How to update Samsung: Your Samsung smartphone has just signaled the availability of a software update but you are not sure how to proceed? Would you like to update your Samsung smartphone but are you afraid that, following the update, the data, apps and settings you have on the device will be deleted? Don’t worry, now I’ll give you a hand.
Let’s start by saying that updating Samsung devices (be they smartphones or tablets) does not involve the deletion of any data: files, applications and settings will all remain in their place. It should also be emphasized that the procedure is disarmingly easy: you start checking for the availability of updates, press the button to start installing the software and in a few minutes the game is done.
Regardless of the model of smartphone or tablet in your possession, I assure you that in no time you will be able to install the latest version of Android (and / or the latest security patches available for the green robot system) without losing any given. All you have to do is take a few minutes of free time and follow the instructions on how to update Samsung that you find below. Good luck and have fun!
Updating a smartphone does not involve deleting the data on its memory (unless you carry out special procedures which we will discuss later), but before proceeding it is always good to make a complete backup of your data. To make the backup you can resort to various solutions, both local and online, and I personally recommend you to use them all.
To make a local, therefore offline, backup of the data contained in the smartphone you can use Smart Switch , the official Samsung application for managing its devices from a PC. The software is completely free, is compatible with the vast majority of smartphones and tablets of the Korean company and is available for both Windows and macOS.
To download Smart Switch on your computer, connect to the Samsung website and click on the button for the operating system you use: Download for Windows if you are using a Windows PC or Download for MAC OS if you are using a Mac. Then, if you are using a Windows PC , open the Smart_Switch_PC_setup.exe file and click the Yes button .
Then put the check mark next to the items I accept the terms of the License Agreement to accept the conditions of use of Smart Switch, click on Next , wait for the drivers necessary to recognize Samsung devices (as well as the files) to be installed on the computer. of the program) and presses on Finish to conclude the setup.
Can’t install Smart Switch? When you open the program installation package you get an error that says ” The specified application could not be started. The application’s side-by-side configuration is incorrect “? Don’t panic. This is a fairly common mistake. To fix it, go to the Microsoft website and download the Microsoft Visual C ++ 2008 Service Pack 1 Redistributable Package 32 and 64 bit Security Update for MFC ( vcredist_x86.exe and vcredist_x64.exe ).
At the end of the download, start one of the installation packages that you downloaded from the Microsoft website, click on Next , accept the conditions of use of the software and complete the setup by pressing first on Install and then on Finish . Repeat the operation with the other file (the x64 package you only need to install if you have a 64-bit operating system) and you should be able to install Smart Switch.
On Mac, installing the Smart Switch is just as simple. All you have to do is open the dmg package you downloaded from the Samsung website and launch the SmartSwitchMac.pkg application contained within it. In the window that opens, you must then click on Continue three consecutive times, you must press the Accept and Install buttons and you must type the password of your user account on macOS (the one you use to access the system).
Next, you have to press Enter , you have to click on Continue installation and you have to accept to restart the computer by pressing the Restart button that appears at the end of the setup.
Once installation is complete, open Smart Switch and connect your smartphone (or tablet) to your computer using the supplied USB cable . Within a few seconds, the Smart Switch should recognize your device and allow you to back up your data. If not, try disconnecting and reconnecting the phone a couple of times.
Alternatively, if the problem persists, bring up the Android notifications menu by swiping your finger from the top of the screen to the bottom, select the item relating to the USB connection and, if not yet there, put the check mark next to Media Device (MTP) option .
Now you just have to click on the Back up button located at the bottom left of the Smart Switch main window and wait for the data to be backed up. The operation, depending on the amount of data to be saved, could go on for several minutes.
The data saved by Smart Switch are: Phonebook , Internet Data , Pictures , Music , Applications , Email , Wallpapers , Settings , Videos , Messages , S-Planner Settings , Documents , Reminders , Clock , Call Log , Lock Settings screen and radio . At the end of the backup, a screen will appear with a summary of all the saved data.
If you want to make a “manual” backup of photos, videos, music or other data on your device, open the Windows File Explorer (the yellow folder icon located at the bottom left of the taskbar), select the Computer or This PC icon from the left sidebar and double-click the name of your smartphone (or tablet ).
In the screen that opens, double-click the device memory icon (e.g. Phone in the case of the internal memory of smartphones), locate the folders and / or files to save (e.g. photos and videos are located in the DCIM folder , while the files downloaded from the Internet in the download folder) and save them on your PC with a simple copy-and-paste.
On Mac, the same procedure can be followed via Android File Transfer , a free application for macOS that allows you to browse the memory of Android smartphones and tablets, unfortunately you cannot use the Finder directly.
Note: in case of need, to restore the data saved with Smart Switch, all you have to do is start the program and click on the Restore button .
As for online data backup, you can safely rely on cloud services from Google and Samsung , which are completely free and allow you to store contacts, photos, videos, emails, browsing history and much more on the “cloud”.
To take advantage of Google and Samsung cloud services you must have both a Google account and a Samsung account configured on the device. Then go to the Android settings (by pressing on the gear located at the top right of the notifications menu), go to Account and check that both a Google account and a Samsung account are set on the device . If one of the two is missing, press the Add account button and log into your account (or create a new one).
At this point, to activate data synchronization with the cloud, all you have to do is select the Google and Samsung logos from the Settings> Account menu , press on your email address and check that all the levers relating to data synchronization on the cloud are active. For example, in the Google account settings you will find the levers to synchronize calendar , app data , Gmail , address book and much more.
As for photos and videos, you can use the Google Photos app which should already be installed on your smartphone / tablet and allows you to have an unlimited backup of photos and videos on Google Drive (although, it must be said, the photos have a resolution maximum of 16MP and videos a maximum resolution of 1080p). To check that the photo and video backup is active, open Google Photos , press the hamburger button located at the top left and select the Settings item from the bar that appears on the side. Then go to Backup and synchronization , activate the toggle of the Backup and synchronization option (if it is not yet active) and make sure that the Upload Size is set to High Quality .
Mission accomplished! Now you have all your data safe and you can take action by updating your Samsung device to the latest software available.
Update Samsung via OTA
The easiest way to update a Samsung device is to resort to OTA (over the air) updates, i.e. updates that are distributed by the manufacturer over the Internet and are delivered directly to the smartphone or tablet, without going through the computer.
As a rule, updates are automatically reported by the system, which indicates their availability in the notifications menu and allows you to install them by pressing directly on the notification that concerns them. In any case, you can “manually” check the availability of updates by going to the Settings menu (the gear icon located at the top right of the notification menu), going to Device Info> Software Updates and pressing the Download item updates manually .
At this point, if updates are available, the system notifies you and allows you to install them simply by “tapping” the Install button . If, on the other hand, the device already has the most recent version of the software, the message The most recent updates are already installed appears .
The installation of the update generally takes a few minutes and is carried out completely automatically: the phone (or tablet) turns off, the update is installed and when Android is restarted, you find yourself with the latest software .
To check the exact version of the software installed on your device, just go to the Settings menu > About device> Software info : in the Android version field there is the version of Android installed on the device, while in Android security patch level there is indicated the most recent security patch installed on the device (the security patch does not change the Android version but corrects security problems that may be present in previous versions of the system).
Note: in the menu with the settings relating to updates there are also the options Download updates automatically and Scheduled updates which allow, respectively, to start the automatic search for updates and to install automatic updates based on preset times.
Update Samsung via PC
If you are unable to update Samsung via OTA, you can also install software updates released by the manufacturer via PC. There are two paths that can be followed to carry out this operation: an absolutely safe and super-simple to follow and a more complex and risky one which, however, also allows you to install updates that have not yet been officially released via OTA. Read on to learn more.
Standard procedure (Smart Switch)
I have already talked to you about Smart Switch before, in the paragraph of the tutorial related to offline data backup . This is Samsung’s official software to manage smartphones and tablets from computers. It allows you to do many things: save data, restore them, synchronize data with Outlook and, among its many features, there is also the one to install updates officially released by Samsung via PC.
To install an update via Smart Switch, all you have to do is start the program and connect the phone or tablet to be updated to the PC. Subsequently, click on the arrow located next to the device name and, if software updates are available, you will see a message about it.
Alternative procedure (Odin)
In some cases, updates via OTA arrive very late compared to their initial release. This pushes more experienced users to obtain firmware from third party sites and install them in a “forced” manner. As? With Odin , a free software that allows you to “flash”, then install, both official and unofficial firmware on Samsung devices. The software can also be used to root, install custom recoveries and much more, but we don’t care about this at the moment.
What you are interested in knowing is that tools like Odin must be used with extreme caution , as their use by inexperienced hands can result in the device blocking (brick). The sources from which to download the firmware to be installed on the device must also be carefully chosen, firmware that must be tailored to the model of smartphone or tablet in your possession: if you install a firmware designed for a different variant of your device (eg . a model sold on other markets), you risk blocking everything.
The exact model of the smartphone or tablet can be found in the Settings menu > About device> Model code , while the firmware can be downloaded from sites such as Sammobile , which however in its free version (to be used upon registration) makes downloads very slow.
That said, to use Odin you need to download the software from the XDA forum (make sure you choose the latest version), extract it to a folder of your choice and start it by right clicking on the Odin3.exe executable and selecting Run as administrator from the menu that appears.
At this point, restart the device to be updated in download mode by holding down the Home + Power + Volume Down keys , connect it to the computer and wait for Odin to recognize it. For the recognition to be successful, the PC must have the Samsung drivers installed which are included in the Smart Switch or can be downloaded separately from the Samsung website .
Now select the Odin Options tab and make sure the check mark is only next to the Auto-Reboot and F. Reset Time options (the Re-Partition option will perform a partition change and you lose apps and configurations on the device to update); then click on the AP button , select the update file to install (which should be in .tar or .md5 format ), click on the Start button and wait for the update to be installed.
Again, this is a risky procedure that should only be practiced by users who know where they are putting their hands. The risk of compromising the correct functioning of the smartphone (or tablet) is high. I do not take any responsibility in this regard, mind you!