Hey Nerd, Geek, Root or whatever else they might call you! If you’re reading this I suggest: read on! Because what’s to follow will be of interest to you… Titanium Backup! I’m wondering for whom I’m even writing this test review: Roots definitely know about this app and non-Roots won’t have any use for. Oh, woe is me! But I’m gonna be brave and test it anyway because this app has the potential to outshine everything else on the market!
|Tested version||Latest version|
|3.5.3 :: Added support for PRO license key on Market ::||126.96.36.199|
Features & Use
Okay, so you made it past the teaser! In that case: let’s get started!
After starting the app you will come across terms that mean nothing to you if you’re not a Linux User: Busy-Box? LZO-Compression? Okay Wiki, you’re up! LZO (Lempel-Ziv-Oberhumer) is a compression standard that’s designed for speed. Why didn’t I know that? Compressing saved apps can also be done via tar.gz and the like, but LZO is quite a bit faster, though not every processor supports it. BusyBox is the bomb, though. It’s Linux/Unix OS’s quintessential component, combining lots of standard Unix applications in one file. Seems pretty important!
You can download and install both programs via the Problems button. If the BusyBox has been installed successfully you’ll receive a message regarding SuperUser rights. This, of course, is important for when you want to use the app and set up backups.
The main function – setting up, administrate, recover, and delete backups – is pretty sweet. Backing up unsecure apps isn't exactly a novelty, granted, and there are other apps that can do the same thing. However, this Titan takes on a whole lot more: it makes it possible to create backups of apps and system applications and then install these, should the need arise.
The backups wind up on your SD card and include all essential application details such as game scores, settings, and login data. When the recovery is set to commence you can decide if you only want the app back on your green friend or if you need the entire backup, including all the additional data.
If you click on one of the apps in the list the enormous context menu opens up. You're going to love it as it allows you to:
- start the app
- uninstall it
- set up a backup
- delete application data
- recover backup
- delete backup
Long click and you can access the special features. These will allow you to save the app to your SD card or to the internal memory. You can also ogle it in the market saying "gee, I've never been to the Android Market before, thanks a million for this function", or make it forget that it actually comes from the Market using the Detach from Market function in order to no longer receive updates. The latter didn’t' really work for me.
Use the Filter to search through the app for specific criteria. Go to menu and click on the Filter button.
What I found very useful is the Batch Modus. This allows you to choose if you want to back up:
- all apps
- user apps only
- system apps
- system data
The Batch Modus really is a great tool. There are 17 options (including the ones listed above) in total; other options allow you to delete all your backups as well as to recover new user apps. This tool's range of functions is insane!
The fact that I'm writing this test review is proof enough of my bravery. However, even i didn't suspect that I could be this brave: seeing as I was on a role in so far as trying out new things goes, I decided to dump several system apps. I ignored Titanium Backup's warnings and went ahead and did it. "Sayonara, Setup Assistant, I screamed manically and pressed the delete button. Well, it would seem that I did in fact still need it, because as soon as I uninstalled it my Desire did an unexpected reboot and has, since then, been starting up without a boot screen. If anyone has any words of wisdom in this regard please let me know in the comments below. To make a long story short: mu Setup Assistant (RIP) has (successfully, for better or worse) disappeared. The moral of this tale is that you should be careful when selecting system apps that you want to delete, as the interaction between system apps can be convoluted, and if you delete one another may no longer function as it should.
Although I was happy that my beloved Desire survived this traumatic process, I now had another problem to deal with. I had lost my root rights, at least that's what Titanium Backup was telling me. However, after starting PicMe it became clear that this wasn't the case. So, I still had my root rights, but how could I make this clear to Titanium Backup? Well, what do you know, there's a Problems button, and behind this lurks the all to familiar BusyBox. My advice to all those of you struggling with this: reinstall the BusyBox and everything will run smoothly again.
You can set backups via Schedules. You can set the date and time as well as start similar functions as to the ones you find under Batch Modus. The app also provides a widget and an image recovery creator.
What (more) can the Donate/Paid version provide?
- History (of the backups)
- 0 Click (background recovery for Batch)
- Use Batch Modus to check all the apps
- Market Doctor (repairs broken Market Links)
- App freezer (makes apps visible or invisible without uninstalling them)
- Unlimited Backups (according to a schedule)
Those were the main functions I checked out during my little odyssey. Here comes the
This must be the most powerful app that is currently available. However, I wouldn't recommend it to beginners as the damage you can cause is considerable and can lead to a completely new installtion of the ROM. If you're an experienced flasher, however, this app is an absolute must have!
Screen & Controls
On the whole, I'm satisfied with the app's design and controls. It's certainly acceptable for such a powerful app. Clockwork Recovery could take a page out of their book. Not enough for five stars though.
There are icons beside the apps in the overview showing you if a backup already exists for each app. You'll find a legend for the icons via the menu button - Legends.
Speed & Stability
Are you familiar with other backup apps? Then you must know that loading and displaying the app list can take between 10-30 seconds. This isn't the case with Titanium Backup: my 230 apps were displayed within 1!! second! That' a record!
It took about 10 minutes to backup 80 apps, including a few games that require a lot of memory space.
Titanium Backup can be downloaded free of charge from the Android Market.
You can download the keyfile needed to activate the donate version is available for US$3,99.