Nuvi 2689 can't update a language file


My nuvi 2689 shows 94% full but it has a 16 GB memory card installed. When I attempt to update the English language file (471 MB) it can't be accomplished because of insufficient space. Do I have to do anything special to the memory card for it to be used. I can see the card in Windows Explorer. It has been formatted (FAT32), is empty and can hold 16 GB.

Thanks much for any feedback.

John from PA


I don't think I've heard of anyone using language files from a SD card so it's probable that voice files need to be on the device itself and can't be installed to the card. I've seen this discussed before when trying to add all English language files to a Garmin GPS that's already quite full and it is a difficult situation to be in.

What English language voices do you have installed now, just Samantha and Michelle, or does your device have all seven TTS and four non-TTS voices? If all seven plus four, when did you install them? You answers to these questions may suggest which technique is best and easiest for you to obtain the language file update.

The 471MB download (from Garmin Express/Tools&Content/OptionalFiles-Language/English) is more than just an update of the default English language voices that came with your 2689, most likely just Samantha (TTS3) and Michelle (non-TTS) but is a full installation of all seven English language TTS3 voices, about 20-31MB each, plus the four non-TTS voices.

If you use Samantha as your selected navigational voice now, Garmin Express will offer to update it alone to the latest voice (first offered in October 2018) and if you've done a map update since then, you were offered the Samantha update during the map update process and are up-to-date or if not done, can be done now. But if you're wanting to have all voices available (7+4), you have some options:

-have you already deleted unneeded files in your nuvi by getting rid of foreign language files, etc., then tried the language file update?

-if patient, you can fill the nuvi with extra files which you'll later delete, then during the next map update, Garmin Express will install the new map update to the SD card leaving the nuvi with lots of extra space for the language file installation

-you can use the clone technique now and reinstall the current map to the SD card and delete the map file on the nuvi itself, then install the language files

Depending on how you answer the questions in paragraph 2 above, there may be other preferable options.

If tinkering manually with files on the nuvi, be sure to have a full backup of the nuvi itself in case a mistake is made and you need to restore one or more files from the backup to the nuvi.

Other info on the latest English language voices:

Thinking some more

The quickest solution as I think more about this is the following:

Add some files to the nuvi just to fill up space. Remember which files they are since you'll delete them at the end.

With the nuvi and its SD card inserted, connect to your computer and run Garmin Express.

In GE, click on the nuvi 2689 icon, then choose Reinstall Map. With almost no free space left in the nuvi, GE should offer you the Install North America to SD card option, and if there, select it, then let the map update proceed and finish.

Now delete those garbage files you added at the beginning to force GE to do the map update to the SD card.

When done, you should have the current map files on the SD card leaving lots of space in the nuvi itself. Confirm that the map works and when reconnected to your computer, you should see much more than the previous 6% free space.

With the nuvi/SD connected to the computer, rerun GE and find, select and install the 471 MB English language files now that the nuvi has more free space.

When complete, you'll now have seven TTS3 language files and four non-TTS language files installed in the nuvi to select. Try them out. Several folks here prefer Australian Karen cool

Now in the future, monitor the POI factory forums for news of updates to any of the 11 English language files and look to do an update. Note that Garmin Express will only identify a voice file with an update available if it is the selected voice; i.e., if your nuvi navigational voice is Karen and a Samantha update becomes available, you'll only see the update offered if you change your selected navigational voice to Samantha, the run GE. If multiple voices have updates available, you need to repeat the process as many times as needed with each voice being selected for the update to be offered.

Clear as mud?

Thanks Craig...

I didn't try your steps but instead deleted all the foreign language files and foreign language help files. That allowed installation of the new language file.

I've also approached Garmin, telling them what I did and basically asking "why doesn’t Garmin Express offer the ability to install to the SD card, instead of presenting me with an error and essentially no solution. Something like a user option reading “your internal memory has insufficient space, would you like to install the selected files to the SD card?"

We shall see what feedback I get.

John from PA

technical problems

Voice and other files will count as "system files". That means they are considered as required for device to work properly. Map files are not considered system files, as you can use different maps, some of them not even from Garmin, or remove them all without affecting GPS itself.

As to not give user chance to mess with device's internal system, there is no possibility to move system files outside device internal memory. Why? If they will be on external card, and user will remove this card, it will be equal to deleting those files. Same if card will be unreadable. This may brake GPS operating system. Look for topics about deleting files from GPS. It will give you an idea how it may affect GPS.

This is way all electronics work. Same with your computer or phone. Files required for device to run are not allowed to be moved outside main storage.

Moving files to SD card.

Here is a post from the Cloning discussion thread where the files that can be moved to SD card was discussed in some detail.

Alan - Android Auto, DriveLuxe 51LMT-S, DriveLuxe 50LMTHD, Nuvi 3597LMTHD, Oregon 550T, Nuvi 855, Nuvi 755T, Lowrance Endura Sierra, Bosch Nyon

Much like Craig had said,

Much like Craig had said, voice and software files can't be on the SD card. But I still think Garmin needs to consider something better than just a message that your main memory is insufficient and thus leaving you hanging. The initial impression is something may be wrong with the card or perhaps the Garmin doesn't recognize the card.

The comment below is Garmin's reply...

"The SD card is for the map updates. The voice or any software files will not work when it is on the SD card, it must stay in the device.

When space is low for the map update, Garmin Express will offer the option to install the update to the SD card or choose a region."

John from PA