Quite a few Android users complained that they are facing a problem with their handset when they are trying to open the Settings option. It’s showing “Unfortunately, Settings has stopped working”. This was a very common issue back in the time when KitKat update was released. However, the problem is not always related to the software update, and if you see this error message on your device try the solutions below and hopefully, you will fix your Android device.
Solutions for “Unfortunately, Settings has stopped working” problem on Android
Restart the device
‘Unfortunately, settings has stopped working’ is a very annoying issue but you can fix it just by restarting your Android phone or tablet. Press and hold the Power button. When the menu opens, tap Restart. Try to access the settings.
Clear cache of the device
The next step is clearing the cache of your Android device. This will clear cached data for all the apps you have on your smartphone or tablet.
- Go to settings > Storage
- Tap Clear cache (on some devices Clean Cache)
Wipe cache partition
In case you are unable to perform the above method, you can enter the Recovery mode and then select the option “Wipe cache partition.” To access the Recovery mode, you have to power off your device and then press a specific combination of keys, which varies from one device to another. Here are some examples (Samsung: Home, Power, and Volume buttons; LG: Power and Volume Down buttons; Nexus: Volume Up, Volume Down, Power button; HTC: Volume Down and Power button;)
- Power off your phone or tablet
- Press the combination of keys at the same time
- After a while, you will see Recovery screen
- When Recovery menu shows up, use the Volume button to navigate to Wipe cache partition option
- Select that using the Power button.
- When this is completed, select reboot option
Uninstall and reinstall Google Play store update
This might sound bit odd but yes, this method can help you in resolving the ‘Unfortunately, settings has stopped working’. What you need to do is clear the cache for Google Play and uninstall the Google Play store update. To do that, go to Settings > Application manager, find Google Play and tap on it. First tap “Clear cache”. Then, tap Uninstall updates. Once you are done, restart your device. Go to Google Play and tap on three horizontal lines. Next, tap Settings. Scroll down, and tap on Build version. You will see the following message: “A new version of Google Play Store will be downloaded and installed”. Tap OK.
Boot the device in safe mode
Many times, a third-party app is the culprit and is causing “Unfortunately, Settings has stopped working” eroor. You can boot your device to Safe mode. When you do that, you will be able to use your Android without third-party apps, because all of them will be disabled. If your device working normally, and the error message is not showing when you try to acess the settings, a third-party app is to blame. You can uninstall the apps one by one, or you can perform a factory data reset.
- Press and hold the Power button
- When the menu appears, press and hold Power off option
- You will be asked if you want to reboot your device into Safe mode
- Tap OK
- You will see Safe mode in the lower-left corner of the screen
If you see that “Unfortunately Settings has stopped working” problem is not occurring in Safe Mode, then a third party app is causing the problem. What you need to do is uninstall third-party apps one by one (start with those recently installed), until the issue is solved or if you have too many apps you can perform a factory data reset.
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A Factory reset removes all your phone’s data, so before proceed, back up all your data.
There are several ways to create a backup of your phone. Follow the steps below:
- The first way to create a backup of the device is with Google account. Head towards Settings > General > Backup & Reset and it will provide two options named as backup my data and automatic restores. Ensure those options are enabled by ticking the checkbox next to them and it will backup details like Wi-Fi password, app data, Google settings, and bookmarks automatically to Google server so that they can be retrieved.
- In case you are using a Samsung device, create a backup using Samsung account. For that go to Application > Settings> User and backup > Account and check if you are signed in with your Samsung account. If the option is enabled, it will sync the contacts, calendar and internet settings to the Samsung account.
After the backup, go ahead with the factory reset process. Here is how to perform it on your Android phone:
- Go to Settings
- Tap Backup & Reset
- Next, tap Factory data reset
- Tap Reset phone/tablet
If the error message keeps popping up, and you can’t access Backup & Reset, do the following:
- Turn off your device
- Next, hold down the Home, Power, and Volume Up button altogether for few seconds till Android logo appears on the screen (if you are not using Samsung, make sure you are pressing the correct combination of keys).
- Release the buttons then. Use Volume down button for highlighting any options and Power key to confirm it. Highlight the factory reset option and confirm it using the power button.
- Next, select ‘Delete all user data’ and confirm it
- Wait for few seconds to see the ‘reboot system now’ option and select it. The phone will restart and you will have to set it up from scratch again.