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Using rooted file explorers like Solid Explorer, Mix Mixplorer, I cannot see content of /sdcard/Android/data

Why? How to overcome?

1 Answer 1

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Though it may be trivial, posting the solution to make it easier for those seeking answers

  • It's because of restrictions imposed in Android 11. See Storage updates in Android 11. Apps are permitted to see only their folders and not of those of other apps,with these restrictions.

  • If your explorer is updated for Android 11 and you can't see, you can view the content going the long way root/data/media/0/Android/data. If your explorer supports, add a favorite tab. Alternatively /sdcard/Android/data.

  • Use a file explorer that is not updated to Android 11 (SDK 30) and you can view directly as before (This is my assumption, haven't tested)

Edit : I just checked SD Maid app. This app has a file explorer built-in and targets SDK 30. Surprisingly, file explorer of this app can access without any issues. I am guessing that this app has exemptions given the nature of it's purpose and maybe those exemptions aren't given to file explorers.. From the developer on mail

I did not make specific changes to the Android/data browsing but SD Maid already had fallback logic that automatically determines what permission levels are required to access a path.

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  • Ugh! I didn't expect "root apps" would be affected by that "scoped storage" enforcements. But I wouldn't expect devs of such apps updating the targetSDK unaware of that, either. I have no Android-11 device, but maybe you can check via adb shell with su if root is really (fully) affected?
    – Izzy
    Nov 30, 2020 at 1:22
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    @Izzy Developers are aware. It's being discussed in their threads on XDA too. So, it's not a problem of root. They must be having their reasons of updating to latest target SDK. I even left a poor review (later amended), he replied on mail, that this is because of Android 11. So Mr. Root is losing some power :( // One would think it is fair that they updated app description to cover this, without users unpleasantly discovering
    – beeshyams
    Nov 30, 2020 at 1:43
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    They're updating because Google forces them. There are deadlines. No new apps are accepted if not targeting SDK<new> starting day X, and no updates starting day Z. That said I wonder: root is root – the highest level in the hierarchy. So who would top that? Strange.
    – Izzy
    Dec 1, 2020 at 0:35
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    @Triynko also Google Photos can't access other App photos, or file managers work properly
    – netizen
    Jan 26, 2021 at 13:44
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    @Izzy I just tested using adb shell on Android 12 (Pixel 3a) and Android 13 (Galaxy M12), and I could browse the files there without root access.
    – Andrew T.
    Feb 19, 2023 at 15:02

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