When performing a factory reset, does Android remove all the added applications and user data or does it completely reflash an image of the OS

I am running on jelly bean 4.3 stock


1 Answer 1


When performing a factory reset:

  • /system is untouched since it's normally read-only anyway
  • /data is formatted
  • /cache is formatted
  • /sdcard is not touched unless you specify. Note that apps on the sdcard will still be erased.

So, to answer your question, the system is not reflash end, but instead the data and cache partitions are formatted.

  • If you have an emulated sd card, will it be touched? Aug 25, 2013 at 3:23
  • Depends on where it stores data. If its on the phone, then yes, it will. Normally I would suggest making Titanium or Nandroid Backups, but it seems like you don't have one :).
    – user24200
    Aug 25, 2013 at 4:12

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