Android internal storage shows more used space than total of apps


I have a Galaxy J7 Sky Pro with a 128 GB SD card “adopted” as storage, although apps don’t install there by default and must be transferred to it. I have several apps now running from that card. This phone is not rootable, so this cannot be changed. There is 16 GB internal storage.

The problem:
My android internal storage shows 12.73 GB storage used due to apps, but when I use a calculator to add the total storage used by individual apps, it comes to only ~5.87 GB used. Where is the other 6.86 GB coming from? Is there some sort of hidden storage belonging to apps? Are there hidden internal apps? This does not appear to reflect the OS, since the phone shows full when app storage reaches about 14 GB.

The question:
How do I browse the internal storage of this phone to be able to determine where the hidden files are and which apps they are related to?


Absolutely, YES!

Let say, you’ve Candy Crush game. So, how those apps store your high score? :smile:

You’ve to root your phone and I DO NOT suggest you to do that.

There are some way to browse some hidden paths with adb i.e. Android Debug Bridge. If you’re familiar with Linux’s VFS i.e. Virtual File System I can provide some commands.


This sounds like a good idea. I have tried rooting this phone, I’m familiar with ODIN and uploading apks to the phone, but this one has no rootable apk. So, I tried browsing with the computer, and it appears that the phone has to be rooted to do that. What I really need is a good file browser program that does not require the phone to be rooted. From PC would be ideal, so a VFS browser could do the trick.


The official way to do that with abd. Rooting a phone is like double edge sword, one wrong step and BOOM!

I use Termux. It’s open source & free. I tried many so-called “File Browsers” but all of them collects user data aka. The “Telemetry”.

Remember when teachers prohibit younger students to go to any laboratory but allow them once they are in higher classes (or eligible for it). Android does that same way before and after rooting.


Part of that storage is probably being used by the OS itself. 16 GB is really low, I wouldn’t have gotten a phone with less than 32 GB even four years ago.