My wife cracked her screen and got a replacement

I figured backing up her phone was going to be easy, but no such love.

Moto x 2013, Sprint, 4.4.4, all stock, not rooted, not unlocked. ADB version is 1.0.32

Currently on a Linux system, it shows up with "adb devices" and I can run "adb pull /sdcard/" just fine, but any sort of "adb backup (options) -f fullbackup.ab" asks me to confirm the backup on the phone, which I do, and the command on linux immediately stops. I end up with a 41-byte file.

How can I make sure all of my wife's apps AND settings are transferred to the new device? I'm going to try an older version of ADB, maybe, but if anyone has answers, I'd love to hear them. Thanks!


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12 thoughts on “My wife cracked her screen and got a replacement

  1. If the original phone is functional, maybe take a look at Motorola Migrate.

    I tried "adb backup -f filename -all" on my X 2013 (Verizon, stock 5.1) and it seemed to be working (Ubuntu 14.04, adb ver 1.0.32 rev eac51f2bb6a8-android). I stopped it after 50MB. Not sure what your problem might be.  

  2. Thanks for the idea, +Bill Blankenship but Motorola Migrate only transfers your contacts, photos, videos and music, nothing else.
    +Ben Moore If I start an app on the old phone, and then place the phones together for NFC to chirp and then tap the app on the old phone, it simply fires an intent for the Google Play store to find that app. Her Google account already has all of her apps installed, but none of her data for those will transfer.

    For example, she has a Garmin GPS watch and syncs that with her phone. Google's sync can't touch that data. 'adb backup' would do it just fine, though.

    No idea what's up with this. I asked Motorola to look into it and I haven't heard back in 24hrs, but they also don't support adb questions. They tried to send me to Google support

  3. +Ian Douglas I had the same problem when I tried to backup the Play Music package. I read that Music doesn't allow backup this way (for obvious reasons) and thus only the header is written, which is 41 bytes (just tried this again and got a 41 byte file).

    One convoluted option would be to get a list of packages from "adb shell pm list packages" and back them up individually (scripting would help here). Not a very efficient solution, I admit. And this would only get apps, not other settings.

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