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Last year I purchased the app grüvtron by Sound Trends LLC. Presumably they later removed the app from the google play store / market. Their website used to have a "buy android version" but now only mentions ios.

The app can no longer be found by searching the market (neither on the device, nor on the web). I can no longer see it under "all apps" / "my apps" (again, neither on the device, nor on the web). The only reason I knew this app was "missing" was because I remembered owning it.

Using google I could find an old market link in a forum to https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.soundtrends.gruvtron This link normally gives "We're sorry, the requested URL was not found on this server".

However, if I happen to be logged in to my google account that owns the app, I get a market page for the app (!) from which I can chose to install it! Doing so, it indeed gets sent to my device and 'everything works' (though, the app graphics are broken -- but I don't think that is relevant here.)

This is worrying. Obviously I have no idea how many of the ~100s of apps I own that have silently disappeared from "my apps", and thus are left out when I browse that list for things to re-install. And even if I remembered a specific app, how would I find the corresponding market link so that I could re-install it?

So my primary question is: Is there a list anywhere on the web or on the android device that lists all apps I own -- including the ones pulled from the market? and preferably with market links?

I have the google market receipts, but those are a pain to go through (it is not really a "list") Worse, in there I only see a company name and textual app name, i.e., no market link. If there had been any reference to the app id (e.g., here, 'com.soundtrends.gruvtron') I could at least have re-constructed the market url.


Edit: a few clarifications follows:

  1. A satisfactory answer must describe a way to get a list of apps which includes those I have purchased, but which after the date of purchase have been pulled from the market by developers. The list should include either market URLs or package-names.

  2. The single one of my purchased apps where I know this has happened (grüvtron) does not appear under my "my apps" list (Menu > My Apps in market app), and I assume this is intentional design for apps that have been pulled (though I find it an odd design choice).

  3. I am currently on ICS, with market 3.7.13. The device is the ASUS transformer TF101 tablet.

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Yeah I know exactly why you're asking. I had a malware app get removed only today and there may be more, but there's no easy way to track this. Good job, dude. –  warsong Jul 12 '12 at 19:37
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2 Answers 2

The application listed above, "AppBak," gets its data from the android package manager class; if you've got root access, you can see the source (/data/dev/packages.list) which is a simple text file that lists only currently installed apks, but there's also an XML file in the same subdirectory, of the same name, which is considerably larger: packages.xml, and where it seems even uninstalled packages tend to remain. I found proof of my former bloatware freezer application in there once, and while it didn't do me a world of good, at least I had a resource I could check to see what went disappearing in the night.

The question I can't answer is if the Market can now wipe that data from packages.xml. But I'd point out that the PackageManager documentation has a Get_Uninstalled_Packages constant on that page, so I'd guess not.

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Looking at the f-droid's repository, this app, 'AppBak' will generate the list of apps installed on your handset into a simple flat text file on your SD-Card.

The crucial thing to remember, is the 'package-name' is the most important part of it, and is at the developer's choosing and discretion.

For example, an app called 'FooBar', that appears in the application drawer, the package name would be 'com.foo.bar.app', from there it is quite easy to reconstruct a market link from that as in:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.foo.bar.app
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Seems to be a useful tool, thanks! But this will only give you the package-name of apps installed on the device, right? The main issue here is to find package-names of apps I previously purchased, but do not currently have installed (and cannot install, since they are invisible.) –  Rickard Armiento Jul 11 '12 at 23:39
    
It lists the apps installed on the device - yes –  t0mm13b Jul 11 '12 at 23:41
    
It should show up on the play store app on your handset, tap Menu > My Apps, not on the web based on PC that is, unless I have misunderstood you? FWIW, my Play Store version is 3.7.13 –  t0mm13b Jul 11 '12 at 23:42
    
Not for apps that have been pulled from the market, I think. I guess it could be a specific problem with the app I mention in the question, since I don't know another one I both own and that has been pulled. I'm also on 3.7.13. Can you confirm seeing any app in your "My apps" that has been pulled from market? –  Rickard Armiento Jul 11 '12 at 23:58
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Based on above mentioned information, you could built yourself a script which checks the URLs (without you being logged in). For "disappeared" apps, an "Error 404" (page not found) should be returned. –  Izzy Jul 12 '12 at 9:24
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