Enable USB Mass Storage Mode On Your Android Phone Running Ice Cream Sandwich
By on December 22nd, 2011
Android 3.0 based tablets don’t have native hardware mass storage mode. Users need to use Windows Media Player or any other MTP based app to transfer their music and videos to their tablet. Sadly, this so called ‘feature’ is present even in Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.
The Galaxy Nexus has 16GB or 32GB of on-board memory, which is not partitioned (/data, /sdcard etc) as it was done in the Nexus S and other Gingerbread based handsets. This means that users can use the full 16GB of internal memory to install the apps, and use the same memory to carry their music and pictures. Also, unlike before, the internal memory in the Galaxy Nexus and presumably all other Ice Cream Sandwich devices won’t be in FAT32 as before.
Due to this, users lose access to the Mass Storage mode. To transfer their music and photos from a PC, they need to use Windows Media Player or any other syncing client. Thankfully, the Galaxy Nexus also has a ‘MTP’ (Media Transfer Protocol) mode, which allows users to use the handset as a removable storage device under Windows 7. The Galaxy Nexus will work as a USB mass storage device only under OS’es which support the MTP protocol like Windows 7, OS X Lion and Ubuntu. Older version of Windows (like XP) does not support the MTP protocol.All Android handsets and tablets with a usable custom AOSP based Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich ROM, don’t have an USB Mass Storage mode as well. This is because of some framework level changes in the new 3.0 kernel used in Ice Cream Sandwich. Most of these handsets will only support USB mass storage mode when they get a proper 3.0 kernel ported for their handset, or until an official Ice Cream Sandwich update is released by their handset manufacturer.Thankfully, until that happens, an XDA developer – Bexton – has written as an app which will enable USB Mass storage mode for handsets running a custom build of Ice Cream Sandwich. The app runs as a service in the background, and will automatically notify you to enable the USB mass storage mode, whenever you connect your handset to your PC.

Interested readers can download the APK file from here. The app works with the Ice Cream Sandwich port of the HTC Desire, Desire HD, Droid Incredible, EVO 4G, HD2, Nexus One and the Galaxy Ace, Moment, Mini and the Galaxy S and its various variants.

Author: Rajesh Pandey Google Profile for Rajesh Pandey
Rajesh is a 19 year old nerd, currently pursuing B.Com Hons from Bhawanipore college in Kolkata, India. He loves everything tech, especially Android. You can follow him on twitter @ePandu or mail to him at rajesh@techie-buzz.com.

Rajesh Pandey has written and can be contacted at rajesh@techie-buzz.com.

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