Is Verizon Wireless Pushing OTA Updates for the BlackBerry Storm?



Storm_OTA_upgrade_maybe In the last few days I’ve noticed several times my BlackBerry Storm 9530 unexpectedly displaying a white screen, with a small timer icon (with an animated, rotating clock hand), and what appears to be an animated progress bar as if something is being downloaded.

After roughly a minute of that, the Storm appeared to reboot, as indicated by a flashing red LED and the display of the message “Verifying Security Software.”

 

Here’s what I speculate might be going on…

 

White Screen

Here’s a screenshot of the white screen that I scrambled to make during one of the incidents (I had to “Photoshop” in the timer icon, as the screenshot didn’t capture that for some reason):

Storm_WhiteScreenTimerProgressBar

Event Log

Examining the Storm’s internal Event Log* revealed the following information:

EventLogAfterWhiteScreen_01

Note the highlighted (blue) log entry in the screenshot above. Does OTAU signify an over-the-air (OTA) upgrade? Also note the log entry just below the highlighted entry: appdelivery. Does that mean some “app” (application) got delivered?

Finally, look up at the top of the screen. Looks like a log entry after a reboot, wouldn’t you say?

Let’s take a closer look at the highlighted log entry by clicking it:

EventLogAfterWhiteScreen_02

Well, that pretty much nails it that OTAU means some kind of OTA upgrade. Whatever the upgrade is, seems to be firmware (a term for software that is held in non-volatile memory, that is, memory that retains its contents when power is removed), a service (a program module that runs continuously while the phone is operational), and not disabled (possibly meaning it’s intended to run after the reboot).

Conclusion

Well, I don’t have a firm conclusion but a strong speculation. If I’m right that Verizon is pushing some kind of upgrades, I wonder what they are. Yes, I had heard a while back that Verizon was pushing an operating system (OS) update for version 4.7.0.75. I already had that update (performed manually–I didn’t wait for an OTA update). So, I don’t think that’s exactly the update that was happening with my Storm.

If you see the same behavior in your Storm, or have any ideas, please let me a comment below.

Postscript, 2008-12-24: It’s possible this OTA update is for the Application Center (see the icon on your Storm Home Screen). Except that I don’t have my Application Center set for Auto Refresh List.

Postscript, 2008-12-25: I observe this every day, sometimes multiple times a day. I really need to know what is going on. My Storm may be experiencing a problem and rebooting itself. But that wouldn’t explain the OTA Upgrade entries in the Event Log, would it?

 

* To see your Event Log, show your Storm keyboard, hold the !?123 key until it locks, then click the following four keystrokes (double-quote, slash, double-quote, slash): ” / ” / .

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About the author

This entry was contributed by Kelly Carter
84 entries have been written by this author.

24 comments on this post

Tara says:
Jan 22, 2009 - 03:01:58

I have already seen this screen, and I have had my Storm less than a week. I’m curious to know what it actually is- I had 4.7.0.75 out of the box, so an update is unnecessary. I had assumed it was some sort of glitch. I have also seen a strange “scrambled” looking screen at least three times so far, but it goes away very quickly. Hmmm…

Jan 22, 2009 - 07:01:59

Tara,
I’m almost positive now it’s a defect of some sort. Hopefully a software defect that will be fixed with a future upgrade. Mine resets now several times a day. Fortunately, it never happens when it would interrupt anything I’m doing, but it’s definitely a problem. I don’t know why the Event Log seems to imply it’s an upgrade; I no longer believe that can possibly be true. It’s not the first time I’ve seen a computer error message be wrong. Thanks for confirming it’s not only happening to me. I wrote this article partly to find out from others if they were seeing it, and hadn’t heard much from others. So, thanks!
Kelly

Robyn says:
Jan 27, 2009 - 11:01:55

Hi, my Blackberry Storm does this, too, and I don’t know why. I have asked quite a few people and looked around on websites but no one has answers. It’s usually after I’ve done something like use the browser–I’ll set it down and walk away, an when I come back to it, it’s non-responsive, then clicks to the white screen, the loading bar, and it takes forever to get back to usability. Please let me know if you find a way to fix it. The guy at the store didn’t have any clues and I think he thought I was making it up. P.S. It hasn’t happened for 2 or 3 days now…

Jan 27, 2009 - 11:01:13

Robyn,
Mine is still doing it to this day. Usually several times a day. It never happens at a time that has caused trouble–not yet. I’m hoping after the next OS update this will be fixed. Thanks for letting me know you have the problem, too.
Kelly

Anthony says:
Feb 4, 2009 - 08:02:39

Mine is also doing this..just noticed it today and has happend about 3 times.

Feb 4, 2009 - 09:02:51

Anthony,
Mine reset yesterday while I was listening to music–first time it has actually interrupted anything important.
Kelly

Tara says:
Feb 4, 2009 - 09:02:45

Could this be a side effect of leaving apps open? Since I have been a nazi about turning apps off when I get out of them, this hasn’t happened to me. It could be a coincidence, but it’s the only thing I have noticed myself doing differently that might have stopped the restart. Just a thought…

Feb 5, 2009 - 06:02:44

Tara,
I almost never leave apps open. I have wondered, however, if there is a particular app that is responsible. When I get time I may reload my OS and start fresh and see if it improves.

Thanks for the suggestion. This minor annoyance is becoming worse.
Kelly

ian says:
Mar 7, 2009 - 05:03:09

yes, this is a serious problem! i get the same thing several times a day!

Mar 7, 2009 - 10:03:59

Ian,
I’ve since concluded that it’s a software defect (a bug), although I can’t explain the “OTA update” entries in the event log. I’m experimenting with an updated OS (not yet released to US public), and the problem has vanished.
Kelly

X9X says:
Mar 22, 2009 - 08:03:04

The same thing is happening to me. Several times a day. It seems to be more frequent now, and I, too, was wondering if it could be one of the many apps I’ve downloaded that’s causing the problem? Seems to me that quite a few of us are having the exact same problem .

Mar 23, 2009 - 09:03:13

X9X,
I upgraded my Storm to an OS version that is not official but was released possibly for a European version of the Storm. The resets have completely disappeared. I’m still testing that OS so I’m not necessarily recommending it to others. So, I think it’s less about apps than the OS itself.
Kelly

Chanin Malle says:
Apr 4, 2009 - 09:04:27

My blackberry deletes my text messages by itself every few days. It gets aggravating because it sometimes deletes them before I even get to read them. I’m also always having the reboot screen, mine ALWAYS interupts me when I’ve been texting constantly for too long or if its left alone. PLEASE help me :(

Apr 4, 2009 - 11:04:36

Chanin,
You didn’t say which model you own–would you let me know? The Pearl has a pretty serious problem with deleting messages, but any BlackBerry can have this problem. Why? Because they are designed to delete things when Device Memory becomes low. The Pearl has very little spare Device Memory, so many Pearl owners have a problem with text messages, emails, and other information deleted. But I have not heard from owners of Curve, Bold, or Storm about having this problem. You can check how much memory you have free by doing Options > Status and reading the value for File Free. No matter which model, you can free up the maximum amount of memory by doing a battery pull: remove battery, wait several seconds, replace the battery, and wait for it to recover. Check the amount of free memory after doing that, and you’ll be able to see how much memory you freed up.

Rebooting frequently may also be due to insufficient Device Memory.

Please let me know if you see any improvement after you do a battery pull.
Kelly

Chanin Malle says:
Apr 4, 2009 - 11:04:59

I own the Storm 9530. If I don’t do battery pulls after the first deleting, it will keep at it. So I have to do a battery pull. I end up having to do this a few times a week. Do you know if the new update will change this and the automatic rebooting??

Chanin Malle says:
Apr 4, 2009 - 11:04:54

Also, when I’m recording something via video recorder. it sometimes doesn’t save it. It says that it’s not the right type to be saved? I don’t know why this happens, but after i do a battery pull, it works again. But shortly after, it will start messing up again. I love the phone (when it’s working) but it’s extremely dissappointing lately. :(

Chanin Malle says:
Apr 4, 2009 - 11:04:53

Oh! i just turned off my “memory cleaning” do you think this will do the trick?? sorry i’m posting so much. i’m playing on my phone now, trying to see what will do it.

Apr 4, 2009 - 12:04:43

Chanin,
The Storm was definitely released with bugs–no doubt about it. I’m currently running a version of the Storm OS that has NOT been approved by my carrier, Verizon, but I wanted to see if it improved my Storm’s quirky behaviors: 4.7.0.103. The site where I downloaded it has removed the download link for policy violation. So far, it does work better, however my video camera is still quirky (e.g., freezes up until I pull the battery). Maybe the best news from this is that work is being done to improve the OS. Hopefully soon an official release will be made.

There is some possibility that your OS is somehow corrupted. Do you feel comfortable wiping the OS and reinstalling it? I have articles with instructions on how to do that. Still, I recommend it cautiously because wiping and reload should be done only as a last resort unless you are quite skilled at things like that.
Kelly

kristi says:
Apr 22, 2009 - 11:04:05

This is happening many times daily to me, and it has interrupted important things…I’m ready to trade in my phone because I’m so frustrated!

Apr 26, 2009 - 07:04:10

kristi,
I have upgraded my Storm to an “unofficial” version of the Storm OS and the problem is fixed. If you are with Verizon, and can wait just a bit longer, I think Verizon will release an OS update that will correct the problem. If you are brave enough to upgrade the OS on your own (read my articles about that topic first), I can tell you where to get the unofficial OS.
Kelly

Lomimoortiods says:
May 28, 2009 - 11:05:11

Hi,

I am new to this forum and want to introduce myself

:)

May 30, 2009 - 07:05:36

Lomimoortiods,
Welcome to newBBie.com.
Kelly

Terry Holtz says:
Jun 11, 2009 - 09:06:09

I downloaded the OTA update from verizon and now all I gett is a flashjing red light. I’ve tried the battery pull and no change. Has anybody else seen this? Any ideas other than taking it in.

Jun 11, 2009 - 11:06:47

Terry,
I’m guessing the OTA update failed before it completed, and you’re left with a non-functioning phone. You have a perfect right to demand Verizon correct it if you can take it to a corporate store. If not, and you want to try to fix it yourself, please read my articles about wiping a BlackBerry and installing an OS. You may need to download the OS (not OTA but to your computer), wipe the phone, and use Desktop Manager to install the new OS. This is a fairly advanced procedure, but many readers have reported they’ve done it successfully in the past. Ask me more questions if you think I can help more.
Kelly

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