I am using MI Note 5 Pro android version 9.0 and Windows 10 Basic. On USB plugging('File Transfer' selected), I can only access files from Phone by normal copy paste(ctrl-c/v) but cannot access full file path from Phone because there is no drive letter assigned.

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where disk is sd card.

I am getting files path as "This PC\Redmi Note 5 Pro\Internal shared storage" but want something like "P:\Redmi Note 5 Pro\Internal shared storage" How to get it without rooting phone?

Purpose: I want to backup my phone data to PC periodically using "Areca backup" open source utility which creates incremental backup. Note: I will not be writing any data to Phone but will only need to read it for copy operation.


3 Answers 3


MTP the protocol used for accessing the phone is not implemented as file-system on plain Windows thus you don't get a drive letter without third party software. Additionally MTP is a pretty unstable, ineffective and slow file-system which makes it not a good choice for backup.

But be aware that the files you can access via MTP are just the tip of the ice berg, making a backup of those data will not allow you to restore your phone (except for some apps that explicitly place their files on shared storage section).

If you still want to backup the data you should enable Android Debug Bridge (adb) and use adb-sync go copy the data to your PC. From there you can then make a backup.

  • Hi, Thanks for answering. I actually need a way to keep copy of files to my PC like documents, images, etc lying in phone here and there and don't care about full backup having app settings too. So basically an easier way to copy paste phone's filemanager contents. Commented May 30, 2021 at 19:48
  • 2
    @PalashBansal Then adb-sync would be perfect for you. Also having ADB enabled is always a good preparation in case the phone display breaks. In such a case ADB allows to backup the files even if the display is broken. MTP however needs an unlocked device which requires a working display.
    – Robert
    Commented May 30, 2021 at 19:56

Software like MTPdrive directly mounts a device with a drive letter.

  • I have MPTDrive and it is very difficult to get a stable connection. And if you do manage to get the phone to be recognized by the app (even though Windows sees it fine), when I try to use it to back up my phone SD card, it drops the connection mid-way through the backup and I'm back to not being able to connect the phone to the app.
    – Ezriderz
    Commented Feb 7, 2023 at 1:09
  • Hi Ezriderz, I am not using any app on windows PC. Procedure is like- connect phone using usb wire, a popup will appear in Android phone to file transfer, do nothing, etc. Select file transfer. Then you will be able to open internal storage or sd card drive from my computer just like default c/d drive you have. Then I use freefilesync app with keeping phone paths as mtp: prefix. The one mentioned in answer do create some problems with ftp incompatible files so i am no longer using that solution. Commented Feb 8, 2023 at 4:17

AndroidDrive does this. If you're looking to transfer files from the phone, its very buggy in that regard though.

  • 1
    Why recommend it if its buggy? Commented Feb 12 at 9:29
  • Because, perhaps someone can fix it. The source code is available. Commented Feb 14 at 9:26

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