Black screen pops up when launching apps (covering these apps) (Cause: F-Droid 1.2)

Hi there,
Since a few days (and after a recent package update of F-Droid) my FP1 has become almost unusable: whenever I start an app there a black screen overshadowing it instantly. I can’t use Messaging, F-Droid, or other apps while widgets like the clock (and the alarm) still work. BUT after 3-4 seconds this black “block” maximises and covers up almost the whole screen; the status bar at the top stays visible though…
This blackness popping up looks as if there’s an app opening in front of any other.
When trying to access the list of running apps via Settings, the black screen gets in my way. And I can’t even answer calls because I don’t get to the Calls app screen… (Also switching off the alarm doesn’t work; though at least I’m awake.)

Can someone please point me to a possible solution or at least a way of doing some further diagnostics? Isn’t there also some kind of swipe move to get a list of running apps? (I once got this by accident and can’t reproduce it…)

Thanks in advance for any help!

Hold the middle button to get that list.

To me what you describe sounds like unresponsive apps. Maybe an app is permanently consuming almost all processing power.

Thanks Urs for the hint with middle button list. And via this list, at least I can access Messaging again to read text messages. At least if I’m fast enough (3-4 seconds…).
The problem persists even after reboot, so I doubt that there’s an app taking up all CPU. But maybe you’re right. How can I check this? As I said, I can’t access the running processes (since I have to get there via Settings, right? And this gets almost instantly overridden by the black block), or is there a turnaround?

EDIT: I just cleared the list of running apps, so there’s no app running that I’ve started. But of course, it might as well be some running process

Thanks so far for the help, getting there in small steps :slight_smile:

EDIT2: Thanks! Got it :smiley: It was the F-Droid app running in the background and trying to get my attention. I used CacheCleaner to get a list of running processes, stop F-Droid and clearing its cache - problem gone! For a bit, because launching it reproduces the problem. So I just uninstalled F-Droid and reinstalled it - problem gone for good!

Thanks Urs for your quick help!

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In case anyone else stumbles on this topic and finds this helpful:
I had the same issue with f-droid. Unfortunately, I have the F-droid privileged extension installed, which means I can’t completely remove the app via settings > apps. I did roll back to an older version by uninstalling all updates, which helps (in the sense that the older version works, and doesn’t block the screen every 4 seconds). Clearing app data/cache and then updating (or the other way around) doesn’t help, so I’m holding off the update to 1.2 until I have time to sort this mess out,

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We had someone with the exact same problem at today’s Hamburg meetup. And we also used the app list to look at the active processes/processes in the cache. There we noticed that fdroid constantly was in a “trying to restart” state. So we force closed fdroid and then the problem was gone. Because previously the problem had survived reboots and even wiping cache from recovery we went straight to uninstall fdroid.

I have the same issue: a dark grey flat covers everything after 1–3 seconds. I am happy now to hear, that I’m not the only one. But:

  • HOW did you use CacheCleaner? As you described, I can’t do anything, because the grey-black ‘app’ covers everything, also settings, even the start screen.
  • Is CacheCleaner an app or do you mean the Button “Clean Cache” on app info page (settings > apps)?

I learned by accident, that there is a Safe Mode (Dictionary Entry: Safe Mode). Using this, I could enter the settings, apps, and reinstall f-droid as suggested. Thank you! How did you find out, that f-droid caused the problem?

I’m actually on F-Droid 1.2 and I don’t experience any problems. But on the other hand I’m on Android #kitkat so that might make a difference.

I was on F-Droid 1.2, but now I got 1.0.2 from the F-Droid-Website.

By looking at the list of active apps and processes in the cache where fdroid was listed as “restarting” indefinitely.

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