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Old November 24th, 2010, 11:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default The Nexus One and it's limited internal memory

This really is the only major complaint I have about the N1. I know it's old news and all, but I just feel the need to vent because I feel the pain of not having more internal memory on my phone every day.

Currently, with every app that CAN be stored on my SD card actually on my sd card, I have about 20MB free on my internal. This frustrates me to no end because that means picking and choosing any new apps that I might want.

Usually if I dip to around 16MB or so I get the low memory notification and soon the system stops being able to retrieve my texts. So this means I HAVE to stay at around 20MB. However, if I ever want a new app on my phone, it either has to be able to install on the SD, has to be EXTREMELY small, OR i have to get rid of an app already installed on my phone in order to get the new one.

Does anyone else absolutely DESPISE this? I need to know that there are more people out there with this problem, it might make me feel better about mine, lol.

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Old November 25th, 2010, 12:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I stopped shoving hundreds of apps onto my N1 and focused on only the ones that I will use. I also have my phone rooted with the ability to move any application to my SD card. With this I currently have 160 MB free with 52 apps installed. So I have very little issues with my app space. Before rooting however, I was down in the low thirties for space having to remove apps at times. Sucky for sure, but the N1 is likely on its way out so I'm waiting for the Nexus S now.
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Old November 25th, 2010, 01:24 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I don't know how many and what apps you have installed. I have currently some >100 apps installed (small ones as well as huges ones) and everything's fine.
I must confess, that I have CyanogenMod 6.1 (nightly) installed and that allows to move apps to SD that don't explicitly allow it. This way, I currently have some 80MB of free internal memory.

Every once in a while, I go through my apps and uninstall the ones I didn't really use. Usually frees up several megs as well...

What might help in your case is to have a look at (and clear) the browser-cache (Browser->Menu->More->Settings->Clear Cache). This can indeed free a lot of memory.
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Old November 25th, 2010, 02:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Use ADB (or a terminal if you have root) to issue the command:

pm setInstallLocation 2

This will allow you to move all apps to the SD card (the same setting that is in CM), and new installs will go straight to SD. Just remember to keep widgets on the internal storage.
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Old November 25th, 2010, 10:00 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty! View Post
Use ADB (or a terminal if you have root) to issue the command:

pm setInstallLocation 2

This will allow you to move all apps to the SD card (the same setting that is in CM), and new installs will go straight to SD. Just remember to keep widgets on the internal storage.
Sorry for my ignorance-- what is ADB? And can I assume, from the above, that this works on non-rooted phones?
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Old November 25th, 2010, 10:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Got an unrooted N1 with 80+ apps and close to 40MB free. Although I agree it would be great if I didn't have to check in on it from time to time.
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Old November 25th, 2010, 11:08 AM   #7 (permalink)
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The best thing would be that all apps should fully install on SD ,maybe 1-2mb's of data on phone storage ,and that's it ...google should fix this ..and developers.
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Old November 25th, 2010, 12:32 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hook View Post
Sorry for my ignorance-- what is ADB? And can I assume, from the above, that this works on non-rooted phones?
Android Debug Bridge.

Part of the Android SDK, and yes, does not require root.
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Old November 25th, 2010, 02:22 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty! View Post
Android Debug Bridge.

Part of the Android SDK, and yes, does not require root.
Thanks. I figured it must be. So far, all I've done with SDK is screenshots. I'll look into this.

Wow! This really works. Not a complete solution. There are still some programs that won't let you move them but, with only hitting the big footprint programs I could move, I went from 34 Mb to 53 Mb.

One thing I don't quite understand is that the total size numbers change when they go to SD. At first I thought this meant only parts of the programs were being moved and I was getting the size still left on the phone because all number went down, but I don't think that's the case. However, everything works after being moved, so I'm not going to worry about it.

Great tip, Rusty!
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Old November 25th, 2010, 03:01 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Stock, unrooted N1.

I have 67 apps, all apps that can be on SD card are, and 70.28Mb free on 'phone. I cleared out a load I never used...

Mind you just cleared pretty much all caches...

Settings => Applications => Manage Applications => tab "All" => Sort by Size => Clear Cache...(you have to check each one... AFAIK...)

Picking the tab "All" gets system apps also eg Market etc. etc..

Sorting by size is not necessary but it means you tend to get the greedy memory gobblers first... (eg Browser..)

I still love my Nexus One: My wife is still p***ed off with me using it so much.. I know Google/HTC will eventually cast us N1 owners adrift when they find some new attractive young 'phone in preference to N1 but, hey, it's still a great 'phone & I have no regrets that I bought it. Of course there will be bigger/better/faster/cheaper/smaller/slicker 'phones in the future: 'twas ever thus (Sigh! I started in the IT industry in 1973....)

Cheers!

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Old November 25th, 2010, 03:30 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Root + cache cleaner, makes the job so much quicker.
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Old November 26th, 2010, 03:59 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I often check and clear the browser cache. That can grow pretty quickly.
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Old November 28th, 2010, 09:50 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty! View Post
Use ADB (or a terminal if you have root) to issue the command:

pm setInstallLocation 2

This will allow you to move all apps to the SD card (the same setting that is in CM), and new installs will go straight to SD. Just remember to keep widgets on the internal storage.
What exactly is ADB and how do I install it? What else does it do? At this point, if I get something on my phone that JUST allows me to copy all apps to the SD card I'd be happy.
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Old November 28th, 2010, 10:25 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cudda View Post
What exactly is ADB and how do I install it? What else does it do? At this point, if I get something on my phone that JUST allows me to copy all apps to the SD card I'd be happy.
As Rusty said above, it is the Android Debug Bridge. I have no idea what else it can be used for, but it does this nicely. It is part of the Android Software Development Kit (SDK). I first installed the SDK in order to do screen shots, so here are the instructions I used.

How to take screenshots of your Android based phone from Windows – Simple Help

Assuming steps 1-8 are taken care of, do the following:

In the tools folder of the SDK kit, there is a program called ADB.exe. You need to open the Windows Command Prompt accessory. If you just launch ADB.exe in windows, it will open and close in a flash. Open the command prompt window and navigate to the Tools folder in the SDK folder tree.

Connect your Android device via USB (you must have USB Debugging checked under Settings. Again, required for screen shots, so I refer you to the directions above). You do not need to mount your SD card.

In the command Prompt window, in the Tools folder, issue the command:

ADB Shell

This will start the SDK command shell running.

Then enter the command:

pm setInstallLocation 2

That's it. Disconnect your device. You can now go to Settings --> Applications --> Manage Applications and move all the programs that let you to the SD card. Also, in the future, apps from the market will install to the SD card by default.

Apps that are explicitly set as private by the developer (as opposed to programs where the developer has just not bothered to add the move to SD feature) will still not be movable.

It's a lot of hoops the first time, but it's not that hard to set up and you will have the bonus of being able to make screen shots.

Hope this helps. Worked great for me. I ended up going from 35Mb free to 83Mb free.

By the way, I am just assuming all of steps 1-8 for the screen shots are needed for this too because I did the screen shot setup first, but someone may come along and correct me.
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Old November 30th, 2010, 12:29 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Seems about right, should be pretty helpful
But to be honest, I havn't touched ADB in a long long time either since I set it up and obtained root.
Between shootme for screenshots, move 2 sd enabler for this and a bunch of other root apps.. I really have no need for it anymore.
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Old November 30th, 2010, 02:29 PM   #16 (permalink)
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thats why im hoping the next nexus has atleast 5 times as more internal memory. lol
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Old December 1st, 2010, 05:24 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I reckon 2GB should do me for apps.
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Old December 1st, 2010, 12:32 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I reckon 2GB should do me for apps.
I can definitely go for a few GBs
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Old July 30th, 2011, 06:09 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Thanks guy you made my day. Still the shortage of internal memory on N1 is a ridiculous mistake.
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Old August 27th, 2011, 11:07 AM   #20 (permalink)
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This is he only complaint I have about my N1. Not enough internal memory. This is the only reason that I would upgrade my phone at this particular time. My understanding is that the Nexus Prime will have double the internal memory. I find myself uninstalling apps and constantly clearing out cache's and cleaning out my browser to free up enough memory in order to avoid having that annoying warning pop up on my notification bar. I am going to be able to upgrade my phone on TMobile at the end of October. I will keep an eye out on the reviews for the Prime to see if its going to be a worthy successor to my N1.
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Old August 28th, 2011, 05:06 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Got me up to 45MB from 24. It's funny that the main culprits are Google's own apps: Maps, Browser, and Plus. Plus especially has bloated up since the last version. Dont the compilers have "optimize" switches on them anymore to chop out all the uncalled library functions? I almost forgot I had the dev-tools installed on my other laptop from when I rooted/CM7'ed my wife's G1.

I still can't get rid of QuickOffice and Facebook though. Is there any working temp-root solution for 2.3.4? I only need to get in there long enough to delete these but full, permanent root is just too much of a pain in the ass for that.
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Old August 30th, 2011, 06:28 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Everyone having memory problems should try Darktremor's A2SD.

[Script][A2SD] Darktremor 2.7.5.3 Beta 04 [N1] (01/29/2011) - xda-developers

Freed up almost 100mb of internal storage for me
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Old April 5th, 2013, 02:20 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Howdy,
New to the forum, and love my N1 but hate the limited memory. I tried everything in your post, got the Java kit, the SDK, and even figured out how to navigate to a folder in the command prompt window (so proud of myself!) but I can't seem to make it work. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong, but I'd LOVE some help. You wrote:

"In the command Prompt window, in the Tools folder, issue the command:

ADB Shell

This will start the SDK command shell running."
I did this, but it flashed a bunch of text along the command prompt window for a second, then went back to waiting for a command. As I wasn't sure if the SDK command shell was running or not, I just moved forward.

"Then enter the command:

pm setInstallLocation 2

That's it. Disconnect your device. You can now go to Settings --> Applications --> Manage Applications and move all the programs that let you to the SD card."

But when I enter "pm setInstallLocation 2" I get the following message:
"'pm' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file." And when I disconnect and go to Settings--> Applications --> Manage Applications I still can't move the unmovable apps. "Move to SD" is greyed out and they can't be moved.
Any help is greatly appreciated, as I really don't want to have to get a new phone, but can't keep having my N1 lose its data connection for lack of internal memory.
Thanks!
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Old April 5th, 2013, 02:26 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Howdy,
New to the forum, and love my N1 but hate the limited memory. I tried everything in your post, got the Java kit, the SDK, and even figured out how to navigate to a folder in the command prompt window (so proud of myself!) but I can't seem to make it work. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong, but I'd LOVE some help. You wrote:

"In the command Prompt window, in the Tools folder, issue the command:

ADB Shell

This will start the SDK command shell running."
I did this, but it flashed a bunch of text along the command prompt window for a second, then went back to waiting for a command. As I wasn't sure if the SDK command shell was running or not, I just moved forward.

"Then enter the command:

pm setInstallLocation 2

That's it. Disconnect your device. You can now go to Settings --> Applications --> Manage Applications and move all the programs that let you to the SD card."

But when I enter "pm setInstallLocation 2" I get the following message:
"'pm' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file." And when I disconnect and go to Settings--> Applications --> Manage Applications I still can't move the unmovable apps. "Move to SD" is greyed out and they can't be moved.
Any help is greatly appreciated, as I really don't want to have to get a new phone, but can't keep having my N1 lose its data connection for lack of internal memory.
Thanks!
Hello and welcome to android forums.

Try this. Open a command prompt on your PC (start>run type "cmd" press ENTER)

Change directory to the android-sdk-windows\tools folder (or wherever adb.exe was installed)

At the prompt type
Code:
adb devices
and you should see your phone listed as a serial number.

type
Code:
adb shell pm setInstallLocation 2
Done.
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Old April 8th, 2013, 11:40 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Thanks so much for helping out!
Okay, so I saw some progress from following your reply, but I'm not out of the woods quite yet.
I connected the N1, set for debugging, opened a command prompt, directed to the folder where ADB was located and entered "adb devices" and it did indeed list my phone as a serial number! (YESsssss!)
I then entered "adb shell pm setInstallLocation 2" and it went right back to a command prompt. Assuming I had done it all correctly, I then disconnected my N1, went into manage applications, and to my surprise I still couldn't move Twitter, Facebook, etc. from the phone to the SD card. The "move to SD card" button is greyed out still.
I rebooted the phone (just in case) and tried again but still no luck.
Am I missing a step, or did I do one of them wrong?
Thanks again, so much, for walking a non-tech guy through this. I really want to keep my N1 (what do you think of your N4?) but am just so tired of it giving me the stupid "low on space" message.
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Old April 8th, 2013, 12:08 PM   #26 (permalink)
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The developers may have set the location within the app so they can't be moved. Android has specific rules for where it installs apps. If the app has a specified location, that takes priority. If it is not specified in the app, then the default install location is used. Android has 3 identifiers for app storage location:

0 = Internal
1 = Auto
2 = External (sd card)

If 0 is set in the app, then it can only be installed on the internal storage regardless of the default install location. Widgets, services and apps that periodically poll need to be in the internal storage to run correctly Which may be why those particular apps are still not able to be moved to the SD card.

Similarly the phone itself can have a default install location set so if the app is set to 1 (Auto) then it will direct the app where to be installed. The only thing you must remember is that 1 is not an option for a phones default location. If the app were set to Auto location and the phone was to, it wouldn't know what the default was.

You may find that by setting the default install location to 2 you can move more apps to the sd card that you couldn't before, but only if the location is not specified within the app. If you go to menu>settings>applications>manage applications you can check which apps are able to be moved, paying close attention NOT to move widgets or polling apps.
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Old October 15th, 2013, 10:58 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hook View Post
As Rusty said above, it is the Android Debug Bridge. I have no idea what else it can be used for, but it does this nicely. It is part of the Android Software Development Kit (SDK). I first installed the SDK in order to do screen shots, so here are the instructions I used.

How to take screenshots of your Android based phone from Windows Simple Help

Assuming steps 1-8 are taken care of, do the following:

In the tools folder of the SDK kit, there is a program called ADB.exe. You need to open the Windows Command Prompt accessory. If you just launch ADB.exe in windows, it will open and close in a flash. Open the command prompt window and navigate to the Tools folder in the SDK folder tree.

Connect your Android device via USB (you must have USB Debugging checked under Settings. Again, required for screen shots, so I refer you to the directions above). You do not need to mount your SD card.

In the command Prompt window, in the Tools folder, issue the command:

ADB Shell

This will start the SDK command shell running.

Then enter the command:

pm setInstallLocation 2

That's it. Disconnect your device. You can now go to Settings --> Applications --> Manage Applications and move all the programs that let you to the SD card. Also, in the future, apps from the market will install to the SD card by default.

Apps that are explicitly set as private by the developer (as opposed to programs where the developer has just not bothered to add the move to SD feature) will still not be movable.

It's a lot of hoops the first time, but it's not that hard to set up and you will have the bonus of being able to make screen shots.

Hope this helps. Worked great for me. I ended up going from 35Mb free to 83Mb free.

By the way, I am just assuming all of steps 1-8 for the screen shots are needed for this too because I did the screen shot setup first, but someone may come along and correct me.

Hi Everyone,
I am using LG Escape which has 4GB space (has only 1.85GB storage) but for some reason after installing few apps I am getting insufficient storage warning.

I really would love to move all my apps and install new ones on 16GB SD card.
Is above all I need to accomplish this?
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Old October 16th, 2013, 01:31 AM   #28 (permalink)
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No, unfortunately. The whole "move to sd" option was removed in android 4.something. If you don't even have the button in the application management dialog then this won't work.

Remember that app data use the internal storage as well as apps. See what is actually using the space and whether there is anything you can clear.
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to serve man (October 16th, 2013)
Old October 16th, 2013, 10:11 AM   #29 (permalink)
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No, unfortunately. The whole "move to sd" option was removed in android 4.something. If you don't even have the button in the application management dialog then this won't work.

Remember that app data use the internal storage as well as apps. See what is actually using the space and whether there is anything you can clear.
Thank you for letting me know, I've been trying to figure out how to do this, and if this is the case that makes the newer OS pretty useless. Any idea why this was removed? My wife's older Samsung has this option and it is very handy, while newer device does not.

Yes, some applications use internal memory for storage as well, for those I am going to to check if the app has an option to move it's data to SD, at least that would be something. I know TouchDown is already using over 300MB of storage for emails and attachments, and there are apps that do not clear their cache on a regular basis.
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Old October 16th, 2013, 11:17 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Yeah, email attachments will eat space fast.

You'd have to ask Google why it was really removed. But it was in Android 4 that they stopped having separate storage partitions for apps & data and media, and I suspect that's the key.

Early androids had very little app storage, plus sd cards for media. For these phones (like the Nexus One) the apps to sd solution was a great help.

Then manufacturers started adding significant storage to their phones, but to fit the way android 2.2 or 2.3 worked they partitioned it into an app area and a media area, and called the media area "/sdcard". Then the actual sd card became "external sd card", with different manufacturers handling this in slightly different ways. A mess really. Plus they often made the app area small, which meant you still relied on moving apps to sd.

So in android 4 Google got rid of the "separate areas for apps and media" model and defaulted to a single partition which you can use for anything. Of course for backward compatibility with old apps this partition would appear as both "/data" and "/sdcard". So move to sd would no longer achieve anything, unless you made it move to the "external sd". But at the same time Google were moving away from sd support (those manufacturers who kept it were basically adding it themselves), so if they didn't support external sd in the OS they weren't going to support moving to it.

Put another way, Google's logic is that with a unified storage partition moving to sd is not needed, and Google don't really support sd anyway. Where this fails is when a manufacturer includes only limited internal storage and relies on the SD for expansion - basically designing for Android 2.3 rather than taking into account how it works now.

Some Samsung devices have has it added back. But TBH this isn't Samsung being forward looking: when the S4 was released, Samsung's answer to the complaint that 16GB (9-10 available) isn't enough was "you can move apps to sd". When even the mainstream media picked up on the fact that this was wrong they announced that they would release an update to add it back! But it's not a part of the OS any more.

The bottom line is that there are tricks to add it, same as there were before it was added (in 2.2 I think - it wasn't there for long!). But these require rooting the device.

And yeah, it gets worse with time, because apps get bigger. I ran my old Desire for 3 years and never used 1GB for apps and data (the Desire had 147MB of space, so you can guess I had to hack to do that!). But with a modern version it's much harder to be that parsimonious.

Anyway, sorry this is so long! All I can suggest is clearing the data you can, keep all media on sd, and consider rooting if that isn't enough
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Old October 16th, 2013, 12:08 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Thanks for the details, and honestly we are aware that google wants everyone to use their cloud services, but apps cannot be stored in cloud and they need space to function properly. So much for the "Open Source" and "Free" phone OS that Android once was, now it is nothing but Google turning into Apple forcing their ideology on users and manufacturers.

On my LG Escape, I am running 4.0.4 and thinking of upgrading to 4.1 but honestly it won't make any difference since we will end up getting a bigger OS taking more of internal storage.

I was really surprised because I have basically no media on the phone, and I did add 8GB SD to see if I could move any apps to SD, but no chance to do so, and after getting just 10-15 apps, I was out of space.

Sorry for posting in this thread, since LG thread is not getting any attention and it sucks to see there is no solution for this.

Is this the same case with Galaxy S4? I always thought I do not need so much storage, 16GB should be enough, but now I am wondering if that will also get eaten up fast with apps, and with no way to add apps to SD card.
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