I've installed apps on the system partition on Android 4.1 and it's as easy as moving an APK to the /system/app/ folder and restart the device. The PackageManager (I assume) will recognize a change in the directory and will install the application.

Now I'm trying to do the same thing on Android 4.4 and it's not working. I'm seeing the APK on the /system/app/ directory but I don't see the app on the launcher. I also tried moving it to the /system/priv-app/ folder but the end result is the same.

Does anyone have a clue of how to do this?

By the way, the 4.1 device was a Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7" Wifi and the 4.4 device is a Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7". Both are rooted.

  • Did you change the permissions when moving/copying apps to the system? What other changes were done to the device? Did the app end up on the hidden apps page?
    – HasH_BrowN
    Commented Oct 23, 2014 at 16:28
  • I just copied the APK which wasn't installed on the device so no other changer were made, I just used the 'mv' command. What hidden apps page are you talking about?
    – SebastianT
    Commented Oct 23, 2014 at 19:33
  • 1
    Could you please post it as the answer. It did solve the issue after using "chmod 644 FILE_NAME.apk".
    – SebastianT
    Commented Oct 23, 2014 at 20:22

1 Answer 1


When copy/move files to system you need to change permissions using chmod 644 file_name.apk. The apps will then show back up.

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