Looks like in Android 10, "install from unknown sources" was changed from a global setting to a per-app permission. Apparently in order to install APKs now I need to whitelist each app that I'm trying to do this from. However, none of the apps I actually need to do this from (default system "Files" browser and Root Browser) even have this setting. Root Browser has a context menu to open with Package Installer but it doesn't work?

Do I need to get another third-party app just to install APKs from the filesystem? This is so lame. Thanks.

Edit: I am on a Pixel 3 running stock Android 10.0.

1 Answer 1


To disable /enable this permission :

Settings → notifications→ Special app access→ Install unknown apps →your app

AFAIR, this change came about from Oreo (Android 8)

Solid explorer and Mixplorer are the one's I use and they both install apk's (OnePlus 7, Android 10)


(From Mixplorer - click to enlarge)

  • I know that, but my issue is that none of my Filesystem browser apps including the system one show up in this list (even with system apps set to show) or have the permission available in their system app info screens. Do you know of any file browser apps that can install APKs?
    – Eliot
    Dec 19, 2019 at 17:44
  • 1
    @Eliot you can also try granting permission to your file explorer apps from CLI using appops: android.stackexchange.com/a/216092/218526 Dec 19, 2019 at 19:15

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