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Application Storage vs Internal Storage Question

Discussion in 'Motorola Droid 3' started by jfourman, Jul 19, 2011.

  1. jfourman
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    jfourman New Member

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    I received my D3 yesterday....Wow, what an upgrade from my D1!

    I know the D3 has 512MB RAM and 16GB Internal Storage. However, when I look at Storage Settings, it says I have 1.53GB remaining Application Storage and 11.35GB Internal Storage. I haven't installed an SD Card yet.

    Q1) How is the OS allocating between the 512MB RAM and the 16GB internal storage?

    Q2) Are my applications installed across memory and the storage?

    Q3) Do I have control of where the apps are stored between the onboard memory and onboard storage?

    Q4) Is there a Settings screen that will display the actual, physical specs (512MB RAM and 16GB Storage)?
  2. tcrews
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    tcrews Premium Member Premium Member Developer

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    The droid 3 has 512 meg ram (random access memory) for running OS and apps being used.

    It also has 16 gig of internal storage (basically like an internal sdcard/flash drive).

    This 16 gig is divided up in to different pieces, some to store the system (OS) files, some to store your apps that you download. It appears to use a little about 2.5 gig for this.

    The rest of the internal storage is mapped as /sdcard (about 11.5 gigs). This is where you store pictures, .mp3s, etc....and where apps you download will store their data (kindle books, launcherpro backups, etc...).

    A physical sd-card you install is "extra" space for you to store more pictures and songs and such.

    Q1) How is the OS allocating between the 512MB RAM and the 16GB internal storage?
    Two different pools.
    512MB ram is RAM for the phone's OS and running apps.
    16GB internal storage is storage of the system files and apps downloaded.

    Q2) Are my applications installed across memory and the storage?
    Memory is for running apps
    Storage is for storing apps
    There is no cross memory usage

    Q3) Do I have control of where the apps are stored between the onboard memory and onboard storage?
    No. On board memory is not for you to use, it's for the OS and running applications.
    On board storage is divided in to sections, some for downloaded apps from the Market and where the system files are and another section for your files (documents, pictures, songs, etc..).

    The 1.53GB remaining is the /data mounted partition for apps you get from the Market (or other sources). The 11.35GB is for where you would put pictures, music and such. They are both off the internal 16GB storage just separated in to different partitions. (2gb for /data, 11.35 for /sdcard).

    Adding an additional (real) sd-card to the slot will mount as /sdcard-ext giving you more storage for pictures, music and such.
  3. jfourman
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    jfourman New Member

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    tcrews: This is a perfect answer to my question. Thank you.

    I am an old techie and should have understood this. On my D1, I was always having to manage my 256MB internal storage by moving as many apps as possible to my SD Card. Even so, I continually was getting a low space message. I was equating the D1's 256MB Internal Storage with Memory when actually it is equated to the 16GB (2.5GB allocated for /data) internal storage on the D3.

    So... 512MB RAM on the D3 seems to be wholly adequate. Why are some complaining that it isn't 1GB? Would performance be enhanced by any measurable amount by having 1GB RAM? What would be the advantages given the common apps and memory requirements on an Android GB Smartphone?
  4. AZDroid09
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    AZDroid09 New Member

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    You can move apps to the media storage as well, I have several apps that I only use occasionally, mostly games, that I have moved to media area.
  5. tcrews
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    tcrews Premium Member Premium Member Developer

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    Best way to look at the phone in comparison to your original Droid is like this..

    Droid:
    256 Meg RAM
    256 Meg internal storage (apps)
    16 GB external /sdcard used for user files
    Froyo allowed for App2SD giving you some more space on top of the 256 meg internal storage though using up some of your /sdcard space.

    Droid 3:
    512 Meg RAM
    16 GB internal storage with 2gb for apps and 11+gb for /sdcard user files
    Empty card slot for /sdcard-ext for additions user files

    You can use the same "Apps2SD" feature on the Droid 3, though it's moving from the internal 2gb partition (/data) to the internal 11+gb partition (/sdcard).

    It's under the normal menu/applications/manage applications and when selecting an app you use the "move to media area" as that is what they call it.

    An added sdcard is just additional storage for user files.


    As to why people complain about 512MEG ram, people just like to complain. ;)
  6. AZDroid09
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    AZDroid09 New Member

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    If you use a lot of apps that get push notifications, live wallpapers, lots of widgets, etc then you will start to have issues like screen redraws. I am deliberately testing the limits right now during my 14 days that I have the option to return this phone. At first I was getting very minor redraws, like the Quick Contacts widget just needing to reload contact pics after returning to the home screen from either browsing sites with tons of graphics and flash or using more intense apps. The more I load up, the worse the redraws get. Now Sometimes on going back to the home screen the screens are blank for a few seconds while all app icons and widgets have to reload. More RAM would help reduce the redraws.
  7. apotheosis415
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    apotheosis415 New Member

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    adding a 16 or 32 gb micro sd?

    So then is the device only expandable with a microsd to add 16gigs more? i was looking for class 10 32gig and they are very pricey. Mayeb the 16's are cheaper for 10 rating.

    Looking to buy a card here soon.

    Thanks!


  8. tcrews
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    tcrews Premium Member Premium Member Developer

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    No, you can use up to a 32gb sdcard. Not sure if class 10 is really necessary though....
    If you want the larger cards, look for a class 6 or so. I haven't seen anything that would require a class 10 card.
  9. aes
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    aes New Member

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    Upgrading storage

    If I purchase a 32GB sd card, who do I move the data on the current Droid2 storage card to the new card please?
  10. btonetbone
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    btonetbone New Member

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    The easiest way is likely to hook your old phone and/or card to your computer. Create a temporary folder somewhere, and copy all of the stuff you want to keep into the folder. Unhook the old card/phone, and hook up the new one. Copy the files from your temporary folder onto the new card/phone and you are good to go. You probably don't need to keep any of the generated files or folder from various programs; the main things to keep would be photos, music, and any other of your personal files.
  11. KidCuda
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    KidCuda New Member

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    Funny I only noticed that today. What is the advantage of the media area?

    Sent from my DROID3 using Tapatalk
  12. Raptor007
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    Raptor007 New Member

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    I picked up a Lexar 16GB Class 6 card so I can put photo's and video on it. I got it for $25 on Amazon so no biggie. I have a spare 32GB class 2 if I really want to put some movies on it to watch on the go but so far that hasn't been a real issue for me.

    What I am curious about and would like to see is a utility app for the D3 like the one for the XOOM where I could use a USB dongle that had a micro USB to USB receiving port to accept thumb drives to support external media. Since the XOOM still doesn't support the microSD card, glad I sold mine off.
  13. PuneE
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    PuneE New Member

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    ppl complain b/c it's a legitimate issue. even tho it's DDR2, quite apparently it's not enuf from actual use w constant redraws. If there are constant redraws NOW, how will the device fare in 6mo.s? in 12mo.s? in 18mo.s? in 24mo.s to fullfill the duration of their contract? It has a dualcore power which is yet to be harnessed by developers.. & when it does, will 512MB DDR2 be enough? what's the use of dualcore power if it's crippled by limited RAM? What about when ICS hits come year end? Can it handle it? how much worse are the reDraws going to get if it's already an issue now??

    Internal 'SDCard':
    I want the option to default app data to be saved to my actual SD card. what use are my backup files, my pictures taken from the camera, etc if my phone locks up in one way or another and all my files are stuck in the device. Sure, I can manually transfer them over to the extSD, but how often will that be done? Why does it HAVE to be that, when in fact, it shouldnt have to be that way. We dont exactly wake up knowing a phone is going to break that day.

    My GF's OG Droid just blackscreen'd on her from one minute of txting to another. If that were to happen to the D3, how can I mount/unmount the phone to retrieve files if I cant see where to touch? (Unless it's straight Plug&play). If there's water damage to the device, I would have to wait days of proper drying before risking turning the device back on to retrieve files, but w an external storage as default, I can pull out the card & have my files immediately.

    arent these valid points to be upset about?
  14. tcrews
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    tcrews Premium Member Premium Member Developer

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    512meg ram is not the reason there is lag. Sorry, tons of Droid's with 256meg of memory are still running fine with no lag....and that's 1/2 the memory and a 1/4 of the CPU (550mhz cpu vs. 1 ghz dual core cpu).

    It's more on Motorola's blur (application layer...whatever) than the memory. Also stock Android AOSP isn't the fastest for homescreen/launcher refreshes coming out of apps, etc..

    No....people complain about 512meg ram because they like to complain and need something to complain about. If the Droid 3 had 1 gig of ram, there would still be the same lag issues.
  15. PuneE
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    PuneE New Member

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    i spose i cant speak for everyone in general, but my complaint on 512RAM is derived from my complaint of lags, redraws, etc since 1ghz CPU sounds plenty to me. Maybe it's the size of the cache that's too small? i wouldnt kno specifically, I only have a vague sense of what all these specs mean & how they work together. I spose if we had 1GB of RAM w the same lag issues, then the complaint would just fall back onto MotoBlur for just being such a resource hog. It's just that since blur is so insistant on our devices & commonly believed to bloat down on our performance, then at least give us something that can handle it smoothly along w w/e future updates may come in at least the next 2yrs.

    i dont have much of an issue w ppl complaining as long as it's not excessive & outrageous. I feel it's in our continued dissatisfaction that we continue to propel improvement, but yet still have a level on contentment w what has currently been accomplished.
  16. jpblock82
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    jpblock82 New Member

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    Install launcher pro, and witness ur redraw woes disappear. The first few days I had my D3, I tried to stock home/blur launcher and wasn't happy with it.. setup LP and boom.. pure satisfaction. The 512MB is plenty, and perhaps a later update for blur will improve these issues... but don't count on it. When D3 gets rooted, that's when this beast will truly shine. Gone will be the blur overlay, bloatware, etc and in turn, freed up resources.

    Sent from my DROID3 using DroidForums
  17. PuneE
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    PuneE New Member

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    ..and my complaint about the SD partitioning is that they limited us to roughly 1.5+GBs for apps, w the other partitioned as a virtual SD card.

    while 1.5GBs may seem like an abundance & a non-issue at this point, we have to keep in mind that app size has increased dramatically in the past yr. Iv read in the past few months that the market will soon support apps hundreds of MBs in size (if not already so), might have even said GBs. Having a 1.5GB cap out of a 16GB Internal Memory makes me nervous coming from a Droid1 where they thought 256MB ROM would be more than sufficient to support apps before Apps2SD was made available in Froyo. & even now still using my D1, having push every possible app I could to SD, even pushing ones that arent officially App2SD support, Im still struggling keeping my ROM 30+MB Free (u get the low memory alert @ 25MB & some srvcs like txt msging gets suspended).

    Why cant they just keep it simple the way it already works best and leave one lump of memory w/o the partitioning? Why should i even have to hassle w App2SD when Im spose to have 16GB of internal? & now I have to juggle files between a virtual SD and the actual extSD. grah~!!

    Im anxiously waiting for root so we can finally "FIX" this issue.
  18. jpblock82
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    jpblock82 New Member

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    Really???? The roughly 2GB for just apps seems plenty... more than enough really.. what do u intend to install that could use so much data?? On my D1, only once did I have, "your running out of room"... and that was a simple fix.. moved 'em to the SDcard..

    Sent from my DROID3 using DroidForums
  19. aes
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    aes New Member

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    Thank you btonebone for your help!
  20. darkmatter
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    darkmatter New Member

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    I really like how moto did the memory for the d3. When you do apps2sd it puts it into the media storage. So, in a way, you still get 16gigs to install apps, while being able to swap out sd cards at will.

    My d1 I never removed my sd card because I was afraid of what would happen with all my apps moved to sd card. You don't get that with d3.

    Sent from my DROID3 using Tapatalk
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