I'm trying to find a way to have a full backup of my phone (apps, settings, data, life universe and everything...) but from what I read on the internet tools such as Titanium and Helium backup are not working anymore on new phones (mine is running on Android 12) so I didn't even bother, also I can't use methods that require rooting since that will void my warranty and the phone is only few months old.

I tried running this command:

adb backup -apk -obb -shared -all -system -f fullbackup.ab

But after a while it stops (at around 17-19 GB, always a different number), creating an incomplete backup. The first time after a backup I tried extracting it but the process exited saying it was an incomplete archive.

I read that this might be cause by active apps, I tried closing them but it didn't help (guess it's some system app), I also found that sometimes it might be caused by not setting a backup password, but that didn't work either

So I would like to know if there's either a better way to fully backup my phone in 2023, or how to make adb backup work.


  • 1
    Possible dupe: How to fully backup non-rooted devices?. While the answers may be old, AFAIK it's impossible to do a full local backup using only ADB, moreover because each app can opt-out from being backed up.
    – Andrew T.
    Mar 27, 2023 at 7:17
  • 2
    As far as I know adb backup does no longer work on recent apps on Android 12: android.stackexchange.com/a/231237/2241
    – Robert
    Mar 27, 2023 at 8:56
  • I'm more concerned about data and settings, I guess apps can be recovered from google drive backup? (I don't have enough space to do a full backup on gdrive)
    – valepu
    Mar 27, 2023 at 9:46
  • Still, my issue with adb backup is that it starts but then it stops after a while without completing the backup
    – valepu
    Mar 27, 2023 at 9:47
  • Does this answer your question? How to fully backup non-rooted devices? Jul 3, 2023 at 0:45

1 Answer 1


There is no method to make a full backup of android smartphones. It is always only a partial backup, be it adb backup or google drive.

I recommend to manually backup your files from ADB:

adb pull -a /sdcard

You can backup apps with Google as explained here. Also Swift Backup or Google One can backup app data of some apps.

For adb backup it's important to know only apps that allow it in AndroidManifest.xml can be backed up with ADB.

You can split backup into packages. Only backup apps that you know. you can try list_app_labels.sh or list packages from cmd line:

adb shell pm list packages -3
adb shell pm list packages -s

for example

adb backup -f chrome.ab -apk com.android.chrome

AFAIK Helium can do this, but you can also try another automated script for splitting backup into packages.

Beware: even in case app data is backed up for single packages, it's not guaranteed it will restore on other devices.

  • Thanks It looks like it worked! I had to use a different command than adb pull because it would file on a file it couldn't read. I found this instead android.stackexchange.com/questions/226573/… I saw your post on xda too, thanks!
    – valepu
    Mar 31, 2023 at 13:16

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