1. Peborgh's Avatar
    I need to set my SD card to be internal storage so that I can stick apps on it.
    Only I've had it on my phone for years and there is some stuff is on it which will be lost if I format the card as internal storage. What can I do?
    Many thanks.
    11-26-2020 06:48 AM
  2. Galactic Zoo's Avatar
    Just back up what you don't want to lose. Personally, I wouldn't recommend setting SD card as internal storage. They are very unreliable and you are likely to lose all of your data if the card becomes corrupt.

    Please register on this forum, which will allow you to engage in discussion more easily, as well as post images. https://forums.androidcentral.com/as...community.html
    B. Diddy and J Dubbs like this.
    11-26-2020 08:03 AM
  3. Peborgh's Avatar
    I have now joined the group but I cannot return to the question I posted earlier. So here it is again.

    "
    I need to set my SD card to be internal storage so that I can stick apps on it.

    Only I've had it on my phone for years and there is some stuff is on it which will be lost if I format the card as internal storage. What can I do?
    "

    So, given that I will lose the contents of the SD card when I format it as internal, how can I save/backup this info and stick it back in afterwards?
    Thanks.
    11-26-2020 08:56 AM
  4. mustang7757's Avatar
    Hi welcome to AC!

    [I merged you to your original question]
    11-26-2020 08:59 AM
  5. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Welcome to Android Central! What kind of data is stored on the SD card? Is it primarily media files like photos, music files, videos, etc.? Do you have a lot of apps currently set to save data to the SD card by default?
    11-26-2020 01:24 PM
  6. Peborgh's Avatar
    I don't honestly know - I am not familiar with the uses of the SD card. I don't think so but I'll find out tomorrow.
    I have the following files/folders at the top level of SD card content:
    .android_s... no contents
    Android
    DCIM
    LOST.DIR

    It is 8:30pm over here in the Old World.
    Thanks.
    11-26-2020 03:23 PM
  7. Rukbat's Avatar
    Android is used by some apps to save data - you can back up the entire folder.

    DCIM is Digital Camera IMages (pictures). Again, you can back up the entire folder.

    LOST.DIR is mainly a Linux thing (Android is running in Linux) - there's normally nothing in there.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    11-26-2020 03:34 PM
  8. B. Diddy's Avatar
    If you click on the /Android directory, you can see what other subfolders there are (corresponding to apps that save data there). Just because a folder exists, though, doesn't necessarily mean that the app has saved any data there.
    11-26-2020 04:43 PM
  9. ManiacJoe's Avatar
    Many of the modern apps that use lots of storage space (camera, maps, games, GPS, etc) now have settings to let you store their data on the SD card. Check the settings in the individual apps.

    Keep the SD card formatted as external storage. It is more reliable that way.
    J Dubbs likes this.
    11-26-2020 05:29 PM
  10. Peborgh's Avatar
    Thanks, all, for your useful information about the SD card contents. I have looked and i makes sense.

    Zillions of apps seem to save data to /Android. What happens if I was to lose all this stuff?
    DCIM has zillions of photos taken on the phone. What happens if I was to lose all this stuff?
    LOST.DIR has some files, named as numbers. What happens if I was to lose all this stuff?
    Android has many a file hierarchy I do not understand. What happens if I was to lose all this stuff?

    Finally, before I leave you in peace, Is there any way I can backup all this to somewhere, format the SD as internal storage and then copy back as if nothing had happened? I need details of how to do this.

    Ongoing and increasing gratitude.
    11-27-2020 06:35 AM
  11. J Dubbs's Avatar
    Like the others have mentioned, I wouldn't set your memory card up as internal storage, it's too problematic on many levels. And if your memory card is years old, it's going to be too slow for your phone as internal memory, and will slow your phone way down and possibly make it glitchy and unstable.
    11-27-2020 10:54 AM
  12. B. Diddy's Avatar
    The problem is that formatting the card as internal storage fundamentally changes how the system saves data to the card -- so you won't be able to back up the current contents of the card and then copy them back to the card after you've formatted it as internal storage.

    If you really need to format the card as internal storage, I suggest the following:

    1. Backup all of the photos, videos, documents, etc. that you might have saved on the card to your hard drive (the easiest way would be to insert the card into your PC and use Windows File Explorer to copy the files.

    2. Go through all of your app settings menus and look for an option to choose the default storage location. Change it to Internal/Phone Storage wherever possible. (Also, if there's a system settings option for this in the Storage menu, change it there as well.)

    3. Don't worry about LOST.DIR -- that's only used for files that got lost or corrupted somehow during a glitch.

    4. Format the card as internal storage.

    5. Connect the phone to your PC via USB and copy all of those photos, videos, and documents back to the phone (if you still want them there).
    J Dubbs likes this.
    11-27-2020 01:08 PM
  13. Peborgh's Avatar
    Thanks for this detailed info, Diddy.

    My problem is that my phone keeps telling me it is running out of storage space (Android 8.1.0).

    The only way I can see to retrieve this situation is to push my biggest apps onto the SD card acting as internal storage. The SD card id 32Gb and almost empty.

    Is there any other solution?

    Thanks.
    11-28-2020 07:03 AM
  14. Mooncatt's Avatar
    Thanks for this detailed info, Diddy.

    My problem is that my phone keeps telling me it is running out of storage space (Android 8.1.0).

    The only way I can see to retrieve this situation is to push my biggest apps onto the SD card acting as internal storage. The SD card id 32Gb and almost empty.

    Is there any other solution?

    Thanks.
    What phone do you have? Android 8.1.0 is only the OS version number, and knowing the make and model can be beneficial. This way we can see what your other specs are.

    The bigger name brands have moved away from allowing formatting as internal storage for the reasons already mentioned. It's mostly the lower tier phones with minimal storage that still allow this, which is part of why they are so cheap. The other reason those phones are cheap is because they have low end processors and memory that results in slow performance all around. Putting big apps on these phones could cause performance issues.

    If you have a phone like that, your best option may end up being to just upgrade it to something with better specs. If you have a better phone with a lot of storage that is full, then some house cleaning may be in order.
    J Dubbs likes this.
    11-28-2020 07:36 AM
  15. B. Diddy's Avatar
    Do you mean that you're unable to change those apps to save data onto Internal Storage due to lack of space?

    Unfortunately, as Mooncatt mentioned, your ultimate solution would have to be upgrading to a phone with much more internal storage. The bare minimum these days should be 32 GB, but if you like to install lots of apps, then get at least 64 GB.
    J Dubbs likes this.
    11-28-2020 12:46 PM
  16. Peborgh's Avatar
    I posted a message that my phone is a Motorola G5 but it never appeared. Does that give you any further thoughts.
    Thanks for your help to date.
    11-29-2020 10:15 AM
  17. B. Diddy's Avatar
    That phone came with either 16 GB or 32 GB of internal storage -- I'm guessing yours has 16 GB. In addition, Moto is kind of notorious for not implementing Adoptable Storage (i.e., the ability to format the SD card as Internal Storage) very well. There are a lot of threads about how Moto phones still give low storage warnings even with the card formatted as Internal Storage, despite the card being almost empty -- it's as if you can only save certain kinds of files to the card. So unfortunately I don't think that changes any of our recommendations, sorry!
    J Dubbs likes this.
    11-29-2020 12:43 PM
  18. Peborgh's Avatar
    One last question. Some of my apps seem to store a lot of cache. Is there a way to clear cache in all apps in one gesture?
    Thanks,
    11-30-2020 09:20 AM
  19. Mooncatt's Avatar
    You would need an app designed to do that, but it's a short term fix for a long term problem. The caches would be rebuilt with continued use, and deleting them can potentially hurt performance.
    11-30-2020 01:16 PM
  20. B. Diddy's Avatar
    With Oreo, you might be able to go to Settings>Storage, then tap Cached Data -- see if an option comes up to clear all cache there.
    11-30-2020 01:31 PM
  21. Peborgh's Avatar
    Thank you all for your information. I will eventually have to move to a new phone but in the meantime I ahve downloaded Cleaner & File Manager to keep the thing useable. It appears to be working to some extent.

    peter
    12-02-2020 07:07 AM

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