What Is an Application Manager in Android?
A mobile application manager is a useful tool that is used by network administrators enabling the installation, removal, updation, monitoring or auditing of various software programs installed on your smartphones and tablets remotely. Each Android device comes equipped with an inbuilt application manager. But, if you are not satisfied with it, you always have an option of downloading a third-party app for it.
What Is Link2SD?
Link2SD is an amazing application for Android users. Any Android 2.0+ user can move games, apps and other data to SD card or to another partition on the SD card. It works brilliantly in managing the apps and the storage on your device. It is a free application that can be downloaded from Google Play Store.
To use this application, it is first required to root your device and then create an extra partition on the SD card. Let us see how to proceed with all these steps one at a time.
Rooting the Android Device
- The very first step is to back up all the personal data that you have on your device to either Google, your computer, or to any cloud storage service. This is important because rooting wipes off all the personal data from the device and hence you need to save it somewhere to install back later.
- Don’t save this data to SD card because the SD card will be formatted to create a partition and hence all that is stored on this card will be erased.
- Next tap on “Settings,” followed by clicking on “About Phone.”
- Now, tap on “Developer Options” and tick “USB debugging.”
- The time has come to download any third-party rooting application compatible with your Android device and install it.
- Once you install this rooting application, simply follow the on-screen instructions. The moment rooting process is complete you will see a “Superuser” app in your Apps folder, which is an indication that the rooting of your device is successfully completed.
Creating Partition on SD Card
This process takes few minutes and here’s how you should proceed.
- Start by downloading and installing a partition wizard from the Play store.
- Then, insert the SD card into the adapter or the SD card reader and insert this reader into the USB slot of computer.
- In case you want any file from this SD card to be saved, move or copy them to the computer or else they will be wiped off when the SD card gets formatted.
- Launch the Partition Wizard app on your computer.
- Now, right-click on your SD card at the bottom of the Partition Wizard and select “Delete.”
- To create the new partition, right-click on the SD card again and click on “Create New.” It will display “Create New Partition” window on-screen.
- Go to “File System” drop-down menu and select “FAT32”.
- Next from “Create as” drop-down menu select “Primary”.
- You will be prompted to enter the desired partition size. Enter it and then press “OK”. This will create a partition on the SD card and will be treated as a primary partition of this SD card.
- Again, repeat the step of right-clicking on the SD card at the bottom of the Partition Wizard window and select “Create New.”
- Within the “Create as” drop-down menu, verify that “Primary” is selected.
- To make the second partition on the SD card for storing the games and apps, from the “File System” drop-down menu, select “Ext2”.
- Again enter the desired partition size on being prompted to do so and click on “OK”.
- Once both partitions are done, click on “Apply” at the top of the Partition Wizard. The SD card is now partitioned into two according to the size you have entered.
How to Use Link2sd?
All the preparations required to use Link2sd are complete now. The device is rooted and the SD card is partitioned. To use the application manager app Link2sd, here’s how you should proceed.
- Take out the SD card from the computer and insert it back into the Android device.
- Switch on the phone or tablet and launch the Google Play Store app.
- Search for Link2SD application here and download it on your device. Once the download is complete, install and launch it.
- Next tap on “ext2,” followed by tapping on “OK”.
- You will be prompted to restart your phone. Do it and reopen the Link2SD application.
- Open “Settings” within Link2SD and then enable the “Autolink” option in it. Once you enable it, the device will move all the new apps and games automatically to the second partition that you created on your SD card.
- If you want the existing games and apps also to be moved to this second partition, then you need to place a checkmark next to “Create link” too.
- The memory status of the SD card partitions as well as the internal memory of the device can be viewed anytime by tapping on “Storage info” in Link2SD.
Salient Features of Link2SD
- It links dex, lib and apk files of apps to the SD card.
- The newly installed apps get automatically linked to the second partition on the SD card.
- Even if any user app doesn’t support moving to SD feature, it is forcefully moved to the desired destination.
- You can see that the app supports moving to SD with apps2sd.
- Gives notification when all the movable apps are installed.
- Helps in converting the system apps into user apps and vice versa.
- Can freeze and un-freeze the system as well as the user applications.
- If the total cache in your device exceeds the specified size, it sends a notification.
- It lists all applications and displays information like detailed size and link status.
- Allows you to search applications by name.
- Shortcuts for various applications are created.
- It supports more than 40 languages.
How Does Link2SD Link Obb and External Data?
The obb and external data files on devices with emulated SD card are not on the external or real SD card, but on the internal storage. So, this app moves all such files to the external SD card. Whether it will go to first or second partition of this SD depends upon your selection. The bind option of the mount command then remounts the file hierarchy at external SD card, though the files are still available at the original position.
Mandatory Requirements for Making This App Work
This app works on all Android 2.0+ devices and it requires two things:
- The rooting of the device on which you want to install and run Link2SD
- Create two partitions on the SD card
Once you have done these two things by following the steps given above, you are all set to enjoy this amazing application manager on your Android phones. For Link2SD to work, it is mandatory to create a secondary partition on the SD card and this app uses this secondary partition as a segment of internal storage. All .dex files, apk files, lib files and other internal data files are moved directly to this partition that is required when OS mounts on boot. A symbolic link, on the other hand, is created in the original location. Thus, the file structure that the system expects is retained, while most of the data goes into the SD card.