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Old November 10th, 2011, 08:20 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default ADB Guide (updated 2013/05/21)

All credit for this goes to scary alien! Go click the Thanks button on one of his posts to show your appreciation.
(LOL, El Presidente, just saw this (12/25/2011)...you are too kind, sir! Thank you for that nice note...SA)

The adb (Android Debug Bridge) is a useful utility, often used for root-related operations.

To use the adb utility, you'll need to:

1. install the Android SDK (Software Development Kit) and its platform-tools package

2. for Windows PCs, you'll need to have the adb USB device drivers specific to your Android device; for Apples Macs, this is not a stumbling block, but often is for Windows machines; finding and installing the adb USB device drivers for Windows is beyond the scope of this tutorial, please see post #4 below

Details and options for installing the Android SDK and the adb utility follow below:

Manual / Standard Method

Mini-SDK (contains adb and fastboot utilities for Windows, Mac, and Linux)

Please see the next post in this thread for the Mini-SDK.


How to update your PATH environment variable to include adb and your Java installation
(courtesy of txwolf1980)


Hope that helps!


change log:

2011-11-12 scary alien: 1) minor edits, 2) additional instructions, 3) include example images
2011-11-25 scary alien: replace attachments with better imageshack links
2011-12-02 scary alien: include link to alternative, pre-packaged adb/SDK installation
2011-12-04 scary alien: include another, mini-SDK alternative installation option
2011-12-05 scary alien: add Mac and Linux adb and fastboot utilities to sdk-tools.zip
2011-12-07 scary alien: adding information for updating PATH environment variable (courtesy of txwolf1980)
2013-05-21 EarlyMon: removed mini-SDK

also, here are the original attachments/thumbnails:
Attached Images
File Type: jpg sdk-install-01.jpg (51.0 KB, 1912 views)
File Type: jpg sdk-install-02.jpg (63.1 KB, 1304 views)
File Type: jpg sdk-install-03.jpg (65.6 KB, 1051 views)
File Type: jpg sdk-install-04.jpg (64.3 KB, 943 views)
File Type: jpg sdk-install-05.jpg (30.6 KB, 821 views)
File Type: jpg sdk-install-06.jpg (48.3 KB, 851 views)
File Type: jpg sdk-install-07.jpg (121.1 KB, 1021 views)

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Last edited by EarlyMon; November 27th, 2013 at 12:47 AM. Reason: add chmod / sudo reference for linux adb/fastboot references
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Old January 2nd, 2013, 03:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The Mini-SDK

During the course of rooting, you'll likely be instructed to go grab the Android SDK.

You very likely don't need that.

If you go and download the whole Android SDK shebang and get a platform tools folder, you'll have everything to begin development in Android. And a big waste of space on your hard drive if you're not into that.

Use our forums' Mini-SDK (below) and unzip that to C:\sdk-tools under Windows
- or -
... under an sdk-tools folder inside your home directory or Documents Mac or Linux.

Then, wherever you see instructions telling you to go to "platform tools" - just use your sdk-tools folder and you're all set.

  • Version.txt
  • Windows:
    • adb.exe
    • AdbWinApi.dll
    • AdbWinUsbApi.dll
    • fastboot.exe
    • md5sums.exe
  • Linux:
    • adb-linux
    • fastboot-linux
  • Mac OS X:
    • adb-mac
    • fastboot-mac
  • sdk.sh
    • installer for Linux and Mac OS X only
    • To use: sh sdk.sh
Good for both 32/64-bit Windows or Linux, 64-bit OS X. (The only 32/64-bit differences are elsewhere in the full SDK - adb and fastboot are the same regardless. Now aren't you glad you're using the Mini-SDK so you don't have to care? )

Note to 64-bit Fedora users or others using distros based on that -
HOWTO Setup Android Development - FedoraProject

Note that the md5 checksum utility is included in Linux and Mac OS X but added here for Windows.

On Windows, the commands from inside the sdk-tools directory are:

adb rest of command line

fastboot rest of command line

md5sums filename

For Linux or Mac OS X, please run the installer first -
  • unzip sdk-tools.zip, double-clicking in your file explorer or Mac Finder is ok
  • bash sdk.sh

On a Mac from within the sdk-tools folder, to use -

./adb rest of command line

./fastboot rest of command line

md5 filename (see note following Linux)

On Linux from within the sdk-tools folder, to use -

sudo ./adb rest of command line

sudo ./fastboot rest of command line

md5sum filename (see note following)

Note - on Mac/Linux, adb and fastboot are added to your path by the installer. Thereafter, the ./ file location qualifier won't be needed in new terminal windows.

Windows users please refer to post 1 to get the Mini-SDK into your path, substitute "C:\sdk-tools" as the proper path. You don't need to worry Java or the JDK with the Mini-SDK.

Hope this helps!


Updated sdk.sh and instructions on May 18, 2014. And we really need to update this to the latest sdk for everyone.

Updated May 20, 2013 to reflect the February 13, 2013 sdk.

Attached Files
File Type: zip sdk-tools.zip (1.71 MB, 3398 views)

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Old August 18th, 2013, 04:06 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by EarlyMon View Post
Point here is 64-bit Linux (doesn't really matter what distro) needs certain 32-bit libraries in order for adb and fastboot to work.
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Last edited by palmtree5; December 7th, 2013 at 08:13 PM.
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Old November 27th, 2013, 12:45 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Having trouble finding the right drivers?

Maybe this will help -

OEM USB Drivers | Android Developers
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