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I often want the same files to be accessed by different apps on my Android phone, but the apps look in different folders. Is there a way to make two different folder paths on a FAT SD card point to the same file? For EXT, I think I could do this with a symbolic or hard link, but those don't exist for FAT. Can FAT be extended to support them? Can Android use an EXT-formatted SD card? Can a folder be mounted on top of another folder?

If this does exist, does it have any negative side effects?

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They're just going to move you to android dude, just ask again there –  hbdgaf Nov 29 '10 at 17:55
It's more a Linux question than an Android question. –  endolith Nov 29 '10 at 19:58
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4 Answers 4

up vote 3 down vote accepted

It is possible to mount a folder in another folder if you have root.

open adb or terminal (adb is preferred) and type

mount -o bind /origdir /newdir

This should have the same affect as ln and will work on FAT32 filesystem

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Works fine. Shows up in apps as if /sdcard/newdir has the same files as /sdcard/origdir, which is useful for sharing files between apps that look only in specific hardcoded folders. You should mention that you have to mkdir newdir first, though. –  endolith Mar 26 '12 at 15:03
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Endolith answer is best for your situation, but Sathya is wrong, there is also solution, if you really need to fake link(hardlink), see: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/4545536/faking-symbolic-links-on-a-fat32-formatted-storage Though i hadnt tried it on android.

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FAT doesn't support symlinks.

Is there a way to make two different folder paths on a FAT SD card point to the same file


Can FAT be extended to support them


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That's why this question exists, yes. –  endolith Nov 30 '10 at 1:47
I'm not sure what more you want, clarified @endolith –  Sathya Nov 30 '10 at 17:50
My question is whether there's any way to produce a similar effect to symbolic links, considering that FAT doesn't support them. This isn't an answer, it's just a restatement of my question. –  endolith Nov 30 '10 at 18:58
The answer would still be no. It isn't a restatement, it's my answer - atleast to my knowledge. –  Sathya Nov 30 '10 at 19:06
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Can Android use an EXT-formatted SD card?

Android can mount ext2 but the volume manager won't handle ext2-formatted SD cards. (If you have rooted your phone you may be able to fix this.)

Can a folder be mounted on top of another folder?


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"Yes." How would you do that on Android? Would it have the effect I want? –  endolith Dec 1 '10 at 4:02
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