Sunday, December 23, 2012

Transfer Information to Another HTC One S

I am still using my trusty T-Mobile G2 while waiting for the new Nexus 4 to arrive. It has only been on order since Thanksgiving so maybe sometime in January it will arrive. In the meantime, my wife has an HTC One S which has a small crack in the corner of the screen. This isn't a real problem but the USB connector has become quite flaky and it often doesn't get charged. I ordered her a replacement and this is the hopefully short story of how I transferred her data and information to the new phone.

First, I did some research. It quickly become apparent that between Google's sync and backup plus what I could copy from the filesystem, all that was left would be SMS/MMS. Message Sync looked promising so I loaded it. I then performed the following:

  • Placed the phone in Airplane mode to prevent new data from showing up.
  • Used Message Sync to back up her SMS/MMS to the phone's storage. 
  • Mounted the old phone on a computer.
  • Used rsync to mirror the phone to an external USB drive. 
  • Unplugged the old phone and powered it off.
At this point, I thought I was ready to power on the new phone and begin the restore process. I hooked it to the computer so it would get power and then proceeded to answer the initial questions and connect it to our wireless LAN. Within a few minutes, I could see gmail showing up. I realized that many of the directories probably had content which didn't need to be transferred so I focused on her pictures, downloads and the messagesync directory.

At this point, I loaded the Message Sync application from the the Play Store and then did a "synchronize" operation. My wife had about 7500 SMS/MMS messages and the synchronization took a bit of time. I wrote this paragraph and previewed it in the time it took to synchronize. So not too bad from a time perspective. But it failed to restore anything. :(

We have used Backup to Gamil for automated SMS/MMS backups and it can restore SMS but not MMS. Unfortunately, it wanted to restore all 75000 SMS she has sent and received over the years. This is a fail. No MMS and way too many messages.

Third attempt was SMS Backup and Restore. Seemed simple enough but no hint of MMS support. This doesn't appear to be a very fast application but maybe it will get the SMS from one point to another.

I have given the new phone to Michele. I will wipe the old one once she thinks all is OK.

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