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How to Disable Safe Mode on Android Devices

Safe Mode helps to troubleshoot your device and identify applications that might be causing issues related to battery life, app crashes, hangs, etc. It enables you to identify and uninstall such “misbehaving” apps. This feature is useful in determining whether a problem is caused by an app installed or Android itself. When a device is in Safe Mode, users cannot download or access third-party applications installed on their devices. Safe Mode can pose a threat to organizations that gives company-owned Android devices to its users. Users can easily activate Safe Mode on their devices, change settings, bypass restrictions, and even uninstall the MDM software. To dodge this loophole, Hexnode MDM allows the administrator to disable Safe Mode on Android devices and prevent users from activating this mode by locking down this feature with a password.

Safe mode on Android Devices

Note:

Safe Mode can be disabled only on Samsung Knox devices, Standard Android devices below Android 7.0, and devices enrolled in Android Enterprise – Device Owner mode. 

Disabling Safe Mode on Android Devices Using Hexnode MDM

Enabling Safe Mode on Android Devices

Perform the following steps to disable Safe Mode on Android devices using Hexnode MDM.

  1. Log in to your Hexnode console.
  2. Navigate to Policies. Click on any policy name to edit an existing policy or click on New Policy to create a new one. If you are creating a new policy provide:
    • Policy Name – A name to identify your policy.
    • Policy Description – A brief description for your policy.
  3. Click on Android > Restrictions. Click on Configure.
  4. Safe Mode – Uncheck this option to restrict users from enabling Safe Mode on their devices.
  5. Device Password – Provide a suitable password to restrict users from enabling Safe Mode. Devices will prompt the users to enter this password whenever he/she tries to enter the Safe Mode.
  6. Navigate to Policy Targets and click on +Add Devices to add the devices you wish to associate the policy to. Click on Save.

Any attempt to reboot the device in Safe Mode will be blocked by Hexnode MDM.

Notes:

For devices other than Samsung Knox or the one enrolled in Android Enterprise – Device Owner mode, it is suggested to put a password in the ‘Device Password’ field even if these devices do not consider it.  

  • On a normal restart, the Android device may ask the user to enter a password. This can also happen when the user tries to enable Safe Mode on these devices. 
  • Users will be prompted to enter the password provided in the ‘Device Password’ field on the device when they try to enable Safe Mode. 
  • Warning: You might end up resetting the device if you forget the password or enter the wrong password. 

Re-enabling Safe Mode Using Hexnode MDM

Enabling Safe Mode on Android Devices

To re-enable Safe Mode on your Android devices, perform the following steps.

  1. Log in to your Hexnode Console.
  2. Navigate to Manage > Devices. Identify and click on the device name. If the policy has been applied to a group of devices then navigate to Manage > Device Groups. Click on the device group that has Safe Mode restricted. This will take you to the corresponding device summary page.
  3. Click on Policies subtab. Identify the policy containing the Safe Mode restrictions and click on it. This will take you to the corresponding policy summary page.
  4. Click on Manage > Modify.
  5. Navigate to Android > Restrictions. Click on Configure.
  6. Select ‘Safe Mode‘ checkbox.
  7. Click on Save.