When your UniFi AP doesn’t respond anymore, or if you are unable to adopt it in the controller, then it’s a good idea to reset the UniFi AP back to factory defaults. This way all the existing configuration of the access point is removed, allowing you to adopt the AP to your controller.
Now there are a couple of ways to reset the UniFi Access Point. We can use the physical reset button, reset the access point from the controller or use SSH to connect to the device directly.
In this article
In this article, I will explain the different methods to reset your UniFi AP.
Using the Reset Button
If you can access the reset button of the UniFi AP, then this is the best way to factory reset the access point. The button has two functions on the UniFi access point:
- If you press and release the button quickly, then the access point will only restart.
- To reset the access point to factory settings you will need to hold the button for at least 5 seconds.
NoteThere is also an option to reset the Unifi Access Point remotely if you are using the Unifi Gigabit PoE adapter. Some of the PoE Adapters have a reset button to remotely reset your Unifi Access Point. You can check this datasheet to see if your adapter has a remote reset button.
Sometimes an UniFi Access Point won’t come back online after a factory reset. It will not show up in your controller as an adaptable device. This problem can be caused by two potential issues:
- Wrong inform address – This will prevent the access point from finding the controller
- Outdated firmware – If the firmware on the access point is too old, it won’t connect to the controller.
We can solve both problems easily with the help of SSH, which I will explain later in the article.
Reset UniFi AP using the Controller
If the access point is still connected and online in the UniFi Network controller, then we can also reset the AP from within the controller. The advantage of this method is that it also removes the access point from the UniFi Controller.
- Open the UniFi Network Controller
- Click on Devices
- Select the access point that you want to reset
- Click on Settings
- Scroll all the way down and click Forget
- Confirm that you want to factory reset the UniFi AP
After the device is rebooted it will be available for adoption again in the controller.
Resetting UniFi AP with SSH
If you can’t access the UniFi access point from the controller and can’t easily access it physically, then SSH is the last option that you have to reset the AP. First, we need to connect to the device.
Connecting with SSH
To connect to the access point with SSH we first need to know its IP Address. You can take a look in your router if it’s listed there, or use a free network scanner. I use Advanced Ip Scanner for that. The tool is free and really easy to use.
Now we know the IP Address, we can use Putty to connect to it with SSH. Download Putty and enter the IP address and click on open. You will get a security alert which you can ignore. Just press Yes.
The default username and password for an Unifi Access Point is ubnt and ubnt. If the access point is managed before, then it’s possible that the SSH password is changed. You can then find the SSH password in the UniFi Network controller under Network Device SSH Authentication:
- Open the network controller
- Select Settings
- Choose System en scroll down to Network Device SSH Authentication
- Note the Password
Resetting the AP
When you are connected to the AP you get a welcome screen. If we enter help and press enter we get a list of the possible commands. Now, this isn’t a lot, but enough to reset the access point.
___ ___ .__________.__ | | |____ |__\_ ____/__| | | / \| || __) | | (c) 2010-2020 | | | | \ || \ | | Ubiquiti Networks, Inc. |______|___| /__||__/ |__| |_/ https://www.ui.com/ Welcome to UniFi UAP-AC-LR! LA-WAP-Living-BZ.v4.3.24# help UniFi Command Line Interface - Ubiquiti Networks info display device information set-default restore to factory default set-inform <inform_url> attempt inform URL (e.g. set-inform http://192.168.0.8:8080/inform) upgrade <firmware_url> upgrade firmware (e.g. upgrade http://192.168.0.8/unifi_fw.bin) fwupdate --url <firmware_url|firmware_name> [--dl-only] [--md5sum <sum_of_fw>] [--keep-firmware] [--keep-running] [--reboot-sys] new firmware update command reboot reboot the device
So first let’s check why it’s not connecting. Get the device information with the info command.
UBNT-BZ.v3.9.27# info Model: UAP-Pro Version: 18.104.22.16837 MAC Address: 04:18:d1:12:ef:e9 IP Address: 192.168.68.11 Hostname: UBNT Uptime: 80 seconds Status: Unable to resolve (http://unifi:8080/inform)
In this case, the device is unable to resolve the controller. The controller should be available on https://unifi:8443. If that is working then there is a reason why the Unifi AP can’t connect to it. It might be in the wrong IP range (that was the problem in this case), or it can be a DNS issue.
If you are sure that the Unifi Controller is available at https://unifi then we need to look further. A possible issue can be that the Access Point was connected to another controller or that the device was removed from this controller.
Now the best thing to do is to reset the device to factory defaults and set the inform URL to the correct address:
- First, reset the Unifi AP with:
The Unifi Access point will reset and reboot. It might get another IP address, so if you can connect to it again, scan your network for it. (or use the mobile app to find the device)
- Set the inform address:
If your Unifi Controller is available on a different address than http://unifi, then you can set the inform address with the following command to the correct IP address of your controller:
You should now see the Unifi Access Point in the controller ready to be adopted.
You can read more about setting the correct inform address and adoption issues in this article.
I hope this post helped you to reset Unifi AP to its factory defaults and then you can adapt it again in your controller.
If you have any questions, just drop a comment below. Check out this post if you want to know more about how to set up an Unifi Access point and some tips for the best performance.
23 thoughts on “How to Reset UniFi AP to Factory Defaults”
i’m setting up some old (second hand, fw 4.3.21) AP and a controller on elementary os with docker, and the AP was continously “adopting”. They were hardware reset and with your explanation i discovered that he was informing on de 172 docker address and not the LAN addres. Then I did “set-inform http://192.168.10.161:8080/inform” and it came alive ….
This for this post, you”re not so lazy admin because you took the time to write a blog that help sb 2 years later.
Zoals ze zeggen van een programmeur “een goeie programmeur is een luie programmeur” gaat dit blijkbaar niet op voor systeembeheerders :p
PS even uitzoeken hoe docker de unifi controller het lan adres kan laten broadcasten …
How to reset Unifi AP with ssh, bcoz i have no chance to press RESET Button and i forgot ssh username and password. How can i solve it? Please help me. thank you guys.
That is not possible.
Any other options ?????
I got a AP-AC-Lite 2nd hand and after attaching it to my controller has “managed by other” I have done the reset via the physical button on a number of occasions and this doesnt seem to help. I cannot SSH into due to old password clearly being still enforced. What other options do I have
No not really. You should be able to factory reset it with the button. Are you sure your press the button hard and long enough?
Thanks for the details of reseting a router. So, if I reset my Unify router to factory setting, would it be possible to use it with other network provider, e. g. TIME?
Yes, but you won’t need to reset it to change the provider. You should be able to login and change the settings.
Big thanks for this! worked like a charm. Wish I found this article earlier!!!
Hi – The AC just hangs up on provisioning and never does anything after that. This is after I did a factor reset.
Most of the time it helps to update the firmware manually. Check this article and follow the steps “Installing Firmware Manually on Unifi Device”.
Can you please help me. UAP reset button does not work at all, tried many iterations with reset button and power cycles. Next step, I tried to reset the device with the ‘forgot function’ in the controller. So now the UAP is not on my controller anymore and it failed to reset the UAP. The blue light is still on. When I try to ssh into the device, it will not accept the password/username, ubnt. As I understand it, a random username and password is created when you adopt the device, but I don’t have access to that info, because the UAP is ‘forgotten’ from my controller. If the reset button does not work it is probably a hardware failure? I feel the click when I press it, but nothing happens.
Are you sure that you hold the reset button for at least 5 seconds? Try to use a paperclip or something else. You should feel a slight click when you press the button. After factory reset, the login is restored to the default unbt login.
This is very helpful, thank you. One question though, how do I find the address of the Unifi controller?
It’s the IP Address of the device where you have installed the controller on. If you are using a cloud key, you can use a program like Advanced Ip Scanner to find the IP Address.
Thanks for this information. I am having a terrible time. I needed to reset everything on my system, starting with my modem, a netgear DM200. I reset all of my ubiquiti gear (usg, ac-ap-lite and an AC-mesh) back to factory settings , but nothing shows up on my controller. I then used your resolve method here, using my desktop ip, as it is the controller host, but still nothing? whatever help you or anyone could give would be appreciated. Thanks.
Did you check the Ubiquiti Discovery Tool? Is the Netgear router set on DHCP and do you get an Ip address from the router (on your desktop)?
Ik heb mijn controller geïnstaleerd op een PI. Alle AP’s waren eerst met een controller verbonden op Windows 10 (daar werkte alles) . Ik probeer dus te migreren.
Heb AP factory reset gedaan (set-deafult) en opnieuw SSH.
dan set-inform http://ip_van_pi:8080/inform
met info komt er dan de melding: Unable to resolve
en even later: Unknown
middels en browser: http://192.168.10.10:8080/inform geeft een 400.
portscanner geeft aan dat de poort “LISTENING” (dus open) is.
Ik hoop dat je mij op weg kunt helpen om dit opgelost te krijgen. Alvast bedankt
Did you check the Ubiquiti Discovery tool? https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/ubiquiti-device-discovery/hmpigflbjeapnknladcfphgkemopofig?hl=en This might help you finding the access points and set the inform address to the correct Ip.
Did you restore the configuration of the controller or are you starting with a fresh new install again?
Beste Ruud, Ik heb een probleem met mijn Unifi Acces Point. Hij brand groen, maar ik kan hem niet benaderen via het IP-adres. Ik moet nieuwe firmware updaten, dat laat ik ook doen, maar er gebeurt verder niets. Ik heb nu een andere provider en een ander IP-adres gekregen. Ik heb een reset uitgevoerd en via IP scanner het IP-adres kunnen achterhalen. Maar het lukt me niet de firmware te downloaden. Heb jij een idee hoe ik dit zou kunnen oplossen?
Waarschijnlijk staat het inform url niet goed. Heb je al geprobeerd om met ssh (via het programma Putty) in te loggen? Anders kan je nog even de Unifi App proberen op je mobiel.
Advanced IP Scanner isn’t detecting any unifi devices. They are all solid white, what could be the problem?
Steady white means the AC is in factory default mode and is waiting for adoption. If you can’t find it in the network, are you really sure it’s probably connected? Try testing different network cables, check if DHCP is running on your router (probably is, but double check it).