Ask Hackaday: What Can Be Done With Your Bootlooping Blu-Ray?

Last Friday, thousands of owners of Samsung Blu Ray players found that their home entertainment devices would no longer boot up. While devices getting stuck in a power-cycling loop is not uncommon, this case stands out as it affected a huge range of devices all at the same time. Samsung’s support forum paints a bleak picture, with one thread on the issue stretching to 177 pages in just a week.

So what is going on, and what can be done to fix the problem? There’s a lot of conflicting information on that. Some people’s gear has started working again, others have not and there are reports of customers being told to seek in-person repair service. Let’s dive in with some wild speculation on the problem and circle back by commiserating about the woes of web-connected appliances.

Time To Die

When thousands of devices all fail at the same time, it tends to point to an external causal factor. One theory put forth by many has been that the issue was caused by an automatic firmware update, bricking the machines. However, with the problem affecting a wide cross section of machines, all presumably running different hardware and different firmware, this would seem an unlikely cause. While firmware updates can cause problems, it would be unusual for Samsung to roll out an update to so many varied models all on the same day. A staggered rollout as fixes were developed would be more likely, particularly for a product line facing end of life, like Blu Ray players.

Blu Ray players are, at this point, primarily used by cinema buffs looking for the highest resolution, best quality experience. However, many use Samsung players day to day for their streaming and recording features, too.

A more likely culprit is an expired SSL certificate which the players use to access Samsung servers. With Samsung’s Blu Ray players often featuring Internet connectivity for streaming video, such certificates are necessary to avoid security issues out in the real world. If not kept up to date, these certificates eventually expire, and need to be updated if secure connections are to be maintained.

Of course, if expired certificates are the problem, it highlights far deeper issues with Samsung’s appliances. While an expired certificate cannot be used for secure online communication, there is no reason that it should brick the entire device. A simple few lines of code are all that is required to detect the out-of-date certificate and notify the user as to the cause of the problem. The player could then allow the user to still use the offline functionality of the device. Instead, what users see is a machine that fails within 10 seconds of power on, getting stuck in an infinite loop.

The fact that the problem is affecting even devices that aren’t connected to the Internet will prove yet more galling for Samsung’s customers. While a certificate failure is a problem for online use, there’s no reason it should affect the proper operation of the Blu Ray player itself. One of the major benefits of physical media is it sidesteps the requirement for an internet connection, and yet owners of these machines still find themselves out of luck.

A Potential Fix

Assuming the problem is indeed an SSL certificate issue — a plausible scenario since Blu Ray involves a lot of signed DRM features — the only real way to fix this problem for the average user will be for Samsung to issue a valid certificate, rolling it out to machines with a firmware update. This may prove difficult with the machines stuck in a bootloop if the affected units restart prior to checking for online updates. And, of course, assuming the updates are sent through an SSL secured channel, there’s no hope of an over-the-air fix at all. Users who don’t have their players connected to the Internet at all are out of luck whatever happens.

However, this isn’t WaitForAnUpdateADay, it’s Hackaday, and we’re in the business of providing quick and dirty back-of-the-envelope solutions. If the problem is tied to the magic date of Friday the 19th of June, resetting the machine’s clock prior to this date may just coax the machine back into life. The really adventurous could try packet-capture the running device to determine where it connects to, and spoof NTP servers on a closed network. But more likely than not the firmware was written with this type of attack in mind.

Consumer Rights

Fundamentally, the consumers who purchased these Samsung devices are feeling hard done by. A week has passed with no solution, and it’s likely Samsung doesn’t have a whole lot of resources on the problem. Having announced their exit from the market in 2019, the simple factors of lower demand in the face of streaming services have meant the Blu Ray market is shrinking fast.

Despite various countries having rules that manufacturers can’t sell defective hardware without proper restitution, it’s unlikely Samsung will be shipping new Blu Ray decks to affected customers. Manufacturing lines have likely already been closed, and the stock simply isn’t available. In our current throw-away society, there isn’t exactly a network of service centres for this sort of hardware either. If they can’t fix it, past bricked-hardware debacles point to class-action and refund settlements. A messy way forward, but with plenty of historical precedent behind it. Let’s hope a device firmware update (DFU) from a USB thumb drive can resurrect these before it gets that far. What a mess!

So what are your thoughts? Is there anything that can be done to get these working again? What happens when a stored SSL cert expires, and what is the proper way to fail in that case? We’d love to hear from any readers who have experience with how the authentication stack works for Blu Ray DRM, especially if there’s an offline fall-back that make these appliances simmer down and spin up some discs.

154 thoughts on “Ask Hackaday: What Can Be Done With Your Bootlooping Blu-Ray?

  1. After several run-ins with samsung appliances I’ve a new motto:

    FRIENDS DON’T LET FRIENDS BUY SAMSUNG

    exploding washing machines, refrigerators that last 3 years and stoves that won’t heat to temp

    and now video players that self brick

    1. You forgot Samsung Galaxy Note Flambe fiasco from a few years back. Redesigned battery pack wasn’t enough and Samsung was forced to recall every single Note 7 and push out firmware update to lock those not yet turned in for recall. Only a few remains in the world, mostly new in box for those ballsy collectors.

      1. I made a lot of money one summer buying them locally because Sprint just forgave the cost, and didn’t require turn in. I paid 25$ each, and sold them back to samsung for 900$ each…

          1. No, he exploited a weakness in the market and made a profit. If Samsung wanted to pay $900, they would. If not, they could have checked the serial numbers, found they were Sprint devices and refused to pay.

            Why is it fraud when you or me do it, and “tough sh*t” when Samsung does it to a consumer?

            Of course, they could always go to arbitration to resolve the issue…ha, ha, ha!

      1. Rip them all and stream them or stick them on USB sticks. You get to skip all the unskippable junk, it isn’t tied to a specific piece of hardware and your plastic disc will last longer. I have shelves of discs that have been out of their case once

          1. Makemkv will rip most to .mkv, the container just wraps the original video and audio tracks, you lose the menus and bonus stuff (you can rip the bonus stuff to it’s own mkv files if you want). There are also some options like anydvdhd which let you back up the disk as an iso image, just without encryption. I have most of my dvd and blueray backed up this way.

    2. But I guess it is because of crappy design choices and bad quality in some aspects. But now that you say it, I can see a pattern in Samsung devices breaking after just a few years. I have repaired 3 Samsung screens, that had at most 5 years of use (They where from my university, and they always throw outdated and broken items out (I got some useful things like a toner colour printer, a fast double side black and white toner printer and another normal office toner white and black toner printer, a server and 5 screens, 3 of hem the Samsung ones. From all this stuff, only the Samsung screens where broken, and it was just 2 capacitors inside)

      1. I have my samsung washing machine for 10 years now and it still works, what models are affected? My previous braun was 25 years old and actully caught fire in the door locking mechanism:O

        1. I mean I got two 5 year old Samsung aircons that have both failed due to bugs and skinks ($1200 repair on one, I did the other one myself cos it was real obvious what the bug had killed) and a 5 year old Samsung washer dryer that failed cos a mouse peed on a controller (Samsung replaced it under warranty and said it should be basically vermin proof).

          My experience with Samsung has been generally good, maybe it’s certain products, or products in different markets, or batches of products?

        2. My old washing machine (with integrated dryer, quite inefficient) started to throw the RCD. When I tore it down, the only suspect thing was the thermal door locking mechanism. But I had already bought a stand alone dryer with heat pump, which does not use any tap water for cooling (the same amount as it need before for washing).
          And so I bought a new washing machine, with a very quiet brushless direct drive.

        3. I bought a Samsung Dishwasher and it stopped working the second day after it was installed. They wouldn’t take it back. I was forced to buy a protection plan since I had no recourse. I must have had it serviced 10 times. Couldn’t take it any more and threw it out.

          I had 3 Samsung Bluray players from 2010. One completely stopped working 3 or 4 years ago and I replaced it with a new model. That one stopped working with this reboot issue a few weeks ago. The internet services, such as Netflix and Pandora, stopped working on the 2 older players some time ago. I only noticed it about 6 months ago. It appears Samsung pulled the plug on something on their servers.

          I’m done. No more Samsung. Arrghh.

          1. I agree with you. I was thinking about getting a TV a month ago becuase i was at a hotel with a newer model Samsung TV and saw TVplus, also notice that they were now geting the POPULAR freebie aps. But when i got home both samsung tvs i got , both less than 4 years old, still had NOTHING. Only freebie was YouTube and a bunch of garbage.. Then I also found out that TCL ,love Roku, have series 4, 5,6 ,and 8,,which means quaility picture like those samsungs.
            Also neat is you usally don’t get wrong button press on TCL as compared a samsung, then again having 10% of the buttons help

    3. my blu_ray has stopped working I’ve contacted samsung told me there are investigating the problem and gave me a address of samsung repair who might be able to fix it thing is will it get repaired or do I fork out more more money for a new one

    4. I second this Samsung hate.

      When I moved in to my home I thought of Samsung as a decent brand, and purchased their TV, fridge, dishwasher and washing machine. This was six years ago.

      TV is holding on, but occasionally has blue lines through it. All online and ‘smart’ functionality has been discontinued. Might be an excuse to grab one of these fancy 4K TVs everyone raves about.

      Fridge has many snapped shelves and is rather noisy, despite cleaning out the compressor area. Tends to get condensation on the front control panel too, not that it’s even humid here.

      Dishwasher faulted live to earth. Has since been scrapped.

      Washing machine was horrendously noisy and the lid lock jammed closed. Also scrapped.

    5. I called Samsung and they walked me through a Hard reset but it failed. So they paid for my 2017 model unit to be shipped to their facility in NJ. I’ll let y’all know what they are able to do. But I’m done with Samsung, in 3 years my brand new Samsung fridge, washer, and blu ray ate shit. Going back to Kenmore appliances!!!!

  2. This is theft. The device’s utility has been stolen by Samsung. It is no different than if an agent of Samsung walked in the front door, smashed the device with a hammer, and walked away. So let the class-action begin. In 3-5 years, a bunch of lawyers will all get new BMW’s, and all the affected customers will receive a lovely 10% coupon off their next Samsung purchase.

      1. When our Whirlpool dishwasher caught fire due to faulty design, the lawsuit settlement was $100 or 30% off of a new Whirlpool model. Now in this case, there was no threat to life, so yeah…10% might be optimistic.

    1. This is the way of the future, you don’t buy something, you rent it, and if it breaks down just “buy” a new one, because you have no choice to fix it or get a replacement.

    2. You’re not buying a product, you’re buying a licence to use a product. The life of the product, is defined by the term of the warranty.

      So in English, once the warranty expires, so can the product.

      1. In nearly all parts of the US, when you buy a consumer electronics product, it is as a regular sale regulated by Uniform Commercial Code. The concepts of written contract, terms of use, copyright, and other things don’t apply. You’re not renting, leasing, or licensing a product. That’s not the understanding by *both* parties.

        I would ask for a full refund, and open a case in small claims court when you don’t get it. If the understanding of one party is reasonably at odds with the conditions of a regular sale or contract, then there is no sale or contract. The exchange of money is not valid.

        (IANAL, only a citizen concerned about our rights in the taxpayer funded courts)

        1. Considering that their Blu-Ray players were sold in large numbers at Costco and such to average non-technical customers, having thousands fail simultaneously being covered in the news isn’t going to encourage those customers or their acquaintances to buy Samsung $1000+ phones, TVs, smart watches, appliances or other products. The potential loss of future sales income would far exceed their cost to pay the expertise to find a solution, IF there is one possible.

          Inspecting the player’s PCB reveals very little circuitry – a System on Chip under a heat sink, a firmware flash ROM and not much else. No sign of a battery of any sort. Nor did I see any evidence of a possible JTAG port. These things are remarkably simple.

          One user hooked his failed player to an ethernet NTP server he set up with an earlier date and time to see if that would help. No change. Another monitored the USB port and found that it doesn’t do anything during the boot cycle.

          For those who haven’t experienced this, the common symptoms are that upon plugging in the player, the drive starts and “grinds” for a few moments then stops. After the bootup period during which no video is produced, the normal start screen appears with the selection of uses – but only for a fraction of a second. It then disappears and the cycle repeats. The player buttons have no effect. Only the eject button on the remote works (fortunately – allowing removal of any disk from the sick player). During the fraction of a second of the initial screen, the up/down/left/right buttons work but it reboots anyway. All the standard ways to reset the player to factory conditions don’t work either because the buttons are ignored or because they can’t be pressed fast enough before the unit reboots.

          Regarding page views – Samsung Community forum pages have ten postings per page. That’s 2000 postings now, and 200000 (2E5) views. Considering that your average TV customer wouldn’t know or bother to check that, I find those large numbers telling. The coverage here, Google, The Verge, Engadget, Slashdot, and elsewhere does as well.

          1. The above is correct. One cannot update the Firmware, we cannot get to the Settings Menu. One needs to buy the competitor’s product, and dump Samsung.

  3. We had two Blu-ray players get stuck in the boot loop in one morning. Both of them the exact same make/model.

    I’d rather find some hackish way of fixing them than go the class-action lawsuit way. I guess I’ve been lucky, and have actually gotten money back from a class-action Lawsuit (entertainingly enough, involving Samsung LCD Monitors). I think I got $40 or $60 back from it, but it took a few years.

    I don’t think I’ll buy another Samsung product ever again.

    1. What tools do you have at your disposal to try figure out what is going on, and what may be possible to fix?
      I’m thinking packet capture on any network interfaces, and a usb gadget like a atmega32 (Arduino Leonardo or teensy or similar) to try debug if any attempt to perform usb enumeration is happening.
      I.e flash a modified LUFA firmware that logs any usb enumeration to UART to see what possible interfaces can be replied to.

      1. Unfortunately my resources are probably quite limited here compared to others. I don’t even own an Arduino or a Pi. My first thought was start sniffing network traffic, but it sounds like others have already done that to no avail.

    1. Why would a tool suck simply for working exactly as intended?
      Does a hammer suck just because someone else used one to smash your finger?

      I think you misunderstand the purpose of SSL here. It is not being used to benefit you, it is being used by others to harm you.
      Here it is being used by the movie industry to verify *to them* you have paid the proper number of times to rent their data, and as is usually the case with encryption, it errors on the side of that you haven’t.

      A hammer doesn’t suck, it is very useful. It’s the act of someone else using a hammer against you that sucks.
      SSL also doesn’t suck, it is very useful. It is Bluray publishers using it against you that sucks.

      It’s also a very sad day when the majority of people visiting a website for the technically inclined can’t tell the difference between a tool itself and what the tool is being used for.

        1. Perhaps, but this required maintenance is generally all right up front and clear (clear in the sense it is complex)
          Even basic introductions to PKI talk of how much needs to go into things to work and work well.
          The “I” stands for “Infrastructure” for a reason ;}

          Don’t get me wrong, I too wish there was suitable yet simpler systems, but there really isn’t. Anything equivalent in safety features is equally complex even if the details are different.

          Ultimately it isn’t unlike someone buying a car from the 1960’s, being told of all the work involved to keep it running, yet still ending up complaining of the work involved. One doesn’t accidentally fall into setting up PKI from scratch.

        2. Also when you say “fragile”, please keep in mind nothing broke, nothing went wrong, everything is working as intended. That it inconveniences everyone with their Bluray player was chosen by design. The people that chose that as acceptable don’t seem to have much problem with it.
          The players not playing movies is exactly what this encryption is intended to do.

          It isn’t the technology with a problem here, it is the usage of it people have the problem with.
          The only way to stop that is to somehow control who can and who can’t use the technology, to prevent it being used against you.

          Except that path is a horrible one to look down. It seems impossible to end up in a situation where us people dictate we can use it and Samsung can’t. It seems all but guaranteed it will be us banned from having it.

      1. You’re assuming it’s the certificate for playback. It could equally be a certificate used to verify automated updates, which protects you from security flaws in non-updated players, or from malicious Trojan updates.

      2. No offense Dissy, but I think it’s sad that the more experienced people on this site like to talk down to others less knowledgeable. We, as a whole, make Hackaday better- yes, by educating one another- but also being kind, and not passive aggressive to others. I appreciate the point you made, but not the way you made it.

        Some food for thought maybe?

  4. It is ridiculous that they are stopping making Blu-Ray players. What are we supposed to do with our Blu-Ray disks? Blu-Ray player makers need to release copy-protection unlocks/workarounds when they stop making the players, so we can at least copy our data to new media.

    I prefer getting programs and movies on physical media because they are easier to keep track of than virtual ones. One does not have to make back-ups as much.
    However if they are going to stop making the players after only a few years – then one is stuck with hoarding/repairing old drives, or converting to a virtual copy and then backing that up.

    1. And the physical discs you buy will continue to work long after the corporate entities that created them cease to exist or care enough to keep them running. Can’t say the same for the current batch of streaming services.

      Of course you might not be able to find anything to play them in :0

    2. When they stop making Beta you buy VHS, when they stop making VHS you buy DVD, when they stop making DVD you buy Blu-Ray and when they stop making Blu-Ray you buy DRM Downloads. Did you notice how many times I said “You buy”, that’s the point, corporations are like whores, they only love you for money, only most whores won’t screw you as hard as a corporation.

      1. Except to this day, DVD’s are still being manufactured, with all Blu-Ray players backwards compatible with DVD’s. Along with all UHD-BD players being backwards compatible with Blu-Ray discs (because UHD-BD is largely the exact same internal format wise as BD) and DVD’s. Of course if you want HD then you need to buy the BD, and if you want 4K you need to buy the UHD-BD, but it’s not exactly fair to expect your 18 year old disc to spontaneously be the latest and greatest.
        Though there’s something to be said about “Netflix Purgatory” where anything they have the western license for, or are the producers of, there’s a extremely slim chance that thing will ever get a physical (western, in the case of a license, which is less severe) release, meaning to have a version with any permanence requires going on the high seas, despite many being perfectly willing to purchase a physical disc over going full yarr harr. Which also guarantees being perpetually stuck with streaming quality video for that series or movie in question, which is absolute garbage for anyone who cares about video quality.

    1. That might leave the system in a state where something checks for a data that is ‘too early’ and causes a problem. But it’s along the lines of what I was thinking about posting.

      There are probably a number of certificates in the machines. The things that are needed just to decode some media files is crazy.

      I was also thinking that Samsung (and LG) used to use a pretty wacky timestamp format in their feature phones, maybe that got carried over to Samsung’s consumer electronics and is involved with the fault?
      No matter the case, the consumer is screwed by shoddy workmanship.

      1. It wouldn’t surprise me if the implementation is buggy and vulnerable; but this version of the AACS spec has some things to say about RTCs (search for “secure clock”). They are apparently optional; but if a device intends to support time-based access conditions the spec requires that the RTC either be tamper resistant or the system nuke all time-based permissions on RTC tamper detection.

        I wouldn’t trust the ‘secure’ clock to stand against a knowledgeable attacker, especially given how RTCs are often implemented as discrete components, with busses relatively trivial to snoop and spoof, rather than on-die in a way that counts as effectively tamperproof without either a glitching attack or some classy rework gear; but it would also be unsurprising for a naive attempt on the RTC to cause the player to really freak out and try to shut itself down a bit further.

  5. Can press please stop reporting page counts on forum threads? Forums can have any number of posts per page. Ranges from 10 to 50 are common but there are outliers that are even more extreme!

  6. Hopefully having my Blu-ray player picked up after a week of back and forward on messenger and customer service, we will see if it gets fixed, because of lockdown, I am shielding and furloughed from work not got the funds to purchase a new player so for the moment I’m using my laptop as a dvd player plugged into my TV.

  7. We programmed a neural net based AI to train itself from all possible hardware fixes on the internet. Here is it’s recommendation to fix the Samsung Blu-Ray

    Place drive in the freezer for 2 hours, then wrap it in a rice towel, power up device while holding F3, blow in the slot, install windows 10 fresh off a USB stick, cook to an internal temperature of 185F or until juices run clear, if too runny add more flour, fold a wad of cardboard and insert under one leg, if red make green, hit to within one inch clearance at rear of unit.

    1. I did, nothing, not wireless or ethernet, matter a fact i recorded all traffics for night before it goes haywire, i was sniffing my other device and i have my Samsung home theater network of that night, it was nothing , no firmware update or whatsoever i suspected it updated date and time that’s when it happens …
      Any suggestion on what happened is welcome
      And i found something else other functions works but not completely due to loading disk, anybody knows how to reset clock on the board?? What ever it is it’s time if we can reset time maybe it works again

  8. wait, i have read about this one week ago, and people still don’t know why it happens ? firmware update or ssl certificate are both still speculation ? as descibed in the text, the firmware update is very unlikely because it affects a lot of different players. and a certificate that blocks the boot process sound weird too. thats more like a major bug of the operating system in general. some common base component that they use in all the firmware for all the players. since it happend to all the devices at the same time, i bet resetting the internal clock would actually help. do they have something similar to a cmos battery ? or does unplugging them for a certain amount of time reset the clock ?

    1. I agree — although they didn’t all die at the same time so it’s probably not just a time-based overflow thing. Specifically, I have two players of the same model that failed something like 10 hours apart.

    2. x.509 cert used in the secure boot process with an expiration they thought was far enough in the future they forgot about upgrading it and didn’t remember to turn off expiration checking while using it?

        1. If they have decided not to make BluRay, chances are they would layoff/reposition everyone in the project. May be they use some outfit to handle the repairs/sustaining who don’t know anything outside of swapping components and not about the intricate things like certificate.

          Been there. Not fun.

  9. How long should I wait until I give up on there being a solution? Seems like if they can’t fix it after 9 days (but I guess 2 weren’t business) they can’t or they won’t do a darned thing about it. Feeling a little SOL over a SSL!

  10. This just goes to show the “high quality” of firmware that permeates everything around us. Every time I’ve looked at what’s running inside anything, from USB keys to home entertainment systems, I’ve come away wondering how the thing seems to work as well it does most of the time.

    What ever happened to software development as an art form? Or even as a science? Not this “agile” “it seems to work – ship it” monstrosity?

    And it’s not just embedded firmware that’s suffering from this (I’m looking at you, Microsoft, Apple, and many other large PC related companies).

    1. I think it’s more than just “it works, ship it”, but “it built and passed all of the tests, ship it!” — which ignores the fact that in my experience most of the developers I know write really crappy tests.

      1. It may be even funnier than that. They have have contracted someone to design the unit and than canned them or axed them after delivery. I worked in a place where something like this happened. I do think they may have saved some cash over the few years things worked flawlessly not paying a salary and insurance and all the benefits etc, but the guy got a job and did not really need them when they needed him again. It cost them a lot more than they ever thought.

  11. the elephant in the room for me is: where do the devices that aren’t connected to the Internet have the time from? this doesn’t make sense and Samsung isn’t helping at all

  12. Didn’t they also have trouble with the Chinese calendar recently? Similar behavior there. Maybe it’s the clock. Pull the rtc battery and try to turn it on while unplugged then plug it in and turn it on again. See what happens. Then stop buying Samsung. They have lots of bugs that tend to suddenly brick devices it seems.

  13. Samsung is hardly alone in this. Ever since I was an Android developer integrating barcode scanners and card readers for point-of-sale systems, I keep noticing everywhere that established electronics manufacturers pretty much universally can’t do software. For example, I have an LG oven, washing machine, air conditioner, and a few other appliances, and love them. But I immediately returned an Android-based LG DVD player, and I will never buy another LG phone, because their software is so astonishingly wretched. Baby monitors, dash cams, BTLE tool trackers, you name it… so much great hardware ruined by terrible software and firmware.

    1. My Futureshop house brand non-smart TV locks up on one of the local off the air stations. Both remote and physical buttons on TV stopped working and needs a physical pulling the plug. My guess is the program info (or close captioning) must have some weird data that crash the firmware. That’s the only thing a non-smart TV might try to process on its own and failed. I don’t use the TV much these days.

      In general countries (asia) that are good in hardware fails at software. Software development doesn’t work too well in a sweatshop.

  14. Samsung stopped making blu-ray players a while back because apparently no one wants to own their films anymore (a.k.a. “streaming”). Stop wasting your time on Samsung forums with Samsung staff pretending to give a toss and just invest in a Panasonic or Sony blu-ray player. Then enjoy that quaint old fashioned concept of owning your films that you paid for as opposed to them being pulled at will, edited, then given back just because some wailing freak on twitter is offended by them.

  15. If a magci dat plays a role in this, I wonder whether there might be a clock value overflow of some kind. If the devices had been counting hours since a start date using an int16_t? maybe something went wrong when it flipepd to negative several years afetr the start date? Has anyone looked at if there might an eeprom holding the date across power-off events which might be reflashable with an earleir date?

  16. Samsung has another problem with their MTP driver for smartphones. The Windows 10 2004 update broke it for a lot of phones. Cannot get MTP to work because “A service installation section in this INF is invalid.”

    Before the 2004 update the MTP driver would spontaneously and randomly uninstall, unload, or disable. Could work for days or weeks, might need reinstalled several times in a day. I have a shortcut to wpdmtp.inf on my desktop so I can go to the file location, right click and install. That would have the phone connection working, until the next time it quit.

    Now it will not work at all.

    1. There were a couple of gotchas in the 2004 drivers with the hardware I have. Of the ones I had problems with has a older date than the 1903 version – probably branched off at an earlier date than some bug fixes and not merged back. I had to pull the 1903 ones from one machine that failed the update. (I had to reinstall all software to get that machine to upgrade) 2004 upgrade is a bumpy ride.

    2. For some reason I can’t see my galaxy s5 files when plugging my phone into usb on win8.1. It works on win10,-and win 7.

      I tried for hours to find a driver. Usb debug mode etc. Any solution?

  17. This is one of the major problems I have with SSL certs, they hard fail right at their expiration. The standard should have had some kind of a soft failure mode for a certificate simply expiring, be it something like a 3hr-24hr window where the cert would continue to work but incessantly nag you about the expiration. For most IT shops a soft fail window of some hours would probably be enough time for it to be noticed and to get a forgotten replacement cert in place before their service falls on its face simply due to an expired cert.

  18. The problem with the players is the Y2K bug came 20 years too late. This behavior is exactly what was predicted would happen when the clock rolled over to the year 2000. A faulty chip is the problem. A chip used across a great variety of machines .

  19. Welcome to Apple or MacBook, look up Lious Rossman on YouTube. He is the leader 😂 n right to repair. I do find it sad that modern technology has become a disposable product

    1. That was for models with a touch screen front end. Ours doesn’t have a capacitive touch interface, and it still failed hard. Different symptoms for a different problem.

  20. I remember when something similar happened to the Microsoft Zune. They all locked up at the same time. Was a clock driver issue caused by issues handling a leap year.

  21. What we need is a physical version of FOSS in consumer electronics. We need a company willing to make high quality versions of things with open software and hardware specs, with no bullshit licensing issues or EULAs, so it just works- and when it doesnt, people are free to figure out why.

    RISC-V enabled open hardware, a Redhat-like business model, where its all open source, but a professional team will still stand behind product support.

    Imagine crowdfunding consumer electronics and appliance design, so that you get something that lasts “forever”, and is user fixable, maybe for a bit more money- and the company model is like kickstarter, but with a team of professional engineers who work for massive professional corporations- but do product design and development in their free time- kinda like real world, physical linux for devices.

    1. Right? I live in rural Kansas, internet service ranges from not available, to DSL if you are in town, within 10000 ft from the local AT&T “office”, then there is expensive and slow HughsNet satellite. That’s why Redbox does well here.
      I can’t believe that this is a time or ssl cert problem.
      BTW, as I worked most of my life at sea, I’ve never seen any kind of media player fail for lack of an internet connection.

    2. I’ve got a VCR that sets it’s time from a time signal on PBS channels.. the analog ones that don’t exist now.. but I believe they stopped doing it before the digital transition, because it was sometime in 2005 I found I couldn’t get it to set, with a strong PBS signal. I dunno what Canadian buyers too far from the border to get a PBS station were supposed to do, there was/is no alternate method for setting it, unless maybe you wait up until midnight on Sunday to plug it in or something.

  22. Fuck Blu-Ray. I vowed never to buy a player when I realized they had not only ditched the error correction that is present in both CD and DVD, but they had implemented an entire byte code interpreter for the purpose of implementing new encryption should their base standard get broken. This isn’t the first time Blu-Ray has hosed its users. Lots of people found out their Avatar Blu-Rays might as well be drink coasters because of a shift in encryption, and people whose players weren’t connected to the internet to get firmware updates couldn’t play them.

    1. Pirates of the Caribbean was a bit like that on DVD they messed with the encryption somehow to make it more secure and a lot of players could no longer sync the audio and video.

  23. Unfortunately developers have taken to using certificates to secure communication not just across the internet, but internally as well to assure trust between internal components. Those tend to be long lived… And they forget THOSE certificate need updates as well.

    Replacing them sometimes look like mine sweeping operation in long forgotten war zones

  24. Dear all,

    I’ve read through this entire post and read all the comments and sadly, I too have fallen prey to Samsung’s ever rebooting BluRay player.

    Having opened up the device I have found an irregularity and was wondering if anyone else has this problem. I’m not saying that this is the cause, but it is unusual behaviour from the power supply.

    There is a connector bringing various DC values to the motherboard. And according to the writings on the supply board, it is supposed to output +2.25v and -2.25v via pins 1 and 2. However, when tested in-situ, I find pin 1 outputting +5.0 and while pin 2 outputs +2.28. I find it strange.

    In order for me to explore this, I’m wondering if any of you came across this.

    It may not make a difference to the problem and it’s very strange that this problem took place for many on or about the same day. 18th of June 2020. However, my device is not connected to the internet to know what date and time it is, it has not received any updates. Which is why I’m thinking it’s internal.

    Let me know if you see the same irregularity in the power supply unit.

    My device is an HT-J550K.

    Ta.

  25. TLDR: Contact Samsung. There’s a fix. It’ll require shipping the unit to them and them sending it back. Repair and shipping are all free. This appears to be happening for UK, US, and Canadian customers so far. Probably happening for other regions too.

    Apparently, there is a fix. Contact Samsung by phone or chat in your country. Get ready with your model info after you get past the auto-attendant/chat bot/whatever. Samsung can only repair the flaw in a repair facility. Some people have reported a 5-7 day turnaround in US. They’ll text or e-mail you a return label and shipping it back and forth is free according to people on the US Samsung Community Forum. https://us.community.samsung.com/t5/Home-Theater/Blu-ray-player-power-cycling-whenever-plugged-in/td-p/1278935/page/221

    I’ve seen a lot of speculation on the SSL certificate issue in this reply thread. Here’s my take. You look at the back of the player and you see something that you really don’t want to see. “Java Inside”.

    I haven’t actually looked at the software inside the Samsung unit (I’m a software guy not a hardware guy). Here’s what it looks like to me.

    Likely the player is Linux based . It boots to a Java Virtual Machine almost immediately (this provides the User Interface to settings and functions). Oracle Java 8u50 or earlier is affected by the ADDTrust External Root Expiration that happened in May 2020 (so are Linux OS flavors that didn’t receive updates for a new intermediate CA root chain good to 2028). Source: UC Berkeley (https://calnetweb.berkeley.edu/calnet-technologists/incommon-sectigo-certificate-service/addtrust-external-root-expiration-may-2020) (I really doubt the full OS is loaded in the machine; it probably uses a kernel and needed services, OpenSSL being one of them)

    The Java VM is likely throwing an exception because an intermediate certificate in the CA root chain expired on May 30. It exits with a code no doubt prompting a restart of the OS.

    In the UC Berkeley article, the problem likely falls under what they call Condition 1 – Legacy Devices or Condition 3 – Explicit CA Trust (which is caused by overriding Java’s default cert path). The Java inside is also probably not the full JVM for memory considerations. Who knows?

    With no ability to boot from the USB (as was reported in this thread), the only option is to put it in for service so they can flash the chips. They’ll load the software and send it back for free.

    Occam’s Razor indicates the simplest answer that meets all the parameters is likely the correct one. This also explains why units not connected to the net also failed on or around June 18.

    Tim Anderson at The Register in the UK interviewed security researcher Scott Helme about this issue. In it, Helme says a lot of certificates are going to expire as they reach their 20 to 25 year expiry dates. Search “An Internet of Trouble lies ahead” (Source: https://www.theregister.com/2020/06/10/iot_trouble_root_certificates_expire/)

    Samsung understands they’ve pissed consumers off. This is another major failure for the brand. However, they figured it out in a week and are fixing it for free. Yes, it’s darned inconvenient. Read Tim Anderson’s interview in The Register with Helme. I’d start contacting manufacturers of IoT stuff you have asking if they have contingencies for SSL CA Root Certifcate expiry issues. You know corporations. They never do anything or spend a dime they don’t have to until it’s too late.

    Hope this helps everyone figure this crap out.

    1. Outstanding! An insightful explanation of the likely cause and a solution. Unfortunate that it precludes any fix in situ but a free repair is far better than nothing. Thank you for the update!

    2. Be aware that on that Samsung thread people are reporting that while the Samsung customer service agents appear to be issuing repair tickets with few hassles, people are getting notices shortly after that they must upload a copy of their receipt or their service ticket will be canceled.

      1. Tell the agent you revoke acceptance of the faulty product under Uniform Commercial Code. They will change their tune fast enough. That’s a right under UCC.

      2. THIS!

        This is also why I refuse to purchase more Samsung computer products.

        I have two SSDs which are dead, but were still under warranty. After contacting the repair centre, they were happy to offer a repair/replacement. But, I first had to prove that I was the rightful owner of the devices. I could accomplish this “easily” by sending original receipt(s) for purchase of the SSDs, and/or the computer systems they were installed in.

        Also, include a diagnostic dump of the drive with their diagnostic software tool. Even though the drives are totally dead. As in: they do not ID on the SATA interface.

          1. Ah. In the US, there’s a USB firmware update from 2017 (they’re last one). It might have the updated certificate chain. Do you trust them? :-)

    1. If they did their certs right, those also have a not-valid-before timestamp. Resetting the clock will probably reset it to some point before that timestamp, but it’d be worth a try.

  26. Mine broke on 25th, and that night i was sniffing my other device and i logged everything, Samsung didn’t update the firmware but my guess it update the clock via internet and next day my device goes haywire i guess if we could somehow reset the internal clock it would solve the problem but i not expert on electronic any suggestion would be appreciated, and i did some other test as well, mine has bluetooth speakers and when i discounted the speakers it aks turn them on while checking on indefinitely for disk, i guess devices is not rebooting but stuck in a loop on checking the disk which results in not working properly, i did check if i can change the regions of the device with hidden code it works just hold yellow button it goes to t-mode so whatever it is it’s based on time and updated upon connecting to internet and broke something
    Please suggest anything to somehow resting the date on chips
    My device model: HT- J5550WK

  27. This afternoon I spent an hour on the Samsung support chat jumping through their hoops to finally be told it was a hardware problem and the player would need to be sent in for repair. Which I knew, of course, but I also knew they would have to go through their standard script to get to that point. Then the chat person tells me I have to go back to the Samsung site and start a repair request. OK, sounds good. But I had to create an account then register my product and then it tells me that my warranty is expired and leaves me with no way to initiate a repair request. Back to the chat and he tells me to call the repair depot and that I would have to pay for the repair. I told him like 3 times other people were getting prepaid labels to ship their units back and getting them repaired for free but he apparently decided it was no longer his problem.

    Normally I wouldn’t get this angry about a 6 year old Blu Ray player I paid $55 for about 6 years ago. But they broke it somehow, not me. And other people are getting free repairs but I am not.

    yet…

    Guess Samsung just made my list of brands I’m done with. I have a Samsung TV that freaked out after the warranty was over and the only reason it still works is I was able to take it apart and re-seat all the ribbon cables and get it working again. And don’t get me started on my Samsung multifunction printer/scanner. It’s the most annoying piece of computer equipment I have ever owned. Someday I will go “Office Space” on that thing.

  28. I got annoyed with Samsung with my first TV purchase> I have Roku (a few) and love streaming. When I saw the app store for Samsung TVs I said looks good. Then i got one, ((WTF moments here) Unlike Roku app store where at least 95% of them there work on all Roku models. Samsung app store is like 5%, yes FIVE percent will work on your smart TV IF LUCKY. Talk about a kick in the ding a ling. Then discover on Their 32 inch there is only TWO, yes 2 HDMI inputs, where pretty much every other maker has 3,THREE HDMI inputs on 32 inch and larger. Which is strange , why, my TCL has 3 HDMI as well as ROKU, so that means after I add a Roku to the Samsung i have only 1, yes ONE HDMI input left.
    By the ways i do bring up the add apps on my Samsung and it has channels that no one has heard of.
    Let’s see streaming apps evry TV should have on my list, YouTube, PLutoTV, Tubi, crackle, popcorn, shoutcast, Then maybe Stirr, Dirto and other great FREE streams. Not watch mud dry garbage.
    Which is also strange because of the new Samsung TV Plus which is SELECT NEW TV models, yep more games

  29. A quick fix for TV’s (not only Samsung) and more friends don’t let friends….
    Our first Samsung LED based TV went dark after about a year. It was the backlight that had failed. Some of the LEDs had failed and the circuitry saw this as excess current and went crowbar. Whenever you get a TV or computer monitor TURN DOWN the brightness to less than 100% I set mine about 85% and can’t tell much difference. They will last virtually forever than. The Samsung pisser was that I called the number in the manual clearly labeled “To find a service Center” only to be told there aren’t any service centers and that someone would have to come out. Didn’t want that. Attempted self repair, made one little mistake, bricked the TV.

  30. I had 2 blu-ray players (BD-J5100, BD-J5700) brick within a couple days of each other. Chatted with a Samsung support person and described the problem. They needed my name, email addr, phone #, shipping address, model and serial number. They created a ticket for each unit and sent me links to print pre-paid UPS shipping labels. Boxed them up and dropped them off at the UPS Store. They were shipped to the Riverdale NJ repair center on Monday June 29. I received the 1st unit back yesterday, Monday July 6. The 2nd unit is in transit.

    The blu-ray player has a new sticker on the back: WKB9117 07/02/2020 EXT. The firmware version has changed. It is now B-JM53BSPWWB-1021.0 (was previously 1020.1). The unit has been reset to factory settings, so had to make a few changes including re-entering my account/password for Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, YouTube, VUDU, etc.

    Overall, I satisfied with Samsung’s response … a no-charge repair and one week turn-around (including a long holiday weekend).

  31. Well I’m in South Africa and the samsung hell(p)desk droid told me I would have to take it in to the local samsung service centre. Ok easy peasy right? (its only 10km away). Problem is, these people NEVER pick up their phones or answer their email and they are seemingly the ONLY centre in the whole province…. Currently checking on youtube to see how to flash the firmware on chip ….. otherwise its reprogram via hammer

  32. My MIND is blow, I was thinking about buying a new Samsung TV for my mom because of “”the Bob Ross” channel, she loves his show and was looking to be TV plus only. Well no longer, found it of the “Stirr” app on channel guide channel 196.
    Well Samsung, you can now kiss my,,,,

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