Device(s): Xperia Z1, Nexus 4, Nexus 7 3G, HTC One X
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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:
- choose the download package for your particular platform
- if you are using Windows and chose the .exe installer, you'll be prompted to select a Destination folder (for example, the c:\android-sdk-windows folder)
-if you are not using Windows or downloaded a .zip or .tgz package, extract the android-sdk_r##-windows.zip to a new folder or the top of the C:\ drive; if you use Winzip or WinRAR, you can do an "Extract Here" and the files will be extracted to the c:\android-sdk-windows folder
- either run "tools\android.bat" from the Windows Command (DOS) prompt or double-check the "tools\android.bat" from Windows Explorer; here's the screen that will be displayed:
- when the "Android SDK and AVD Manager" launches, click on the "Available packages" entry in the left-hand pane/column.
- click on the arrow that's to the left of the "Android Repository" line to expand the list of packages available for download
- check the box to the left of "Android SDK Platform-tools, revision #"
- click on the "Install Selected" button at the bottom right of the window
- another window will be displayed, showing the package(s) that you've selected to install; go ahead and click the "Install" button
- the Android SDK Platform-tools will now be installed (progress will be shown)
- click the "Close" button when the package is finished installing
- the "adb.exe" utility will have now been installed in the "c:\android-sdk-windows/platform-tools" folder
- the complete, current documentation for the (adb) Android Debug Bridge can be found here:
- before you can actually use the adb utility with your Android device, you'll need to turn on USB debugging on your Android device
- launch the Settings application and navigate to Applications -> Development and make sure the checkbox for USB debugging is selected/checked
- connect your Android device to your PC using the appropriate USB cable
- to use the adb utility, start a Windows Command Prompt (DOS window) and change (cd) to the platform-tools directory under the Android SDK's installation folder (i.e., where the adb.exe utility resides); here are some sample commands:
# first, change our directory to where adb.exe is installed
c:\> cd c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools
# test to see if the adb daemon can communicate with our Android device:
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb devices
# display the help for the adb utility
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb help
# open a shell session on our Android device
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb shell
# list the files in the Android device's /sdcard folder
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb shell ls -a -l /sdcard
# install the "android-app.apk" application to the Android device
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb install android-app.apk
# retrieve a file from the Android device to the local PC
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb pull /sdcard/downloads/myfile.txt myfile.txt
# send a file from the local PC to the Android device
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb push myfile.txt /sdcard/downloads/myfile2.txt
# display the Android device's system log (press control-C key
# combo to terminate)
c:\android-sdk-windows\platform-tools> adb logcat
If you have problems establishing a connection via adb (i.e., "adb devices" does not "see" your Android device), its likely you forgot to enable USB debugging or you do not have the adb USB drivers properly installed. Don't worry, you won't be the first or last to have had either of these problems. Please consult with the experts in your device's all-things-root sub-forum for help in identifying and installing the proper adb USB drivers.
Mini-SDK (contains adb and fastboot utilities for Windows, Mac, and Linux)
Please see the next post in this thread for the Mini-SDK.
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:
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 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.
Mac OS X:
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? )