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When Nokia Lumia Phones "Brick"

Saturday, November 23, 2013 in Technical Articles (Views: 2636)
Unfortunately, one of the joys of owning a smartphone is what to do about them when they "brick", and they will eventually. A phone being a "brick" is simple, which essentially means it's in an unusable state.

In this particular excercise, I have the joys of resetting a Lumia 920. Now, this was the first Windows Phone by Nokia not to allow access to the battery (boo-hiss) or this could have been a lot easier. First, allow me to go over simpler methods of resetting the phone.

1. Soft Reset
Simply hold down Volume Down + Power. That will reset your phone, similar to a PC reboot. Wait for your phone to vibrate before releasing.

2. Hard Reset
Hold down Volume Down + Power + Camera. When the phone vibrates, remove your finger from the power button, leaving Volume Down + Camera pressed. Wait 5 seconds (Nokia logo should appear) and release. You will see the "gears spinning"

3. Special hard reset if you are "stuck with spinning gears"
Hold down Volume Down + Power
When the Nokia logo comes up, press these buttons in succession:
- Volume Up
- Volume Down
- Power
- Volume Down

If you got the right answer, the phone will blank out, and the Nokia logo will come back up. Wait about 15-30 minutes. If the gears don't stop spinning, enjoy the last resort option, #4.

4. And the last resort (where I am), flashing the phone again.
There is a Nokia Flash utility (using v4.1) which will flash your phone back to factory spec. Careful here, as your phone may also be voided of its warranty. This tool also only works in Win7 or Win8. Do also note that this will not download the ROMs, just the app that will get you to the ROMs.

Upon download, the following dependencies exist:
- Visual C 2005 Redistributable
- PC Connectivity Solution
- Fuse Driversx64
- WinUSB Drivers x64
- Nokia Connectivity Cable Driver

Of course, I install these. As I always suggest, do this on a system you don't care about, as installing drivers can sometimes produce unexpected results.

You are then asked (and required, wtf) to enter your name, and then if you want to launch the downloader. Once the downloader appears, you connect the device (pretty blue window prompt), and then (accept defeat and) click "My device does not boot up".

Another wtf moment appears when after clicking the button, you are asked to disconnect all devices and click Continue. Again, wait for the next wtf moment - since you click Continue, it wants another reconnect. You then can update the device. The ROM will begin to download, but again, this may take a while. Crisis never checks your schedule remember.

Needless to say, a fun exercise. But, if your Windows Phone (more specifically Nokia) is bricked, this may be the answer for you.

For reference, the download link to the installer is here:


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