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Am I storing 2 copies of my photos on my phone?

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by JohnKay, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. JohnKay

    JohnKay Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Yes, I've been looking for an answer to these questions for a while and getting a tad frustrated.... So, I have a folder called "camera" and "auto backup" in my gallery.

    I deleted a photo I no longer wanted from the folder called "camera", but it is still in the folder called "auto backup". Whaaaaaat??? So here are my questions:

    1) Is this photo in "auto backup" a full sized copy of the one that was in "camera"? Or just some low-res thumbnail?

    2) Why is it still in "auto-backup"? Clearly, I don't want to back it up.

    3) I have set up my phone to backup all my photos using Google+. This would imply there is no need for a separate folder called "auto backup", right? Or am I missing something?

    Doesn't seem very intuitive to me. Or am I being a bit of a thicky?


  2. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

    After some searching I'm pretty sure the "auto backup" folder that you see is the very Google+ backup that you have chosen to use. The only ways proposed to remove it are to disable the setting that backs up all your photos using Google+ or possibly to stop syncing your phone with the auto backup album in Settings -> Accounts & Sync.
  3. JohnKay

    JohnKay Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Thanks, but your reply doesn't answer any of my questions!
  4. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

    Ok, let me try again based on what I read/posted, this time interspersed with your actual questions...


    It is in auto-backup because you have set up your phone to backup all your photos using Google+.

    The auto-backup folder is your Google+ backup album.
    funkylogik likes this.
  5. JohnKay

    JohnKay Lurker
    Thread Starter

    OK, just to clarify... My first question was an either/or answer: is it a full-size copy or a low res thumbnail?

    You answered "Yes".

    Which one is it?!!!!
  6. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

    Ah, sorry, that was unclear...by the time I wrote the answer I forgot there was a second part in the quote.
    Photos uploaded using Auto Backup are stored, by default, as full size resolution photos.
    They include a link to adjust your settings if you would prefer less resolution.
    funkylogik likes this.
  7. JohnKay

    JohnKay Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for your answers DivineBovine. OK, now I must be insane, so is this what is happening:

    a) I take a photo.
    b) It goes in the "camera" folder of my phone.
    c) Because I have google+ set to auto-backup, it backs up the photo to the cloud and the "auto-backup" folder in my phone both at full resolution

    That's insane! Why would I want 2 copies of a photo on my device, both at full resolution?

    (I wonder if there is some confusion here - I have been talking only about my device the whole time - not Google+ as accessed by my desktop)
  8. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

    That may be a weakness of the Google+ automatic backup system. You may want to turn it off and use another. May I suggest one of the many cloud storage solutions with referral links in my sig? ;) Most include the ability to automatically backup your photos and do NOT synchronize a local copy of the backup.

    For some people it would be a strength. They could feel free to edit and process the files without having to copy or Save As. It's not like storage is expensive these days...SD cards are cheaper per gigabyte than hard drives were per megabyte 10 years ago.

    Anyway, are you sure it's actually storing the files on your SD card? My original gallery app shows me all of my Google+/Picasaweb albums as if they were folders, but they are not actually stored on my hardware. It's not clear to me if it does that with the auto backup or not.
  9. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

    Eh, my sig is missing from all but my first post in this thread so you'll have to scroll up to see it. Anyway if you do switch to one of those services for your photo backup, we each get bonus storage space when you use my referral. Copy, Dropbox, and GCloudBackup are right there in my sig and dozens of others are in a page I put up full of them, also linked in my sig.

    Sorry, don't mean to sound all advertisey, but it seems like it'd be a win for everyone. :D
  10. JohnKay

    JohnKay Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Thanks DivineBovine
  11. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert


    JohnKay, were you able to clarify this part?
    I don't use the Google+ backup function but every day someone posts asking the same question you asked and I've been pointing them at this thread...it'd be great if they could know that it's not taking up any space, if that's the case.
  12. EarlyMon

    EarlyMon The PearlyMon
    VIP Member

    Use EStrongs File Explorer and look at what's actually being stored locally to be sure.

    Thumbnails are stored locally.

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