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Old October 31st, 2013, 08:24 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default How to prepare for a FDR

My GS4 (i337) is stock except for running Nova Prime. Of course my apps (and there are many) all have individual tweaks, etc. that will be tough to duplicate after a FDR. It's taken months to get where I am now with layouts and settings, etc... picking up on tidbits of knowledge (and forgetting them) along the way.

In anticipation of needing to do a FDR at some point in the future (perhaps after the 4.3 update), I would like to find a reasonable way to minimize the pain of doing the FDR.

Is there a FAQ or something that would help guide me in this preparation? I am not interested in rooting.

I have a 32Gb GS4 with a 64Gb SD card. Although I had no problems with the last OTA update, I realize I may not be so lucky next time.
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Old October 31st, 2013, 08:34 AM   #2 (permalink)
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For your apps, if they were installed from the Play Store, they should reinstall when you reconnect to your account after the FDR. I have had this fail in the past, but not recently.

To prepare, first take a screen shot of all of your home screens and save the screenshots to the external SD card. This will at least allow you to get back to the layout that you have.

I would also recommend screenshots of the Downloaded list from the App Manager. If all goes well with the reinstall from Google then they will be of no use, but if for some reason it fails, you will at least have a list of the apps that you installed.

As for tweaks to individual apps, memory and retweaking is your only avenue. Sorry, but that's how it is for us unrooted folks.

I had to do an FDR after the 4.3 update (two actually) and the screen shots were the best thing that I did.

Anyway, good luck (if you need it)
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Old October 31st, 2013, 09:07 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks BRG. Your post about needing to do a couple of FDRs after your update to 4.3 is what sparked my question. I did a FDR on my previous Android and it was not fun sorting out everything.

So there is no process other than memory for us unrooted folks? Rats.
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Old October 31st, 2013, 05:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If you didn't know, use Helium. It save most of your apps' settings. Also, use applist to ensure a list of your current apps. Any apps that have built in backup capabilities, utilize 'em.
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Old October 31st, 2013, 06:15 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Hmm. I have Helium but have never messed with it. I'll have to check it out as well as the other app you mentioned.
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Old November 10th, 2013, 01:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigRedGonzo View Post
For your apps, if they were installed from the Play Store, they should reinstall when you reconnect to your account after the FDR. I have had this fail in the past, but not recently.

To prepare, first take a screen shot of all of your home screens and save the screenshots to the external SD card. This will at least allow you to get back to the layout that you have.

I would also recommend screenshots of the Downloaded list from the App Manager. If all goes well with the reinstall from Google then they will be of no use, but if for some reason it fails, you will at least have a list of the apps that you installed.

As for tweaks to individual apps, memory and retweaking is your only avenue. Sorry, but that's how it is for us unrooted folks.

I had to do an FDR after the 4.3 update (two actually) and the screen shots were the best thing that I did.

Anyway, good luck (if you need it)
Just getting back to this topic as 4.3 release for AT&T is imminent.

I make extensive use of folders on my screens. So instead of having a lot of pages with single apps, I tend to group similar apps in folders and use fewer pages. Ergo, taking screen shots with each individual folder open will be... tedious. But it may be necessary to keep things as I have them now... unless Helium saves layouts/folders too.

I've done a little bit of research into using Helium, and based on the info here:
How to backup Android app files with Helium (formerly known as Carbon) | How to | Softonic
it sounds confusing at best and problematic at worst.

I suppose I could backup to my PC, but with a 64Gb SD card installed on the phone, any reason I can't just back up locally? Also, will Helium save all my custom settings, and that I use Nova Prime instead of TW for a launcher?
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Old November 10th, 2013, 03:43 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I have tried to back stuff up to my SD card numerous times for many apps like widget locker, nova, my alarm clock...it never works. Seems that once the app is uninstalled with FDR, ithe backup is gone. I've also tried sending zip files of UCCW clocks and fonts to Box Storage, but when I download them again, the few are empty. Have no idea why that is.
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Old November 10th, 2013, 04:03 PM   #8 (permalink)
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It seems that there is a need for NON-ROOTED phone owners to have a backup modality similar to 'nandroid' backups on rooted phones. That is, the ability to make a "snap shot in time of the phone' which includes data as well as apps as well as layouts of home pages.

Go for it app developers!

FDRs would not be such a problem if such were available!
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Old November 10th, 2013, 04:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrouchoM View Post
If you didn't know, use Helium. It save most of your apps' settings. Also, use applist to ensure a list of your current apps. Any apps that have built in backup capabilities, utilize 'em.
Helium sounds iffy, based on what little research I've done. The App List app sounds like it will save me from wading through all the apps I've purchased/installed to get the ones I currently use.

But making a ghost copy for a quick restore after a FDR does not sound possible, at least not with Helium on an unrooted GS4.

And if Helium does work, does it have to be a 2 part process with the phone app working in conjunction with a PC/Mac app? Or can the phone app stand alone using either the sd card or using ES file explorer to move the backup to a PC/Mac?

And smitty543? You are absolutely correct.

How does My Backup Pro compare to Helium? Any better or worse? (I need to Google it and see what I can find).
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.rerware.android.MyBackupPro

And maybe tru backup needs to be considered as well.
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfl.tbp

However, this link makes Helium sound pretty good!
http://www.talkandroid.com/guides/beginner/how-to-backup-apps-and-app-data-on-your-rooted-or-non-rooted-android-phone-or-tablet/
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Old November 13th, 2013, 03:52 PM   #10 (permalink)
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My Backup Pro does nothing more than restore your apps. Then some of them wouldn't work right. Better off going into my apps, all apps in the play store and use the list of everything you have ever downloaded.
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Old November 13th, 2013, 03:57 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I was hoping to find a solution that would back up my Android such that not only my Android settings would be preserved, but also my app settings too. That sounds like a stretch at the present time.
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Old November 13th, 2013, 04:45 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedlever View Post
I was hoping to find a solution that would back up my Android such that not only my Android settings would be preserved, but also my app settings too. That sounds like a stretch at the present time.
Even if there were something like that for unrooted folks, I would only recommend restores when the updates are small. For instance, with this next 4.4 OTA update it's probably best not to restore app settings in order to prevent major conflicts. There's too much being changed in the next version. Even for rooted folks it's not recommended with Titanium Backup to do app setting restores when the Android versions have too many changes.

Having a Google Edition phone I'm already planning on backing up everything on my internal SD as I'll be doing a complete factory reset after the OTA install is done. I'm not looking forward to it, but it must be done.
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Old November 13th, 2013, 06:15 PM   #13 (permalink)
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That is a good point that I did not consider. I better get busy with paper and pencil if I want to set up like I am currently.
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Old November 28th, 2013, 08:40 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Continuing this thread, I did some backups with Helium today. I had some issues getting Helium to work. And I'm not sure why I had to use the PC (Win7/64) as I did all my backups to my external SD card. I think.

First, the link to Samsung USB drivers from the carbon site is to an old set of USB drivers (1.4.4.0). Next, the Samsung site has USB drivers that are also old (1.5.14.0). Neither of these would work for me.

However, over at xda-developers, I found a link to a more recent set of Samsung USB drivers for Windows (1.5.27.0) that worked for me.
[18.07.2013 LATEST]Samsung USB Driver for Mobile Phones 1.5.27.0 [Drivers Win 8/7/XP] - xda-developers

I had to enable USB debugging from developer mode and also change the USB mode from MTP to PTP (notification drop down bar, touch on the USB bar).

Now to sit down with a pencil and some paper and record the apps I put in various folders along with any custom settings I can think of/remember to record.

I suspect 4.3 will soon follow... and hope to be prepared for a FDR... if need be.

Nice way to spend a Thanksgiving.
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Old November 28th, 2013, 11:45 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I am stll stymied by the need for FDR after "an update". Seems that the update process should be seamless - for the average "non-techy". THe process of FDR and "recreating" the phone's setup is not straight forward if one is not into "rooting" and all of that.

It is my understanding that updating iPhones is a seamless process, and, if so, the state of chaos with android 4.3 update will drive me to bite the bullet and defect to iPhone when my contract ends! Does not seem like good business sense for the android folk and manufacturers to make things difficult for the masses! What am I missing?
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Old November 28th, 2013, 12:06 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty543 View Post
I am stll stymied by the need for FDR after "an update". Seems that the update process should be seamless - for the average "non-techy". THe process of FDR and "recreating" the phone's setup is not straight forward if one is not into "rooting" and all of that.

It is my understanding that updating iPhones is a seamless process, and, if so, the state of chaos with android 4.3 update will drive me to bite the bullet and defect to iPhone when my contract ends! Does not seem like good business sense for the android folk and manufacturers to make things difficult for the masses! What am I missing?
You are missing nothing, you are correct.

However (you saw that coming - admit it) Android applications have the disadvantage of working across a massive range of different devices, and when a large update (4.3 to 4.4 say) comes a fair few apps will be "broken" by it. Usually an update is just around the corner for most of them, but it is the price you pay for having the choice of literally hundreds of different devices.

Apple can make updating seamless because they have very few types of device to update. Only Windows 8 promised a completely seamless transition with apps from phone to tablet to PC. I have absolutely no idea whether it succeeded but for Android there may be umpteen versions of the same app. You don't notice because Play store recognises the type of device your attempting to install on and downloads and installs the correct version.
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Old November 28th, 2013, 12:25 PM   #17 (permalink)
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iPhone updates, like the recent ios7, are not seamless in the eyes of non-techies (like my folks).
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Old November 28th, 2013, 12:44 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GrouchoM View Post
iPhone updates, like the recent ios7, are not seamless in the eyes of non-techies (like my folks).
Having only a solitary Apple device (iPod 16gig touch (4th gen)) owned by my daughter that I don't touch, all I can say is that it has not yet got ios7, and I don't know whether it will. It took me ages to sort my laptop out when I finally got her a netbook last year and unistalled itunes and the like from my laptop. Never again will I install anything Apple on a PC, it was a PITA.
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Old December 1st, 2013, 01:38 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Update: Good news!

I updated to 4.3 last night with no issues at all. I'm very pleased to not have to re-install and tweak all my apps.

We'll see how KitKat does in January.
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Old December 2nd, 2013, 02:58 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I guess this sorta belongs in this thread...

Every time I do a FDR, the thing I most hate losing is/are my playlists.

I don't know what genius decided that your music playlists will store to the phone's internal memory rather than the SD card (where the music actually is), but that's where they (apparently) are and the damn things get wiped on every FDR.

(Oddly, I also just lost a playlist WITHOUT a FDR. I have no explanation for this, but it underlines the need to back the damn things up.)

There has to be an easy way to find my playlists, temporarily move them to the SD card (or even my PC), and put them back where they belong after the FDR.

Can someone explain how to do this, please? (Assume I am non-rooted and don't quite understand exactly how my phone does all the awesome things it does, but I am capable of following step-by-step directions.)
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Old December 2nd, 2013, 10:11 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Ok, I take back my comment about no issues at all. I discovered today that my unread msg counts are not showing on emails or messages. I'm using Nova Prime and Tesla unread plugin.

Should I uninstall the plugin and reinstall it in order to get my unread count balloons back?
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