Discussion in 'Android Help' started by jflint, Mar 21, 2016.
What does Busybox do, and why does it work only on rooted phones?
A busybox is a name for a single executable (program) that (usually) supports a wide-variety of Linux (Unix) commands that are not typically available in the stock Android operating system.
Typically, the busybox installer will also offer to create symbolic links to the various commands so that you don't have to type the commands in the form of "busybox <command>" (which you can also do even without the symbolic links).
The reason it takes root is that you need to install the busybox in the /system partition (nevermind the systemless root installations that can be done nowadays--the gist is the same) as well as many of the commands need higher level access to allow you to do useful things.
Also, here's a very interesting and illuminating post that also discusses busybox and other toolboxes:
Hope that helps!