'll find a way to screw Chrome OS Notebook (software wise) if they'll make one ;P

Paralityk said,
C'mon it's Samsung their software, especially low level software (drivers etc) is always crappy.

Wasn't that the excuse for Vista? You can only blame others so much before people start to realise there's something fundamentally wrong with the OS itself.

Flawed said,

Wasn't that the excuse for Vista? You can only blame others so much before people start to realise there's something fundamentally wrong with the OS itself.

Yet there's nothing fundamentally wrong with the OS itself since it's updated fine on HTC,LG, Dell phones just fine AND even other Omnia7 owners have been able to update fine as well.

You're thinking is still off after all this time it seems.

Flawed said,

Wasn't that the excuse for Vista? You can only blame others so much before people start to realise there's something fundamentally wrong with the OS itself.

err, yes you can when drivers are a fundemental part of the os, that other people write. when they fail, there's not a whole lot microsoft can do.

AgentGray said,

err, yes you can when drivers are a fundemental part of the os, that other people write. when they fail, there's not a whole lot microsoft can do.

The driver, if that's what it was, was working fine before the update. The changes made to the OS by Microsoft caused the bricking of the phones, not samsung.

Flawed said,

Wasn't that the excuse for Vista? You can only blame others so much before people start to realise there's something fundamentally wrong with the OS itself.

Vista was perfectly happy until you installed samsung drivers

Flawed said,

The driver, if that's what it was, was working fine before the update. The changes made to the OS by Microsoft caused the bricking of the phones, not samsung.
\
There is a thing called "guidelines"
Samsung does not follow them when developing any kind of software...

Deviate_X said,

Vista was perfectly happy until you installed samsung drivers

And graphic card, printer, web cam, tv tuner, et al. Driver issues were pervasive in the initial release.

Paralityk said,
\
There is a thing called "guidelines"
Samsung does not follow them when developing any kind of software...

Perhaps Microsoft should have actually tested the patch on their preferred partner's phones before deploying it?

Kirkburn said,
Flawed, I suggest you shush until we have more info. You're railing on ifs and maybes.

Why such hostility, did I hit a raw nerve?

Flawed said,

The driver, if that's what it was, was working fine before the update. The changes made to the OS by Microsoft caused the bricking of the phones, not samsung.

still Samsungs fault for ****ty drivers. The SP has been available to Samsung for a longer time then its users.
besides the point that other phones have no problem with their drivers.

Shadowzz said,

still Samsungs fault for ****ty drivers. The SP has been available to Samsung for a longer time then its users.
besides the point that other phones have no problem with their drivers.

Agreed.

Flawed said,

Perhaps Microsoft should have actually tested the patch on their preferred partner's phones before deploying it?

Perhaps, it would be nice of them. But knowing how Microsoft is very "buisnessy" (no "love" like apple(?)/google, no ideology, pure money, no vision) they've got into agreement: Here is SDK, guidelines, main OS, make it work simply and properly now and we'll provide updates that are meant to work with this "base setup"
Here, let's assume, Samsung screwed up and that's how **** happens :>

I know it's all ifs and maybes but Samsung did exactly this or similar fails many times and I lived through few of them personally (list above) that's why I make those assumptions so strong :>

Stay with me for this short story:
Samsung i5700 - Android Phone based on Samsung's S3C6410.
1. It's CPU is clocked at 800Mhz, no one knows how it's achieved, documentation suggests it's impossible to set clockgens so that they generate such number. In effect (probably, still no one is sure) main bus's clock is generated wrong so that it works at 1/5 speed. Pain to use.
2. Contains a proper 3D chip with theoritical performance of early android devices, however samsung's drivers emulate any 3D instructions using main CPU (sic!)
3. It's just out of production (though still sold in some places) but Samsung makes no indication of open sourcing any bit of drivers... officially we're stuck at 2.1 (unofficially 2.2 is working without divx acceleration, and 2.3 is... well it starts up so far )
Knowing how big of improvement are new drivers usually developed by some single person "hackers" (@ samdroid.net) i wouldn't be surprised if Samsung already threw out/lost source code

The Samsung's way:
1. make it work somehow
2. sell, sell, sell
3. support only if it stops working
4. forget

THIS IS MADNESS

this is not good!

i do not have a mobile operator to cry to if something goes wrong.. no complete hard reset as on iPhones then

BGM said,
this is not good!

i do not have a mobile operator to cry to if something goes wrong.. no complete hard reset as on iPhones then

Samsung warranty will most likely cover it?

dhan said,
it does but not if someone had it disabled.

The zune software tells you that it has to update before the phone update, I'm pretty sure it won't offer to apply the phone update until you have updated the zune software.

I have an Omnia 7, i tried to get the update last night but nothing was there. SO glad i didn't persist.

Tbh, if they ask me to return my phone to the store for a new one then thats fine by me as i get a nice shiny new one and with everything so well integrated with the cloud/zune it will take me ~ 10 minutes to get back to where i was at.

zikalify said,
I as usual am still waiting for the update. HTC Mozart unlocked to giffgaff UK.

Did you connect your phone to the PC and then check for updates on the Zune software? That's what I did and it updated that way, I didn't get any sorta notification if that's what you're waiting for.

GP007 said,

Did you connect your phone to the PC and then check for updates on the Zune software? That's what I did and it updated that way, I didn't get any sorta notification if that's what you're waiting for.

Plugged it into mac and you WP connector and didnt find anything. You have same phone as me and in same country? i think its rolling out over country

GP007 said,

Did you connect your phone to the PC and then check for updates on the Zune software? That's what I did and it updated that way, I didn't get any sorta notification if that's what you're waiting for.

JUst checked on zune player and it says up to date version 7004

zikalify said,
JUst checked on zune player and it says up to date version 7004

They are doing a rolling update, not everyone will get it at the same time. I myself do not have it yet

I hope they do the right thing and replace/repair these phones free of charge.
Some companies (sony) actually have it written in the EULA that if your device bricks from doing an official update which is required to play games you are on your own, but then they normally never go wrong. Except when I did it and ended up with a broken PSP

speedstr3789 said,

why? How are they even remotely the same?

They both have Windows 7 in the name? I guess one brand will tarnish all others. Unfortunate for Microsoft

Flawed said,

They both have Windows 7 in the name? I guess one brand will tarnish all others. Unfortunate for Microsoft

Yeah, but Windows 7 SP1 hasn't "bricked" any PCs so far. That tells you whose QA is better.

briangw said,

Yeah, but Windows 7 SP1 hasn't "bricked" any PCs so far. That tells you whose QA is better.

All in good time my friend

Most Omnia7 users don't get far enough to actually brick their phone from what I've read on other sites. Also there are others who got it to update without any problems on the first try, so go figure. My LG updated without any problems as well on the first go, and I'm guessing all the HTCs upgraded fine as well. It seems like there's some combination of factors with the Omnia7 itself and not just a basic OS/software problem.

I once owned a WM device (Samsung i780 with WM6). While users in Europe, UK and US got updates to WM 6.1, devices purchases in India were left out. The response I got from the Samsung support was that the updates will not be made available to Asia. bah! humbug! Now on iPhone, I don't have to worry about device dependencies, location and whole lot more...too complex for a non technical business user like me who cannot install cooked meat/roms.

ConfusedFusion said,
I once owned a WM device (Samsung i780 with WM6). While users in Europe, UK and US got updates to WM 6.1, devices purchases in India were left out. The response I got from the Samsung support was that the updates will not be made available to Asia. bah! humbug! Now on iPhone, I don't have to worry about device dependencies, location and whole lot more...too complex for a non technical business user like me who cannot install cooked meat/roms.

Related how exactly? Windows Mobile and Windows Phone are 2 completely different operating systems.

Billus said,

Related how exactly? Windows Mobile and Windows Phone are 2 completely different operating systems.

The point I was trying to make is the high level of dependencies on device manufacturers to roll out updates to the respective devices. Although what I said has little to do with this thread, just wanted so share my frustration of having a samsung wm mobile in the past.

ConfusedFusion said,

The point I was trying to make is the high level of dependencies on device manufacturers to roll out updates to the respective devices. Although what I said has little to do with this thread, just wanted so share my frustration of having a samsung wm mobile in the past.

What you said has NOTHING to do with this thread. Everyone got the update at the same time. This is Windows Phone 7, related to Windows Mobile in no way at all.

ConfusedFusion said,
The point I was trying to make is the high level of dependencies on device manufacturers to roll out updates to the respective devices.
You know this is something they are specifically trying to prevent with WP7, right?

Billus said,

Related how exactly? Windows Mobile and Windows Phone are 2 completely different operating systems.

Related perhaps because they were both Microsoft phones from Samsung, and since this user in from India, has a phone that is globally unlocked (not purchased from a carrier), and still had issues updating it?

Billus said,

Related how exactly? Windows Mobile and Windows Phone are 2 completely different operating systems.


no their not, its the same kind of step from WinXP to Vista/7.
WP7 still has much of its roots in WM6, and without WM6 there wouldnt even be a WP7.
Its the same OS, WP7 is just further up the development tree.