Why are apps starting themselves (not at boot)?

movrshakr

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Stock 2.1 ?clair. I am not into killing everything all the time, but I do look in Advanced Task Killer occasionally. What is bothering me is that I am finding apps loaded that I did not start myself. I am not talking right after boot--I mean during general use and after I have stopped essentially everything, I will look later and things have just appeared.

Examples: ATT Navigator. I NEVER use that; never have, never will. Yet there it will be. Not every time I look, just once every 2-3 days. Boom, there it is. ROM Manager -- starts on its own (or something else starts it). I don't use it. I installed it, opened it, but have not and do not use it. But, it will suddenly appear in the running apps. Voice Search. Browser (Dolphin). And there are others. Mail and Messaging start very frequently, but those two don't bother me; they are essential.

My only concern really is those that use power draining resources like GPS and wifi. And that I just don't like unneeded things just getting started.

Why is this happening?
 
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Jan 14, 2011
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A good rule of thumb is to turn off wifi and gps when not in use. You can also turn off background data to limit this and boost your battery. Other than that, sometimes apps need to poke their head up and see what's going on. If you look at running services, you can see how much ram and cpu they are consuming. If you still have a lot of ram being unused, (and you will), your fine. Android brilliantly handles the use of ram so that unused ram is basically wasted ram. Now if the apps are running rampant with cpu usage, you may have a problem.
 

movrshakr

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I am not worried about RAM at all...I understand Android does a great job of managing that. My interest is two-fold.

First, just the unsuppressable curiosity of what is causing this--why is it happening? (It is my nature.)

And second, just not wanting anything that is going to use battery or data bytes getting cranked up when I didn't ask for it.
 

SoftWyer

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Could be a few things.

The apps may be starting as part of a scheduled alarm. (aside, anyone know of an app to view these alarms?)

The OS may kick-off the app in response to a general broadcast. The main culprit here is likely to be the Search request. If you've ever used the Google Search widget (Quick Search Box) then that will start apps and query them whenever you request a search. You can limit these by removing these apps from the global search -> Settings->Search->Searchable Items and untick the apps you're never going to want to search on.
 

movrshakr

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...You can limit these by removing these apps from the global search -> Settings->Search->Searchable Items and untick the apps you're never going to want to search on.

Oh, I looked and looked and looked for an app titled "global search". Now I realize you don't mean to go into global search -> (then to) -> Settings--you mean to START at Settings!

Ok, I looked in there, but it does not provide a drill down to uncheck INDIVIDUAL apps, only a line to uncheck to not search ANY (names of) "Apps (Names of installed apps)".

This seems to be defining whether to search for names of apps. I don't understand why that would start them up.
 

SoftWyer

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This seems to be defining whether to search for names of apps. I don't understand why that would start them up.

The Applications listed in the Searchable items page will, if checked, be started by Google Search when you use the Quick Search Box. You mentioned mail, messaging and Dolphin. They are all capable of receiving search requests, so if you've got them ticked then Search will start them :)
 

movrshakr

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Either you or me (probably me) is completely misunderstanding. When I go to the place suggested:

Settings -> Search -> Searchable Items ->

Now, at that point, I have this list:
Browser
Apps
Contacts
Music Player
Dolphin Browser HD
Phone

Hitting the Apps line just checks or unchecks the single word item "Apps". It does NOT open a list of individual apps to control. I CANNOT check/uncheck individual app names. I can check Apps either on or off to be searched, but I cannot drill down to tell it to not search say, "Mail."

Please walk through it on your phone an tell me what I am doing wrong. Do you get a list of all apps to individually check each one?! I don't.
 

SoftWyer

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Settings -> Search -> Searchable Items ->

Now, at that point, I have this list:
Browser
Apps
Contacts
Music Player
Dolphin Browser HD
Phone

You are not doing anything wrong, I just didn't explain it particularly well :)

The list above is the one you need to work with. If you never want Dolphin to open as part of the Global Search, then make sure it's unchecked in the list above. Similarly for any others you don't want to appear.

Global Search works by starting each checked application in the list above and telling them to 'find this search term'. The applications do a search of their data and pass back the results to the Global Search. It then takes all the search results and ranks them, chooses the top ~15 and presents these in the Google Search Box.

The 'Apps' in the list above indicates that Application Names will appear in the Global Search, so you can open the Quick Search Box and type 'Dolphin' and it will show the Dolphin application in the search results.
 

moosc

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first dump TASK KILLER its complete waste! second as stated earlier apps open and close as needed. its not a problem and u WILL not stop it from happening. this normal for Android. ill wager u came from a blackberry where memory leaks and lack lusting OS was bad.

Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk
 

SoftWyer

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second as stated earlier apps open and close as needed. its not a problem and u WILL not stop it from happening. this normal for Android.

Every time one of those crappy widgets opens, like HTC's News & Stocks, etc it will pull down data from the cloud happily burning a hole in your data allocation. If you can stop these through normal activities like removing them from search and taking them out of the 'Synchronization' process then you should.

I don't consider these unwanted processes to be 'normal'. They might not do any harm, but they do use resources and will cause other apps to be forced killed to make room for them to run.
 

movrshakr

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first dump TASK KILLER its complete waste! second as stated earlier apps open and close as needed. its not a problem and u WILL not stop it from happening. this normal for Android. ill wager u came from a blackberry where memory leaks and lack lusting OS was bad.

Wrong. Never owned a berry. You are not comprehending at all what I am saying. Did you read my posts?

"My interest is two-fold. First, just the unsuppressable curiosity of what is causing this--why is it happening? (It is my nature.) And second, just not wanting anything that is going to use battery or data bytes getting cranked up when I didn't ask for it."

So, you feel that having apps that you did not start using up your data allocation is "not a problem?" Sorry, you and I will just have to disagree on that point. You also say that android starts apps as needed, and I am saying they are being started when not asked for by me. Now, you can claim that android "needed" to start them--and I am saying, if that is the case, Iwant to know WHY it "needed" to do that.
 

moosc

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no matter what u do you can't stop apps from opening. if your on a limited data plan turn of your data sync. off mind nothing will come through you'll need to refresh your gmail/email ect manually. even if you feel the need for a task killer expect those killed apps to reopen and using task killer will increase battery use.

Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk
 

SoftWyer

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no matter what u do you can't stop apps from opening.

Yes you can if you know WHY they are opening. As we've discussed in this thread, some open because of Global Search, some because of Synchronization. You can configure search and synchronization from starting the apps you don't want.
 
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DaNaRkI

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From what I've read in various fourms and from Capfaq.com - Task Killers is that based on how Google wrote the Android OS: the system has a list of apps to load into memory so that if and when you choose to use them the app will load fast. Add to this that some apps are written to run in the background once installed, and/or restart on their own. One way or another some apps will be seen in these tasks manage/kill lists even if you've never once used them or even considered it. The greatness of android being an open OS is that there is a good number of apps in the market to address such conserns. A few even venture to try and control the auto-load design of the OS, tho none are fully effective.

My suggestions go along the lines of checking the settings of these apps, to turn off every possible option they have of using data unless you manually force it to. If your comfortable with rooting you have options so great as to pick and choose what apps are allowed to use your data (a trick some ppl use to remove ads).
 

fldude99

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I agree that apps sometimes start on their own and can be a detriment in spite of anroids abilities...i.e. during the nite last nite my battery went from 80% to 25%..so I look at running processes and there is easy tether..been running for 3 1/2 hours, meaning it started up at about 4AM while I'm sound asleep..that's not a good thing
 

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