10/10/2011

Motorola Droid Bionic 4G Issue and SD Card path

The very day after my previous post on the Droid Bionic, where I had said I had heard of people having 4G issues, then I began to experience those issues myself. If I turned the phone off, and started it back up again, it would come back to using 4G, but only for a minute or two. The same thing would occur if I toggled airplane mode. After tolerating the situation for several days, I decided I wanted to take the phone in to see if I could get it replaced.
As I planned to reset the phone completely, to also assure myself that it wasn't some kind of software glitch, I wanted to back up all my photos, videos, and music. So, I plugged my phone into my computer, and switched the USB connection to USB Mass Storage. I'm using CentOS 6, so the devices mounted under /media, but both as /media/MOT. I think I should backup, relabel and restore my external SD card, so it can mount under a different path.
Unless, you know what directories and files you have stored where, then it would be difficult to tell which is the internal and which is the external memory. Unfortunately, the way Motorola has the paths internally defined, the internal SD card path is /mnt/sdcard/ (or /sdcard) and the external SD card path is /mnt/sdcard-ext (or /sdcard-ext). Knowing the paths can me the confidence that I had copied everything from the internal /sdcard to the external /sdcard-ext.
Of course, I have the Android SDK installed, so I can start up a shell on my phone with:
adb shell
Next, I could look for the directories or folders to backup from the internal card with:
ls /sdcard
Then, for each folder to backup, I executed something like:
cp -r /sdcard/dcim/ /sdcard-ext/
With the backups all done, and resetting the phone to factory complete not fixing the problem, I headed off to the Verizon store to spend two hours watching the guy try to get my phone to work for more than a minute. I was amazed in one minute where my phone was downloading at a rate of 27,000 kbps! At my house, the best I can normally do is around 18,000 kbps. He reset the phone to factory again, he pulled and reset my SIM card, he exchanged my SIM card, he made sure there were no problems with my account, and with the 4G network. It was obvious after all the testing and troubleshooting, when he could set his phone down and have full bars of 4G, and mine would drop 4G and go to 3G that there was a problem with my device. Yet, he would not admit to it, and I started to get irate.
When they were refusing to agree that there was a problem with my phone, that first they needed to escalate the issue to a "real" technician before they could be sure that there was actually a problem with my device, I threatened to simply return my phone. This got a manager's attention, and he offered me free data service while I was waiting for a "real" technician to contact me. As that would not add up to two dollars, I counter-offered that I wanted to get a free cover, and showed him the $14.99 silicone cover that I had been considering. He agreed, and credited me with a free cover, and I agreed to wait for the "real" technician to contact me within 24-48 hours.
My visit to the store was on a Saturday, so I felt it fair to wait until Tuesday before they contacted me. Wednesday morning, I got a call from an unidentified caller and ignored it, waiting to see what the voicemail was about, but none was left. I called 611 with the feeling that perhaps it was Verizon, and sure enough it had been. I don't know if they were planning on sending me a new phone or not, as the woman started to say, "the resolution is that because you live in an area that is known to have problems...", I interrupted her.
I told her, "Stop right there, that is not a resolution. I paid for a phone to have 4G, and I want to have it. My phone did have 4G for the first couple of weeks, and then it stopped working correctly. I spent two hours in the store on Saturday, and everyone else could keep 4G, but me. I want it replaced, or I will return it". She very nicely said, "I will help you with that." Two days later, and I got my new phone. I don't want to jinx myself, but for at least the last three days it has been working well with 4G.

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About Me - WrightRocket

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I've worked with computers for over 30 years, programming, administering, using and building them from scratch.

I'm an instructor for technical computer courses, an editor and developer of training manuals, and an Android developer.