Android Enthusiasts Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for enthusiasts and power users of the Android operating system. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have a bunch of complete crap apps on my phone which I can't move to the SD card, so they are taking up about 10mb of space on my phone, which is irritating when I want to update my phone as I need 25mb, so have to delete loads of apps.

I was considering rooting my phone, but this apparently doesn't allow you to delete them. So how do I go about this? I don't want to run a custom rom and am happy to stick with HTC's regular firmware, but I want to 'unbrand' my phone.

Any ideas please?

share|improve this question
up vote 8 down vote accepted

Rooting your phone without a custom ROM can be used to removed crapware. I have a french "Orange" HTC Desire, and here is what I did to remove the Orange apps:

  • use Unrevoked to root your phone (close Eclipse because it can prevent Unrevoked from detecting the reboot, use USB Drive Mode if you try to root on a Mac as they say it's more reliable)
  • once you're finished, reboot your phone in recovery mode (shutdown, press the - key and the Power button at the same time)
  • mount the /system partition as read/write (easy, it's a simple GUI)
  • open a shell on the phone with the command "adb shell"
  • get a root shell with the command "su"
  • go the /system/apps folder and remove whatever you want with rm (remove both APK and ODEX files that you don't need)
  • close your shell
  • unmount the /system partition
  • reboot

With this method, I removed the useless Tetris and other games demos that were on my phone.

I still don't know if rooting your phone will prevent me from getting OTA updates in the future, that's why I haven't got a custom ROM yet.

share|improve this answer
As far as I know, rooting your handset will prevent you from getting any OTA updates, yet it's the only way, I know of, for getting rid of any app that was added by the maker. – Omar Al Barahamtoshey Dec 11 '10 at 0:15
Thanks, I'll give it a go and see what happens – David Yell Dec 13 '10 at 10:05
In general rooting by itself shouldn't prevent OTA updates, but removing system apps probably will. – Erik Sep 9 '12 at 23:05

Use Titanium Backup, it will let you uninstall system apps simply and easily if you have root. Rooting will not prevent you from getting OTA updates (how would the network know you're rooted?) in general, and you can almost certainly un-root if you want to update later.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.