Computer: Android 4.4 KitKat External SD Card not Writable – A new Google “Feature”

External SD Card not writable

One reason why a love Android is because you easily can expand memory by a large external SD Card (and by USB devices….).

With Android 4.4 “KitKat” Google has (tacitly) decided to de-value this feature by making the “external” SD card only readable by all applications, but writable only in a very restrictive way i.e. temporarily for single applications but not for multiple apps to share storage between them. Google thinks this kind of “sharing” should only be done by cloud services and thus requires permanent internet access, whereever you are in this world…

Test: Use “Ghost Commander” and try to copy files from “/storage/sdcard” (internal storage) to “/storage/sdcard1” (external SD card)……

The easy way: Android 5 Lollipop

I decided to upgrade my Android 4.4 to Android 5 (Lollipop).

In Lollipop Google has opened again wirte acces to the external SD card, but you must in some way “allow” ech App, what directories of the SD card should be writable for this application.

Ghost Commander:     not successful on first attempt

File Commender:      successful with Lollipop

ES Datei Explorer:   successfull with lollipop (after authorizing SD card root)

X-plore:                   successfull with lollipop (after authorizing SD card root)



Possible Fixes

There a some Apps around that could fix this “Google Feature”, but they need a rooted Android.

So I am an now looking how to root my Sony Xperia Z1 Compact.

My Build No. is  14.4.A.0.157   (the “Kernel”, the “ROM”)

Rooting is possible only with Build 14.4.A.0.108   -> Have to flash the kernel first (with “FlashTool”)

First Steps

Developper Mode: Settings -> About -> Build Number  —- Tap 7 times on “Build Number” —> Now you are a “Developer”

USB Debugging: Once you are “Developer” you can see the item “Developer Options” under “Settings -> System”. Check “USB DEbugging” and authorize it….


 FlashTool for Sony Xperia

Install the FlashTool on the Windows PC.

Connect the Sony Xperia via USB to the Windows PC   —- with “USB Debugging ON”


3 thoughts on “Computer: Android 4.4 KitKat External SD Card not Writable – A new Google “Feature”

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