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Old 01-12-2022, 08:37 AM   #1
Renate
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Only 5GB of storage on 32GB Glow21?

I've heard people complain about this and I've scratched my head over what they mean. Finally I did some sleuthing.

There are a few ways to get files onto your Glow (or any device):
  • USB Mass Storage (UMS)
  • Media Transfer Protocol (MTP)
  • Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP)
  • Android Debug Bridge (ADB)
  • File Transfer Protocol (FTP)

B&N put in a Linux loop device:
Code:
# mount
...
/dev/loop0 5232656 68 5232588 1% /mnt/media_rw/spsd
This is backed up by the backing file:
Code:
# stat /storage/emulated/0/.mass/backingFile.img
  File: `/storage/emulated/0/.mass/backingFile.img'
  Size: 5368709120       Blocks: 20600   IO Blocks: 512 regular file
Device: 1ch/28d  Inode: 1627     Links: 1
Access: (660/-rw-rw----)        Uid: (    0/    root)   Gid: ( 1015/sdcard_rw)
This is installed by /system/bin/initial_usb_mass.sh
This file is what gets mounted when you use UMS.
UMS is where the screen says, "Your Nook is connected and you can't do a thing until you disconnect".

So, the point is, don't use UMS to transfer your files. The whole idea is bad. If you transfer to "/sdcard" using any other method you have access to the whole ~28GB. However, I've never gotten MTP to work. Does that work for others? PTP only gives you access to the DCIM and Pictures folders.

I use my own AdbSync.exe (in sig) to sync directories on my desktop to my Android devices.

Edit: Just to double check this all (since I don't have 5GB of books) I copied over 8GB of music to /sdcard.
Code:
C:\>adbsync C:\Music\Albums sdcard/Music/Albums /acsu /s
...
C:\>adb shell du -s /sdcard
10,028,945        /sdcard/

Last edited by Renate; 01-12-2022 at 09:03 AM.
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Old 01-12-2022, 10:20 AM   #2
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I found another way to bypass the GL4's UMS and have access to the full storage capacity of the device. (Whenever you connect your Nook and the USB mode screen comes up, tap the X to send that screen away.)

First, you need to install another Android launcher by ADB on the Nook. Once you've done that, look for the Settings icon in the app drawer and tap it. Then, look for "Connected Devices" and tap that. You should see a few options (I have four), the last of which is USB. Tap USB. You see three options: Charge this device (the default option), Transfer Files and Transfer photos. Select "Transfer Files". You should now have access to the full storage of your Nook.

This was confirmed for me on my Mac. I have an app called Android File Transfer which should automatically start and show the contents of the device's storage when an Android device is connected by USB. It never came up for my GL4 before. When I choose the "Transfer Files" option, it immediately comes up on my Mac when connected.

I do not know of this Transfer Files option works with MTP or FTP. But it works!
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Old 01-12-2022, 12:08 PM   #3
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Yes, the generic "Transfer Files" is MTP. I don't know why I've never gotten it to work. It does not show a device in the Windows File Explorer. PTP does show a device. I'm not sure where the problem lies in not having any backing in the Glow or File Explorer not working or what. My interest is only intellectual. I have no desire to move files with drag and drop.

Edit: Duh. Windows couldn't find a driver.

Last edited by Renate; 01-12-2022 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 01-12-2022, 12:16 PM   #4
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Well, it doesn't work in all situations, I see. It works in macOS and Linux, but my Windows experience is the same as yours! Also, for those who use Calibre, Calibre doesn't seem to recognize the GL4 in MTP mode. So, what I found may not be all that useful for many folks.
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Old 01-12-2022, 12:25 PM   #5
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What good is the nook if you have to jump through such hoops to be able to actually have access to the storage?
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Old 01-12-2022, 12:43 PM   #6
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B&N really needs to stop with the storage partitioning BS.

TBH: I wouldn't care if they just gave the user 10GB for sideloading. That is more than the Clara has.
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Old 01-12-2022, 01:23 PM   #7
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I don't understand why B&N even bothers to do this storage partitioning!

That said, it may not be a problem for some people. Few people will use a device of this size for pdf or manga. Even a 5GB partition can hold hundreds, if not thousands, of ePubs.

I have several ways to circumvent the storage partitioning foolishness, so I'm not concerned with that.

Why go through the trouble with this Nook? For me, it's the Android OS. The ability to have an eInk device that not only reads book files but that can also have Scribd, Instapaper and my favorite Bible study app installed on it (to name only a few examples) is huge for me. Android is the reason I looked into Boyue and Onyx. If Kobo devices used Android, I'd have one and wouldn't bother with the Nook!
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Old 01-12-2022, 01:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
What good is the nook if you have to jump through such hoops to be able to actually have access to the storage?
Well, I can't say that I have ever had to jump through any hoops. I never even noticed that other people were having a problem.

Edit: I just modified the kernel to make Windows see it as MTP. I guess some people might call that "jumping through hoops".

Last edited by Renate; 01-12-2022 at 01:58 PM.
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Old 01-12-2022, 03:07 PM   #9
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If we inaugurated a Mobileread Olympics and included a Device Decathlon, would one of the events be hoop-jumping? : )
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Old 01-12-2022, 03:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZodWallop View Post
B&N really needs to stop with the storage partitioning BS.

TBH: I wouldn't care if they just gave the user 10GB for sideloading. That is more than the Clara has.
My Clara has over 120GB free for books.
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Old 01-12-2022, 03:35 PM   #11
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I had 128GB on my Glow 7.8". It's trivial to add to the new Glow '21. You just have to solder a bit.
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Old 01-12-2022, 09:12 PM   #12
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"Trivial." "Solder a bit." "Replace the SDCard." "MTP." "UMS." "PTP." "ADB." "FTP." ??

So, if you're Joe Smith and buy the Nook Glowlight 4 -- and use it normally without customizing or jumping through hoops... you get 5 GBs of storage, not 32 GBs (minus whatever the OS takes up)? Are the Nook developers incapable of learning from the past?

So basically you're back to an 8 GB device (unless you buy some 20 GBs of books directly from B&N). Five GBs is fine for me, but I think they should drop the price to $120 (as ZodWallop mentions) since the GL4 really isn't really a memory upgrade (for side-loaders anyhow).
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Old 01-12-2022, 09:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcentros View Post
"Trivial." "Solder a bit." "Replace the SDCard." "MTP." "UMS." "PTP." "ADB." "FTP." ??

So, if you're Joe Smith and buy the Nook Glowlight 4 -- and use it normally without customizing or jumping through hoops... you get 5 GBs of storage, not 32 GBs (minus whatever the OS takes up)? Are the Nook developers incapable of learning from the past?

So basically you're back to an 8 GB device (unless you buy some 20 GBs of books directly from B&N). Five GBs is fine for me, but I think they should drop the price to $120 (as ZodWallop mentions) since the GL4 really isn't really a memory upgrade (for side-loaders anyhow).
I feel the same way. I have no idea how to solder, and I know nothing about Android, so all this talk about ADB and MTP is way over my head. I don't feel particularly motivated to learn these things either, as the Nook and other Android-based readers aren't that much better hardware-wise than Kindles and Kobos. I've decided to stick to my Kobos for now. At least I know how to patch and customize those, there are detailed instructions for dumb users like me. And they have 32GB out of the box, which is plenty for me.
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Old 01-12-2022, 09:39 PM   #14
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Well, I can't say that I have ever had to jump through any hoops. I never even noticed that other people were having a problem.
Well, you're obviously a very far cry from an average Joe Schmoe, who knows zilch about Android or any other OS and doesn't understand most of the things you're saying. You could as well speak Chinese.
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Old 01-12-2022, 09:57 PM   #15
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You could as well speak Chinese.
你好嗎

I don't like what B&N is doing with this partitioning either, but let me explain it. You start out with 32 GB. All the system files use up maybe 4 GB. That leaves you 28 GB space. B&N wants to hog all that 28 GB for their own books. They set aside a maximum of 5 GB that is this special area for sideloading over UMS. If you don't use this area it doesn't eat any of your 28 GB. Any installed apps come out of the general 28 GB.

So, if we look at at types of users: Solid B&N types will just load lots of bought B&N books in the 28 GB and not touch the 5 GB. People who lightly sideload will probably never run into the 5 GB limit. Power users should not be using UMS or else they should switch the backing file so that it's on the whole /sdcard and not /sdcard/spsd.

The reason I brought this up was to see if people actually have a problem and to help them find a way forward.

Do people actually use UMS? (That's when it says: "Your Nook is connected over USB and you can't do a single thing with it now")

Obviously if you want to solder in 128 GB micro SD cards into your device that's a whole different subject, but we've got all sorts here.

Last edited by Renate; 01-12-2022 at 10:00 PM.
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