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How to fix Samsung Galaxy J3 (2016) that shows “Unfortunately, Messages has stopped” error [Troubleshooting Guide]

The Messages is actually the default messaging app in your #Samsung #GalaxyJ3 (2016) and the error message “Unfortunately, Messages has stopped” is actually talking about the app that crashed for some reason. This kind of problem occurs from time to time as some of the services or processes that run in the background may have crashed and affected the apps.

In this post, I will tackle this specific error as many of our readers contacted us regarding this issue. The error may also occur to other Galaxy devices as it’s not exclusive to the J3, in fact, way before the J3 was released, it has already been happening with the Galaxy S3, S4 & S5, although the name of the app may have been different before. So, if you own this phone or any Galaxy device for that matter and are bothered by a similar issue, continue reading below as the troubleshooting guide we drafted here may also work for you.

Before we jump right into our troubleshooting, if you have other issues, drop by our Galaxy J3 troubleshooting page for we have already addressed many issues with this phone since we started supporting it. Try to find problems that are similar with yours and use the troubleshooting procedures or solutions we suggested. Should you need further assistance from us, fill up our Android issues questionnaire and hit submit. Don’t worry, it’s free.

Troubleshooting Galaxy J3 that keeps showing “Unfortunately, Messages has stopped”

The purpose of this troubleshooting is for us to know what the problem is all about, why it occurs, what caused it and how to fix it. While we make sure our troubleshooting procedures are effective and safe, things can still happen while you’re troubleshooting so please proceed at your own risk.

Step 1: Isolate the problem by booting your phone up in Safe Mode

This will tell you immediately whether the problem is caused by one or some or your downloaded apps or not. Third-party apps may crash without warning and the worse thing is that it may bring along other pre-installed apps with them. So, follow the steps below to boot your phone up in safe mode so we can begin our troubleshooting:

  1. Power off your Galaxy J3. Press and hold the Power key, tap Power off and then touch POWER OFF to confirm.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the screen with the device name.
  3. When ‘SAMSUNG’ appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see ‘Safe Mode’.

While in this mode, open the Messages app and try to see if the error still occurs, if so, proceed to to step 3 immediately, otherwise, move on to the next step.

Step 2: Clear the cache and data of suspected apps

Assuming the error doesn’t show up in Safe mode, it means that one or some of your third-party apps are causing the problem and in this case, you need to find the culprit and try clearing its cache and data. If that won’t work, then you may have to resort to uninstalling it to see if that makes a difference.

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap Application manager
  5. Tap the suspected app.
  6. Tap Storage.
  7. Tap Clear data and then tap OK.
  8. Tap Clear cache.

To uninstall an app, just follow the same steps but hit Uninstall and please note that you may have to uninstall more than one app to find the culprit. You may also have to reboot to normal and safe modes back and forth for testing. In other words, it’s not that easy to troubleshoot possible app problem but it’s worth it to bring your phone back to optimum performance.

Step 3: Delete the system caches so they’ll be replaced with new ones

System caches get corrupted all the time and they may occur when you least expect them that’s why many are surprised when their phones get messed up and won’t work normally. While we really can’t be sure that this is the cause of the problem, let’s just rule it out before doing further troubleshooting procedures. That said, this is what you have to do:

  1. Power off your Galaxy J3. Press and hold the Power key, tap Power off and then touch POWER OFF to confirm.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the device logo screen displays, release only the Power key
  4. When the Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe cache partition.’
  6. Press the Power key to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key to highlight ‘yes’ and press the Power key to select.
  8. When the wipe cache partition is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  9. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Once the phone successfully rebooted, try to trigger the error message by opening the Messages app. If the error still occurs then the next step will take care of the problem, otherwise, problem solved.

Step 4: Master reset your phone to bring it back to factory defaults

After doing all other steps and the problem remains, it’s time you reset your phone to bring it back to the configuration that works. However, you have to backup all your files and data you don’t want to lose as they will be deleted and can no longer be restored. Here’s how you reset your device:

  1. Power off your Galaxy J3. Press and hold the Power key, tap Power off and then touch POWER OFF to confirm.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up button and then press and hold the Home key. While holding both, press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Android logo appears on the screen, release all three keys. It may take a minute before the Android recovery screen appears.
  4. While on Android recovery screen, use the Volume Down key to highlight options, in this case, highlight the option ‘wipe data/factory reset.’
  5. Press the Power key to choose the highlighted option.
  6. Press  the Volume Down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ option is highlighted.
  7. Press the Power key to confirm the reset.
  8. Once the reset is complete, press the Power key to choose ‘Reboot system now.’
  9. The phone will restart a little longer than usual and the reset is finished.

I hope we were able to help you with your problem.

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