Previous 1 2 Next 27 Replies Latest reply: Mar 4, 2014 12:32 PM by jmbladen
cosi66 Level 1 (0 points)

Hi all


Since I upgraded my iPhone to iOS 7, I suffer from random crashes/resets, where my iPhone reboots and enters a reboot loop (Apple logo, black screen, reboot, Apple logo, black screen, reboot, etc) that I can only exit by restoring the device (resetting doesn't help).


Some more information

a) The device: iPhone 4, 32 GB, has never been jailbroken, and has never shown any similar issues before.

b) The crashes/reboots: I haven't been able yet to find a pattern when and why they happen. I had reboots when searching for an app, when pluging in the wall charger, when entering the access code, and even when doing nothing at all (iPhone in my pocket). The only constant is the reboot loop after the crash.

c) What I tried so far: I restored the device several times, using normal restore (with the iTunes logo) and DFU mode (black screen). After that, I recovered from a recent backup (takes some hours), and everything is ok again - for some hours, until the next crash and reboot loop. I also set up the device as a new phone, and there it seems stable, so I exclude a hardware issue. I tried quite a few of the advices that I found when googling for reboot loops: reset all settings (this led to an another immediate crash and reboot loop), disable app background refresh, etc.


I've been using this device for my daily business. With the current instability (and the couple of hours it takes to bring it back to life again), it became more or less useless. I wish I could downgrade again (I know that I can't). My assumption is that either iOS 7, or some incompatible app or some corrupt setting is causing this situation. But I don't know how to proceed to isolate and eliminate the issue. I really would like to avoid setting up everything from scratch again.


Any advice is greatly appreciated!

iPhone 4, iOS 7.0.2
  • jmbladen Level 1 (0 points)

    I am having the exact same issue only my phone is a 32gb iPhone 4S.  I have additionally found that sometimes I can get out of the springboard restart loop by taking the sim card out.

  • crystalmarie_82 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hey, so I am in a corporate enviroment and several of our iPhones including one iPad have had the same issue of this reboot loop. I have a question to those that have had the same issue...


    Do you happen to have Exchange mail synced to your device?



  • jmbladen Level 1 (0 points)

    No Exchange accounts on my phone currently, but I've had them in the past.  That said, I've now done a clean reinstall of iOS 7.04 to try to purge any lingering preferneces or settings that might be the culprit.


    I'm convinced this is some kind of conflict in a software preference as I had my phone swapped out for a "new" 4s thinking the phone itself was the problem and the problem reemerged.  Strangly the crashing seems to start almost like clockwork at the same time and day on a weekly basis (Friday late afternoon eastern time).  I did my second clean reformat on Saturday and did not restore from computer or iCloud.  The first restore was not as clean as there was an iCloud backup that autorepopulated my mail and calendar settings.  I had to be sure the delet my iCloud backup before starting the restore process.  Based on history, I will not know if that fixes it till Friday afternoon.  If the problem occurs again I'm assuming it has some tie to the settings required for me to access my calendar and e-mail from Google (imap and caldav not exchange) given the time domain consistantcy of the problem. 


    Chasing this down has been incredibly frustrating.

  • crystalmarie_82 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the response. So, when this first started happening I was instructed by the Apple techs to do the same, "erase all contents and settings" and or "completely remove the iOS and reinstall it" and setup as a new device, no iCloud or iTunes info was restored to the phone and the problem reoccurred, one of our devices was replaced with a brand new iPhone by Apple and it happened again. The only common element with all of our devices is our Exchange mail and iOS7. However, not ALL of the devices have had the issue. I'm baffled, I finally spoke with an Apple tech yesterday who took the time to research the issue and said they haven't heard of this happening, but said he elevated it to the high engineers so I'm waiting to hear back from them.

  • jmbladen Level 1 (0 points)

    Love to hear what you find out. 


    At the moment, I'm thinking their is some kind of setting tied to the internal clock or calendar or something like that involved.  Have you seen any consistancy to the time and day when the rebooting begins?  As I said, mine has turned out to be consistant on four successive fridays since upgrading to iOS 7.  Thinking there must be some process or recurring element that kicks it off that is weekly in nature and embedded somehow in something I have on my cloud PIM accounts.  That said, I'm using gmail imap and caldav so exchange is not involved.  That leads me back to something in the actual calendar data rather than the communication protocal....


    Anyway, more data to consider.

  • gcyn14 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm having the same problem! But with some differences.

    I have an iphone 5.

    My problems started on Nov. 13, with the crash and reboot loop.

    I haven't progessed the way the 2 of you have, YET.

    By the 15th they had become farther apart by approx. 12 hrs.

    Starting the 16 through 19 in the pm I thought my problems were over with the iOS 7.04 update.

    But on the 19th at around 10pm the phone crashed and tried to reboot and I couldnt get it back on again.

    In the morning (20th) I tried to restore but the phone wouldnt turn on, and I got the "plug iphone into itunes" screen.

    Now, I can't find a computer, mine or anyone elses, that will recognize my phone because of the security or lack of itunes updates.

    If youre experiences are all I have to look foward to, I think I'll just send it in for a new one.

    Thanks for sharing.

  • jmbladen Level 1 (0 points)

    Not sure why I thought I was out of the woods, but no dice.  iPhone did its clockwork Friday afternoon reboot cycle.  Currently the phone is usesless.  No matter what I seem to do to try and interupt the respring cycling its stuck.  I'm now wondering if there is just a wierd timeslot where this happens and I just need to wait it out while the phone is powered off.  Gonna leave off for an hour to see.  That said, what in the world coudl be causing this.  It's clearly not hardware as it jumped from one phone to another. 


    Any new ideas welcome.  I'm now tempted to try hard resetting phone next Friday morning and leaving it pristine with only the sim card installed but not connected to my gmail cloud PIM to see what happens.

  • cosi66 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi all


    I started this thread, and I wanted to let you know what helped me, and share some thoughts on the issue.


    I managed in the meantime to bring back my phone to stable again, i.e. no more crash or reboot loop for a month now (after almost daily crashes before). And I could do this without having to set up everything from scratch. Here is what I did: Before, I had ca. 800+ apps on my device, and the free memory was around 1+ gigabyte. Immediately after restoring the device from backup, I deleted roughly 400 of my apps in iTunes (mostly apps that I once downloaded to try them out), bringing the free memory up to ca 10 gigabytes, and then I synced with the iPhone. From that moment on, the crashes haven't happened again.


    Now, what did the trick? Due to the massive change in my phone's content, I cannot say for sure, but I think that the problem was not related to one particular app of those that I deleted. Because the deleted apps were all apps that I have not (or never) been using. All the stuff that I use regularly, was still there, with the same settings, etc. And, by the way, also my exchange mail account was there before and after the fix. So, I suspect that the source of my my problem to do with the sheer amount of apps that I had before, and that the springboard process (the 'app' that shows the iOS homescreens) was

  • jmbladen Level 1 (0 points)

    @cosi66, glad to hear you've been able to find your way out of this crazy situation.  I have to say, though, I think there must be some other answer than the one you proposed.  In my own case, I did a full clean install of the OS including not restoring from any backups.  Further, on the most recent of the three times I've done it I reinstalled only apps that I use daily or nearly daily.  That took me from over 150 apps down to 43.  I've now got more than 18gb of free space out of the 28gb capacity (32gb iPhone 4s).


    Question, did you use your iCloud account account again when you last recovered your phone?  I'm wondering if there is something in the cloud settings that restores regardless of my choosing to restore from iCloud backup or not.  I'm debating about trying again with a clean install, but starting with a new iCloud account. Not that invested in the account as I have a separate one that links to all my app and music purchases.


    I can't say for sure, but I do recall turning on icloud backup to try it out before this started and now wonder if that has something to do with it.  Something in the backup preferences is causing the conflict....

  • cosi66 Level 1 (0 points)



    First of all, sorry for my half-finished post above. While typing, I was interrupted, and by reflex I hit CMD-S. Unfortunately, the stupid interface of Apple's support website interpreted that as a submit command. I tried to complete my text with the update function, but when finally hitting the submit button, I got an error message, and all my updated text was gone... No way to bring it back, and also no way to delete the half-baked posting. Quite frustrating.


    Now, to complete what I started above:

    In my case, the problem definitely had something to do with the springboard process (an iOS system 'app' that manages the iOS homescreens) and the watchdog process (another iOS system 'app' that monitors certain things on your phone and that can initiate a restart when it thinks the phone is frozen). In the folder '/Users/<your account>/Library/Logs/CrashReporter/MobileDevice/<your phone>' I could see what caused my crashes; they were all 'stack+SpringBoard' and the reason in these crash log files was 'Watchdog timeout'.

    The following two forum posts helped me:

    I'm quite sure that my issues had to do with the 'application map' that is mentioned in the above posts. So far, Ive been thinking that it was just too large (as in the case of Andi1996 [second link above]), but jmbladen's observation seems not to support this. So, the absolute number might not the source of the problem, but I still assume that something went wrong with my application map during the upgrade from iOS6 to iOS7. I remember having stability problems before, as soon as all my 10 home screens were full of apps and newly downloaded apps would generate additional pages (only visible via iTunes). Considering that there are some fundamental changes to how we can organize apps within folders in iOS 7, it can well be that the springboard process just wasn't able to cope with my application map correctly within the 120 seconds before the watchdog process restarts the phone. My massive cleanup action must have fixed this somehow.


    @jmbladen: I'm only using iCloud for the 'find my phone' functionality, so all the backup & recovery was done via iTunes from my local harddisk. And there was no temporal pattern for my crashes before. You might suffer from the same symptoms, but probably not because of the same cause.


    My advice for anyone affected by random crashes and a reboot loop is to check out the directory with the CrashReporter logs mentioned above to find out what app or process causes the crash. If it's the springboard and watchdog problem, then you should try to clean up your home screens (from iTunes). Maybe the absolute number of apps is not that important, but make sure that you reduce the number of screens. And then sync and backup before you start using the phone again. In my case it helped.


    Hope this helps someone else too.



    P.S. Once you know the right keywords to search for, you find forum postings back to 2008 / iOS 2 describing exactly the same problem. This reboot loop is a very nasty issue, and it is hard to understand that Apple still hasn't been able to address this, or at least provide some better help on how to get out of it again.

  • Meesala Level 1 (0 points)


  • jmbladen Level 1 (0 points)

    So here's the latest.  Phone crashed again.  I'm narrowing in the timing and it's wierd indeed.  Like clockwork the reboot/respring loop started just after 2p today (Friday).  4th week in a row.  And I've now narrowed the return to helth at about 530p.  Can't identifiy any calendar entries that in any way correspond to that window.


    I've looked throught the diagnostic log and it showed springboard was crashing last week with a references to "Thread 5 Crashed."  In that thread there is reference to a whole bunch of things but the only thing that struck a nerve was "CalendarProvider."  Thus, I began looking for something in the calendar causing the issue. Also showing up last week in the diagnostic log was "ResetCounter" at each of the timestamps when I tried turning the phone back on.


    This week no log of a springboard crash; strangely.  This week only has "ResetCounter" showing up at each of the timestamps I tried turining the phone back on when the loopping occured.  There is no log of any crash just after 530p when I turned it on and it did not crash on reboot.


    My next test is to do a clean iOS install and not reactivating iCloud.  I'm still thinking there is a plist that is being restored from iCloud even though I'm not using iCloud backup.


    Any other thoughts would be great.  Like help interptiting those logs....



  • cynthia06 Level 1 (0 points)

    I had exactly the same problem - in the middle of web browsing. The phone turned off on its own, then got into this reboot loop. Reboot never passes apple logo.


    In my case, even the "restore" with iTune didn't work. Kept getting error message at the end of iTune restore.


    In the end, I had to take my iphone to Apple Store. People there could not fix my problem either. They ended up giving me a brand new phone (since my old phone is only 3 weeks old and still under warranty). They said they have seen the problem before, typically can be fixed by restore. In my case, though, it might be a hardware issue??? Can't believe the phone broke in 3 weeks (5S 16gb model).

  • crystalmarie_82 Level 1 (0 points)

    I heard back from Apple a couple of days ago... They said they are aware of the issue and believe it's due to a bug within iOS7 and Exchange, they are working on a fix but do not have an ETA. IF you have Exchange mail or calendars synced to your Apple device... we recieved some info from Apple that could be causing this issue.

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