Should You Clear the System Cache on Your Android Phone?

That's how

Some Android phones store temporary files used for tasks such as operating system updates in a cache partition. You may have seen recommendations on the web suggesting to delete this partition from time to time, but is it a good idea?

What is the system cache and what data is stored there?

Some time ago, in the days preceding Nougat, Android used a system cache to store the system update files. Android has since moved away from this, preferring a different method to install updates.

Many modern phones do not even have a system cache now. If yours has a system cache, it will be on a separate partition from your phone's. The files stored there do not occupy any space accessible to the user. Clearing your system's cache will not allow you to download new apps, store files, or save more cat photos.

The system cache is also different from cached application data, which are data stored by applications and specific to that particular application. For example, Spotify stores streaming music in its cache file for faster (and offline) playback. Each application has its own cache file, separate from the system cache file and Is occupy a space accessible to the user. Clearing this cache is a great way to free up space. Do not forget that the application will rebuild the cache as it is used. Erasing is not therefore a permanent solution if you need more space.

RELATED: Why Android no longer needs a cache partition

Do you need to clear the system cache?

Clearing the system cache should not cause any problems, but it should not be very useful either. The files stored there allow your device to access commonly referenced information without having to rebuild it at any time. If you clear the cache, the system will rebuild those files the next time your phone needs them (as with the application cache).

Although we do not recommend emptying the system cache – especially regularly or for no reason – it can sometimes be useful. For example, these files can sometimes be corrupted and cause problems. If you have problems on your phone and no longer have options, feel free to try.

How to clear your phone's system cache

As mentioned, some phones do not have a system cache partition. We tested several phones and only those of OnePlus and Alcatel allowed us to clear the cache. Samsung Galaxy, Google Pixel and the phones Oppo and Honor did not have this option, for example. As with many things in Android, your mileage may vary.

To clear your phone's system cache, you must first restart the device in recovery mode. To do this, turn off the device, then press and hold the power and volume down button until the phone turns back on. If that does not work, the button combination may be different on your device. Refer to the user documentation if necessary.

To start your phone in network mode, press and hold the power and volume down buttons.

You may be prompted to enter a password. If it does, enter your locked screen password to enter recovery mode.

If you are prompted for a password, enter your password for the lock screen.

On some devices, the touch screen may work during recovery, which allows you to press the option you want to select. On others, you will have to navigate between the different options by pressing the volume up and down buttons, using the power button as the "Enter" key.

From there, the process will depend on your specific device, but you will look for a "Clear cache" option. If you have problems, you may need to consult the documentation for your particular device.

Choose clear data and cache

Once you have found the right option, select it. As it is an irreversible decision, some devices may ask you to confirm that you want to continue. Once you confirm, it should only take a few seconds to clean up this partition.

Once the operation is complete, use the restart option during recovery to restart your phone in the operating system. Your phone will turn on normally and you are ready!

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