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Root Where are my apps on the SD card?

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by travelcat, Aug 31, 2011.

  1. travelcat

    travelcat Guest
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    This should be an easy answer...

    I have an apparently rooted Desire (apparently because rooting failed using unrevoked, but yet I can do things that suggest it did indeed root)

    I also have Root Explorer. I have moved a lot of apps to the /system/apps folder, but I'd like to move some to the SD card. Odd thing is, I cannot seem to find the apps that are already on the SD card. It has folders that contain the data to the apps, but not the apps themselves.

    I think I'm supposed to move them simply to the root of the /sdcard directory, but I wanted to be sure before proceeding.

    And a related query - is there an upper limit to how many apps I can stick on the syste/apps directory? Are there any rules as to what kind of apps can be used from there? So far everything I've put ther has worked fine, but I've only moved apps I know I'll probably not want to delete.

    Thanks for any advice!
     

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  2. Hadron

    Hadron  
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    "move to sd" in the manage applications menu moves things to .android_secure on your SD card. However, as the name implies that's supposed to be a secure store (to stop people ripping-off apks), so you won't be able to browse it and it will appear to be empty. Take a nandroid though and you'll see the size of the .android_secure.img within the backup.

    /system/apps is the directory where ROM apps are stored. If for any reason you want to convert these system apps to user apps you can use Titanium, but I'd take a nandroid first in case it goes wrong - not everything works this way.

    Edit: If you want to move stuff into /system/app, as seems to be the case here, the hard limit is that the entire /system partition is 250 MB by default (i.e. if you have not used a custom hboot or mtd), including the ROM. Most of us in fact do it the other way: install a custom hboot or mtd that reduces the size of the /system partition to fit the ROM better (waste less space), and hence have a larger /data partition (see below). One advantage of this is that if you move apps to /system, the next ROM update you flash will remove them, whereas if they are user apps they remain (if it's an update to the same ROM, so that you don't need to wipe).

    When you install an app then by default it goes to /data/app, unless you are using an a2sd solution with an ext partition, in which case it only appears to go to /data/app but is really on /sd-ext/app.
     
  3. travelcat

    travelcat Guest
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    Hadron, thanks for the great answer!

    Sorry, I did leave out some info... I'm on the stock Froyo 2.2 ROM. I don't really have a desire to use a custom ROM at this time, but your warning that I'd lose apps I've moved to /system/apps is appreciated. I did end up with a custom recovery, after an attempt to use Unrevoked3 failed but killed my stock recovery. I was unable to get clockworkmod or AmonRa to take, so for now my custom recovery is 4EXT, which has been working fine so far.

    I have just the regular Apps2SD. I have quite a number of apps that don't want to move to SD, even if they're suppposed to be able to - I get "failed to move application" way too much. These are the ones I've been moving manually using Root Explorer.

    So the question is, if App2SD moves apps to /.android-secure, is that where I should drop apps that I want to move to SD, but which won't move with App2SD? or should I drop them in the root /sdcard directory?
     
  4. Hadron

    Hadron  
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    There are ways to enable moving. I used to have an app called "ModInstallLocation" which allowed you to change the default install location, so that might help you move more apps (I stopped using it when it became irrelevant to me, using custom ROMs, ext partitions etc). Of course you must not move apps with widgets, and any you want to run during startup are also best left on the phone.

    Moving the apk to the sd card by hand won't work. You need to use the move to SD menu.

    And yeah, I remember you have a unique rooting setup :)
     
  5. travelcat

    travelcat Guest
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    Hadron - thanks.

    So I can move .apks by hand to system/apps just fine, but not to SD? Darn, because like I said, "move to SD", either with the stock button or with App2SD, hasn't been working as well as one would hope - and FWIW, this was the case before I attempted rooting and just had the little non-root hack to force stuff to SD. It's gotten better with the semi-root, but still not as good as I'd like.

    Oh well. There was a ton of crapware on the phone I deleted, so I imagine there's plenty of space in the /system/apps directory...
     
  6. Hadron

    Hadron  
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    You could try installing "ModInstallLocation" and see whether more stuff moves after using that.

    You won't be able to just drag apks into .android_secure, and I'm so sure that just moving them to the root of the sd won't work that I'm not even going to test it ;)

    Quick System Info can tell you how much space is left in /system (very useful app IMO).
     
  7. travelcat

    travelcat Guest
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    Thanks. I downloaded Quick System Info, definitely useful.
     
  8. SUroot

    SUroot Android Expert
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    Why do you want to move system/apps? They wont give you any more space.
     
  9. Fishyweb

    Fishyweb Android Enthusiast
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    I found that usually, when I get "failed to move application", it is successful if I try it a second time right away. Have you tried that?
     
  10. Hadron

    Hadron  
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    That was my first reaction, but (s)he's actually moving stuff into /system.
     
  11. SUroot

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  12. adskankster

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    It's worth noting that updates to apps in system get placed into data, so you'll need to merge them after updating - this at least is the case for system apps, I assume it'll apply to other apps moved there? Not sure whether you can just overwrite the apks or whether you need to do anything else though.

    Titanium Backup has a batch job to merge them for you - which is what I use for Maps and the like updates.
     
  13. travelcat

    travelcat Guest
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    SURoot - Yea, Hadron got it right. Moving stuff INTO the folder, not moving the folder. Sorry if that wasn't clear.

    adskanter - thanks. I knew that updates would go to data, I didn't know that Titanium Backup has a merge function. That will prove quite useful :)

    I'm quite happy. Being able to move my "necessary" programs to system/apps has been awesome - I have been able to reinstall everything that I've slowly been uninstalling as space was eaten up, and even have room to try a couple new apps.

    I may still try again to root and try a custom ROM, but for now my phone is roomy and happy, which makes me happy :) Thanks a lot to all those that have been answering my numerous posts as I figured this thing out!
     
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