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How To Factory Reset Your PS4

A factory reset of a PlayStation 4 – which may soon stop receiving new games – is usually a reliable option to fix whatever problems the console may have. Before taking this step, however, users need to do a few things to make setting up the console less of a hassle in the aftermath.

Performing a factory reset involves restoring a device to its factory settings. It will essentially bring the device to the state in which the user received it. Factory resets are most commonly done when someone intends on selling a device and has to get rid of their data. Other times they are performed when the device has some kind of issue and alternative methods fail to fix it.

When resetting a PlayStation 4 to factory settings, everything will be wiped from the console (via PlayStation). This means that if someone's personal and game data isn't backed up somewhere – either the cloud for PlayStation Plus users or an external drive for anyone else – it will be lost forever. Once the data is secured, the console can be safely reset.

Resetting the PlayStation 4 requires several steps

According to Digital Trends, users should deactivate their PlayStation 4 as their primary console before resetting it. Failing to do so could create problems when trying to sign in on another console. To do this, go to "Settings" and then "Account Management." Next, select the option "Activate as Your Primary PS4." When the option to deactivate it appears, click "Yes" (via PlayStation).

Once that's done, users must return to the "Settings" menu and select "Initialization." From there, users will have two choices for resetting the console. The first is "Restore Default Settings." Doing this will wipe the console of any changes made to its settings, but it won't get rid of any game data on the hard drive. The second – and more severe – choice is "Initialize PS4." Initializing the console will completely wipe everything from it. Once the console has been wiped, it will restart as if it were just purchased.

Factory reset when your PS4 won't turn on

If there's an issue preventing someone from even turning on the PlayStation 4 to access the settings, it can also be reset from Safe Mode, which many players became all too familiar with after PS4 update 7.50. To access Safe Mode, press and hold the power button on the console while it is powered off. After a few seconds, a menu should appear with the option to "Initialize PS4."

There is also an option to initialize and then reinstall software in Safe Mode. To do this, according to PlayStation, first create a folder on a PC or Mac labeled "PS4." This file should be placed onto a USB drive formatted as FAT32. This format is typically the default on USB drives, but reformatting can be done right on the computer in most cases (via Kingston Technology). Within the "PS4" folder, create another one labeled "UPDATE." From there, download the latest software update from PlayStation's website, save it in the "UPDATE" folder, and rename the update file "PS4UPDATE.PUP." The name will allow the PS4 to recognize it.

When the USB drive is inserted into the console, select "Update System Software" from the Safe Mode menu. This will bring up the option to "Update from USB Storage Device." If the console is unable to pull the update from the USB, double check the format of the drive and the names of the files.