Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

Summary: Ack! I've been hit with the Low-on-space bug! And HTC doesn't have a clue what it is.

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TOPICS: Storage, Hardware
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Of course not. It has 8GB of internal storage and you're geeky enough to have a Droid, so you certainly aren't out of internal storage. If you're like me, though, you're still receiving an error message telling you that you are "Low on space: Phone storage space is getting low."  Here's the problem, though: HTC has no idea that this issue exists, let alone that it's essentially bricking Incredibles.

I spent a fair amount of time Googling the issue tonight (surprise) and came to an extensive thread on the Android Central forums regarding the low on space message.  Seems a lot of folks have this same problem: not only does the phone show plenty of space in its 8GB internal partition but also in the areas of the drive devoted to so-called "phone memory."  According to HTC tech support (more on them later), this warning message is supposed to appear when you have less than 10MB available of the roughly 750MB devoted to phone memory. I, like most of the other posters on Android Central and HTC's own support forums, have plenty of space (549MB in my case) available and shouldn't be getting any such warnings.  Neither should the people with HTC Heros who have also posted their problem on the HTC forums (t even looks like this problem is popping up on HTC's Windows Mobile phones).

Or so the extraordinarily polite gentlemen at HTC tech support told me when I finally just called.  He thanked me for bringing the problem to their attention, informed me that the only solution he could propose was a hard reset, and suggested that I note the problem on their support feedback page, which had a much wider audience than his tech support database.  If you happen to be having the same low-on-space issue and you'd like to talk to him or one of his tech support friends yourself, he's just a phone call away.

Now I really don't want to do a hard reset, since I've invested some time in getting my Incredible to be precisely the mobile computing companion I want it to be. And from everything I've read tonight, it certainly sounds like this is an issue with HTC's mail and messaging clients.  People who have gone through a reset and abandoned HTC Mail and the HTC SMS client in favor others like K9mail and Handcent SMS haven't had this problem reappear. Others who have just done the reset have had mixed results.

So now, not only are the HTC apps and their Sense UI keeping me from getting Android 2.2 until later this summer, but some users are reporting that the low disk space issue causes their phones to lock up and become unusable until they perform the hard reset, wiping out their applications, data, and setup.  Awesome.  And here I was feeling all superior to my iPhone-carrying friends. Makes me want to root the phone if I have to wipe it anyway.

Anyone else out there having this issue? Get on the horn with HTC and make some noise. We'll see if we can escalate this beyond grumpy posters on hidden forums.

Topics: Storage, Hardware

Christopher Dawson

About Christopher Dawson

Chris Dawson is a freelance writer, consultant, and policy advocate with 20 years of experience in education, technology, and the intersection of the two.

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82 comments
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  • Like I said multiple times

    Android's main problem is lack of quality control. Lots of features, most halfazz implemented. Very little testing is done before the features are released to the masses.
    wackoae
    • In this case...

      @wackoae The problem is HTC's software, not Android. If I could root it and run straight Android, I'd be good to go. And could actually be running Android 2.2. The phone hasn't been rooted yet - we'll see what happens when the procedure hits the web.
      mrdatahs
    • iPhone's main problem is lack of quality control.

      @wackoae
      http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=2446048&tstart=0
      [i]The navigation bar at the top of the email screen has disappeared[/i]

      Lots of features, most halfazz implemented. Very little testing is done before the features are released to the masses.

      Cue the double standards...
      NonZealot
    • RE: Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

      @wackoae <br><br>Android does indeed have a ton of bugs, some of them pretty bad. I've had a formal bug submitted at code.google.com in Android's IMAP client since last fall....it's noted as a "Defect" but nothing has been done about it. And there are a whole bunch more out there.<br><br>Android (up to v2.2 that I've tried so far) is "good enough" for many users, but full of bugs....it's not half-baked, but more like about 3/4-baked. Reminds me of Windows. <img border="0" src="http://www.cnet.com/i/mb/emoticons/wink.gif" alt="wink"><br><br>It's a good project with a lot of contributors, though, and eventually they will iron them out. Right now it's pretty flaky though, and this kind of bug highlights one of the downsides of Android phones: who owns the bug? The Android project? HTC? Someone else that HTC outsourced a piece to? Messy and there will likely be a lot of finger-pointing going on.<br><br>None of this with the iPhone....
      RealNonZealot
    • RE: Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

      So there is a fix for this...clear cache of email apps, facebook, etc. Also, don't use HTC Mail, use K-9 or MailDroid. Lastly, the mobile Firefox app can cause this -- uninstalling the app makes it go away, and reinstalling the app won't cause the error to come back for a few months.
      strakerc
  • quality

    hey chris, sorry for the problems, but hey, you get what you paid for, right?
    banned from zdnet
    • Dude -

      @banned from zdnet I paid $200 for the phone and through the nose for data and service. I think it's reasonable to expect the mail client that comes with the phone to not bleed memory.
      mrdatahs
      • RE: Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

        @daengbo
        No, it's actually better to ban you for asking such a stupid question to begin with.
        ubiquitous one
  • You can back up, I assume?

    I don't have any smartphone. I have a phone. It has a colour screen. The colour is orange. I don't even use it much, but it works. As a phone.

    It is, however, sadly short of memory for text messages, so I suppose I could use some of that 8 GB you are talking about.
    Robert Carnegie 2009
    • It's more the principal of the thing

      @Robert Carnegie 2009 Yeah, I can back up and most of my apps live on the SD card. My contacts are all synced with my Google account.

      However, if there is a fundamental problem with the HTC messaging software, then I'd like to see it addressed. Wiping my phone won't make that happen for other users.
      mrdatahs
    • re:

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      iwdy23
  • hard reset

    It seems to me that the ability to do a hard reset is very useful. This is lacking in desktop computers: if they get screwed up (and it's sooo easy to do) only an expert can get the computer back to a working state. The ability to get your device back to factory settings (and then get your stuff back through synchronisation) is very useful for non-technies. This sort of approach is how I see computers going as they become more like consoles in future.
    The Star King
    • RE: Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

      @The Star King
      Umm...you NEVER should have to hard reset anything!!!

      Must be a Windows Users :) I am not kidding but what is a "hard reset". I don't know I use OSX and Ubuntu. Why would you have to do that and why is it soooooo easy to screw things up. Is it because internet pop ups completely hose your computer? Seriously I don't know.
      ctunk
      • I believe we're talking about phones here. Not sure why we need to hear ab

        @ctunkout how wonderful Apple is.
        kevintblack
      • You're not as clever as you think you are

        Just telling you.
        Michael Alan Goff
      • RE: Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

        @ctunk
        Mac OS, wouldn't that be a re-initialize? Watch out for those free screen-savers.
        My HTC Tilt with Win Mobile 6.1 putts along just fine.
        philwhite42@...
      • RE: Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

        @ctunk And where did Windows come into play here? Isn't this about the Android Incredible? Sure I could say I have no issues with my iPhone or my Blackberry but those to are off topic.

        Back to topic it sucks that this is happening - and it seems to be more of an HTC issue than an Android issue. Hopefully they'll find the problem soon.
        athynz
      • @athynz: You are pretty cool

        For an Apple zealot, you can be pretty level headed. I wish more Apple zealots could be like you. :)
        NonZealot
      • Hard Reset

        @ctunk I guess you were unaware that all the way up through the 3G iMac, a Hard Reset button resided on the machine to force it back to factory default. I would guess (but can't guarantee) that a similar button resides even in the newer models. With Windows, it's called 'pulling the battery and reboot.'
        Vulpinemac
      • RE: Is your Droid Incredible low on disk space?

        @NonZealot - [b]For an Apple zealot, you can be pretty level headed. I wish more Apple zealots could be like you. happy[/b] Thanks for the complement but dude I'm definitely NOT an Apple zealot, fanboi, shill, whatever... I do love my iPhone even though it could be better. I just don't get into the whole "I hate Apple" mentality that you have. Nor do I get the whole "I hate Windows" mentality the Apple zealots have - I love Windows 7... it may not have been my idea but it works for me just fine. I just counter the FUD, distortions, and lies...
        athynz