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Android Debug Live CD

It's quite difficulty to log the debug messages from an Android Mobile if you've just a “normal” PC around but not an own, special prepared development machine.

That is because an Android Mobile has a quite extensive logging output over its USB port, but you need to have a special driver and special software to be installed on your PC to catch these output, and installing own software and drivers is mostly forbitten on business machines for the normal user.

But as long as you can boot your machine from an external device like a CD or a USB stick, there's at least a workaround: Thanks to the XDA developer team, there's a live CD available having the android debug tools on it.

Getting the CD

According the XDA- devoper forum, download the CD image from Server 1 or Server 2 and burn it on CD.

Getting started

Boot from the new CD. When then a Install window appears, choose your language and then press “Test Ubuntu” (as you certainly don't want to use the second button “Install”…)

When then the desktop appears, open Firefox to have this manual available also there.

On your Android mobile

  • activate the USB debugging under “Settings/Applications/Development/Enable USB-Debugging”
  • connect it via USB to your PC.

Back on the PC, open a terminal window (Application/Accessories/Terminal)


sudo su

to get root rights and

adb start-server

to activate the Android development bridge (adb) to connect to your mobile

When you now type

adb devices

your mobile should be listed as known device. Now you are ready to start

Logging messages

If you are now ready to log messages, type

adb logcat | tee mylogfilename.txt

You'll now see the log messages running over the screen.

Please do now the operations on your mobile of which you want to have the log file from.

When finished, press CTRL+C to stop the log. The log is now saved in mylogfilename.txt

Sending the log file

Please to not forget: This Live CD does not have a permanent file system, so when shutting down, all changes and files are gone forever, so you've to save your created log files somehow before.

You could e.g. save it onto an USB stick, but if you have Internet available, the probably easiest way would be by using FireFox to either send it as email with your personal mail web interface or to add it as attachment to the OOBD bugtracker.

In case the file size is quite big, you can significantly shrink it with the command

gzip mylogfilename.txt

which makes a compressed mylogfilename.txt.gz out of it.

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doc/dev_androidlivecd.txt · Last modified: 2014/02/10 07:08 by admin