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PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 3:49 pm 
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Hi all,

I originally asked this question on the Android Forum where it was suggested I might have better luck here, so here it is hope someone can help.

I have just bought a 80 G9 for my wife's birthday and while I think the G9 is great for the price I am absolutely gob smacked that Honeycomb wont allow apps to be installed to the SD Card. Does anybody have any comments on that or ideas on how to get around it.

I should warn you that I might be a bit ancient to be talking Android apps but you're only as old as you let'em make you feel .

Actually all she really wants to do is download maps to the SD Card so as not to clog up the on board memory but I'm not sure how to go about that or even if an associated mapping app which has to be stored on internally memory would be able follow the path to access the map files on the SD Card.

I've asked Archos support the question but their reply was just this... 'You can't install apps to SD Card but you can write to SD Card with Honeycomb providing the SD Card is formatted to FAT32 but NTFS is read only.'
Wasn't really what I asked them but that now raises another question :? , are they saying there is a formatting process somewhere on the G9 with FAT and NTFS options because I can only find a mount SD Card option which I assumed will format it to FAT32 this being the normal flash memory file system but then do you need NTFS for video it being a bit quicker at file transfer ??? seems there are more questions than answers. It seems that Archos support are now choosing to ignore my second email which just politely requested clarification.

Does anybody have any experience of this? before I start messing around and giving myself a bigger problem.

Think the tablet is great though so I may be putting some pennies away and getting myself one, just a bit naffed off with the standard of customer support and also the generalisation and poor explanations in the of Archos on line manual.

(PS upgraded firmware to ICS yesterday, Sunday)


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:11 pm 
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jack500 wrote:
I have just bought a 80 G9 for my wife's birthday and while I think the G9 is great for the price I am absolutely gob smacked that Honeycomb wont allow apps to be installed to the SD Card. Does anybody have any comments on that or ideas on how to get around it.

You're not really supposed to.

If you have the flash version you have 7 or 15 GB or flash memory. That should be sufficent to install dozens if not hundreds of apps.
Instead of putting the apps on the SD card to save the internal storage for data do it the other way round: Put the apps on internal storage and date (music, videos, ebooks, ...) on the sd cards. Most apps have no problem finding data there.


jack500 wrote:
Wasn't really what I asked them but that now raises another question :? , are they saying there is a formatting process somewhere on the G9 with FAT and NTFS options because I can only find a mount SD Card option which I assumed will format it to FAT32 this being the normal flash memory file system but then do you need NTFS for video it being a bit quicker at file transfer ???

Android itself only allows formating sd cards with FAT32. But it seems like you could format the sd card on your computer with NTFS and read that with Android (never tried that myself).

NTFS should be somewhat faster than FAT32, but that shouldn't really matter in real life.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:37 pm 
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Hmm! ... Thanks for that moronoxyd your reply is appreciated,

Is there a reason that I'm missing why 'you aren't supposed to'.

I can see that Archos have capped the ability for Android to install apps to the SD Card but I can't think why apart from the read time might be a bit slower but I doubt anybody would really notice that especially as the internal memory would be faster with less stuff in it.

But anyway, I'm not really bothered about the vast majority of apps being installed to the internal memory at all, it's just things like mapping apps and the associated down loadable maps.

If I could install a mapping app to SD Card then there would be no problem regarding the number of Maps I downloaded for the App to access.

eg. I looked at one which had seperate downloadable maps and the maps were between 300 and 400 mb each so I would like those on the SD card but I have yet to find a way of downloading the maps or anything else to the SD card.

Archos stated in their reply that the G9 can write to the SD Card providing it was formatted to FAT32, but failed to explain how to write to the card although they imply that it is possible. Same sort of frustrating style as most of their user manual, they often state what the G9 can do but not how to do it. Very frustrating!

I've searched the G9 for a way to write to SD but feel I must be missing something as I am new to Android.

Then when I politely asked them if they could expand their reply my emails seem to have gone into their now becoming infamous customer service black hole

All I would like to know is how do I write to SD Card with the Archos, and in particular how do I download maps or maybe other support files that I may need at some time in the future in such a way that the associated app can access the files from the SD Card.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 10:42 am 
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jack500 wrote:
I can see that Archos have capped the ability for Android to install apps to the SD Card but I can't think why

Archos did not 'cap' anything, it's just the way Android 3 and 4 work.


jack500 wrote:
Archos stated in their reply that the G9 can write to the SD Card providing it was formatted to FAT32, but failed to explain how to write to the card although they imply that it is possible.

The SD card is mounted on /mnt/sdcard, whereas the internal flash storage is /mnt/storage.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:34 pm 
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Hi moronoxyd
Please don't think I am arguing with you, as I am not, I am just trying to understand and I do appreciate your help.

moronoxyd wrote:
jack500 wrote:
I can see that Archos have capped the ability for Android to install apps to the SD Card but I can't think why

Archos did not 'cap' anything, it's just the way Android 3 and 4 work


From what I have been reading by using a computer to go into the Android OS and using the Java Developer tool kit you are able to change the default installation location to either internal memory, SD Card or let the device decide by changing the reference to either 0, 1, or 2. similar to registry values in a PC.

But then I don't want to start messing like that with a new Tablet and all I want to know is how I use the Archos to write to SD itself as Archos Tech Support have stated it can do but now don't reply to my emails when I ask how I do that.

I don't want to install apps to run from the SD Card but just their associated files.


jack500 wrote:
Archos stated in their reply that the G9 can write to the SD Card providing it was formatted to FAT32, but failed to explain how to write to the card although they imply that it is possible.

The SD card is mounted on /mnt/sdcard, whereas the internal flash storage is /mnt/storage.[/quote]

Yes but same question how do I write (move downloaded files or get them to download direct to the SD Card) or do Archos just intend that the G9 is used for playing Angry, looking at pictures, or watching videos.

You see I was thinking of getting the 10" G9 for myself but if its functionality is so limited I will have to think again.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:57 pm 
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Just get the 16 GB 101...

moronoxyd is correct.

The era of moving data to sd is no longer. All data now goes to internal sdcard with Android 3 and 4. You have more than enough space on internal card for apps and their data. If you are still concerned, just go with the larger capacity flash drive version.

You won't get any more functionality with another brand when it comes to apps and SD Card use.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 15, 2012 4:52 pm 
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Thanks Zandoli that sort of ends my pain in that area at least I can stop searching now.

As I said Archos support did say that the G9 can do a simple write to SD Card (Not install and run apps from there) do you by any chance know how this is achieved.

Its just that I hate having a feature on any piece of kit that I know is available but don't how to use.

Although I can't see much use for that at the moment I may find I have a need in the future.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:39 pm 
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jack500 wrote:


As I said Archos support did say that the G9 can do a simple write to SD Card (Not install and run apps from there) do you by any chance know how this is achieved.



So do I take it that that nobody even on the ArchosFans Support Forum knows how to write/archive stuff to SD card even though Archos themselves say it can be done.

Why would Archos want to keep that a secret ? Seems silly saying that it can be done but then avoiding explaining how to do it.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 5:43 pm 
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I think all they meant was that your tablet can use a filemanager to transfer files to and from your Archos.

Do not read much into what was said.
Remember there is a language barrier which can make translations a bit vague/ambiguous.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 8:38 pm 
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Thanks for replying it is appreciated, sorry if I am coming over as pushy that is not my intention but I am eager to understand more.

When I say 'write' I am only using Archos' own terminology for as I explained I am new to Android. Never having even laid hands on an Android device until mid January of this year which was a phone that I immediately unlocked and rooted being frustrated by the Network providers constrictions and bloatware.

So I did expect that a file manager would be needed to do the writing but as I understand it their are file managers and there are file managers. What I was really looking for is advice on which file manager is best suited to the Archos G9 ICS especially as I now have it confirmed that the Archos only has partial root access.

Although PC World did claim to have checked the manufacturers specs (which I read with them on their computer) and alongside 'Root Access' it said 'Yes'.

But when I got my hands on a G9 (March 1st 2012) I soon realised that serious root management applications seemed to be missing. Although I couldn't be sure if 3rd party stuff like for example 'superuser' would be necessary on factory supplied kit with full root access.

Therefore I don't want to install a file manager that may try to force move a file that can not or should not really be moved. I may be talking rubbish but that is my concern.

My wife has already downloaded some reference documents which she would like to keep so I would like to create an archive file on the SD Card where she can store them.

So in short I would very much appreciate any advice re the best suited file manager for the G9.

Thanks!


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 1:47 am 
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'best' is an emotive term, and you are likely to get a variety of answers. I suggest you use the built-in one for a while until you know what you like and dislike about it - you will then be in a good position to see if others would better meet your needs.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 1:06 pm 
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Thanks Nigel,

I do find the on board one a bit clunky and it often doesn't even let me look at a file or provide any other option other than view the icon. Perhaps I just need to get use to that limitation although it is a bit annoying when trying to understand what is what.

I do like ES File, but that is with a rooted Android 2.2. and I'm not sure if it's suited to a partially rooted G9 running Android 3/4 and recommendations from people with experience are often worth their weight to a novice and that is all I am seeking.

I wouldn't really be bothered who thinks what is best, if I had just 1 or 2 recommendations that I know work OK with the G9 I would try them in the knowledge that they do a reasonable job, but at the moment it would be hip, dip, dip, install, uninstall and who knows what problems I could create for myself in the process.

However if the recommendation is that the on board filer manager is best for the G9 I'll persevere with it.

But! There is one other thing that I am trying get my head around which is when I plug a USB stick into the 3G USB port (with 3G switched off of course) the pre-installed file manager doesn't see it, the USB option is there but greyed out, neither is the mounting option in settings active although the option is clearly there. ...Please! what am I missing??

One of the features of the G9 when launched was the ability to use the full sized 3G USB port for external storage devices when not actually being used for 3G. So how do I see/mount a USB stick, ..what am I missing?

All I can find in the instruction manual is this statement ( no actual instructions)
External storage - Total space: Displays the amount of total space on an inserted micro-SD card or USB connected storage device.
External storage - Available space: Displays the amount of free space on an inserted micro-SD card or USB connected storage device.


Last edited by jack500 on Sun Mar 18, 2012 6:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 2:15 pm 
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re the standard file browser: to find out more about a file, long-click on it (to select without opening it) and the use the drop-down menu in the top-right corner to ask to see the details. unfortunately, the file browser does not have an option to force the file extension to be shown - even Windows allows you to do that!

re externalstorage: assuming you have already enabled the 3G, port ( or are using an OTG led plugged into the micro USB port), the OS should recognise the stick when you plug it in, and mount it automatically. A USB icon will appear on the bottom bar to allow you to dismount it, and you should be able to see the filing system via the file browser. Sometimes, though, the OS does not succeed in mounting the device (in which case clicking on the USB icon on the bottom bar will produce a message saying it is safe to unplug the device). In this case, reboot and try again. If it still fails, it is possible the device is using an unsupported file system, or - in the case of a hard disk - it does not have enough power to operate, or the device cannot be handled by the standard drivers. In the last case, you are out of luck. I have found the G9 cannot handle some of my older USB sticks - and It can read SD cards plugged into one of my adaptors, but cannot read the same cards when plugged into a different adaptor. (Now that I have upgrade to ICS, I will have to check again to see which of my cards/sticks/adaptors/HDDs work!)

I hope this all helps. I find my G9 very useful, and find that I am using it in preference to my main laptop computer and my old netbook for web browsing, personal emails, listening to music and watching videos, reading ebooks, etc - so much so, that I felt no need to take a laptop with my on a recent holiday abroad, and was able to use tthe G9 at the end of each day to archive all the photos off my cameras (and preview them so I could throw away the obvious dross). My travel kit consists of the supplied USB charger and lead (plus an international mains adaptor that covers all the countries I am likely to visit), an OTG adaptor, a micro- to mini-USB adaptor so I can charge my old phone and connect up my cameras, an SD card reader, a mini- to standard HDMI adaptor and a flat HDMI cable so I can use any reasonably modern TV as a display, and a pair of headphones. (I also have a mini-to micro USB converter, so I can charge up my G9 off older chargers, for when I am not carrying around the full kit.) Everything fits in a small Vivanco DVD player bag, with room to spare even after I've thrown in a pair of battery-powered speakers. I am toying with the idea of a small keyboard+trackpad to round off the kit. How does this compare with what others of you have?

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 6:09 pm 
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Thanks Nigel for an informative reply.

I bought the G9 as a present for my wife and I like it so much I was intending to get one for myself but I would need similar functionality as you seem to have and was starting to reconsider but having read your post I now think it is I who needs to adjust to Android better, although the guesswork involved doesn't help.

To answer your question I am using a screened OTG but not with led, but this is full sized as I am only able to use the 3G port at present being unable to buy a micro OTG cable locally, but I do have one on order. I have been trying the USB stick in the 3G port with 3G communication switched off in WiFi connection. This because, not being able to find any instructions in the user manual, I have been reading what I could on the Internet and I feel sure I had read that 3G should be off when the port is used for a USB drive and I didn't want to chance damaging the 3G circuitry. But! After reading your post and not seeing anywhere else to enable 3G I decided to chance it with 3G on and Bingo it works :D .

I have been trying with 7 different flash drives and now the G9 is able to see them all except one and strangely this a 16gb Sandisk Cruzer which is not only my best quality drive but also the newest. ?? The G9 does see it in storage settings and shows it as mounted but in the file manager the USB section is still greyed out but then I can live with that, or rather without it.

Now I need to study your post and see how I can get to where you are at.

I have bought a mains travel adaptor for the G9, 2.5 amp with twin USB outputs which should save on cables and adaptors when traveling. I did have one prior but that was only 1amp and not enough for the Archos.

Thanks again for a helpful reply and thanks also to others who contributed, I feel I might be getting somewhere at last.


Last edited by jack500 on Sun Mar 18, 2012 6:51 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 6:22 pm 
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Hi Nigel,

Just reading your post again, and you are right, just dawned on me that the Sandisk is a U3 drive.

Think I'll delete the U3 program with all the portable stuff about these days it seems like U3 was maybe a flash in the pan anyway. (excuse the pun)

Cheers Jack (PS I may be back :D )


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:41 pm 
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Jack, which charger did you buy? (and does the G9 work fully with it, or do you get a 'slow charge' warning?)

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:35 pm 
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This is it top right of page, the one on the left is the same but with various pin adaptors, The single 1amp output travel charger I already have has the pin adaptors but to be honest I find them just more bits to cart about and loose and I always have the standard travel adaptors anyway.

I did say in last post it had 2.5amp max output, sorry it is actually 2.1 amp, but read on :?

http://www.maplin.co.uk/search?criteria=USB+Charger

I bought this Saturday afternoon in the local high street Maplins and when I posted on Sunday I hadn't had chance to try it out as I wanted to monitor its charging against the standard Archos charger as Lith Ion batteries (and the other rechargeables) will try to take whatever current you chuck at them unless controlled.

(main reason for buying besides it cutting down on number of chargers to carry about, is that I am good at loosing chargers and I would rather loose this than the genuine Archos)

Now Maplins assure me that it is ideally suited to the Archos, and they sell Archos kit, plus Maplins staff usually have quite good technical knowledge. So the way this thing is supposed to work is:- .. if just one USB devise is plugged in then 2.1amps will be available on the one USB socket in use, but if both sockets are plugged into it is supposed to automatically switch down to 1.01amp per outlet.

So, I first timed the Archos charger and it was averaging 1% of charge every 3 minutes 22 seconds. When I tried the one from Maplins I didn't get any kind of slow charge warning but then a few seconds after plugging it in the % of charge dropped down a notch, I waited 3mins 30 seconds and it didn't even go back to where it had been. I checked the USB polarity and it is the same as the Archos charger. The only thing that appears to be different is it has the extra 600ma more output than the Archos which of course should be good, but then different manufacturers control the charging in different ways and if Archos shut down the charging circuit on detection of any over current in order to prevent the battery from frying, rather than just regulating the charging current then this charger isn't suitable.

On the other hand it could be that the output switch over isn't working and I am only getting 1.01amp on the single output. Or maybe technical spec is wrong and it needs on of those linked power leads you sometimes get with small ext. HDDs.

So it will be going back and they will be asked to explain what's going on although it does charge my phone up quicker than on it's own 500ma charger and when it gets to 100% the phone just shuts down the charging as normal.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:10 pm 
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Jack,

I suspect the battery icon did not show the lightning bolt when you were using the Maplin charger. I don't know of a charger (other than the one supplied by Archos) that will charge a non-HDD G9 at the fast speed. Indeed, the G9 refuses to take ANY current from some high-power chargers - see http://forum.archosfans.com/viewtopic.php?f=86&t=57856. So I'm not surprised, merely disappointed by your experience with the Maplin charger. let us know if you find one that works!

(Archos, how about selling spare chargers via your online store, please, as no other charging mechanism seems to fast-charge your G9 units?)

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:52 pm 
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Hmm! I see,

Although I notice one bloke in that thread claimed he had a 2.0amp that worked but I'm so not sure. I cant really see the the USB wiring making any difference either, as the outer pins carry the standard USB 5 volts and polarity has to be standard and the centre pins just data and they are just wired through pin to pin. They are not swapped and crossed about equipment dependant.

If the cable mattered it could only be if the charging circuit needed to communicate with the charger in a similar way that many other charging circuits do. That's why a phone or power tool battery has more than two connections, the charging circuit will not work if it can't detect the safety thermistor embedded in the battery cells.

But the Archos battery is on board so I would have thought it easier to monitor that internally. I can only think that the G9 has been built to a price and they must have had to make saving where ever possible to achieve what you get for that price when you look at the other stuff around and what you get (or rather don't get) for more outlay. So just having and over current sensor instead of a current regulator circuit and then just balancing the size of charger accordingly would make sense and also avoid issues with people trying to whack all kinds of current into a G9 just like I have done with my phone. :?

I bet if you found a 1.5amp USB charger it would perform in just the same way as the Archos original.

Surprised by your comment that Archos don't even list a replacement charger as an accessory though. Most odd!


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 9:34 pm 
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OK! it can't be the lead look here (this an Archos specialist supplier)

http://www.newmp3technology.com/all-Arc ... harger.htm

They also do replacement AC adaptors but they don't give the spec

http://www.newmp3technology.com/archos-80-g9-acusb.htm

I can't see it being a safety circuit or any other kind of circuit built into the Archos mains charger.

Following taken from the Archos FAQs for the G9 Flash memory version.
Charging from a standard PC USB port or using a different USB cable may result in very slow charging or no charging at all.

What I take from that is that a straight 5volt DC supply is what is required (nothing special) but a standard USB on a PC doesn't put out anywhere near 1.5amps. Also many USB cables are not capable of passing 1.5amps either as they are designed to only pass what is a standard computer USB would handle and the max. current per port is 500ma so a standard USB Cable would be a bottle neck for 1.5amps even if used with the Archos 1,5amp charger. The same would apply to other USB charger cables that are supplied with other USB chargers of a lower rating, but there is now way of knowing for sure what the cable size is, so Archos FAQs replies have to be guarded accordingly.


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