Best Way to Cache Data in Android

I have an ArrayList of custom, simple Serializable objects I would like to cache to disk and read on re-launch. My data is very small, about 25 objects and at most 5 lists so I think SQLite would be overkill. In the iPhone world I would use NSKeyedArchiver and NSKeyedUnarchiver which works great. On Android I've attempted to do this with with a FileOutputStream and ObjectOutputStream and while the result is the same, the performance is terrible. Is there a better (read faster) way to cache small objects to the file system in Android?

Asked by: Kimberly229 | Posted: 25-01-2022

Answer 1

For what it worth I cache some of my String data to disk using BufferedWriter/BufferedReader and it's very fast. Matter of fact it is faster than storing the same data to SharedPreferences. The code goes something like this (note that things happen faster when you provide buffer size)

final BufferedWriter out = new BufferedWriter(new FileWriter(file), 1024);

Answered by: John807 | Posted: 26-02-2022

Answer 2

public class MyClass implements Serializable 
private static final long serialVersionUID = 1L;

public String title;
public String startTime;
public String endTime;
public String day;

public boolean classEnabled;

public MyClass(String title, String startTime, boolean enable) {
    this.title = title;
    this.startTime = startTime;
    this.classEnabled = enable;

public boolean saveObject(MyClass obj) {   
    final File suspend_f=new File(SerializationTest.cacheDir, "test");

    FileOutputStream   fos  = null;
    ObjectOutputStream oos  = null;
    boolean            keep = true;

    try {
        fos = new FileOutputStream(suspend_f);
        oos = new ObjectOutputStream(fos);
    } catch (Exception e) {
        keep = false;
    } finally {
        try {
            if (oos != null)   oos.close();
            if (fos != null)   fos.close();
            if (keep == false) suspend_f.delete();
    } catch (Exception e) { /* do nothing */ }

    return keep;

public MyClass getObject(Context c) {
    final File suspend_f=new File(SerializationTest.cacheDir, "test");

    MyClass simpleClass= null;
    FileInputStream fis = null;
    ObjectInputStream is = null;

    try {
        fis = new FileInputStream(suspend_f);
        is = new ObjectInputStream(fis);
        simpleClass = (MyClass) is.readObject();
    } catch(Exception e) {
        String val= e.getMessage();
    } finally {
        try {
            if (fis != null)   fis.close();
            if (is != null)   is.close();
        } catch (Exception e) { }

    return simpleClass;  

and calling from activity

cacheDir=new File(android.os.Environment.getExternalStorageDirectory(),"MyCustomObject");
cacheDir= getCacheDir();

MyClass m = new MyClass("umer", "asif", true);
boolean result = m.saveObject(m);

Toast.makeText(this, "Saved object", Toast.LENGTH_LONG).show();

Toast.makeText(this, "Error saving object", Toast.LENGTH_LONG).show();   

 MyClass m = new MyClass();
 MyClass c = m.getObject(this);

 if(c!= null)

 Toast.makeText(this, "Retrieved object", Toast.LENGTH_LONG).show();


 Toast.makeText(this, "Error retrieving object", Toast.LENGTH_LONG).show();

dont forget to use write_external_storage permissions in manifest file.

Answered by: Byron348 | Posted: 26-02-2022

Answer 3

It's hard to know without profiling but my guess is your poor performance is down to using ObjectOutputStream. Have you tried writing your own writeObject(ObjectOutputStream) and readObject(ObjectOutputStream) methods as this may help performance.

You could use the traceview tool to see exactly where the application is running slow. Have a look at this question for instructions on how to use traceview.

Answered by: Miranda699 | Posted: 26-02-2022

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