pedanther: (cheerful)
[personal profile] pedanther
So, here's a thing that I wish I'd known an hour ago: Android devices' external/additional storage doesn't preserve a lot of the file properties I'm used to assuming a computer will keep track of. In particular, it doesn't keep a "file created" date or a "file last modified" date. (It does know one date, which is the file creation date if you created the file in that location on that device - if you moved it from another computer, or even from another folder on the same Android device, that's what date it remembers.)

The way I learned this was by moving a bunch of files onto my new Android device, and saving them to the external storage on the assumption that this was a sensible way to keep the internal storage free for important system files.

To be fair, I don't care about the file dates of all the files thus affected (and of those that I do care about, there's a significant chunk that I have backed up on a computer with a real file system, because I care about them in other ways too, so there is a place I can look up that information if I need it). But in a way, that just makes it more annoying, because it means that the significant files constitute a relatively small chunk of storage space, and I could easily and without any inconvenience have kept them in the device's internal storage if I'd known it would matter.

ETA: Or, on further investigation, perhaps not. Copying a file to the device's internal memory also loses a bunch of file property information and keeps only one file date, which is reset to the time the file was copied. The reason I didn't spot this immediately is that thereafter it functions as a "file last modified" date, updating each time the file is edited. Which is something, anyway, and for at least some of the files I was annoyed about is the thing that matters.


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