FP2 not rebooting after updating to 21 / Android 9

Hi all,

I was very excited to see the Android 9 announcement, and really happy to see the upgrade was available for me this morning, so had to install it straight away. However, after pressing Restart, the phone is stuck on the “Fairphone” boot screen.

I’ve tried restarting by holding the power button down, and by taking the battery out, but doesn’t seem to help. I’ve left it on that screen for 5-10 minutes, but all other upgrades have gone well with maybe the odd reboot, but got past the screen pretty quickly.

Any suggestions on where to go from here?


Did you have TWRP installed when you did the upgrade?
(If you don’t know, then you most likely did not.)


I’m fairly sure I didn’t - I’ve installed TWRP on other devices, but don’t think I got round to doing it on my FP2.

I’m just trying Recovery mode using Power + Volume Down. That buzzes a few times and a blue light flashes at the top, but it seems to be stuck in the same boot screen still.

That’s for Fastboot Mode, you need Power + Volume Up for Recovery.


Oh thanks - I was following instructions here.

Using Volume Up + Power gets me to the Android “No command” screen instead. Nice to see something different, at least…

Sadly I can’t get past the No Command screen - the only thing I can do is reboot, or wait for the phone to restart itself.

Any ideas appreciated - I’m hoping there’s a way out of this!

That’s actually normal. You need to repeat the previous keys then. Hold Power and briefly press Volume Up. Be prepared for the tiniest letters you have ever seen on a display. :wink:


Ah, brilliant! It says I’m still at Android 7.1.2 at this point. Any pointer on which is the best way forwards now? I’m familiar with adb from putting lineage onto tablets, but not sure what state my FP2 is in currently, and whether I should try to ‘jiggle’ it into action, try to manually apply an update, or something else (really trying to avoid a factory reset…)

Also, many thanks for helping out - really appreciated.

Right after accessing the Recovery and choosing “Reboot”, I actually just got stuck on the Fairphone splash screen myself (the blue balls kept pulsating endlessly). I was able to trigger another reboot by holding (12 seconds) the power button and then got to the normal Fairphone OS 7.1.2 screen again (however, I might have performed a factory reset in Recovery, I had to set up the device anew).


That sounds similar to what’s happened to me previously, but there seems to be some sort of major blocker for applying the update this time.

Maybe an adb sideload for the latest (either 7 or 9) android upgrade might work in this case?

You can connect your FP2 to a computer and manually install Fairphone OS 19.11.2 again via a fastboot script:

The manual installation file for Android 9 wlll only become available some time after 18 April.


ok, thanks - I’ll see if I can apply 19.11.2 from those instructions…

Phew, the manual update took two attempts but it did the trick - the phone is back to where it was. I’m not sure if it’s an intermittent problem with upgrades generally or if the first attempt allowed the second to work. But it means I can try the upgrade to Android 9 without quite as much fear. Maybe I’ll back my phone up first, just in case :wink:

Huge thanks for the help, @urs_lesse - I was afraid I’d lost access to all my services relying on OTPs and so on for a while!


One important question for others … have you kept the data that was on the phone at the start even after this final manual re-installation of Android 7.1.2 (Fairphone OS 19.11.2)? Or was it like all new from the box again with all data wiped?

Success! Posting this from Android 9 on the same phone.

After the second attempt to manually install Android 7 (which worked), I removed a couple of apps just in case, and went back to the updater. It took a few tries to download (one seemed to stop, and i had to restart to make it go again), but it was applied, rebooted, and took a while with white-ring update screen.

I hit the never-ending blue dots screen after that, and restarted by holding down the power button, but it booted and logged in fine after that.

The other thing I did differently this time round was a “basic” update rather than the “advanced” route, but I think the issue is more just things being a bit intermittent maybe…

Thanks for all the help, glad we made it with a bit of persistence and luck!


Yes, all my data and apps are as before (as far as I know) - I didn’t have to do any factory reset, and didn’t wipe anything during the process.


Hi everyone,

I have the same issue as described here so I would like to reinstall the old Android OS version via computer too.

My issue is that, first, it is required to turn off the secure start up, according to the guidelines. Could someone help me to do that in the troubleshoot mode ?

Sorry for my tired English and thanks in advance, any help very much appreciated!

You are referring to a FP2 (and not FP3), right? There’s no “secure start up” for FP2. What guidelines do you mean, can you send a link?
You might also open a new topic using your native language if you preferred that (just saying).

Thank you very much for your answer! I didn’t know there was no secure startup on FP2.
I was referring to these guidelines, where they do say that you have to disable secure startup first: Manually install Fairphone OS for the Fairphone 2 – Support
But it’s great if it’s not a problem.
In the mean time, I have tried a factory reset because I was beginning to feel hopeless (I have set an automatic backup via Google I think). But it didn’t worked.
I am now in the same situation as described here: Fairphone OS 19.11.2 update. Upgrade error: Unable to find partition for path '/system' - #5 by Aitziber
The similarity with this post is that I cannot find my phone on my computer via USB… I only have old USB cables with me at the moment and they don’t seem to work. Sometimes the phone appears in the device manager, but only briefly. And in ADB it doesn’t appear at all.
I don’t know what to do now. Do you have any idea?
I think there aren’t as many fairphone users in my native language (French) as in English, and I would not have had such a fast answer, so I wil make an effort with my English.
But maybe I should open a new topic as you suggested? I wasn’t sure if it was relevant since my issue seems similar to others

I realize I haven’t finished trying the guidelines since I thought I had to disable secure startup first. So I will try that before solliciting you any longer.
I think I left my phone in TWRP mode for too long, the battery is fully decharged. So I will let it charge for a while first, before trying again with the guidelines. I hope it works…