Particle Photon led stuck on solid white, factory reset procedure not working

I just received my photon yesterday and was able to get it activated via the Android app. However, it was always listed as “offline” in the Android app, so I’m trying to do a factory reset to start over. However, the procedure to do so isn’t working. It is solid white, and whether I press the reset button or not as part of trying to factory reset it, it never blinks white after letting go of “Setup”. Am I missing something?

Here’s what happens:

Edit:
I have tried tapping the reset button in conjunction with holding the setup button as noted in the directions, but this doesn’t work, either. I included the video above because I didn’t think that holding the setup button by itself should cause the led to cycle through the various colors. It should simply take the device back to a blinking blue led.

Just to be sure, in order to do a factory reset, you’d have to push the reset button as well, which I haven’t seen you do. Please try that again, and see if it helps. You can reference the docs for the exact steps.

I’ve tried pressing the reset button in conjunction with holding the setup button in a couple of ways. However both resulted in the same behavior as the video above (e.g., when releasing the setup button, the led goes back to solid white).

I’ve tried:

  1. Pressing the setup button, tapping the reset button before it starts blinking magenta (and releasing reset immediately), then waiting until the led blinks white before releasing setup.
  2. Pressing the setup button and holding it until the led blinks white and then tapping reset and releasing both.

Also, I’ve allowed the white led to stay on for over an hour. It doesn’t seem to be doing anything.

Thanks for trying to help.

So you can still get the device into DFU mode? (flashing yellow?) If so, please install the update from here:

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Thanks. I installed the update. Now the device is blinking white and green. What does this mean? I don’t see that state listed here: http://docs.particle.io/photon/#leds

This was actually the state it was in when I unplugged it and landed in the broken state discussed here.

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From there, I was able to reset the device and then get it back to a blinking blue light. Thanks for your help!

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I’m having this exact same issue, would also like to know what white-green blinking means, and what steady white means. In my case Tinker showed the device id as set up, and my Photon also shows up in the web IDE, but Tinker also showed it as constantly offline. Will try DFU next.

Edit: no luck with installing update in DFU mode. Went right back to solid white. Meanwhile though I saw in the documentation that solid white means “Factory Reset complete; rebooting.” Wondering how long this should take? It’s been like this for several minutes now. In any case, the device is not available over serial while it’s in this state.

Maybe something went wrong during my DFU process?

XXX$ dfu-util -d 2b04:d006 -a 0 -s 0x8020000 -D system-part1-0.4.2-photon.bin
dfu-util 0.7

Copyright 2005-2008 Weston Schmidt, Harald Welte and OpenMoko Inc.
Copyright 2010-2012 Tormod Volden and Stefan Schmidt
This program is Free Software and has ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY
Please report bugs to dfu-util@lists.gnumonks.org

Filter on vendor = 0x2b04 product = 0xd006
Opening DFU capable USB device... ID 2b04:d006
Run-time device DFU version 011a
Found DFU: [2b04:d006] devnum=0, cfg=1, intf=0, alt=0, name="@Internal Flash   /0x08000000/03*016Ka,01*016Kg,01*064Kg,07*128Kg"
Claiming USB DFU Interface...
Setting Alternate Setting #0 ...
Determining device status: state = dfuIDLE, status = 0
dfuIDLE, continuing
DFU mode device DFU version 011a
Device returned transfer size 4096
No valid DFU suffix signature
Warning: File has no DFU suffix
DfuSe interface name: "Internal Flash   "
Downloading to address = 0x08020000, size = 247052
.............................................................
File downloaded successfully
XXX$ dfu-util -d 2b04:d006 -a 0 -s 0x8060000:leave -D system-part2-0.4.2-photon.bin
dfu-util 0.7

Copyright 2005-2008 Weston Schmidt, Harald Welte and OpenMoko Inc.
Copyright 2010-2012 Tormod Volden and Stefan Schmidt
This program is Free Software and has ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY
Please report bugs to dfu-util@lists.gnumonks.org

Filter on vendor = 0x2b04 product = 0xd006
Opening DFU capable USB device... ID 2b04:d006
Run-time device DFU version 011a
Found DFU: [2b04:d006] devnum=0, cfg=1, intf=0, alt=0, name="@Internal Flash   /0x08000000/03*016Ka,01*016Kg,01*064Kg,07*128Kg"
Claiming USB DFU Interface...
Setting Alternate Setting #0 ...
Determining device status: state = dfuDNLOAD-IDLE, status = 0
aborting previous incomplete transfer
Determining device status: state = dfuIDLE, status = 0
dfuIDLE, continuing
DFU mode device DFU version 011a
Device returned transfer size 4096
No valid DFU suffix signature
Warning: File has no DFU suffix
DfuSe interface name: "Internal Flash   "
Downloading to address = 0x08060000, size = 146072
....................................
File downloaded successfully
Error during download get_status
Error during download get_status

I updated the photon CLI again just in case, did a safe reset, and got the Photon blinking blue.
Serial connection working now, put in wifi info successfully via CLI, and now…

It’s breathing magenta. That’s different, but no idea what it means.

Breathing magenta is safe mode. Means there is no firmware on the device that the system can run. Try flashing tinker again.

I’ve had about the same experience as @spongefile. I believe I got it connected to the Particle Cloud, because it was breathing cyan, but the iPhone app and the web IDE said it was always offline. Trying to push sketches to it didn’t work even though the IDE said it did it. So I tried starting over (flashing blue mode) to re-enter my wifi credentials in case it wasn’t actually connected, but I kept getting the solid white light.

I could get it into DFU mode and tried updating the firmware to 0.4.2 as suggested by @mdma (3 attempts now) but I still get the breathing magenta.

I got mine fixed just now by following @kennethlimcp 's suggestion:

Continuing the discussion from Mystery Photon LED colors and patterns:

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That seemed to have worked for me too, @spongefile. Thanks!

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@mdma - I keep seeing you and other people saying to “flash tinker”. But my device is completely offline so how can I flash it? Is there a “Flash Tinker” button somewhere that I am missing?

Hold the setup button, press the reset button, and release the setup button if it starts blinking Magenta. It should then be in safe mode, and able to connect to wifi. Then, you should able to flash Tinker through either the app, or over the Web IDE, using the code provided.
If you’ve got the CLI installed, you could do this over DFU mode. for the exact steps to do so, look over here: https://github.com/spark/firmware/releases/tag/0.4.3-rc2

@Moors7 - This unfortunately does absolutely nothing. I cannot even connect it to the internet. I tried updating by dfu-util but this did nothing. I am stuck between having a constant green light, or a constant white light. The constant white light appears when I try to factory reset the photon. This is not working at all. Any advice?

@Moors7

I followed your recommendation as well but had different experience than @mastap94.

After performing the factory reset, the Photon slowly flashes blue.

Anytime I attempt to put it into Safe mode or DFU mode and setup via the Particle Dev (iOS) app, Particle CLI setup or DFU the particle loops through the following:

  • solid white light (2 sec)
  • slow flashing green (2 sec)
  • faster flashing green (2 sec)
  • solid cyan (1 sec)
  • flashing red (i think this is the SOS and some other red flashes)

Any ideas?

@mastap94:

I’m going to assume you tried to flash the .bin files as per the instructions on the link I gave you? Did you also flash the photon-tinker.bin from that page? Did it give you any errors?
After doing that, what happens with your photon, blinking blue, or immediately solid green?


@Ashton:

A factory reset shouldn’t be necessary in the process described above.

That’s a bit confusing; when does it do what?

  • Can you get it into safe mode (blinking magenta)? - runs no user code
  • Can you get it into DFU mode (blinking yellow)? - allows flashing over USB
  • Can you get it into listening mode (blinking blue)? - allows credential configuration

Assuming you can get it into DFU mode, did you manage to upgrade to 0.4.3rc2, as described above?

Could you count those flashed, they indicate the type of error?

@Moors7 - No I did not try that yet. How do I do this though? There are no instructions on how to load the tinker-photon.bin…

Download the .bin, then in that directory, try particle flash --usb tinker-photon.bin when your device is in DFU mode.