Tips Increase internal storage memory for Apps on Galaxy SII

I had two main reasons to replace my good old Galaxy SII (GT-I9100): I wanted a larger screen and much more space for the Apps. But since yesterday, only one reason remains: a larger screen. I ave indeed successfully increased the storage for the Apps from 2GB to 6GB thanks to a tutorial from "Techotv".

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Samsung Galaxy S2 has 16GB of internal storage out of which 14GB space is available, but not the entire available capacity is usable for apps installation. Unlike modern smartphones like Galaxy S4, our galaxy S2 has two internal partition, known as Device Memory (about 2GB) and USB Storage (the rest i.e. about 12GB). Device memory is the location where apps are usually installed. USB Storage is the location where data (apps data like those of games), user files are stored. So, even though you might have lots of internal storage space available, you might face storage issues during apps installation because you’ve just about 2GB available for apps. In this tutorial, we’ll see how we can increase device memory partition and decrease usb storage partition to accommodate as many apps as we want on our beloved Galaxy s2 smartphone.

Posted => here <= on JANUARY 3, 2014 by SAURABH

Important Notices:

  1. This tutorial is for Samsung Galaxy SII (GT-I9100) model only !!!
  2. Backup all contents of your android phone including pictures, music, videos, call logs, SMS, etc... as this process will completely format your mobile. Possibly enable next Google's Automatic Backup and Restore features so all your Apps, Contact, Calendar and Settings will be automatically re-installed.
    1. Go to Settings > (Personal) Back up and reset.
    2. Check the options "Backup up my data" and "Automatic restore".
    3.  Never put all the eggs in one basket. Use another backup tool next to Google. Also notice that Calls logs, SMS, MMS are not backuped by Google.

Prerequisites:

  1. Download Odin3 v1.85 program from Techotv and unzip it. Samsung Odin is the ROM Flashing tool for SAMSUNG Android Smart phone and tablets devices. Including Samsung Galaxy SII, etc. Other official versions are available here.
  2. Download Philz CWM Recovery for Galaxy SII from here. The ClockWorkMod Recovery (CWM) is a replacement recovery option for Android devices. It's used as being better than the Stock android Recovery. A Recovery is a bootable partition that has the recovery console installed where you can find tools to help repair (recover) your installation as well as install system (OS) updates, delete all user data and files, etc... On Galaxy Samsung SII, you can access the Recovery by turning off the mobile and pressing next simultaneously Volume Down + Home + Power for a few seconds.
  3. Download the Partition files (PIT) from Techotv and unzip them. A PIT file is a Partition Information Table that can be used to re-partition the phone’s internal memory space.
  4. You phone doesn't need to be rooted but this tutorial is assumed to work both if you have rooted your device or already installed a custom ROM. NB.: Android needs to be rooted to get the full control on the device, various features being indeed usually locked by default to prevent among other users' mistakes, etc...
  5. You need a PC with the Samsung Drivers for Galaxy SII installed, otherwise the connection required by Odin to flash the mobile won't succeed (although the mobile is detected by Odin).
    1. Install "Kies" from Samsung (available here) to get those drivers on your PC.
    2. Don't RUN Kies after the setup. It could interfere with Odin. If required, kill all its related processes using the Task Manager (via Ctrl-Shift-Esc).
    3. If drivers are not installed, you will be stuck within Odin on the step "<ID:0/003> SetupConnection.."

Go go go!

  1. Launch ODIN program.
  2. Turn off your mobile.
  3. Press mobile's Volume Down + Home + Power buttons together for few seconds.You will enter the Recovery mode.
  4. Press Volume Up key when prompted on the phone screen to continue in download mode.
  5. Connect your phone to computer. You’ll see one of the rectangular boxes in ODIN turned yellow indicating that the program has detected your phone.
  6. Click on PIT button within Odin and select one pit file. I have chosen for the 6GB PIT file as I store anyway music and video files on micro-sd card instead of internal storage and want a lot of place for my Apps!
  7. Hit on PDA button within Odin and select Philz CWM Recovery file.
  8. Keep selected the Options "Re-Partition", "Auto-Reboot" and "F. Reset Time".
  9. All other Options must be unchecked.
  10. Hit on Start button.
  11. You will see Messages displayed by Odin... The process is completed once the message “<OSM> All threads completed. (succeed 1 / failed 0)” appears. You should also see a green rectangular box with the message "PASS!".
  12. If Odin is stuck on "SetupConnection..", try each of the following tips:
    1. Check that Samsung Drivers are installed (See "Prerequisites") and Kies stopped.
    2. Connect your mobile on another USB port.
    3. Use a shorter USB cable.
    4. Remove the battery of your mobile for 5 minutes.
  13. Unplug your phone from computer.
Odin Storage Extension on Galaxy SII

Odin Storage Extension on Galaxy SII

Check the outcomes:

  1. Go to phone storage settings and check if the device memory has increased and USB storage space adjusted accordingly. You may be required to format USB storage before it is shown in storage setting. I had to do so as requested by a notification.
  2. If the new storage setting is still not visible on your phone, then do factory reset either from recovery (volume up+home+power keys together in phone off state) or from phone settings (Setting > Backup and Reset > Factory reset). I had to do it.
  3. If storage is still not increased, flash stock Samsung firmware or custom ROM for your phone. I didn't have to do this!

Google started automatically to restore all my Apps, Contacts, Settings, etc... I only had to reorganize my Apps on the "desktop"...

10.000 thx to SAURABH from Techotv.com for this tutorial. Thanks to him, I have only one more reason to buy another smart phone, which is not enough regarding my own criteria :cry:

Tips "Authentication Error Occurred" with my Samsung Galaxy - Android 4.1.2 - due to Wi-Fi

Depending on the place where I was located at home, when trying to connect my Galaxy via Wi-Fi, I could got or not this infamous message "Authentication Error Occurred". I did possibly solve it by changing the channel of my access points.

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My experience with this error message is that it really depends on the received signal(s) and possibly having several network with the same SSID.

I have 3 Wi-Fi Access Points in my house. All are configured with the same password and encryption (WPA2/AES), the same SSID and the same channel. This is creating a large and stable wireless network in the house.

But at some locations where I get either a poor signal or two signals of quite the same strength, I get the infamous "Authentication Error Occurred" message with my Galaxy SII (Android 4.1.2) just after enabling Wi-Fi. And I get this message whatever Access Point I am trying to connect from those locations.

At those very same locations, my laptop "Sony Vaio" (Windows 8) can connect without any issue, as well as my tablet "Nabi 2" (Android 4.0.4). Reason why I conclude it's probably an "Android/Galaxy issue" and not a "Router/Access Point issue".

Moving from those locations just a few meters away, I can successfully connect quite immediately after enabling the Wi-Fi. But in such cases, although I only moved a few meters away, I get at least one signal much better than the others.

My access Points are "Devolo DLAN 200 Wireless N". From security/encryption point of view, they only support WPA/TKIP and WPA2/AES. I tried both mode without success.

I also tried to use shorter password (minimum being 8 chars) without success. But I admit I didn't try to connect using WPS (which is supported by my Devolo and reported by some users on various blog to solve this issue).

I finally tried to completely disable the security/encryption. I did enable the MAC filtering instead. In that mode, the connections succeed really more often, but still not always. And there is at least one location where I can never connect with my Galaxy SII although I can with my laptop and my tablet: my bed :(

During my tests, I was monitoring the wireless signals using "Wi-Fi Analyzer", to be sure that the signal was kept "fair". So, loosing the signal for any reason is not presumed to be the issue either, especially as far as I was doing the same test (I.e.: I enable the Wi-Fi and wait for a connection) simultaneously with my Galaxy SII Android 4.1.2 and my Nabi 2 Android 4.0.4.

As the quality of the signal was "fair" and as far as I had no issue in most other locations with free Wi-Fi, I started to consider that the problem was possibly related to some small signal disruptions in my area.

Here in Europe, the frequency 2450 MHz is used by microwave ovens. Those could possibly disturb the Wi-Fi channels 9 and 10. But if your does, change it immediately ! Radiation that escapes from a microwave oven while it is in use may not exceed 5 mW (per cm2 at a distance of 5 cm ). So, if your experience Wi-Fi issues when using your microwave oven, the leakage radiation is probably exceeding a lot that limit (It happens as some of my colleagues already experienced). But I don't have any special device turned on when I do my tests...

Looking for more information about Wi-Fi signals, I discovered that frequencies from 2400 to 2450 MHz (Wi-Fi channels 1 to 8) are used by "radio amateur". Those could effectively impact the Wi-Fi signal as their radio signal goes up to 120 Watts while Wi-Fi is usually around ~18-30 mWatts. It would therefore be advisable to check within the neighborhood if anyone has such a hobby. This could likely be the case if the Wi-Fi issues are only experienced during certain period of the day (e.g.: the evening) or during the weekend.

I finally read that channels 1, 5, 9 and 13 are known to be used by some wireless transmitter and camera (at least here in Europe). As I don't have such devices, and taking into account the info about the frequencies used by "ham radio", I decided to use the channel 9 or 13.

Concretely I did switch from channel 6 to channel 13 on all my access points and could immediately connect flawlessly from all locations where I was experiencing issues previously. That being said, there are possibly some other locations still to be discovered where I will experience again the problem. But for sure, changing the frequency has an impact on the connection!

Tips Android - No connection to any network - Go Locker

I had an issue recently with my Samsung Galaxy S2: I was unable to call or send SMS. I was also not reachable anymore and appeared as not connected. I did not even succeed to force manually the connection to any network. After some unsuccessful investigation, I did reboot the device and noticed that I was not prompted anymore to provide my PIN code. The prompt was actually hidden by my Lock Screen for Go Locker :(

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For some reason, the configuration set for that lock screen was preventing the prompt for PIN code to appear. For sure, my mobile was configure to prevent any use without a valid PIN code. So voilà !

A colleague of mine had the very same issue. We found the prompt only after disabling  Go Locker and rebooting

This issue is also reported by other user on Google Play, but I never saw any explanation and solution. Maybe it was related to some specific settings I set, like: prevent pressing twice the home button to enter the "desktop", ... Or maybe because I did select Go Locker as default application to handle the Home button instead of Go Launcher ?

Tips To switch or not to switch from Google to Outlook.com ?

I was thinking about moving everything from my Google account (mails, calendar and contact) to my Windows Live account since I am using that account from Outlook 2013 on several personal computers to keep them in sync...

After some investigation, I will only use the Calendar of my Windows Live account...

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Since a long time now, I am using two great tools (both free) to synchronize the Outlook Local Accounts of all my PC (at home and at work) with my Google Account (which was sync with my Galaxy S2):

  1. Google Sync: to sync my calendar both way
  2. Go Contact Sync mod: to sync my contacts both way

Now, I am planning to use my Windows Live account account instead of my Google account as a central repository for my calendars and contacts: it's actually the Windows Live Hotmail feature which is concerned; a.k.a. Outlook.com.

For mails, I will continue to use my own mail server at Servage.net (with imap support). Actually, my main email address is a forwarded to my Gmail address, where the best free spam filter ever made available is applied. Next, the mails are forwarded back to a servage's mail box that I access via imap from all my devices/PC.

So... what should I do to use outlook.com instead of google on my PC and Galaxy S2 ?

  1. Install the Outlook.com sync featureon the Android device. First feedback:
    • It's great for keeping your Android Calendar in sync with your Outlook.com calendar
    • It's great for using your Outlook.com contacts from your Android.
    • But it's really disappointing as contacts can't be edited
    • And, about the synchronization of the emails, notice that it may only fetch emails from the last 30 days...
  2. Add Outlook.com as a new account in Outlook 2013
    1. Go to the menu File and click on the button Add Account in the Account Information pane.
    2. Select Manual setup or additional server types and click Next.
    3. Select Outlook.com or Exchange ActiveSync compatible service.
    4. Add your User information and Logon information, using the Mail Server: blu-m.hotmail.com
  3. Define Outlook.com account as the default account in Outlook 2013
    1. Go to the menu File and select the Exchange ActiveSync account (Outlook.com) in the Account Information pane.
    2. From the Account Settings drop-down menu select Account Settings...
    3. In the E-mail tab, select your Exchange ActiveSync account and click on Set as Default (Except if you want to send and receive your email with another account by default).
    4. In the Data Files tab, select your Exchange ActiveSync account and click on Set as Default (If you don't do that, meetings will be created in the local account which is currently the default one).
  4. Export the calendar from Google
    1. Go to Google Calendar
    2. Expand the menu of My Calendars and select Parameters
    3. Click on Export Calendars. A download should start automatically.
    4. Unzip the file downloaded at step C.
  5. Import this google calendar in the Outlook.com account via Outlook 2013
    1. Open the Calendar view (via the bottom-left menu).
    2. Go to the menu File and select Open & Export.
    3. Click on Import/Export in the Open pane.
    4. Select Import an iCalendar (.ics) or vCalendar file (.vcs).
    5. Browse to open the file unzipped at step 4.D and containing the calendar exported from Google Calendar.
  6. Export the contacts from Gmail
    1. Go to Gmail
    2. From the top-left Gmail drop-down menu and select Contacts to open your Google address book.
    3. From the More actions drop-down menu, select Export...
    4. Select next the Outlook CSV format. A download should start automatically.
  7. Import those gmail contacts in Outlook.com (Outlook 2013 does not support to import contacts in the Oultook.com account)
    1. Go to Windows Live Hotmail.
    2. In the top-left drop-down menu Outlook, select People.
    3. Under "Add people to your contact list" select Import from a file.
    4. Click on Choose File and pick the file downloaded at step 6.D and containing the contacts exported from Google Calendar.
    5. Click Import Contacts.
    6. Force a Send/Receive in Outlook 2013 to sync the contacts newly added to the Outlook.com account.
And now, check what's working well and what's not:
  1. Everything is ok with the calendar. I can edit/add/delete appointments from any device and the changes are synchronized on the others.
  2. Well, actually,
    1. Due to how MS handles the "all-day events", those appears spanned across two days. To fix that, I had to edit all my "all-day events" and save them (without any change).
    2. MS is creating "Anniversary" events for all contacts with a birthday. As those events already exists (e.g.: created manually or automatically by MS Outlook 2007), I had now plenty of duplicates that won't be detected as one is named "XXX's birthday" and the other "XXX's Anniversary" :(
  3. I don't see all my contacts in Outlook 2013.
    • This is a know bug in the Windows Sync feature. A fix is under investigation at MS (to be released in January 2013). As a workaround  you can edit the contacts and save the change. This will force a sync between Outlook.com and Outlook 2013.
    • But I can add new ones and edit existing ones from Outlook 2013 and the changes are synchronized on the devices.
  4. I can't edit my contact from my Android device.
    • But I see those added through Outlook 2013.
  5. All notes in Contacts are now displayed with the HTML tags instead...
  6. Regarding the emails, I would not like this solution either as I want to be able to access all my emails and not only those of the the last 30 days.
Linked Outlook.com with Gmail contact instead of importing:

Instead of importing the contacts from Gmail into Outlook.com, you can link those contacts with your Outlook.com account. Doing so, they are in sync!

  1. Go to Windows Live Hotmail.
  2. In the top-left drop-down menu Outlook, select People.
  3. Under "Add people to your contact list", in the right pane, select Google Contacts.
  4. Follow the connection wizard (Notice that the import is not immediate but done in background... Also when you change a Google Contact, the change will be not be synchronize immediately).
Unfortunately, you won't see the contact linked to Gmail in Outlook 2013 due to the same bug in Windows Sync mentioned above
Also, you may not modify a Google Contact from Outlook.com (and therefore from Outlook 2013). However, you may add additional information to a Google Contact. This information will be kept in Outlook.com (Concretely a new contact with the same name is created in Outlook.com and linked with the Google Contact. This link can be cut via the menu "Links" appearing in Outlook.com when the contact is selected. For each information, Outlook.com display the origin: Outlook or Google). The new contact created in Outook.com will be sync with Outlook 2013 but it won't contain any information from Google. You can modify this contact within 2013 and the changes will be synchronized back later with Outlook.com but obviously not with Google  - I was not able to force it or to refresh the contact in Outlook.com...
So, for me - as far as I want a single repository accessible from not only my PC but also my mobile devices, this approach is pointless.

How to delete all meetings from Outlook 2013 Calendar:

If by accident you did import your meetings in the wrong calendar, here is how to select all the items and delete them.

  1. Go to the menu View.
  2. Click on Change View and select List.
  3. Select all the Items pressing Ctrl-A
  4. Press Delete
How to select all contacts from Outlook.com:
A really hard one as there is neither a Select-All menu nor a shortcut like Ctrl-A! And just like with Windows 8, it's nowadays really difficult to guess how Microsoft has implemented some of the most simple operations with the keyboard.
To Select All your Contacts in Outlook.com:
  1. Select the first contact with your mouse
  2. Press Shift + Page Down.
Conclusions: 
I think I hate hotmail (and MS) a little bit more now than before regarding the integration with mobile devices :)
But ok... hotmail is Microsoft's target mailing solution and I presume they will continue to work on the integration with outlook 2013 and the mobile devices...
In addition, Googly Calendar Sync will be end of life in January 2013. The download link is already not available anymore...
So, for now, I will only use the calendar of my Windows Live account. Doing so, I can already get rid of the Googly Sync tool from all my PC.
But I will keep "Go Contact Sync Mod" tool to sync the contacts as there is really nothing else convenient offered by MS to share them between PCs and mobile devices :( That being said, Go Contact Sync Mod 3.5.20 is really great, free and efficient with Outlook 2013 ! E.g.: In my case, I do sync the Google Contacts directly with my Outlook.com account in Outlook 2013...

Tips Galaxy S2: Hardware ID Missing

Since a recent Kies update, my Galaxy S2 started to throw the exception "Hardware ID Missing" every time it was plugged into my PC.

The reason is a "bug" in the version of the SAMSUNG USB Driver for Mobile Phones installed with the Kies update. Fortunately, there is a elementary solution.

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This solution consists in installing an older version of the Samsung Driver. E.g.:  v1.4.8.0 available here, or 1.4.103 available here. I did use the 1.4.103 with success. No need to uninstall first the version currently installed. You will simply have to confirm during the setup that you want to install that version although another one is already installed.

This issue prevents Kies to connect with the phone via USB. Concretely you see the "connecting" message for a while as well as a spinning icon looping indefinitely.

Tips Samsung Kies error: PDLR has stopped working

After a recent update, Kies started to throw the exception "PDLR has stopped working".

If you are looking how to solve that issue, I did google on that too and found a radical solution.

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A solution often mentioned on the web is to remove the following line from the config file (or to completely delete the file) :

This config file is located in "%programfiles%\Samsung\Kies\External\FirmwareUpdate\KiesPDLR.exe.config" (on x64 platform: "%programfiles% (x86)").

This fix didn't work for me. But another one did the trick: I did an "advanced" uninstall of Kies using the free "Revo Uninstaller" and did next a fresh re-install.