If your doing any development or testing on Android devices, this is a must to have installed on your machine. I recommend adding it to your Windows PATH variable, as once you begin to use it, you’ll find yourself coming back to it more and more.
In this post, I’ll outline some of the most useful commands I’ve been using in my interactions with Android so far. First off, ensure you have an Android device connected to your machine, or an emulator running.
adb provides a command for determining what Android devices are detected to your machine, ‘adb devices‘:
Use the above command to ensure that adb detects your device or emulator. For example, it may not detect a physical device if you don’t have the correct USB drivers installed.
Here are some of the other commands that should prove useful to you when working with Android devices. Note that for some of these commands to work, you will need to a rooted Android device.
Install an APK file
adb install path_to_apk_file
Uninstall an APK file
adb uninstall com.myapp.main
View the device log buffers
Switch locale on the device (to German in this example)
adb shell “su -c ‘setprop persist.sys.language de; setprop persist.sys.country de; stop; sleep 5; start’
Start intent e.g. your applications main Activity
adb shell am start -a android.intent.action.MAIN -n com.myapp.main/.activities.MainActivity
Run all Instrumentation tests in a Java class against an application
adb shell instrument -e class com.myapp.tests.UITests -w com.myapp.test/android.test.InstrumentationTestRunner
Get a dump of the devices configuration (useful to include in bug reports)
These are the commands I’ve found most useful when working with Android so far, view all available commands by typing adb -h from the command line.
Happy New Year.