Samsung Galaxy Note 9 keeps showing “Settings has stopped” error

The error message “Unfortunately, Settings has stopped,” while it means that an app has crashed, isn’t really the same as any other app-related errors that you encounter from time to time because Settings covers all apps, services and features. In other words, it has command over other apps as far as their settings and configurations are concerned. Other than that, Settings is a core application and is deeply embedded in the firmware, so if it crashes, it could also mean that your phone has a firmware problem other than just an app issue. 

In this post, I will walk you through in troubleshooting your Galaxy Note 9 that’s bugged down by the “Settings has stopped” error. We will try to consider every possibility and rule them out one by one until we can determine what the problem really is or what triggers the problem so that we can try to formulate a solution to fix it. So, if you’re one of the owners of this phone and are currently having the same problem, then continue reading as we may be able to help you through this article. 

Before we proceed, if you’re looking for a solution to a problem with your phone, try to browse through our Galaxy Note 9 Help Guides page to see if we support your device. If your phone is in the list of our supported devices, then go to the troubleshooting page and look for similar problems. Feel free to use our solutions and workarounds.

Troubleshooting Galaxy Note 9 with “Settings has stopped” error

In fixing a high-end phone like the Galaxy Note 9 that keeps showing the error “Unfortunately, Settings has stopped,” you must be really thorough to prevent data loss. There are times when this error shows up due to third-party apps and there are also instances wherein it’s just a sign of a firmware problem. Now, here are the things you need to do when you’re having this issue: 

First solution: Make sure it’s just because of a glitch

The ‘Settings has stopped’ error could be due to a minor glitch in the system. As we know, glitches happen from time to time or more often than we think and even high-end smartphones like the Note 9 may also encounter it. We need to rule this possibility out before moving on to other troubleshooting procedures. You can do so that following these very simple steps: 

  1. Press and hold the Volume Down button and don’t release it yet. 
  2. While holding down the volume button, press and hold the Power key as well. 
  3. Keep both keys held down together for 15 seconds or until the Galaxy Note 9 logo shows on the screen.

Once the phone has successfully rebooted, try opening the settings app to see if the ‘Settings has stopped’ error still shows up. If it still does, then move on to the next solution. 

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Second solution: Run your Note 9 in Safe Mode

The next thing you need to do is make sure that it’s not due to a third-party application that has gone rogue. I have encountered several cases in the past wherein Settings kept crashing because there were downloaded apps that weren’t working properly. That’s the reason why you need to do restart your phone in safe mode, to temporarily disable all third-party apps and here’s how you do that:

  1. Press and hold the Power key until options show. 
  2. Tap and hold the Power off option until it changes into Safe Mode. 
  3. Tap the Safe mode icon to restart your device.
  4. Once the reboot is successful, you should see ‘Safe mode’ at the lower-left corner of the screen. 

When in safe mode, try to open Settings and see if the ‘Settings has stopped’ error still pops up. If it does not, then it means that there really is an app that’s causing the problem or triggering the issue. Follow these steps to probe further: 

  1. Restart your phone normal to boot into standard mode. 
  2. Remember the apps you installed about the time when the phone starts to show the Settings has stopped error.  
  3. Once you already have an app in mind, swipe down from the top of the screen to pull the notification panel down. 
  4. Tap the Settings icon on the upper-right corner. 
  5. Scroll to and then tap Apps. 
  6. Find and tap suspected app. 
  7. Tap Storage. 
  8. Touch Clear data and tap OK to confirm.
  9. Tap the back key once and then touch Uninstall. 

However, if the ‘Settings has stopped’ error still keeps on popping up when you access the app even in safe mode, then it’s time to troubleshoot the firmware. 

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Third solution: Delete the system cache to fix ‘Settings has stopped’ error

When troubleshooting the firmware of your Note 9, you must begin by deleting the system cache. When performed correctly, the old cache will be deleted and replaced with a new one. If this problem is caused by corrupt system cache, then this procedure will fix it. Here’s how it’s done and don’t worry as none of your files will be deleted: 

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Galaxy Note 9 logo shows, release all three keys.
  4. Your Galaxy Note 9 will continue to boot up into the Recovery Mode. Once you see a black screen with blue and yellow texts, proceed to the next step. 
  5. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight wipe cache partition.
  6. Press Power key to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key to highlight yes, them and press the Power key to select.
  8. When the wipe cache partition is complete, Reboot system now is highlighted.
  9. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Once your phone has successfully restarted, try to see if the Settings has stopped error still shows up. If it still does, then you have no other choice but to reset your phone. 

Fourth solution: Backup important files and reset your phone

As long as your phone’s firmware hasn’t been modified in any way and you’re still using the stock firmware, then a reset will be able to fix this error. However, before doing the reset, make sure to create a copy of your important files and data as they will be deleted. After the backup, remove your Google and Samsung accounts so that you won’t be locked out of your device after the reset. If it’s not possible, then just take note of your Google ID and password as you will be needing that to set up your phone again. Once everything is in order, follow these steps to reset your phone: 

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Galaxy Note 9 logo shows, release all three keys.
  4. Your Galaxy Note 9 will continue to boot up into the Recovery Mode. Once you see a black screen with blue and yellow texts, proceed to the next step. 
  5. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’.
  6. Press Power button to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes’ is highlighted.
  8. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  9. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  10. Press the Power key to restart the device.

I hope that we’ve been able to help you fix your Samsung Galaxy Note 9 with “Unfortunately, Settings has stopped” error. We would appreciate it if you helped us spread the word so please share this post if you found it helpful. Thank you so much for reading!

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