Google Nexus 7 Tablet: Hard Reset or Reboot

   Posted July 21, 2012 by David Kirk in Android

nexus 7 logo

Performing a reset is the ideal way to reboot your unresponsive Nexus tablet. This tech-recipe tutorial describes the various reset and reboot options

A poorly behaving application can bring your Nexus tablet to a crawl or even freeze the device entirely. Often a simple soft reset or reboot will restore your device to normal function. If not, wiping the device through a hard reset is required.

Soft Reset or Reboot

A simple reboot is the unlikely to cause data loss. This is the safest procedure and should always be tried first.

Just hold down the power button for several seconds. Continue to hold down the power button until the screen blinks off and the boot logo appears.

Hard Reset or Wipe via Menu

If a simple reboot does not restore your system or if you wish to wipe it completely to start fresh, a hard reset is your best option. This will remove all data on your device. Most of your information should be backed up into your online Google account. However, to be safe, backing up to your computer is also recommended. Your applications can be downloaded again from the Google Play store.

1. Select the Settings icon.

2. Click Backup and reset under the Personal section.

select backup reset

3. Be sure that your Backup account and Back up by data options have been enabled and that your data is saved.

4. Select Factory data reset. You may need to confirm with your password if enabled.

Hard Reset via Hardware

If your device is completely unresponsive, you still have one additional option.

1. Press the power button and both volume keys for several seconds. The computer screen will eventually blink off. Continue to hold until you see the Android recovery logo and the large Start selection at the top of the screen.

2. Move the volume keys up and down to see the menu selections. If you don’t want to factory reset, you can try to Power down or to Restart bootloader from these selections. The power key will select the option.

3. If you are forced or desire to factory reset and wipe the device, select Recovery Mode. Your device will reboot. This reboot will be much slower than normal.

4. When you see the Android with red triangle, hold the power button down and press the volume up key until the wipe data/factory reset option appears. Press the power button to select it. Remember that this will erase all the data on your device.

5. With the volume keys select Yes – erase all user data and again press the power button to select this option.


About David Kirk

David Kirk is one of the original founders of tech-recipes and is currently serving as editor-in-chief. Not only has he been crafting tutorials for over ten years, but in his other life he also enjoys taking care of critically ill patients as an ICU physician.
View more articles by David Kirk

The Conversation

Follow the reactions below and share your own thoughts.

  • hormoz

    hi,I did this instruction but I just saw google logo in black screen..I tryed another method by plugging to Pc but when I plygged my tablet to Pc the power bottom didn’t there another method?!

    • John Doe

      I have the exact same problem, it freeze when I plug in the USB cable.
      I also took off the back cover and found a reset button but it doesn’t seem to work either

  • Terry dcruz

    Started up my Nexus 7 this morning from an off state. The Google screens displays followed by the glowing X. After about 5 seconds the glowing X animation freezes and then the device restarts. This reset cycle repeats continuously. I tried restarting the device into Recovery Mode (by holding the power and +/- volume buttons) but after selecting recovery mode it just sticks at the Google screen, i cannot even connect it to the pc via USB when i boot it in recovery TWERP opens and it says no os installed, please sudgest me wat do i do?

    • emanresulive

      > It seems to me that you’ve lost some of the hardware data included in the factory mode I suggest either:
      A: Flipping out and blowing it up on the fourth of july or
      B: Taking it to best buy or something and seeing what they say

  • steeve

    I have same problem, the X logo freeze and the nexus reboot non stop ! When i try the recovery mode, when restarted i have the google screen but nexus don’t boot. HELP !!!

    • d.J.

      When I turned on my nexus the X thingy won’t stop loading and now I am balling. 🙁 plz help. >

  • steeve

    I’ve just downloaded and install nexus toolkit 3.2.0.
    I run it with nexus in fastboot mode, i’ve selected option 3. unlock bootloader, so, after unlocking i’ve reboot nexus and it run now but as the first time (select language etc..)
    If this can help someone.

    • john

      thank you somuch

  • My Nexus is new, and it has only been a day before it would not start. Your hold down method worked and it is working again. Thanx.

  • Isaias

    I tried to do this but when I press the buttons it won’t go on recovery mode it just turns on and off again what do I do?

  • One pissed bitch

    I tryed everthing and nothing it just the same black screen the holding down of the power button and the plugging it into my computer everthing and still nothing someone plz help me

  • Mohammad Bin Tanveer

    Your Hardreset via Hardware works 🙂 THx!!!

  • PaulD

    That worked for me and also the android interface changed with a swipe to unlock, setup access changed to a pull down. I assumed when I got an android OS update it didn’t install and start properly.

  • sasha

    My nexus 7 is completely unresponsive, it won’t come on, it won’t listen to the power on or volume buttons, and I have only had it for a month, can I get a replacement?

  • ma

    i reboot my device.hold power and volume key.screen off but device is off can start up my device.i didn`t continue my holding…

  • reggy

    this is not working because i have a android tablet that dont has volume keys the volume is on the screen when u turn it on plz help me i dont know what else to do what must i do

  • James

    So I did the “Hard Reset via Hardware” and once I get the red triangle, I held the power button and volume up button at the same time and i get a black screen, and more black screen, I can then to the screen with “Start” at the top. What am I doing wrong?

  • Wes

    Everything was working fine until I got to step 4. It says “no command” when I hit any keys when the red triangle is there. What’s up?

  • Someone

    when my Nexus goes to the X, it continues the animation forever!!!!!!!! Sorry, but the techniques didn’t work!!!

  • del

    wow cool was real stressed couldn’t think logic had gone then saw this and remembered after nearly loosing sanity bank details contacts and the thought of a promise to destroy and not just giving all my personnel info out pic of family emails ect ny nexus is back and can now be wiped of all data pics of importance new email just for nexus and never sync any apps with my phone ect it be good warning thou ive just near lost possibly everything as wouldn’t get refund either if tampered with ahhhhhh BUT SAVOUR HAS BEEN PROVIDED CHEERS DIAMOND GEEZER

  • drw

    Thank you! My nexus 7 was stuck on a phone screen and could not get in at all, could find nothing published, tried everything else…. even the reset to factory on google/nexus but none of it worked until I followed yours. I’m in!

  • SP

    Perfect – thanks!


    My nexus wont work it does not power on at all

  • Dane Ganger

    Wife’s Nexus 7 locked up last evening. Have read all the comments and have tried all of them also. Will not move out of the Black screen with the colored x. When I try to restart bootloader it then goes right to the Android figure and asks start again. Any suggestions???

  • julie

    thank you so much! mine froze up, and I was afraid I would have to do a hard reset. Thank you for providing this information!!

  • Steph

    I have an Galaxy Nexus that I’ve had for over a year now and it suddenly died on me and no matter how much I charge it, it just won’t come on. I followed these directions, I get the little autopsy android alien thing with the Start arrow, but it just flicks back out… I loved this phone, we have seen so much together and it pains me that its little light has gone out… (actually, I just want to get all the crap I recorded back)

  • Mike

    Just bought my daughter a brand new Nexus 7 tablet, and it didn’t recognize the camera today while we’re at the Grand Canyon. Our whole goal was to take bunch of photosphere images and now the thing won’t even boot. It appears from online forums that many others have issues with brand new nexus tablets. Have we bought a LEMON here? Can’t believe we let the part time google salespeople at the mall talk us out of an iPad mini or a kindle fire. What have you experienced?

    Very very disappointed.

  • Ted

    I have followed all of the suggested procedures with no positive result. I get a large X in the middle of the screen. and further shutdown actions get an android picture that says “no command”.

  • mony’s work

  • andrea

    i cant get passed the glowing x on my nexus 7 tablet. it is fully charged??

  • Teddy

    I tried turning on my nexus 7 and it wouldn’t so I plugged in the charger, tried turning it on and it has a glitching screen thing showing. It does not show any screen or images, just some weird looking stuff! Please help!!!

  • Ana

    I am so happy right now!! I’ve had the frozen X problem after turning it on and seeing google. I tried almost everything then came across this site and saw how to restore back to factory reset. I figured nothing else was working, what do I have to lose. I’ve only had it for 29 days but couldn’t return it (past the 15 days for computers), I didn’t think it was going to work when I saw the X after following the above directions and after a few minutes the screen was on. I’ve only had it a short while so I really only lost some free app and 1 book. THANK YOU!!

  • Shib

    Thank you so much. This helped me alot

  • Manfred Vonn

    I bought a Nexux 7 with 4.3. I updated to 4.4. Question: Will a hard reset convert back to 4.3?

  • Bibby

    Thank you so so so much. I thought my tablet will never work again but I tried your Hardware reset and now it works perfectly. Thank you. God bless you.

  • Gabriel

    this is the most usefull thing ive ever seen. fix my completely screw up screen of my nexus 7

  • rinna

    This article is very helpful. Thank you!

  • Cecile Do

    Hi, please help me out, I can’t open may Nexus 7, I had tried so many time, so I did make a wipe data factory reset, and I am successful to do so, now I have another problem, when I start it up, it asked me the wifi, I got it, but it stay there forever, I can’t find anything to setup my Nexus, please lead me thru it, appreciate it very much. Thanks for your prompt answer thru my email.

  • merrie dhillon

    my nexus 7 is not not starting up and when i try to start it appears with google logo and glowing x contiuously. not displaying any thing else.plz some one guide me what to do

  • Scott

    My nexus 7 is stuck on the screen that you select power off, start, recovery mode, and restart boot loader. It will not do anything at all. What now? None of the things you commented on before work. Please help!

  • Wendy Soto

    ok i dropped my tablet without a cover on its back and my tablet will not turn on. Help I dont know what to do. It is only 4 months there any thing that I can to?

  • Wendy Soto

    I tried the things listed to reboot it and i even let it die then try to reboot it using computer

  • Maddy

    What does ‘restart bootloader’ actually do? I don’t want to factory reset, and I’ve already tried the ‘start’ and ‘power off’ options on that screen.