Use Link2SD to Expand Internal Memory of Android.
So, you install a new app on your Android. But as soon as you hit the install button, an “out of memory” error appears. Now you can always go back and free up space by removing less used apps . But there is a better alternative.
You can convert some of the free space on the SD card to internal memory. And later, use this space to install applications.
Starting with Android KitKat, you cannot install apps to an SD card. You can only use to save images, videos and application data. However, with root access and applications like link2SD, you can change this. The process isn’t entirely obvious, but once you set it up, everything works like a charm.
What do I need?
Before we start, make sure you have a rooted
- Android with an SD card slot.
- SD card (obviously).
- Internet access to install applications (such as link2sd and AParted)
How do we do it
Now we will do it in 4 steps –
Step 1. Root the device.
Step 2. Back up your SD card data.
Step 3. Create a partition on your SD card.
Step 4. Install and configure Link2SD.
So let’s get started.
# 1 Root Android
Root level permission is required to link apps to SD card. So, make sure you have rooted your device if you haven’t already.
How can I do it? Unfortunately, there is no one way to root every android. Each device is different, as is the rooting process.
The best way to find out how to root your Android is to do a simple Google search with your device name. Also, check if your device is compatible with Kingo root – the popular one-click root app.
If you have a rooted smartphone, proceed to the next step.
# 2 Back up data
Before installing apps on your SD card, you need to format it first. And this “ formatting the memory card ” will erase everything you have on it. So yeah, make sure you create a copy of its content.
You can make a backup by connecting your phone to your computer with a USB cable and then copying the files to your hard drive. Or, if you have a Wi-Fi network, use Airdroid. It’s fast and doesn’t require cables.
Once you’ve made a backup, proceed to the next step.
# 3 Divide the SD card into sections:
Each OS has its own file system preferences.
Most memory cards are in FAT32 format, which is good if you want to use them with Windows and MAC. But since we also want to use this SD card as internal storage, we will have to format part of it to ext2, the popular Linux filesystem.
So, in a nutshell, we will create two partitions on the SD card:
One half will be in ext2 format, which will be used as our internal memory
The other half will be in fat32 format so that we can use it as a regular SD card for storing photos, videos, etc.
For the sake of simplicity in this tutorial, I’ll take a 2GB card and format 1GB to FAT32 and the other half to ext2.
So follow the instructions
1. Before making any changes to the SD card, first go to settings and unplug it.
2. Then install AParted and open it. It will ask for root permission, grant that.
Well, there are several tutorials on the internet that suggest using a desktop tool (like a mini-partitions tool) to split your SD card. But this is just a tedious process – remove the card from the phone, insert it into the computer, and then repeat the same process again. It’s a waste of time.
Instead, if you use AParted, you can get the same results in less time and with less effort. The app works fine. However, if you run into any problem, you can always use the mini-partitions tool.
3. Now, to create a partition, click on part 1, in the “Format” section, select “fat32” and specify the storage that you want to transfer to the memory card as the size.
I will highlight half, i.e. 1 GB, but you can choose what you want.
4. Then click on green plus and the Part 2 window will appear. Under Format, select ext2 (you can also choose ext3 or ext4, but if you don’t know what it is, use ext2 only). And again, select the remaining space for part 2.
Then click “Apply Changes” and confirm it. Within seconds, it will format your SD card in two different partitions.
To make sure the partition was successful or not, go to storage settings. You will see that the size of your SD card has halved. However, you won’t be able to see the ext2 partition.
# 4 Install and configure link2sd
Finally, it’s time to move all bulky apps to the SD card.
To do this, we will use the free link2sd application. There are other alternatives to this app (like apps2sd), but it doesn’t move all files to SD.
In addition, the play store has a pro version of link2SD. And the only difference between free and paid is that the later does not contain ads and can move app data to SD card as well.
Now, in most cases, this application data won’t matter much. This is usually about 10% of the total memory that you are moving. However, if you want to, buy the paid version. It is also a good way to support the developer.
In this case, I’ll choose the free version of the link2SD card.
1. Start by installing link2SD from the Play Store. Then open it up and give it root access.
2. Choose a file system for your internet storage. If you remember, we set this to ext2 format , so select it and restart your device.
3. Now after restarting Android, open the link2SD app again. You will see all the apps that you have installed on your device.
To move apps to SD card, you can filter apps that are in your internet storage and then search by size.
4. Now, to move them, click on the 3 vertical dots in the upper right corner, select several options and select the applications you want to move.
I would not move system apps to the SD card, because if you accidentally delete them or remove the card, other dependent apps may not work correctly. So avoid system apps whenever possible.
5. After you finish selecting applications, click on the three vertical dots again and from the menu select move to SD card make sure each file type is checked with a checkbox OK. And everything, all the applications you have selected will be transferred to the SD card.
6. To make sure all future apps are automatically installed to your SD card go to settings check the auto link.
To uninstall apps, you can distinguish apps from SD card and then uninstall them. Also, from now on, think twice before removing the SD card as you now store your apps on it as well.
All in all link2sd is one of those apps that you installed once and forgot about it.
RELATED: 6 Helpful Tips to Free Up Space on Your Android Device # Top Image from Pixabay