If you have an Android smartphone or tablet with a small amount of storage, they are likely to continue uninstalling apps to make room for other applications.But there is a way to expand the storage of your Android device if it has an SD card slot.
By default, Android apps are installed on the internal storage of your smartphone, which can be very small. If you have an SD card, you can set it as the default installation location for some apps, freeing up space for more applications that would have been able to install. You can also move almost any app currently installed to the SD card.
There are a few different ways to do this, and you depend on the version of Android and the applications that you want to move. Before we begin, we should observe: the execution of an application off your SD card it will almost always be slower than rotate the internal storage, so use it only if absolutely necessary – and, if you can, try to use it for applications that do not require a lot of speed to work well.
How to Install Applications on the Memory Card: Adopting a Card
Traditionally, the SD cards on Android devices are used as portable storage. This means that you can store files, such as videos, music and photos, to use them on the device and connect the SD card to the computer to transfer files from one side to the other. When used as a portable storage, an SD card can be removed without affecting the functionality of the device.
However, from the Android 6.0 Marshmallow it is possible for you to adopt your SD card as internal storage, essentially making the SD card is an integral part of the internal storage on the device. The adoption of your SD card as internal storage to install new applications on your SD card by default, if the application developer allows it. You can move the app back to internal storage later, if you want to.
In addition, when you adopt the SD card as the internal storage, it is not possible to remove the SD card from the device without affecting the functionality of the device, and the SD card can not be used in any other device, including the PC. The SD card is formatted as one drive EXT4, local, encrypted using 128-bit AES encryption and mounted as part of the system. After you take a SD card on an Android device, it will only work with this device. Therefore, take this card only for that specific device.
Make sure you do the backup of the data on your SD card to your computer before you adopt the SD card as internal storage. The adoption process will erase all data on the SD card. You can put the data back on the SD card after it is adopted as the internal storage, but to do so you must connect your own Android device to the computer to transfer the data. You can’t remove the SD card from the device and connect it directly to your PC to transfer files.
If you used the SD card as portable storage and moved some apps to the SD card, it is necessary to move these applications back to internal storage before you adopt the SD card as internal storage. If you do not do this, these applications will be deleted and will have to be installed again.
By adopting an SD card as the internal storage, make sure you are using a SD card fast. Look for Class 10 or higher, and UHS to buy a new SD card. If the SD card is an SD card cheaper, slower, it will slow down your applications and devices. If you want to dedicate the SD card to the device adopting it as internal storage, it is better to spend a little extra money for a card faster. The Android will test the speed of the SD card during the process of adoption and will advise you if it is too slow and will negatively affect the performance of your device.
Insert the SD card into your device. You should see a notification saying that a new SD card has been detected. Tap “Configure”. If you do not see this notification, open the application settings of Android, go to “Storage and USB” and click the menu button to “Format internal”.
A screen is displayed allowing you to choose whether you want to set the SD card as portable storage or internal storage. Tap “Use as internal storage” and then tap “Next”.
A message is displayed warning you that after that the SD card is formatted as internal storage, will work only in this device. You are also advised to make the backup of the data on the card. When you are ready to continue to adopt the SD card as internal storage, tap on “Erase and format”.
If there are still applications that are installed on the SD card that you forgot to switch back to the internal storage, the device will display a warning that the app will be erased. To see which apps are still installed on the SD card, tap “View apps”. If it does not matter to you that the app will be erased, tap on delete option.
The Android will format and encrypt your SD card. Once the formatting process is finished, you will be asked if you want to move data currently in the device’s internal storage to the SD card. This step will move your photos, files and some applications to the SD card. To migrate the data to the SD card now, tap “Move now”. This selects the SD card as the preferred storage location for all applications, databases, and data. If you still don’t want to migrate your data, touch “Move after”. The internal storage continues to be the preferred storage for all content.
If you choose “Move after”, you can migrate the data later by going to Settings> Storage and USB. Tap on the SD card drive, touch the menu button and select “Migrate data”.
When the process is complete, a message is displayed stating that the SD card is working. Tap “Done”.
After that the SD card is formatted as internal storage, the device’s internal storage and the SD card adotadoserão displayed on the screen Storage of the device when you access Settings -> Storage.
Touching on one of the items in Storage devices in the screen Storage in the Settings app allows you to view usage information about this local storage.
From now on, when you install an application, the Android decides intelligently where to put it based on the recommendations of the developer.
You can manually move apps between internal storage and the SD card, but this is not recommended and may cause unexpected consequences on some devices. If you absolutely must do it, go to Settings -> Storage and USB. Select the storage that currently contains the application that you want to move card (or internal SD) and tap “Applications.” Select the application that you want to move from the list and tap on the “Change”button.
You do not need to specify where to store the content of each application. By default, applications always store your content in the preferred storage location.
If you only want to store photos, movies and music on your SD card, use the SD card as portable storage is the best option for you. However, if you have a device running the Marshmallow with a slot for the SD card with internal storage limited, this is an easy solution to expand the internal storage capacity of the device.
Install App in Memory Card with the Partitioning of the SD
Unfortunately, Android can only move apps to the SD card if the developer of the application allow. If you want to move apps that are not approved, you may do so, but you will need to do the root on your smartphone. So if you have not already done so, do that first and then come back to this guide. Then, follow the steps below to the letter, and you should have some extra space on your SD card for apps.
First Step: Partition Your SD Card
Before you partition your SD card, make sure to back up all the data on your SD card. This procedure of partitioning will erase everything on it. Turn off your Android device, remove the SD card, insert it into an SD card reader on your PC and copy the files to your PC. Once done the backup of your data, leave the SD card in your PC to the partitioning process.
To get started, download and install a program such as MiniTool Partition Wizard on your PC and start the program. In the main program window, you will notice several disks listed. The hard disks in your PC are listed first, followed by the SD card. Select the disk to your drive to SD. Be very careful when selecting the disk from the SD card, because you don’t want to accidentally erase any one of the other disks.
Let’s delete the current partition on the SD card. This is the point at which all data on the SD card will be erased. So, again, make sure that you have backed up your data before you proceed with this process. Click with the right mouse button on the partition of the SD card and select “Delete” in the pop-up menu.
Now, let’s partition the drive to our Android device. The first partition will be used for data. Click with the right button on what is now the partition is not allocated on your SD card and select “Create” in the pop-up menu.
Create partitions on a SD card so that you can install apps on an Android device is different from the partitioning of a drive to a PC. For this to work, you must set both partitions on the SD card as “Primary”. Then, in the dialog box “Create New Partition”, select “Primary” in the drop-down list “Create As”. Then, you need to set the file system type for the partition of data. Select “FAT32” in the drop-down list “file System”.
You do not need to assign a “partition label” to the partition. By default, the size of this partition is the available size of the SD card. We need to resize it down to accommodate the second partition that we will create next to the application. As this is the data partition, you almost certainly will want to make it larger that the second partition of “apps”.
To change the size of the partition, move the cursor over the right edge of the yellow border in the section “Size and location” until it is displayed as a double line with two arrows, as shown below. Click and hold the yellow border and drag it to the left until you get the approximate size you want for your data.
After you complete the configuration of the data partition, click “OK”. The remaining space on the SD card is listed as not allocated below the data partition that you just created. Now, you need to set the second partition for the applications. Click with the right button of the mouse on the second partition is not allocated and select “Create”.
You will receive a dialog box warning that the new partition does not work on Windows (Remember when we said that to create partitions on a SD card to install applications directly on the card is different from partitioning a drive for use on a Windows PC?) The Windows can only recognize the first partition on a removable disk. However, as we are not using this SD card in a PC with Windows, we can continue to create the second partition. Click “Yes”.
As we mentioned above, both partitions must be set as “Primary”, then select “Primary” in the drop-down list “Create as”. For the application partition, “File System” need to be “Ext2”, “Ext3” or “Ext4”. If you are using a ROM pattern, select “Ext2”. Otherwise, select “Ext3” or “Ext4”. If you are not sure which one to choose, start with “Ext3” or “Ext4”.You can change the “file System” if your selection does not work.
Type a name for the “Partition Label”, if desired, and click “OK”. You do not need to change the size of the partition. The remaining space on the SD card is automatically used for the second partition. The two partitions are listed under the header of “Disk” (“Disk 2” in our case). However, the changes are not yet final. To finalize the partitions, click “Apply” on the toolbar.
A confirmation dialog box is displayed, making sure that you want to apply the changes. Click “Yes” to apply the changes.
The dialog box to apply the pending operations is displayed showing the progress of the operations.
When all the changes have been applied, the dialog box “successful” will be displayed. Click”OK”.
Select “Exit” from menu “General” to close the MiniTool.
Before you remove the SD card from your PC, you can copy all the files back to the SD card that you want to make available on your Android device. Do not worry about the Windows to deal with the two partitions. He will only see the partition “FAT32”, or data, where you want to place your files in any way.
Second Step: Download and install a program like Link2SD
Now that you have an SD card properly partitioned, re-enter it in your Android device and boot the device. Search for “Link2SD” in the Play Store or similar programs, and install. The guide that we will give here works for basically all the apps of this line. After the application is installed, tap on the icon “Link2SD” which appears on the home screen, or tap in the drawer “Applications” and launch it from there.
If you created your device using our guide, the SuperSU is installed on your device and you will see a dialog box asking you to grant full access to Link2SD. Tap to authorize.
The following dialog box displays the first time you open Link2SD, prompting you to select the file system on the second partition of the SD card. Do not select FAT32 / FAT16. This is the file system that you used for the first partition, for the data. You used “ext2”, “ext3” or “ext4”, then select the appropriate option for your second partition. Tap “OK”.
If things are working correctly you will see the dialog box “Restart your device”. Tap on “Restart device”.
If you receive a script error mount, probably chose the type of file system “ext” wrong when creating the second partition. Close the Link2SD, turn off your device, remove the SD card and put it back in your PC. Open the MiniTool Partition Wizard again, delete the second partition and create it again, this time using the other setting (probably “Ext3” or “Ext4”) that you have not used before. Walk through the steps again until you get to this point and should get the dialog box “Restart your device”. If you do not see the above dialog to select the file system from the second partition of your SD card, you can uninstall Link2SD and reinstall it. This should reset the application.
Once your device has rebooted, open Link2SD again. You should not see any dialog box display. Instead, you will see a list of the applications and some options at the top of the screen of the application. In this case, you have installed and set up Link2SD with success.
Third Step: change the default installation location of your applications
If you want to automatically install new apps in SD card instead of internal storage, we recommend to do this now. To do this, tap the menu button (three vertical dots) in the upper right corner of the screen.
Tap on “Settings” in the pop-up menu.
In the section “automatic Link”, tap on the check box “automatic Link”, and then click Settings “automatic link”.
Make sure the first three check boxes are selected. The last check box, the “Link internal data”, may not be activated in the free version of Link2SD. Thus, the data files for applications installed on SD card will still be stored on the internal storage.
Use the arrow keys to back at the top of each screen in the Link2SD to return to the previous screen. You can also use the Back button on your device.
For information about the internal storage and the SD card, select “storage” in the same menu that you accessed earlier in the “Settings”. The item “External SD” in the list is the data partition of your SD card where you can store files, documents, media files, etc. Any files transferred from your PC to the SD card are in this partition.
Step Four: Move Already Installed Applications to the SD Card
It is likely that you have some applications already installed in your smartphone that you’d like to migrate to the SD card. If we enter in device settings and access the “application Information” (by means of the settings menu of the app) to an app any one can see that normally we can’t move some apps to the SD card. The button “Move to SD card” will be dimmed. However, we can go beyond this limitation. We open the Link2SD and roll in the list of applications until we get to the program and tap on it.
The “application Info” in the Link2SD is similar to the information screen of the application in the settings of the device, but this information screen of the application allows us to move the app to the SD card. To do this, scroll to the application and click the “Link to SD card”. In this manner, the greater part of the app that is possible will be transferred to the SD card.
A confirmation screen is displayed, making sure that we want to move the selected application. Tap “OK”. A progress screen is displayed while the application is being moved.
The screen “Link to SD card” is displayed, allowing you to specify what types of application files that will be moved and linked to the second partition of your SD card.Let the first three types of selected files. Tap “OK” to continue.
A progress screen is displayed while the links are created. Tap “OK” on the screen that follows. You are returned to the application Info screen”. Note that a good part of the app now resides on the SD card. The data are still stored on the internal storage.
If you want to move any application installed directly on the SD card or moved from the internal storage to the SD card back to internal storage, just open the “Link2SD”. Open the application Info screen” for that application and tap on “Remove link” ” The application will be moved to the internal storage of the device.
After you install and move applications to the SD card, you must leave the card in the device when you use it. If you remove the device, all the apps moved to the SD card may not be used without the SD card.
Install App in the SD is Not Difficult
This may seem like a complicated process, but if you have an Android device with internal storage limited and you have an SD card slot as us, this can be a protection for life. Buy a microSD card with a reasonable amount of storage is much cheaper than buying a new device.
Got any questions? Leave in the comments your questions!