Tuesday, December 4, 2012

How to Move Almost Any Android App to the SD Card (No Root Required)

If you have been an android user for a time, you should know that Android apps install to the internal storage by default, But when internal phone memory gets full, you will at least face two problems such as can’t install app anymore and phone starts working slowly, so you need to clean up some storage space on your Android phone after install a lot of apps, like game apps, music apps, and video apps, etc.

So what should a user do when your mobile phone is running out of internal storage? Of course move apps to SD card or install Android Apps to the SD Card by Default are the best option if you don’t want to uninstall your favorite apps.

Install Android Apps to the SD Card by Default

This tweak requires Android 2.2 or later. To change the default install location, you’ll need to use the ADB, or Android Debug Bridge, utility included with Google’s Android SDK.

Step 1. Enable USB Debugging
First, you’ll need to enable USB debugging on your Android device. Open the Settings screen, tap Applications, and select Development.

Tap the USB Debugging checkbox to enable it. This will enable debug mode, allowing you to change the settings on your Android device from your computer. You may want to disable debug mode after completing this process.

Step 2. Install the Android SDK
You’ll need to download and install Google’s Android SDK on your computer. If you don’t already have Oracle’s Java JDK installed on your computer, you’ll have to download and install it before installing the Android SDK.

After you’ve installed both the JDK and Android SDK, launch the SDK Manager from your Start menu.

The ADB utility isn’t installed by default. It’s included in the Android SDK Platform-tools package – select this package and click the Install button to download and install it.

After the process completes, connect your Android device to your computer with its included USB cable. Windows should locate the device and install the appropriate drivers automatically. If it doesn’t, you may have to download and install the appropriate drivers from your Android device’s manufacturer. Do not mount the device after connecting it – just plug it in.

Step 3. Using ADB
Open a Windows Explorer window and navigate to the android-sdk\platform-tools folder. On Windows, you’ll find this folder at C:\Program Files (x86)\Android\android-sdk\platform-tools by default. Check C:\Program Files\Android\android-sdk\platform-tools if you’re using a 32-bit version of Windows.

Launch a Command Prompt window in this folder by pressing and holding the Shift button, right-clicking in the folder, and selecting Open command window here.

Run the adb devices command and you should see your connected Android device.

Run the following command to set the default install location to your SD card:
adb shell pm setInstallLocation 2

Note: If you want to revert this change later and install apps to the internal storage by default, run this command:

adb shell pm setInstallLocation 0

0 represents your device’s internal storage, and is the default. 2 represents the external storage, whether it’s an SD card or USB storage.

Use App 2 SD (move app to SD) to move app to SD Card

With this tool, you can export the app list to SD card, and the app will notify you when an app can be moved. Also With this handy app, you'll have more control over your ever expanding collection of apps. This app is crucial to anyone who has memory management issues

Moving Apps to SD Card
To move an app to the SD card, open the Settings screen, tap Applications, and select Manage Applications. Select the app you want to move and tap the Move button on its details screen.


  1. Replies
    1. Yes, of course. It is good for you phone. I have tried it on my htc one x.

  2. But how do u do it on Android 4.1.2, without Rooting?

    1. So just use the apps called App 2 SD to help you.

    2. it does not work on Android 4.1.2

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. I did all that process correctly but still sd card isn't the default storage for my apps(I don't have usb storage I have only internal and external sd card)

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. after doing this process correctly...still i am not able to install apps on sd card.....

  8. Thanks for helping i m searching about this and found your blog its fantastic keep the good work buy calling cards

  9. am using micromax a116 HD internal memory is 1.77gb .i cant play heavy games in it so der is no option to move apps to sd .experts saay dat mobile needs to be rooted so by doing this process will i able to move apps to sd??.pls mail me at sabarigiri90@gmail.com

  10. Nope, this just doesn't work on S3, as far as I could try, and try, and try. Seems like Samsung has changed how that works on its custom ROM, but I couldn’t find more info on that.

    As for anyone else to which this DOES work, beware. There's a dangerous caveat here!

    Quoting http://droid-den.com/android-guides/android-guide-force-apps-to-the-sd-card-without-rooting-a2sd/
    > There was actually a reason behind google not installing all apps to the sdcard by default. That reason is because some apps will not work properly if they are installed on the sd card. You need to be aware of this because if you don’t know, then those apps will start to break and malfunction. Apps that fall into this category are those that require a background service running all times, and ALL widgets.
    > So, twitter, instant messages, any app with a widget and also launcher replacements hyave to be manually moved back to the internal memory, or they will break. So, just the same way as you used to move apps to the sd card, simply do the opposite and move the apps similar to what I have described back to the internal memory.

    1. There is an updated command for this. Use "shell pm set-Install-Location 2", without quotes of course, instead of "adb shell pm setInstallLocation 2".

  11. after doing this process,my apps are downloading in both the internal and external memory..please help me out..

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