How do I see the Fairphone database

Hello all,

This is my first time on the forum. I recently purchased a Fairphone 4. I love the phone but I cannot figure out how to access the database. I have the phone connected to my computer but all I see is a blank screen.

Previously, I had Samsung phones. When I connect them to the computer, I see all the folders in the database (more than 40 folders).

I want to download photos and screenshots to my desktop drive. How do I access the database?

I look forward to your reply



Hi and welcome to the forum.
Do you mean by database the Android OS files, there is no database.

The memory on the phone is encrypted. What are you using on your pc?

You may want to look into adb (android debug bridge) via which you can log in.

Welcome to the Fairphone community.

I don’t know, what exactly mean with ‘database’. But to use an USB connection not only for charging, you need to allow data transfer via the quick settings menu.


Here’s a quick video tutorial.


Thank you, Robert. At least you understand what a database is. This was exactly what I wanted. Have you created any more videos on the Fairphone settings? Please let me know.


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No word about a database in this video. And nearly three minutes video for saying the same we did already here in the thread?
Switch on data transfer in the quick settings menu :confused:.


Thank you for the link, This is very helpful.

I find it surprising that your first answer said you do not know what I mean by database. " In computing, a database is an organized collection of data stored and accessed electronically from a computer system." In addition to a communications device, the cellphone also contains a collection of folders where data is stored. Roberts link was exactly what I asked.

Thank you again for looking at my question and reaching out to me. Forums are the new reference manuals.


Hello Amoun, “In computing, a database is an organized collection of data stored and accessed electronically from a computer system.”


A filesystem is definitely not a database :wink:

But anyhow, doesn’t matter…Make no sense to discuss here what are the differences. To much Offtopic…


Usually what falls under the term database is indeed a set of data, but has a way to run queries on them. Which can be of a predefined structure (SQL) or undefined (no-SQL). A directory structure on a filesystem is generally not referred to as a database in IT.

But the important thing is that your question is answered and the community was able to help out. But for future questions regarding accessing your internal storage, it’s probably better to call it internal storage to avoid confusion.



Whereas your use if the word database is apt in referring to a collection, you have used the statement out of context - and hence it is inappropriate.

The phone surely is a collection but of files, where a database is a collection of tables of data where individual rows of fields of information is accessed via row and field headings.

The phone has two main collections neither of them are databases.

The most important being the operating system which allows access to modules like screen, bluetooth, graphics processor, camera and memory. It is not a darabase in any ‘normal’ computing sense.

The memory in the phone or a computer may house the data that you aquire and frequently access. The location of this ‘personal’ data is held in a database as oart of the OS. This is a true database but not accessible to the user so falls outside of the scope in the way you use the word.

It apoears you want access files which brings up the question do you want to access your private data held as documents, videos etc. or do you want to hack the OS files.

The above may help to explain why you did not get a direct answer to your original post, as your use of the word database indicated you were unlikely to be familiar with how accessing internal data on the ohone was accomplished.

Hope you don’t feel too misunderstood. It can take time especially if there are nationsl language barriers to cross also.

All the best

Hello all, your comments and corrections to my terminology could be the foundation for a spirited discussion. The quote I used above is the Wikipedia definition.

Terminology evolves. You are all accurate. I am 80 years old and a retired technical writer, photographer, UI designer, and teacher. I love to be shown where I am wrong and use a term inaccurately. My problem is remembering all the terminology I used to make my living by.

My first operating system was CP/M. CP/M was based entirely on a rigid file system. The developers of Android smartphones were just children or, in many cases, were not even born yet. Even the internet was in its infancy. ARPA was resisting any commercial access. The concept of WiFi was a Star Trek illusion.

I am sure that in the next 40 years databases and file systems will evolve to something that is not yet invented. It reminds me of IBM turning down Xerox’s offer to collaborate on the creation of the copier. The quote at that time was “Why would anyone need a copier with typewriters and carbon paper available.”

Thank you all for keeping me current. I am sure that this will not be the last time I am corrected on my use of antiquated terminology.



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