A walkthrough of SD-Booster for Android

By Jeremy Lesniak, Contributor

aNewDomain.net — Have you ever felt like your Android device suffered the symptoms of a fragmented hard drive? Opening files tend to take longer than expected, saving snapped photographs freezes your phone or it’s slow to boot? It may be an issue with your device’s SD card. Well, now rooted Android users have a solution with SD-Booster.

SD-Booster for Android is a free app in the Google Play store. The app is designed to allow expansion of the allocated cache on the SD card of your Android device. SD-Booster is very easy to use. Just punch in a cache size and apply it. The opening help tip on SD-Booster is direct and to the point.

As I learned from the help button within the app, the color designation on your cache entry has meaning. Red is too low, yellow is better, green is the best and magenta is too high. Very easy to follow, right?

I tested the performance of SD-Booster on my rooted Samsung Galaxy Nexus running a CyanogenMod 10 nightly build, based on Android 4.1.2. Sadly, my results were not what I expected. The Galaxy Nexus performance didn’t get significantly better. Your mileage may vary.

I ran a baseline on cold boot speed as well as SD write speeds using theAntutu benchmark app. The default cache allocation for my device is 128KB with a cold boot time of 65 seconds. Increasing the cache to 1024KB (1MB), only decreased cold boot time to 63 seconds. Lastly, with the cache set to 2048KB (2MB) the boot time decreased to 58 seconds. Those few saved seconds weren’t really noticeable.

Benchmarking the SD card write speed didn’t assist my device significantly either. Baseline read speed was 17.1 MB/s.

While running on the optimal cache setting of 2048KB, the read speed increased to 20.9 MB/s. Not a big difference.

SD-Booster may not be for devices with more up-to-date hardware (CPU, RAM, free space). Or it may be that not all SD cards are created equal. As the developer states, this app is for rooted devices only. One would think that a rooted device has been configured to run better than stock with removed bloatware as well as a ROM that runs more efficiently.

If you have an older Android device, give this app a try. It’s at the great price of free, but again, SD-Booster is only for rooted devices.

Based in Charlotte, NC, Anthony Pruitt is an IT pro, a columnist and the podcast captain at aNewDomain.net. Follow him @ihavnolyfe or on Google+ and email him at Ant@aNewDomain.net.

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