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[Problem and Solution] After GB Update, missing apps? Avoid reinstalling, try this...

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by RoboCuz, Sep 7, 2011.

  1. RoboCuz

    RoboCuz Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Ok, so this information is probably buried in a few threads, but I suspect it should be called out, because people are going to have this happen, and not find the info easily.

    You got your update to Gingerbread, and now it seems a bunch of apps are missing. You may not see any connection as to why certain apps are missing and others are not--however, the issue is related to apps that reside on the SD card. You may have moved some on there, or they may have moved themselves (some apps just install to SD card, without user intervention).

    When I refer to internal storage, I mean the ~6.5 GB internal storage, NOT the ~750 MB app storage. Both reside inside your phone, but one is available only for apps (app storage), the other mounts as a drive (internal storage), just like the SD card, when you connect your phone to a computer and mount the drives (three show up, two drives and a CD rom). This internal storage is also known as emmc storage, so you might see me refer to that as well.


    1) Mount your internal and SD drives on a computer
    2) Move the contents of the SD cards ".android_secure" folder to the internal storage drive, in the same location, at the top level.
    3) Then unmount your drives
    4) Reboot your phone. [reboot may not be necessary; you can just wait a few minutes and see].

    Hopefully many or all of your missing apps will come back. This has been reported by a number of people as fixing some or all of their missing apps. Once you do this, you should be "fixed" permanently. For new apps, you can still move apps to SD with impunity. Just be clear, you need space on your internal (~6.5GB partition) not SD card.

    Anything that causes just your SD card to be unmounted and mounted will revert the .android_secure from the internal to SD, causing missing apps again (temporarily). So if you either:
    - Eject or pull out your SD card and reinsert it
    - unmount and remount it from the settings menu
    it will cause the SD card to become your secure partition incorrectly, and you will temporarily loose access to all apps that have been "moved to SD".

    To solve this, you need to either
    - connect to a PC and mount drives then unmount,
    - do a hard reboot: (turn off fast boot and reboot, boot to recovery if you have root, or pull the battery--which I don't recommend).
    Either of these will cause the secure partition to be taken from the internal storage again.

    (Alternate) Temporary Solution
    If you are looking for an alternate solution to the problem; perhaps if you don't have access to a computer to plug your phone into (incidentally, file managers on the phone can't solve this problem, as the .android_secure directory is not properly available unless the drives are mounted to your computer), an alternate solution is to force the SD card to remount, as mentioned above in caveats section. To be clear, this is what CAUSES problems if you have moved your .android_secure folder over...but it will SOLVE the problem temporarily if you haven't.

    - I have seen people say they have just reinstalled all the missing apps. This will work, as it puts them correctly on the internal storage. However, without understanding what is going on, you will still be subject to the above CAVEATS.
    - Some people are pulling their SD card out before the update, and then inserting it after. This is equivalent to the above temporary solution. Any full reboot or mount/unmount of drives with the computer will reset you (to broken).
    - I have lived with this for a while, and honestly, it isn't that big a deal once you know what is going on...once you move your apps, things generally work as they should.
    - If you really want to do this "perfect" such that you never have any app issues, then before you upgrade, you should create the .android_secure folder (if needed) on the emmc and copy (not move) the contents before the upgrade. After the upgrade, you can then clear the contents of the folder off the SD card...


    The problem, if you care (if you don't, stop reading, you are done), is the new update incorrectly mounts the internal storage for the Apps2SD functionality, and therefore, all your apps that were moved to SD are suddenly on the wrong drive.

    This is clearly wrong for a number of reasons, and will also result in other bugs. For example, when you go to the Settings/Applications/Manage Applications menu, and choose the On SD Card, it shows at the bottom of the screen the space available ON THE SD CARD, even though when you move the app, it will be going to internal storage, which may or may not have free space, totally unrelated to the info shown. I'm sure that won't confuse anyone, when their internal space is full, but they have space on the SD, and it shows the space, but they can't move. Nice.

    Anyway, this bug has been around since the April leak and been called out in a few places, and had already been fixed in cyanogenmod as issue 2470.

    If only VZW or HTC developers read xda or here! Sigh. I had hoped the last minute delay was to fix this issue. Guess not. I wonder if we will get an update for this update :)


    psdpro, midgets, Nano and 5 others like this.

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  2. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    can we just move the apps back to sd card after rebooting etc. saves having to unmount mount sd card after every restart
  3. RoboCuz

    RoboCuz Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    Nope. Unfortunately, the GB update seems to always mount the .android_secure from the internal storage, so it will always look for the apps to be located there.

    So until this is fixed, the Apps2SD functionality is a misnomer, it really moves your apps to the internal storage.
  4. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    so you are saying can no longer move apps to SD, or each time you restart phone they will not show up. unless you mount unmount the phone???

    What happens for the folks that have many apps to much for internal storage. I am not one of those just asking.
  5. RoboCuz

    RoboCuz Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    You can no longer move apps to the SD card. You can still take the Apps 2 SD action, however it moves them to internal storage.

    By internal storage, I am not speaking of the ~700MB app storage however, but the ~6.5GB of internal storage...so there is still PLENTY of space for tons of big apps, if you use it correctly :)

    So this action is still very useful, and for most people, I suspect they will have enough space on internal, that it is really an upgrade inconvenience, but after, they probably won't even notice, things hopefully will still work as they should.

    [NOTE: Unless you are rooted and do nandroid backups; if you do, clockworkmod doesn't backup the correct location. Amon Ra (the latest) does, I believe, with the correct settings. ]
  6. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    ok so basically I need to move all my apps to the phone storage from my SD card to avoid them dissapearing, or use fast boot and then it seems to be ok.
  7. RoboCuz

    RoboCuz Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    I don't think fast boot changes anything....that may solve other problems, but I have not seen it effect this at all.

    You can move all your apps the phone storage, and then after the update, you can move them back to SD (and they will go to the emmc storage not SD, but still free up space on the app storage area).

    You can also just copy the files in the .android_secure directory on the SD card to the .android_secure directory on the internal storage (the other mounted disk when you mount both) after the upgrade. If you do this, you should be okay as well.

    Actually, in theory, you should be able to copy the files from the SD to the other drive (internal) BEFORE the upgrade, and then after you upgrade, when you first boot into GB, it will find them. Just copy, don't move, and you should not have any problem (at least with this particular issue) during upgrade.
  8. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    I am already updated. Sorry new to all this so just trying to get my Stuff straight. Most of my apps are moved to the SD card.

    When I updated like others quite a few were gone, most came back from the amazon market purchases after I re authenticated that app. The others came back after I unmounted & remounted the SD card.

    When I use fast boot all apps are always there I assume since fast boot doesn't unmount the SD card when shutting down. So that seems like a work around sort off?

    With fast boot off powering on those apps on the SD card are missing again and to get them back you have to again unmount & Mount SD card.

    Basically the real fix for now is to move all apps to the phone.

    Hope that makes sense. Is there an advantage to fast boot or not besides the obvious time saved?
  9. RoboCuz

    RoboCuz Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    oh, now I see...it isn't the fast boot that is making a difference, it is the umounting and remounting! Now that is strange!

    According to the bug that I reference in the beginning, it claims that the mounting order is not deterministic--I have always had the internal mount first. But you are saying that on phone reboot, the internal seems to mount, but when you mount and umount your SD card from the computer, it mounts that as your secure?

    Hmmm...are you ejecting and inserting your SD card from your phone? Or are you connecting the phone to a computer via a cable and just choosing the mount drives option (which should mount two drives...three if you count the CD rom drive)? That's the way I mount it, so I have access to both internal and SD and you can then just copy the directory from one folder on one drive to the other drive. And when I take my phone off the computer, it always mounts the .android_secure from internal, not SD. Interesting.
  10. iowabowtech

    iowabowtech root@android:/ #

    I suggested enabling fastboot to a user out of curiosity, it seems to have worked so far for those that have tried it. My theory was that the fastboot option may never unmount the SD card as a true shutdown/restart would. It seems if these same users do a battery pull, the problem persists. So it's a workaround more than anything but I suspsected this might be the case.

    If your fix works long term it would clearly be the best option.
  11. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    Think we are a little mixed up here which is most likely my fault sorry.

    1. I updated without moving any apps

    2. I still havent moved any apps (from sd to internal)

    3. When first turning my phone back on after the upgrade I had missing apps.

    4. To get them back in settings, sd/storage, I unmounted then mounted the SD card that brought the apps back.

    5. When shutting the phone off and turning it back on as long as fast boot is checked the apps always come back. I dont think fast boot unmount/mounts the sd card on shut down/restart.

    6. If I uncheck fast boot and shut down, when I turn the phone back on the apps are gone again, to fix this I can again go into settings, sd/storage and unmount the sd card and then mount in again.

    I am doing all this from the phone.

    I was saying it seems fast boot seems like a work around to not having the apps going away again.

    If not using fast boot the apps will all go away, so it seems moving them to the phone is the best option. Sorry if I am not making sense.
    Holydoc likes this.
  12. iowabowtech

    iowabowtech root@android:/ #

    Just to be clear, using your method, it would provide a sort of "semi-permanent" solution for all the current apps on sd right? However, if any future apps are placed on the SD, would you need to undergo this proceedure again for them to be recognized properly long term?
  13. laurel25

    laurel25 Newbie

    Thanks!!!! This worked for me!
  14. RoboCuz

    RoboCuz Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    For the first question, yes it is permanent for all current. For the second, no, there is no problem. New apps will get "correctly" moved to that emmc when you "move to SD"; so they go to the right place. Honestly, for most people, once you move the apps to the internal, as long as you have enough space, you will not notice anything. Except if you unmount and remount JUST your SD card, either as described below, or by pulling out your SD card and shoving it back in.

    You made perfect sense, and I completely get it now! And I can confirm, it does "fix" it, temporarily. For me, I have already moved my apps to the correct location, so for me, it broke it :)

    [technical details you can ignore: When I unmounted the SD card, it also unmounted the android_secure partition (asec) from emmc. And then when it remounted it, it mounted asec from there. So of course, all my SD apps are still missing. Heh. So then I plugged my phone into a computer and mounted both drives, and then unplugged, and now I am back to good--a hard reboot would also have worked. ]

    So as mentioned at the top of _this_ post, if you follow my suggestion from the FIRST post in the thread, this is probably the one thing that will break: if you pull out your SD card from the phone while it is up, and then put it back in (or do as you did, and unmount and mount), it will screw up all your apps you moved to "SD", until you do a "hard" reboot, or connect your phone to your computer and mount the drives.

    Hopefully I didn't confuse everyone else with this message :)
  15. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    Gonna give this a try shortly when I get 5 minutes noticed the android secure folder on the phone is empty. noticed after ejecting the phone from the computer it broke the apps again. So I would have to remount/mount sd card under this circumstance to.

    EDIT so we copy the files over not move them, is there a reason for having the files in the android secure on both drives phone & SD card?
  16. jakob95

    jakob95 Well-Known Member

    2 questions.
    1st: Does that mean I have to have the app on both my SD card, and on the internal storage(the one that is 6.5GB)
    2nd: I have just done what you said, and it seems that my apps are in my app drawer now, but they don't have icons(just the green android picture instead) in the folder on my homescreen although if I press on the app it still boots up.
  17. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    2. Give it a few seconds and the pictures should come back. Or at least they do for me they load with just the plain android picture and the app works and it take a bit for the correct picture to show.
  18. JaRN99

    JaRN99 Android Enthusiast

    I'm waiting for the update to hit my phone.....in preparation I moved all of my apps back to the phone. Was this the best thing to do or should I have left them on the SD card and just keep fast boot checked once I get the update?
  19. drews66

    drews66 Newbie

    moving them seems best, since if you have to do a proper shutdown or battery pull the apps on your Sd card will break and you have to unmount/mount your sd card to get them back.
  20. jakob95

    jakob95 Well-Known Member

    I gave it like 5min and the pictures of the app still don't show up. Only way is to Force close HTC launcher.
  21. JaRN99

    JaRN99 Android Enthusiast

    So once I get the update downloaded and installed can I then move them back to the SD card?
  22. Legobricke

    Legobricke Well-Known Member


    The SD card issue.... This is currently an issue that pretty much makes the SD card obsolete. If all apps must be move back to the phone to work, what's the point of the SD card?

    I have to assume that Verizon will get this fixed. Certainly it's funny that Verizon has software out there telling the Market it's an EVO and only let's you get carrier app's from SPRINT... LOL

    Am I wrong here? I know there is the temp fix of unmount/remount.... But that's just unacceptable.

    Very Surprised they haven't stopped the OTA yet!

  23. NightAngel79

    NightAngel79 Bounty Hunter

    think this should be a sticky for now....

    sorry havent had time to read all the way through this yet but if this really does work it could be a BIG help....

    everyone please continue to let the OP (and the rest of us) know if this helps
  24. PDP

    PDP Lurker

    The menu |settings | SD &phone storage | Unmount SD card then Remount SD card method worked for me (except for getting my analog clock back - I'll work on that).

    For folks looking for where the Fast book check box is located, it is under menu | applications.
  25. RoboCuz

    RoboCuz Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    You probably want to move them, not copy...only advantage to having them in both places is if you do a nandroid, it will grab...but to do that right, you really want to copy back from emmc to sd right before backup...

    I'll update first post to say move.

    Not true...there are many things that can be stored on the SD card (music, pictures, video, backups, ...), just not the apps :) And moving them "to the SD card" is still useful, cause it gets them out of the ~750MB partition, and onto the larger ~6.5GB partition.

    Yes, you can. Honestly, I think the easiest thing to do is do the update, and then move the files from the one disk to the other. You can do the unmount / mount trick, but that seems to be more work in the long run.

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The HTC Droid Incredible release date was April 2010. Features and Specs include a 3.7" inch screen, 8MP camera, Snapdragon S1 processor, and 1300mAh battery.

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