Clearing Space on the SD Card of a Nexus One Android Phone

CC-licensed photo from Wikimedia

So what if Google has discontinued the Nexus One, closed its N1 web store, and released newer Nexus phones to market? None of that fazes me. I love my Nexus One for the pleasant heft of its metal body and the smooth contours of its rounded corners, its glowing white button and its removable back cover. It’s not for nothing that Wired deemed it “sexy.”

Still, the N1 can frustrate even its adoring owners at times. I ran into just that situation the other day when I tried to use the camera on the phone. An alert notification informed me that I had only 3MB of space left on my 4GB SD card; I would have to lower the quality of the photos I was taking or stop taking them altogether.

This came as a surprise, since I had recently transfered all of my existing photos and videos from my phone to my computer. With that material off of the phone, what could possibly be taking up so much room?

A little bit of googling produced only marginally helpful advice, so I’d like to explain how I found my way back to a nearly empty SD card. In the end, it turned out that an extra step was needed to truly remove those old files from the phone. In the hope that it might be helpful for other N1/Android owners, here is how I cleared additional space on my SD Card:

— Check Settings > SD card & phone storage to see how much free space you have
— Connect N1 to a computer and transfer all photos and videos from the DCIM/camera folder
— Delete all photos and videos from the DCIM/camera folder
— Disconnect N1 from computer
— Download the ASTRO file manager or another file management app from the Android Market. This will allow you to browse the folders on your Android phone from the phone interface itself.
— Open Astro and go to .Trashes
— Delete all files in .Trashes
— Go to Settings > SD card & phone storage to confirm that your SD card now has empty space.

And that’s it — upon completing the above steps, I had 3.69 GB of free space on the card. No need to delete applications or clear caches, as others suggest. Just clear your .trashes folder, and you should be good to go.

9 thoughts on “Clearing Space on the SD Card of a Nexus One Android Phone

  1. Holly

    This is fantastic! I just deleted tons of pictures and music from my Samsung Fascinate and could not for the life of me figure out why my sd card was still full. Thanks so much!!!

  2. Taylor

    WOW! Thank you! This works for all androids I’d imagine because I just did it on a T-Mobile Sensation. If doesn’t appear in the beginning be sure and click View (the eye icon) and select show hidden files!

  3. db

    This is brilliant… such a simple solution and there I was getting scared reading all the blogs online asking me to debug etc etc ! Thanks a million


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