1. nuraman00's Avatar
    I upgraded to Android Marshmallow around the end of August or beginning of September.

    After that, my left button next to the home button hasn't worked most of the time.

    It will work a little bit after a restart. But as I use my phone more after the restart, it will stop working. It actually hasn't worked at all even after a restart in about a week.

    I went to AT&T, but they couldn't do anything.

    I called Samsung, and they said the only options I have are:

    1) Try a factory reset to see if it's a software problem.
    2) Send in the phone for repair, but they're not taking out of warranty repairs anymore. And even doing so would cost $80.

    Neither looks like a good option.

    And I already had to do a factory reset once this year in January because my fingerprint scanner disappeared and I couldn't log in anymore.

    They say there's a way to back up all of your data (like text messages and stuff) before doing a factory reset. Can someone else verify that?

    Will it also back up other app data? For example, I have a few reminder apps (Life Reminders, To Do Reminder). Will it save settings for those apps, as well as the saved task history within those apps?

    And what would you do? Would you do a factory reset to try and narrow down the problem?

    I've only had my phone for a little more than a year.

    Are there any other things I can try?

    Thank you.
    10-24-2016 07:54 PM
  2. B. Diddy's Avatar
    First, try wiping the cache partition, which won't erase any personal data: https://support.t-mobile.com/docs/DOC-28932

    If that doesn't work, then try booting into Safe Mode, which temporarily disables all 3rd party apps. Galaxy Note 4 Safe Mode: What you need to know | Android Central. If the problem disappears in Safe Mode, then something you installed is causing the problem. You may have to uninstall apps one by one until the problem disappears. If the problem persists in Safe Mode, then it's more likely to be a hardware or firmware problem.
    10-27-2016 03:42 AM
  3. nuraman00's Avatar
    Thank you.

    I will try these things in a few days and let you know.
    10-27-2016 10:59 PM
  4. nuraman00's Avatar
    First, try wiping the cache partition, which won't erase any personal data: https://support.t-mobile.com/docs/DOC-28932

    If that doesn't work, then try booting into Safe Mode, which temporarily disables all 3rd party apps. Galaxy Note 4 Safe Mode: What you need to know | Android Central. If the problem disappears in Safe Mode, then something you installed is causing the problem. You may have to uninstall apps one by one until the problem disappears. If the problem persists in Safe Mode, then it's more likely to be a hardware or firmware problem.
    So I tried clearing the cache partition.

    It started working right away after that.

    But a few minutes later, it stopped working again.

    I haven't tried booting in safe mode yet. Will try that another time.

    For now, I guess clearing cache partition isn't a reliable solution since it only works for a few minutes after it's done re-booting.
    11-12-2016 06:08 PM
  5. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Interesting. Safe Mode is definitely worth a try, then, because if some 3rd party app is not playing well with the new update, the problem should go away as long as you're in Safe Mode. This will help you narrow the problem down a bit, but it will still be challenging to pinpoint the exact app that's the culprit. You might have to uninstall apps one by one in that situation.
    11-13-2016 10:15 PM
  6. nuraman00's Avatar
    Interesting. Safe Mode is definitely worth a try, then, because if some 3rd party app is not playing well with the new update, the problem should go away as long as you're in Safe Mode. This will help you narrow the problem down a bit, but it will still be challenging to pinpoint the exact app that's the culprit. You might have to uninstall apps one by one in that situation.
    Thanks.

    Just an update. I haven't tried safe mode yet, but I was able to figure out how to consistently reproduce the problem.

    1) Restart phone.

    2) After entering my backup password and getting to the home screen, the left button works. I can open other screens or apps, and still use the left button. I can open screens and close them like normal, at this point.

    3) As soon as I hit the power button to turn off the screen, the next time I turn my screen back on (whether it is within a few seconds, or an hour later), then the back button stops working.
    11-14-2016 01:51 PM
  7. nuraman00's Avatar
    I tried safe mode.

    The back button always works.

    One thing I noticed is that in safe mode, if I turn the screen off, then on again, I always have to swipe to unlock it.

    But in normal mode, if I turn the screen off, then on again, sometimes I don't have to swipe to unlock it. The screen will unlock just by turning the screen back on.

    What should I do to proceed investigating this?

    Is there a list where I can see what date my most recent apps were installed?

    One thing I'm possibly suspicious about, is having 2 reminder apps. Both Life Reminders, and To Do Reminder. I started with Life Reminders at the beginning of August. But the repeat reminders functionality (keep sending reminders every X minutes after a missed reminder) didn't seem to be working. I emailed them to ask for help, but their suggestion didn't help, and sometimes I have to email them several times before they respond.

    So I then tried To Do Reminder. Overall it works well, including the repeat reminders after a missed reminder. But I can't duplicate old reminders, nor categorize them like I could Life Reminders.

    I'm wondering if having both of them some interfere. Or, I might have installed To Do Reminder right around the same time the back button stopped working. Just a hunch, it could be an incorrect one.
    11-26-2016 06:30 PM
  8. nuraman00's Avatar
    I think it's definitely something related to how after pressing the power button to turn off the screen, then pressing it again to turn it back on, how the phone unlocks by itself without me having to swipe.

    When I was in safe mode, I always had to at least swipe if I turned the screen on shortly after turning it off.

    What could be causing this interference?
    11-28-2016 03:19 PM
  9. nuraman00's Avatar
    This is still a problem.
    05-20-2017 12:39 PM
  10. nuraman00's Avatar
    I found a solution today.

    A few months ago, I saw that the left button would always work if I disabled locks.

    Then today, I changed my lock screen settings so that it's instantly locked when I hit the power button.

    Now, no more back button issue.

    I think what was happening before was that if I set the lock screen after 15 seconds of 1 minute or whatever, if I hit the power button to turn off the screen, then turned it back on within those 15 seconds or whatever interval I set the lock screen setting, then the back button would stop working. I think it's because the screen would automatically unlock without me having to unlock it if I hit the power button to turn on the screen within that interval.

    But if I change it so that the screen is instantly locked when I hit the power button, then it solves the problem.
    B. Diddy likes this.
    08-31-2017 01:56 PM
  11. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Glad you found a solution, and thanks for keeping us updated!
    09-01-2017 12:09 AM
  12. nuraman00's Avatar
    Glad you found a solution, and thanks for keeping us updated!
    No problem.

    I just wish Samsung could have helped come up with the solution, rather than my own trial and error.

    I had 3 support calls with them this year about this issue. The best they could say was that to either disable all locks, or to send the phone in for repair as it could have been a hardware issue.

    I even sent the phone in with 2 items on the ticket. The other item being that charging cables weren't staying connected in the charging port, and were becoming disconnected too easily.

    Before sending my phone in, I asked several times if they'd try to solve both issues on the ticket (charging port issue; back button issue).

    They said yes.

    But once they saw the charging port issue, and declined the repair because it would be too costly, they sent the phone back without addressing the back button issue. I thought they were going to call me to ask me about the back button issue, because it requires specific steps to replicate, and it might not be clear via email. I thought once I had a technician on the phone, I could tell them how to reproduce the issue.

    But they sent the phone back without even telling me they were sending it back, once they declined the charging port repair. So they never took the chance to solve the back button issue in person, either.
    B. Diddy likes this.
    09-09-2017 02:51 PM

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