How to Move Apps to your SD Memory Card on Android?

by Guest Author on February 25, 2012


Currently, some handsets running Android 2.2 let you move some of your apps to run from the SD memory card instead of the phone’s operating memory. You may find yourself wanting to do this at some point if you have a lot of apps installed and start to run out of space for new ones.

From Menu > Settings > Applications > Manage applications tap on an app and, if it’s available, you’ll see an option to move it to the SD card. A small part of it (a “stub”) will remain in the phone’s RAM so that the app can function properly, and any widgets that are part of the app will stop working. Officially, it’s not possible for you to manually move apps back and forth to the SD card. Your phone would make this decision for you based on available memory. Even if your handset supports it, the capability for an app to be moved to the SD card has to be included in the installer by its developer, so may not yet be available in all apps.

Moving an app to the SD card is as simple as pressing this button. Want to move it back? Next time you look, this button will say Move to phone.

Apps to Manage other Apps:

Task killers: one app to rule them all A task killer is a small app that you can use to selectively close (kill) other apps on your phone. If you have one of these installed, you’ll be able to see that a surprising number of applications seem to be running in the background and it’s tempting to routinely kill as many of these as you can in the hope of making your phone run a bit faster. In fact, it costs the phone as much power to hold “nothing” in its memory as it does to hold actual data, so using one of these programs to constantly kill apps in an attempt to reclaim resources is largely a waste of time, and may actually be causing you more problems than it’s solving – you may miss notifications, alarms or email updates, or be forcing the phone to reload regularly used apps back into memory all the time instead of just leaving them dormant for when they’re needed. But while task killer apps aren’t really necessary for managing phone’s memory usage, they do have their uses.

If you have a program that’s crashed or isn’t behaving properly, an app like Advanced Task Killer will give you a handy shortcut to force-quit and reload it, which usually solves the problem. The same thing can be achieved, however, by going to Menu > Settings > Applications > Manage applications and scrolling down to the app you’d like to quit. Selecting the app takes you to a detailed screen with all kinds of information, including a button to Force Stop and one to Uninstall the app altogether. Certain apps may continually run in the background unless you deliberately quit them. If there’s an app that you’re convinced is running your battery into the ground, you can use a task killer to regularly nip it in the bud and see if things improve. There are also several resource meter apps on the Market, such as SystemPanel, which combines a task killer with the ability to monitor individual apps’ long-term resource usage. Handy for troubleshooting a slow or laggy phone.

Most of the task killer apps on the Market include an “ignore list” option, which you should use to specify which apps won’t close when you blanket-kill all your running tasks. Usually this is achieved by long-clicking an app’s name and clicking Add to ignore list or the equivalent.

Tip: Some task killers will automatically ignore Android’s system apps, but if yours doesn’t, you should add the following to your ignore list. These, plus anything starting with “.com”, need to be allowed to run so that your phone behaves itself properly: Alarm clock, Bluetooth share, Browser, Calendar, Gmail, Market, Messaging, My uploads, Package installer, Settings, Voice dialer and Voice search.

Application backup utilities

Because your contact lists and calendar events and email are synced with your Google account online, there’s no need to back these up, but sometimes it can be useful to have a backup of your apps. You may want to temporarily uninstall an app to make more room on your phone’s internal memory, or return your phone to its original state and start again. There are a few apps that will do this for you, but Astro File Manager is one that you’re more than likely going to have other uses for, too. Once you’ve backed up your apps to the phone’s SD storage, you can save them to your computer via a USB connection. Start Astro and go to Menu then Tools then Application Manager/Backup. Select the apps you want to copy and tap the Backup button. Tapping across to the Backed Up Apps tab at the top will display your available backups, which can be reinstalled.

Tip: For a more comprehensive backup solution that includes you SMS messages, phone settings and other data, look to MyBackup Pro.

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