Having a developer unlocked Focus should put me in the driver’s seat to an early NoDo update but instead, I’ve got myself an error code. And I’m not alone as Patrick is having the same exact issue.

So, what I can I do resolve the timeout error? According to MS (just updated March 12): 1.Delete history for Internet Explorer Mobile, Maps, and Search, and try the update again 2. Remove some apps and try the update again. I did step one (which was just annoying). Patrick went further and took step 2 as well and there’s no change. He’s removed most of his apps, email and all media. All for nothing. I haven’t gone to step 2 yet because…well really? I mean what the hell is the point of saving my settings and backing up my phone if I need to first uninstall my apps? It strikes me as such an imperfect answer that it’s like the mechanic saying that the answer involves hitting the hood a bunch of times.

And don’t be so fast to chalk this up to trying to push an update too early. Remember that Focus users are getting their updates now through this method and MS has a troubleshooting page exactly about this issue.

So, anyone else getting this or other errors? Right now I’m thinking I may be forced to hard reset first and then update but then I lose settings and customizations.


  1. Nobody is getting this error because virtually nobody is getting this update. Aside from the 4 or 5 Samsung Focus phones actually sold carrier-unbranded, none of the phones are receiving the February or March updates. From what I’m reading on Twitter and on other Windows Phone sites, blogs, and forums is that most Windows Phone enthusiasts are using a registry hack to remove the ATT-US branding, connecting to some Hungarian network via VPN, then forcing the phone to check for updates. Most people are reporting, even then, that they are only receiving an update to build 7008, though I’ve heard a few (arguably inaccurate) reports that NoDo is being delivered to their Samsung Focus using this method.

    Regardless, the problem isn’t with this update, as almost anybody installing an update onto a Samsung Focus (again, aside from the 4 people who own devices legitimately sold unbranded) are doing it using an unauthorized workaround, and these users don’t really know the legitimacy of the Hungarian network they are connecting to, nor the future problems that may arise if the Microsoft Update service is loading a region-specific firmware for Europe/Hungary onto their phones. This may end up bricking more phones when AT&T does someday release the February and March updates here in the US with a US firmware update bundled in.

    But that, my friends, is the key to the solution. Rather than risking your data by connecting to a questionable network, the apps you’ve installed and configured on your phone, or potentially bricking your phone; as a community of enthusiasts, we really need to get on AT&T’s case and get these updates out there in the hands of Windows Phone users in the US. Pushing forward with updates to provide basic enhancements like the performance improvements, bug fixes, and new features is the only way the platform will gain traction. In order for that to happen, we have to remove the roadblocks standing in the way. As of now, the only roadblock left for the majority of mainstream users appears to be AT&T.

  2. It seems (from perusing threads at xda, etc.) that the core issue is a timeout in the backup process when there’s a lot of data on the phone. Many people have had success when they got below ~ a 3 GB used level; I ended up just doing a hard reset to get the February update to install on my Focus, rather than guessing at how many apps needed to be uninstalled once I’d cleared the caches.

    On the plus side, the February update does seem to fix this problem, since updating from it to the March “NoDo” update worked flawlessly after having reinstalled all my apps & media, re-unlocked & unbranded the phone, etc. The backup didn’t time out for me after the February update had been applied when installing NoDo, with just as much on the phone as before.

  3. @Mark Jonson: For what it’s worth, I am using the unbrandad/Hungarian method and it appears to go through the entire process and then fails on step 7 (which is the initial issue with the first roll out)
    @Brian: Below 3gb? That’s 9gbs to delete for me. I guess those fancy ass HD videos that MS tries to defer me from making (by forcing the default to something like WVGA) is burning me a second time here.

  4. I tried it…failed miserably…at first I would get the pre-nodo update and got rid of almost everything on my phone (below 3gb) to get it to work. No luck. Then I tried the dreaded hard reset….*gasp* and then I couldnt even get the pre-nodo update to pop on zune. =( . Each time I tried I got the “time out” error at the end of the update.

    …..so now I sit at 3am reinstalling everything back into my phone….

    If we dont get Mango first……I’m gonna do something…not. nice.

  5. @DavidK: Yeah, I went the route of making sure all my media was backed up on the PC, etc. and then hard-resetting it rather than guessing around at whether I’d deleted enough. Fortunately, it does seem that the February update’s fix to the updating process is effective … once you manage to get it installed. Syncing media files back over to the phone takes a little while, but isn’t too bad. Reinstalling all the apps, etc. is a bit of a pain. Just make sure if you do it and aren’t a dev, you re-unlock (and do the prevent re-lock hack) before installing NoDo, since Chevron won’t work once NoDo’s installed.

  6. Had the same issue after unbranding my Omnia 7.
    Did alle thee steps above and removed a bunch of my apps. After that it worked without anymore problems.
    When NoDo was available a day later I had no more issues updating. I guess/hope the first update fixed the issue which occured installing that update.

  7. i got an update on my atrix today… and it worked the first time with no removal of my data required. still havent seen an update for my surround and ive had the atrix for only a month… my suround is definately riding the bench untill mango (at least mango) i do love the windows phone experience but no smart dialing, no flash, no real customization, shit not even custom ringtones and profile management. in a year (at this rate maybe more) i will probably reinstate my surround but untill some significant improvemtns are made i cant use this OS as a daily driver. i mean… the phone is built with a kickstand and speaker and it wont even rotate to landscape with the speaker slid out!! WTF MS

  8. Guys, i just got the Focus. I have been usoing windows since tilt 1. is there a free voice navigation app for WP7? on the tilt 2 Bing updated to have voice turn and i have gotten used to it. I am not paying att $10 a month for att navigator. Any suggestions?

  9. Ditto here. Both tricks tried (Hungarian and disconnect NIC) with an unbranded AT&T Focus. Feb update fails at step 7 with 2/8 GB free. Not willing to clear phone unless AT&T Feb update fails same way. Then I’ll clear phone, unbrand, do Feb update and unlock before AT&T NoDo. Can’t imagine why step 7 would fail with 6 GB on a USB connection.

  10. I just completed the upgrade on my AT&T Focus. I thought to add that I was experiencing the same time out error during the February update. I decided to do a hard reset as well and the February update installed without a hitch. After that, I had to “unlock” the phone again and then follow the same procedure to get the March update. It all updated fine and I’m up and running.

  11. @Mark: My udnerstanding is that preNodo is really small. In fact, I think NoDo is only 11mb. I wish I could just get a XAP or preNoDo and move on:)

  12. @Patrick: Couldn’t you just email it to an account you see on the phone (like the .cer) and double tap it? In which case, where can I get it? Maybe I’m thinking too much like a WM6 guy :P.

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