Feb 18, 2022
Ok... First time here. I have a major problem with internal storage. 64 gig max and I'm having error messages of running out of storage. I have 154g of 256g SD card left. I think my problem is my text messaging app. Its up to 10gigs on internal storage and I have never removed those messages. I like to keep them, like a journal for me. Is there some way I can take these off my phone and store them on my SD card, or Google Drive and be able to read them in the future off my phone on my computer/laptop? Would this help my internal storage problem? Please help. Everyday I'm going through my apps and changing internal storage to SD card on some apps that seem to want to go back to internal storage... maybe another problem?

When you say "text message app" what do you mean: SMS+MMS or something else? I ask because some people don't distinguish between regular SMS/MMS and IP-based proprietary message apps, but it will be important for answering your question.

If it's SMS+MMS I assume that there are a lot of MMS in there (because 10 GB of SMS would be of the order of 10 million messages ;)). But for those messages moving them anywhere (i.e. backing up and deleting the originals) will mean that you can't read them on your message app - that can only read stuff in the smsmms database in internal storage. There are apps out there that claim they can back up to a PC and let you browse them, but I've never used one.

But if they are a different type of message then the solutions will be different too.
I've run into the same issue. I've cleaned, moved, deleted and just uninstalled everything that I possible could. I noticed that the N8 was auto deleting things and when there was enough room, auto installing updates! I took it to Verizon and they said that's a known annoying problem. The S22 will take care of this for me, but strangely enough, I noticed that my "Textra" app for texting sometimes can't handle large files. So I will switch to "messenge+" and send bigger files. I noted that I ran out of space quickly. I then decided to delete the message+ and the memory opened up, leading me to believe that the messenger program was duplicating the messages between the two programs and using up space.

I do have the messages backed up, but as it was pointed out above, I can't review the messages without reloading them.
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@ Hadron ------ Here is the app screen that I see. The messaging app is circled in RED. I'm really clueless to what app this is officially called. I'm also not sure if its this app that eating up my storage! I can only assume it is because it shows 9.7 gigs.

In the past I have looked at the internal card on my computer and somewhere I saw all the pictures in a spot like data but it took so long to manually delete these photos. If I can find that area again that would be helpful.


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@ Hadron ------ Here is the app screen that I see. The messaging app is circled in RED. I'm really clueless to what app this is officially called. I'm also not sure if its this app that eating up my storage! I can only assume it is because it shows 9.7 gigs.
That's Samsung's "Messages" SMS/MMS/RCS messaging app. It might be worth clicking on it to see how much of that storage is "cache" (temporary files that can be deleted safely) and how much is stored data.

Unfortunately I don't know how it is using 9.7 GB. SMS and MMS are stored by a different app, so it shouldn't be those unless Samsung do something unbelievably wasteful and store their own copy of every message in that app's own databases in addition (which would double the space needed for the messages). The other uncertainty is RCS (which Google call "Chat"): that app can use RCS, but as I have never used RCS Chat I don't know where those messages are stored (i.e. whether they are stored in that app's data). The reason this may matter is that most message backup apps can't back up RCS Chat messages, which means that if I did use it I'd be careful about clearing any data before I knew I had a backup of those messages. I don't know whether Samsung's "Smart Switch" can back up those (or whether Samsung provide a way of viewing backed-up messages on a computer). Maybe someone who uses that program will know?

In any event it certainly looks like that app is storing message itself, whether those are the only copy of RCS Chats or duplicate local copies of SMS and MMS. Unfortunately that doesn't really help, since the only way to reduce that usage is likely to be deleting messages (unless by some chance there's 6GB of cache in there, in which case you can easily make some space by clearing it).
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10GB is very large for any app.
But, I see a few others that seem large as well..
Facebook Messenger is using half a GB, as well as a bunch more I am guessing.

Social media apps and Google apps are notorious space hogs.

Personally, my guess is that there may be a ton of thumbnails stored on your device.

These are tiny, low resolution copies of existing pics and videos that you see when searching through your gallery, file manager, and other apps.

The problem with them is that multiple apps will make multiple thumbnails of the same thing, and they are more difficult to find to be rid of them.
Not to mention that the next time you open whatever app that makes them, they will just reappear again.

The thing is, a good app won't even need to use or make them, or store them.

I do not regularly recommend cleaning apps, but there are two that I do (and use myself) for multiple reasons.

The one to try first is an older version that has no ads.


Once it is installed and the permissions granted, check out the Duplicates section first.
This will scan the device and SD card for copies of files, and tell you where they are.


If there are only a few here, then great!
If there are a lot, don't delete them yet.

Go back to the menu screen, and select Junk Files.
It may take a minute or two, but this will find, sort, and show the location of files on the device that are generally trash, like thumbnails.


Notice that there are checkmarks, denoting what is to be deleted.
You may uncheck, or tap the item to open it.
Once opened, you may uncheck or check individual files.

You can also tap individual files to see them.
Sometimes I get errors doing this, because some files are not able to be read by my default media app.

Once you make your selections, go back and select Clean Now.

You will be asked to verify.

If thumbnails are a large issue (notice how I have almost 1GB of these stupid things!), then there are ways to be rid of them.

But first, try this app to see if we can locate a large amount of files somewhere and pinpoint the location.
@Hadron This is a screen shot for you. Again I do not want to delete these messages because I've never saved them.


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Cache is always safe to delete.

It usually is safe to delete data on an SMS app because messages are stored by another app. But as I say I don't know about RCS Chat, which this app can also do. But if this app is wasting space keeping its own copy of SMS/MMS then presumably if you cleared its data it would just copy them all back, so it would probably be a waste of effort.

So my guess is that the fact that SMS/MMS messages are stored by a separate system app is irrelevant, and to reduce space here you will need to delete some messages. Hence trying to find a backup tool that will let you view messages on another device sounds like what's needed.

I'd be curious about whether a different SMS app would be more efficient with space or do the same thing (as always with the caveat that most don't support RCS Chat, so if you do use that Google's Messages app may be the only alternative). But if another app did the same thing you would run out of space! I can't tell for myself because my own 11,000 SMS plus maybe 20 MMS (I know nobody who uses MMS) only use a few MB.