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Basic ADB Knowlege

ADB stands for "Android Development Bridge," and it's an official tool provided by Google. It allows you to tunnel into your device over the USB cable and run shell commands on the device. Shell commands are small snippets of code you can execute on your phone to do things like make the file system read/write, copy files, and do commands like reboot or play a sound. You can access ADB using Terminal on Mac or Command (CMD) on Windows, but first you have to set it up. Follow this guide from top to bottom, skipping the instructions for Windows if you have a Mac, etc.

Install ADB

  1. Make sure your device is rooted. You can use ADB on a non-rooted phone, but for all the tutorials on my site ADB needs root to do the first command (su).
  2. If you are on Windows, you must install the USB driver for your device. Go to the product's website, find Support, and browse for the USB drivers like this page for Motorola devices.
  3. Download the tools package for Mac or Windows to your computer.
  4. Open the archive, open android-sdk-windows, then open tools and extract the file called adb to your home folder (~/) on Mac or (C://) on Windows.

Start ADB on Mac

  • Open a Terminal window on your Mac by clicking the Spotlight icon in the corner, typing Terminal and pressing enter on Terminal. Move the terminal icon to somewhere in your dock so it will stay.
  • Now every time you start up a new Terminal and want to run ADB, you'll always want to start like this (remember to press return after each line):
    export PATH=~/tools
    adb shell

Start ADB on Windows

  • Open a Command Prompt on Windows XP by clicking Start > Run and typing in cmd, or on Windows 7 by clicking the Windows logo and simply typing in cmd and pressing Enter.
  • Now every time you start up a new Command Prompt and want to run ADB, you'll always want to start like this (remember to press return after each line):
    C://adb.exe shell

Hack Away!