Factory Reset and remove current user (Photon Device)


I have seen problems connecting to a specific wifi router (at a relatives house) using the iPhone Tinker App. I have tried a number of devices that have been flashed with custom hardware and they all fail to connect (I cannot remember the lcd flashing sequence). However, I can set up these devices using a usb connection to send the wifi credentials. It may be that as these were test devices, I have already set up a user (i.e. claimed the device) and this has been the issue.

Yesterday, I tried a new, out of the box photon, it has worked ok. Not sure if this is a one-off, but I would like to attempt this again with the previous devices.

Now to the question - how can I reset a device (i.e. the previous devices) to be ‘fresh out of the box’ as far as particle are concerned? I know I can do a software restore/update using DFU, ,but I presume this does not reset any user/device claimed details? I want to remove ANY evidence of being used so I can repeat the same conditions as yesterday where the device connected. Thank you.

Hold the setup button to erase all credentials. Then do particle update, followed by particle flash --usb tinker. That should put you back to default.

This has not worked to clear some of the device details. I tested with a device that had wifi credentials and was named. I used the details above (to use the particle operations the device has to be in DFU mode) to reset the device. However, on powering up, the device automatically reconnects to wifi (so held the wifi credentials) and displays in the dashboard with the name I used when I claimed it before doing the reset.

I need this device to be a ‘vanilla’ out of the box device. This means all the eeprom data cleared and no customer info held with Particle.

This is just an experiment to see if by having been previously setup was in some way stopping the device from connecting to wifi in a new location using the mobile app - it may be a red herring - anyone else seem similar?

You might have missed that bit.
Power up the device in normal mode, press and hold SETUP 10+ sec (till rapid flashing blue) and the credentials will be gone.
If you have data stored in EEPROM, you’d need to remove that yourself or by flashing a complete image via dfu_util.

But the claiming status (and hence the device name) is not stored on the device, but with the cloud.
If you want to remove and unclaim the device from your account you’d need to do this via CLI or Build or the respective API endpoints.

I guess it is. It’s most likely the way how the setup was done at the other location rather than anything with the device or claiming status.

I did all as explained (including setup button). However, the Particle Dashboard still identifies the device by the name I used when I claimed it. If this name is stored in the cloud, clearly the links are not being deleted.

The name is most likely linked to the ID of the device, which isn’t necessarily user data. During the mobile setup, you’ll be asked to change the name if desired. You could always make it something random before unclaiming if that’s something you’re really worried about…

Only one of those two statements of yours can be true


unless the two describe two seperate reset attempts.

But I’d say if you also did that

the device should not be shown in dashboard and am rather positive it wouldn’t.
Or did you reclaim the device to the same account?
If so your account (in the cloud) just remembered that device ID but that doesn’t mean that the link to the device was still active.

The name is definetly connected to the device ID as long you have that device claimed to the same account.
You have to unclaim the device so that this device ID does get unlinked from your account.
If someone else claims the same device he’ll not see your name you chose to have linked to that device ID under your account.
The device ID on the other hand is not a user setting but “hardwired” to the device and hence won’t be reset.

agreed - on the second attempt it did not automatically connect to wifi.

Only after explicitly unclaiming the device using the Build console did the device (as suggested at the end of the last post) not then show up in the Dashboard. I believe this is the crucial part to ensure there are no longer any links between the device and particle that could cause issues when trying to reuse a device elsewhere.

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