I have samsung galaxy 3 (I5801). I have downloaded many APK files from internet. I have no problem in installing APK files. By default when APK file is selected it installs itself to phone memory. I want it to install application on SDCARD. I have made my phone memory full.

So my queries are

  1. How to install APK on SDCARD? APK should install itself to SDCARD.
  2. How to move already installed application to SDCARD from phone memory?

3 Answers 3


If you're using Android 2.2, you can move your applications to SD from Settings -> Applications -> Manage Applications. Before 2.2, you need to have root, create a separate partition in your SD card, and install a custom ROM that supports app2sd.

  • 4
    It should be noted that developers need to specifically make their apps moveable to the SD card under Android 2.2+.
    – ale
    Dec 7, 2010 at 13:43
  • 1
    In addition to what @Al said, you Cyanogen mod can force apps to install to sd card (but may not be recommended depending on what type of app it is).
    – Bryan Denny
    Dec 7, 2010 at 14:54
  • 1
    all thanks a lot for answer. I think my mobile is running Eclair version, which i think 2.1. So do i need to keep installed application count low in order to utilize space on phone memory? I dont see any option like "move to sdcard" or "install on sdcard" while installing or in 'manage application' from settings menu.
    – JRC
    Dec 9, 2010 at 9:02
  • Yep... Lie Ryan's answer is spot on. JRC, you need to juggle the apps that are installed or get a device like the first Galaxy 7500 with 8 GB internal memory.
    – Sparx
    Dec 22, 2010 at 18:44
  • 1
    @travis: from adb shell or Terminal Emulator app, use mv /source/path /destination/path to move files and use ln -s /actual/file/path /symbolic/link to create symbolic link (the -s stands for symbolic/soft link, if you do not specify this, you'll be creating a hard link, which may not cross partition boundary). Note that you need root to modify apk files stored in /data/app/ and app data in /data/data/. If you're not familiar with ln or mv, it's a good idea to play around with them in safe files before messing with the system. Make a backup! Do this as a last resort only.
    – Lie Ryan
    Mar 29, 2011 at 9:10

If you're using Android 2.1 you can use Link2SD app. To use this your phone must be rooted and your SDCARD should have ext2 [OR] ext3 partitions. Then it installs on phone memory and moves the installed application to SDCARD.

Moving the already installed Apps to SDCARD: Open the Link2SD application and Filter the apps which are phone memory. Select each application which is installed on SDCARD and choose the option Create Link. Done, this solves the problem.

There are tools available to partition your SDCARD. On Windows Machine you can use Minitool Partition software and on linux you can use gparted.


Simply download and install the android SDK, in cmd prompt, go to the directory of SDK, cd into "platform-tools" directory, and type adb shell.

A $ should appear in new line, then type pm setInstallLocation 2 and press enter. the text pm setInstallLocation 2 should appear in the new line again.

Now close the command prompt, disconnect the phone and restart the phone.

Your apps should now move to SD card by default.

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