Increasing internal storage on LG G3 (D855) using the SD Card

It’s a great phone, and I have no regrets about choosing it over the Samsung or the Sony at the time (I played with all three side-by-side), but that was some time ago and now 16Gb of internal storage is frankly a little light.

Of course you can add an SD Card for additional storage and this is great for movies and music files, but ultimately you start running out of app space. One of the coolest features of Android M (aka 6.0 or Marshmellow) is the ability to merge your SD Card into the internal memory. The downside is the loss of a bit of performance and you lose the ability to treat the SD card as a removable drive (it gets formatted into an internal format thus making it unreadable outside the phone without reformatting) but I never do that anyway because it means taking the back off the phone.

However, LG have disabled this feature.

BUT you can re-enable it.

1. Upgrading LG G3 to Marshmellow (Android 6.0 M)

On the Official LG Website, search for your G3 and you will find:

screenshot-www.lg.com 2016-05-24 08-14-20

Select “Software” and you get…
screenshot-www.lg.com 2016-05-24 08-14-32

Alternatively, the quick link is: http://www.lg.com/uk/support/mobile-phones?superCategoryId=CT00008355&categoryId=CT00008356&search=D855

Install the drivers and then the Mobile Support Tool.

2016-05-24

Connect your phone and select “Start Upgrade” and the system will officially and automatically upgrade you to Android 6.0. For some, that’s good enough because you have the latest official version and haven’t had to wait for an OTA (over the air) upgrade.

2. Enabling SD Card Internal Storage

Now this bit can get a little technical and scary, but bear with me. You need to make an edit to the system configuration and to do this you temporarily need to root your phone. This means basically to take control over it. It’s going to be temporary but you will need to install some programs to help you do this.

2.1 KingRoot

On your phone, go to https://kingroot.net   (note the https is important, going to http will not get you there)

screenshot-kingroot.net 2016-05-24 08-31-28

Download the Android Version onto your phone. Don’t bother with the Windows version, it is in an odd character set and makes no sense. You will need to sideload this .apk file. In SETTINGS / SECURITY  enable the  UNKNOWN SOURCES option. Then select the KingRoot app from your downloads folder and install it.

Run the App and follow the instructions here https://kingroot.net/tutorials to root your device. It will not be rooted the next time you reboot, so all will be well.

2.2 Build Prop Editor

From the Play Store go to https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.jrummy.apps.build.prop.editor

screenshot-play.google.com 2016-05-24 08-37-48

Running this app enables you to search for the following entry:

ro.lge.adoptable_storage 

This is set to false by default on the LG marshmallow ROM. You can set this to true, save the file and then reboot the phone.

Now, when you go into storage settings. You can press on External SD card, this will bring up the file explorer for the card. Pressing the additional options at the top right and selecting settings will reveal the all powerful option to format the SD card as storage. Woo!

WARNING: This will remove everything on the SD card, remember to backup any files.

WARNING 2: Removing the SD card from now on without reformatting the data to the internal storage properly will result in the loss of stuff. You need to be committed to keeping this SD card in situ and doing a complete factory reset when you want to move on.

There! Sorted.