I have a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0.

I have files on an external SD card but I cannot mount the tab as a usb drive from my computer - I cannot find a way to turn on USB Mass Storage.

How do I do this in JellyBean?


Starting in 4.0 (actually 3.0, but few devices used that), most Android devices use the MTP (Media Transfer Protocol) class rather than the Mass Storage class. This was done for various reasons, including the annoyances attendant to having to unmount the SD card from the Android device to access it from the PC.

Samsung has embraced this new way rather fervently and doesn't allow mass storage at all under normal circumstances (If you have root, you can force it on some devices. Not sure if it works for a Tab 2).

MTP mostly "just works" on Windows since XP and on Mac, though getting it working on Linux can require a bit of effort if you don't use GNOME. The Arch Linux wiki has a useful article on the ways and means of accessing MTP devices on Linux.

  • So you are saying in essence I am SOL? – Roy Hinkley Oct 9 '13 at 18:47
  • As far as accessing things via UMS, yes. – Compro01 Oct 9 '13 at 18:51
  • 2
    Why would they take an obvious and great feature away - I know you don't have the answer, just venting! – Roy Hinkley Oct 9 '13 at 19:18
  • 2
    "Great" is a matter of perspective. The unmounting inherent to UMS causes annoyance in Android. For example, it renders any moved-to-SD apps broken until you disconnect from the computer. This can be irritating if you're transferring 10 gigs of stuff and get a text message you're interested in. MTP leaves the Android device in control of everything and allows both the Android and the PC to access the same volume at the same time, which can be useful and prevents munging from two fundamentally different OSes messing with the same filesystem (especially a fragile one like FAT32) back and forth. – Compro01 Oct 9 '13 at 20:04
  • It's a pity, but it seems that this answer is also correct for my Samsung Galaxy Tab GT-P7500 with Android 3.1: even switching USB Debugging doesn't make the USB connection mode options available. – imz -- Ivan Zakharyaschev May 3 '14 at 14:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.