Android apps install to the internal storage by default. If you’ve ever seen your device complain that it is out of memory, especially when trying to install a new app, don’t feel too bad. You can also set the SD card as your default install location. This trick allows you to move almost any app to the SD card – no root access required. Enabling the moving app feature on your phone is much easier than how it may sound like. We shall take you through it step by step.
This tweak requires Android 2.2 or later. To change the default install location, you’ll need to use the ADB, or Android Debug Bridge, utility included with Google’s Android SDK. Following are the Step-by-step Instructions for moving All Android Apps to SD Card (Without Rooting Device).

 Move All Android Apps to SD Card (Without Rooting Device)

First of All Hit Like Buttons Shown Below.

1) Enable USB Debugging & Developer Options
The 1st step is to enable USB Debugging.In gingerbread it is placed in Settings> Applications > Development > USB Debugging. And ICS it is placed in Settings > Developer Options > USB Debugging. But, after upgrading it to 4.2 it is missing. If your are on Android 4.2 or higher The USB Debugging and Developer Options are hidden in latest Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. If we want to use those options, manually activate it.  Here is the guide to enable USB debugging on Android 4.2 Jelly Bean running mobiles and tablets.
Developer Options have many features for app developer to test an app on their device from PC via ADB.

  • Go to – Settings > About phone.
  •  Then move on to Build number option
  • Tap on Build number repeatedly about 7 times.
  •  This is enough.
  • After touching 7th time you will see a message that, “you are now a developer”.

Enable usb debugging Developer Options on Android 4.2 Jelly Bean

Now the option will be placed in Settings menu. Normally it placed under System in Settings menu. Then you can enable it in Developer Options and Android Debugging.

Enable usb debugging Developer Options on Android 4.2 Jelly Bean

2) Install the Android SDK
After Enabling USB Debugging You’ll need to download and install Google’s Android SDK on your computer. If you don’t already have Oracle’s Java JDK installed on your computer, you’ll have to download and install it before installing the Android SDK.

Note: You need only Android SDK for this so No need of Downloading Android SKD bundle just download SDK Tools Only.

 install the Android SDK

After you’ve installed both the JDK and Android SDK, launch the SDK Manager from your Start menu.

install the Android SDK

The ADB utility isn’t installed by default. It’s included in the Android SDK Platform-tools package – select this package and click the Install button to download and install it.

Install the Android SDK

After the process completes, connect your Android device to your computer with its included USB cable. Windows should locate the device and install the appropriate drivers automatically. If it doesn’t, you may have to download and install the appropriate drivers from your Android device’s manufacturer. Do not mount the device after connecting it – just plug it in.

3) Using ADB
Open a Windows Explorer window and navigate to the android-sdkplatform-tools folder. On Windows, you’ll find this folder at C:Program Files (x86)Androidandroid-sdkplatform-tools by default. Check C:Program FilesAndroidandroid-sdkplatform-tools if you’re using a 32-bit version of Windows.

Launch a Command Prompt window in this folder by pressing and holding the Shift button, right-clicking in the folder, and selecting Open command window here.

Using ADB


  • Run the adb shell command to enter ADB tools.

Using ADB

Command Code:

adb shell
  • Run pm get-install-location command to check the default install location which will be 0.

Using ADB
Command Code:

pm get-install-location
  • Run pm set-install-location 2 command for setting default install location to SD card.

Using ADB
Command Code:

pm set-install-location 2

0 [auto]: Let system decide the best location
1 [internal]: Install on internal device storage
2 [external]: Install on external media

  • Run pm get-install-location command again for conformation of location change.

 Using ADB
Command Code:

pm get-install-location

4) Moving Apps to SD Card

Apps that refused to leave your system storage can now be moved to the external storage. For instance, below you’ll see screenshots of the Google Maps app. Before the change was made, the Move to USB Storage button was grayed out. After the change was made, the button is enabled and the app can be moved.
 Move All Android Apps to SD Card (Without Rooting Device)

Some apps shouldn’t be installed to your SD card and should remain installed on the internal storage. The external storage is unavailable when your Android device is mounted on your computer, so apps that remain running all the time should be left on your internal storage. Widgets, launchers, animated wallpapers, and anything you want to use while your Android’s SD card is mounted on your computer should be left on the internal storage.


  1. i could set the location to 2 and now it says 2 when i check with get.. but now my phone does not install any application atall.. says no space.. what to do.. Samsung GT-S7562.. is it must to root this model..

  2. when i check using, pm set-intallation it says 2[external] but still on my application manager sd card storage doesn’t show..please help..thank you very much

  3. there is no message such like “You are now a developer!”and the no commands are working!
    what i have to do please help me
    I have hTC desire

    Android Version : 2.2.2
    Baseband Version :
    Kernel Version :
    Build number : 2.29.405.14 CL345208 release-keys
    Software number : 2.29.405.14
    Browser version : webkit 3.1

  4. On the Asus TF300T, this does not enable the option to move apps to the sd card. In fact, the application still install to the Internal memory after the change has been made and the tablet restarted. Thanks for the effort though, as this is truly an unacceptable annoyance from Google.

  5. i’ve gotten some problem while input the command ‘adb shell’. it was written there that error:device not found, although i’ve plugged my samsung galaxy note 10.1. give me some solution please?

    • same things happen with my lenovo s920 .for my case it is because my window doesnt have my phone driver pre installed and it doesnt have it in windows update so i googled the net and found the driver installer’s link for my phone in a lenovo forum..problem solved after i installed it..there was a pop up window appeared stated ‘window doesnt recognise the driver’ when installing but i proceed anyway..

  6. i follow all the steps but nothing happen with my lenovo s920 jelly bean 4.2.1..still only can move to built in usb storage not sd storage even after restarting..

  7. hi,
    I did as you explain but there was some problems, 1st of all i try it on HTC wildfire S, the problem was with commands which is in the explaination figure ( pm get-install-location) the right commands is ( pm getInstallLocation ) and so on,
    and the 2nd major problem id the system apps like maps, adobe … still can not be move to sd crds. is there any other way to do it,
    walid alsalihi

  8. hey

    about that my phone doesnt have the option to move to sd card it only has move to phone storage what should i do plz help!!!!!

  9. Just tried this on 2.3.4 (Samsung Vitality w/Muve). Was able to convert to the new syntax for the commands and phone displayed EXTERNAL as install location. However, I cant move maps, streetview, or anything else that I couldn’t before.

    Have you tried this with the new update to the Tools Package? Maybe they changed something for LOCKED carriers to keep on scroogling us?

    Could you test this, or fill me in on something I may have done wrong? Id love to help make it ‘current’ to help others.

  10. i just want to thank you and give ************************* unlimited star for the great solution. kiss, kiss. thank u again, that’s a perfect instruction. D:))

  11. hi,
    i m using XOLO Q700 4.2.1. all process was successfully done but there was problem i dont have “move to sd” option in my mobile please help me…… what should i do..?
    hoping for quick reply…

  12. Hi Sir,,, ive done all the instruction above perfectly.. ive already multiple check and run the shell get-install-location several times. and it says – pm get-install-location 2[external].

    but nothing happens. the default download and install location is in internal…. and i cant force the built in apps to move in my sd card.. please help.. your reply is very much appreciated. thank you.

  13. bonjour a tous j ai un petit problème cette semaine avec mon arnova 10.1 4g system 4.2.2 et j ai utilise Fash tool et puis le nouveaux firmware sur le sit de de puis ma tablette et fotu elle s allume mes l’écran reste blanc j ai essai de fer le reste rien et puis mettre le firmware sur la carte sd rien ,
    mai des que je branche le cable usb sur le pc je voit que la memoir interne normal et tout et de dans ya qu quel qu’un peut m aide svp merci a vous .

  14. Woww… i am succeeded Finally!! Thanks dear for solving a huge problem of mine. now i can download apps direct in to my sd card. once again Thanks a lot.

  15. After having some problems with my Samguns USB connection this tutorial went very well! Very good solution! Thanks!

  16. 1. Windows
    – Open the folder called ” platform-tools”
    – shift+right-click anywhere inside the folder and choose [Open Command Window Here]

    – right-click the folder called “platform-tools” and choose [New Terminal At Folder]

    2. Enter in the following

    For Windows :
    adb devices
    adb shell pm set-install-location 2
    adb shell pm get-install-location

    For Mac : (note – there is a period before the slashes)
    ./adb devices
    ./adb shell pm set-install-location 2
    ./adb shell pm get-install-location

    3. Check if you did it right
    – if you did it right, the last output should say: 2 [external]

  17. I am having the same problem as others have described above. My phone is a ZTE Zinger, model Z667T, Android version 4.4.2. I followed the directions provided and received the confirmation that the install location is “2 [external].” When I open my apps management, however, there is no option to “Move to SD card.” There is only the option to “Clear Data.” My phone is still telling me that my storage space is low even though my phone shows that I have at least 7 GB of storage on my SD card. What is the solution for this problem? Thank you!

  18. I am experiencing the same problem as some have noted above. My phone is an Android ZTE Zinger, model Z667T, Android version 4.4.2 After following the directions, I receive confirmation in command prompt/terminal that my install location is “2[external].” When I try to move my apps to external storage, however, I have no option to “Move to SD card.” The only option that appears is “Clear data.” What is the solution to this problem?

  19. Having difficulties locating the adb.exe, platform folder and anything in the 3rd step, using ABD. Been trying to figure out what went wrong for a while now. Everything else has been perfect and followed to a T. Advice?

  20. hi. ive followed all instructions until i get to the part where i put the commands.
    after i typed in: pm set-install-location 2
    it gave me an error.

    Error: java.lang.SecurityException: Package android does not belong to 2000 (unit of my phone).

    can you find me resolution to this error? thanks

  21. Thanks man, a simple yet effective guide! Let me just add that it becomes even easier if you’re using a Mac since you can install the android sdks via HomeBrew.
    If you already have home-brew installed you just have to run `brew install android-sdk` on the terminal and it does it for you. Then, just run `android` on the terminal and the sdk manager appears! 😀

  22. Hey I love the guide, but I have no pc. Any way to use my tablet or phone to change the other? Or simulate windows, or even open a command prompt in android?

  23. I have same problem when type the pm install command , get not in group 2000. I believe this has to do with not being rooted although article says you don’t have to.


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