Link2SD Android App

I have a Motorola Milestone Android phone that I bought almost two years ago. I know that it is already out of date, but it is a good phone and I like it. I thought about getting in one the new Galaxy Nexus phone that is coming out soon, but I have other things I need to spend money on besides a new phone. The one problem I have had on my Milestone though is a lack of memory for apps. It had gotten to the point that I could not add anything new without getting out of space errors.

I have a 16GB SD card in my Milestone but I was not using all of it so I thought if I could move apps to my SD card that would sure help in making the phone useful again. I looked at upgrading to Froyo but my phone is rooted and besides the move to SD card feature the downgrade in performance that might come with the upgrade was not something I wanted. So I went looking for an app that could help me move apps to my SD card and free up some space.

After searching and trying a few apps I came across the Link2SD app. It required taking my 16GB SD card out and re-partitioning it with an extra partition for Link2SD to use but that seemed like a minor inconvenience so I took the card out, made a backup copy of everything on the card and proceeded to re-partition my SD card with two primary partitions. One 15GB for my information and a 1GB primary partition for Link2SD to use. After the partitions were formatted (I used FAT32 if you want to know), I copied all my data back to the 15GB partition and inserted my SD card back in my Milestone and booted it up.

Once my phone booted up I installed Link2SD from the Market and grated it root permissions. It was a pretty simple to start moving the apps to my new SD card partition. I did only a few apps to see how well it worked. It has been over week now and I have been happily adding apps back to my phone that I had removed, like Angry Birds, Google SkyMap and a few others. It has been great to be able to have some room to install new apps on my phone again.

If you don’t have Froyo on your Android phone but are rooted you might want to take a look at Link2SD. It has been a great app to add to my Milestone and has given me a reason to not upgrade quite yet to the next Nexus phone (even if I really want one). I am sure if I hold out long enough the next Nexus phone will be even better. 🙂

ES File Manager

You know you are a computer geek when instead of looking first for cool and exciting games to play on your new Android phone you go hunting for a file manager. Not that I did not download some games as well but a decent file manager is just a requirement to organize all of the media I am going to create using the built in camera, video recorder and of course to keep track of all the audio and other files I want to load from my desktop onto the phone. That is why one of the requirements I had for a file manager was to be able to connect to a file share on my home network.

There are many good file managers available for Android but they all lacked the essential feature to be able to connect to a network share. The best app I found was ES File Manager. Not only can you use it to manage files on the local SD card but it can connect to Windows/Samba shares and FTP servers. This was exactly what I was looking for. Now I can simply connect to my main desktop Samba share and copy the files I want on my phone easily. No need to connect the phone via USB cable. This also makes it easy to copy and move photos and video off the phone to my main desktop. The only thing that would make it easier is if Dropbox finally got their Android app finished so I could just sync those files. Until then ES File Manager makes it easy to do.

Check out the official ES File Manager website for more details. Great app for those that want to browse local network file shares. Not sure why people use the other file managers.