How to factory reset a PS4 | digital trends (2023)

Sometimes, factory resetting your console is a necessary task that will allow you to start from scratch and hopefully fix any issues you may encounter with a piece of hardware. AsPlaystation 4, this can be critical to the console's lifespan, although resetting the system isn't necessarily the easiest process. Fortunately, we have all the details to make the process as easy as possible. How to factory reset your PlayStation 4 system.


  • Here's How to Factory Reset Your PS4
  • Perform a factory reset in Safe Mode
  • How to Reinstall System Software on PS4



duration of time

2 hours

(Video) How to factory reset the Sony PS4

What do you need

  • Playstation 4

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  • Any PlayStation game you can play on PC
  • All cross-platform games (PS5, Xbox Series X, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC)

Here's How to Factory Reset Your PS4

Performing a full factory reset for the PlayStation 4 is quite a simple process. This is usually done as a last resort to ensure system functionality. Before performing a factory reset, it is important to remember to back up all your saved data before starting the process. PlayStation factory reset will erase all your data from the system and if you don't backup your save data then you will have to start games from scratch.

Things to consider when backing up include images, saves, and videos that can be uploaded to any of them.external deviceor in the cloud. To back up data to the cloud, you need aPlaystation plusAccount that offers 100 GB of storage space. However, you can also use a flash drive to copy saves if you are not a PS Plus member.

Below are step by step guides on how to factory reset your PS4 whether you are using an original model, a Slim or a Pro.

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Before we get started, you should know that a factory reset completely erases the console's hard drive and may even remove system software. It's a last resort when a software glitch is causing your PlayStation 4 to freeze, especially when booting up or when you want to make sure the console is no longer holding your data.

There are two ways to reset your PS4 - through the console's dashboard or in safe mode if the console is having problems starting up. We will go through both paths, the first being through the PlayStation 4 panel.

Step 1:Start from the settings menu and find the account management option. You must deactivate the machine as your primary PlayStation 4. With this setup you can playdownloaded gamesoffline, identifying that specific PS4 as yours. If you miss this step, you will encounter a host of other issues when logging into your new console andtry to play your games.

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Step 2:Go toActivate as your primary PS4. Your PS4 will likely already be activated. If so, theactivateoption is grayed out anddisablewill be the only option you can choose. To choosedisableand selectEon the following screen.

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Stage 3:Log back into your account and go back to the last steps settings.

Step 4:Scroll all the way down in the settings menu. click instartupand you will be presented with a few more options. For the purposes of this guide, you only have to worry about the bottom two options - we're skipping the Clear Learning Dictionary. Below you seerestore default settings, which will erase your saved configuration data and reset the PS4 to factory settings, but will not erase the hard drive.

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the other optionBoot PS4, is the big one that wipes data off your hard drive, including downloaded games, saved game data, and everything you've added to your console since you bought it. This will restore your PS4 to the original condition it was in when it came out of the box.

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Step 5:Full Wipe is what you are looking for. Note that it will take a long time - probably a few hours or more.

Once the cleanup starts, the PS4 will show a progress bar showing how long it will take, but expect it to take even longer as the console will go through several steps. When you're done, you can set up your PS4 exactly like you did when you first turned it on. If you want to sell it, please deliver it completely new and without any data attached.

Perform a factory reset in Safe Mode

If you are experiencing system software issues or other errors that prevent you from accessing the settings menu and resetting your PS4, you can access the same options on the consolesafety mode.

Step 1:Shut down your PS4 completely. do not definesleep mode. You want your console to be completely powered off so you can boot into safe mode.

Step 2:Press and hold the power button until you hear two beeps. You have to physically press the power button on theconsole, instead of starting it with a controller. Hold it for about eight seconds. It beeps when you first touch the key and again before booting into safe mode. It will be labeled and you will recognize it by its black background.

Stage 3:There are three different approaches to resetting your PS4 available from the Safe Mode menu. As inIdeasmenu, in safe mode, you can chooserestore default settingsto reset everything on PS4 to original software settings but keep your data.

You can also chooseBoot PS4. This will erase your hard drive and reset to factory settings, but the system software – in other words, the operating system – will remain.

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The last option isInitialize PS4 (Reinstall System Software)This is an even more comprehensive factory reset that will require you to reinstall your PS4 operating system.

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Step 4:If you don't have any software issues, select Initialize PS4. This will reset your hard drive and software settings to factory defaults, but leave your operating system software intact. This is the same option as above (available onIdeasmenu), and you can choose betweenFastECompletestartups. If that's all you need, you're done.

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How to Reinstall System Software on PS4

Reinstalling system software is a more difficult reset than a full boot and will completely erase all console software. You must have another device available to reinstall system software after this reset. If you have software problems with the operating system, select InitializePS4 (Reinstall System Software), but there is one more step in the process that needs to be done first.

Step 1:Search on your PClatest system softwareDownload it from the PlayStation website (version 8.03) and download it to your computer. To transfer the update to your PS4, use a USB stick or an external hard drive that can be connected via the USB port. Take an external hard drive or USB flash drive with about 1.1GB of free space.

Step 2:Create a new folder on your USB device and name it PS4. Inside that folder, create a folder and name it "UPDATE" in capital letters. Place the firmware file in this "UPDATE" folder for quick access during transfer. Make sure the file name is "PS4UPDATE.PUP" when saving it.

Stage 3:Start your PS4 in Safe Mode. Follow the instructions above to turn off your PS4. Hold down the power button until you hear two beeps, which will allow you to boot into safe mode.

Step 4:Select Initialize PS4 (Reinstall System Software) on your PS4. From there, follow all the instructions on your PS4. As you go along, the console will erase everything including system software. The next prompts will guide you through connecting the USB with the saved update and reinstalling the system software. After installing the updated files, your PS4 will be reset to factory settings.

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