Gathering Android Log Files

A friend has an Android application that isn’t functioning properly. On Windows or Unix, I know how to stack-trace and debug apps … so she figured I’d be all set up to do the same thing on Android too. Except I’ve never encountered a problem that required debugging Android apps. Consult the universal archive of all IT knowledge (a.k.a. Google).

I don’t have the Android developer kit installed, nor do I need it, so I elected to use “Minimal ADB and Fastboot” to grab the log data. My device did not show up without a Windows driver for theĀ debug bridge. Once the driver was installed and the adb server restarted, my device appeared.

 

C:\Users\lisa>"c:\program files (x86)\Minimal ADB and Fastboot\adb.exe" kill-server

C:\Users\lisa>"c:\program files (x86)\Minimal ADB and Fastboot\adb.exe" start-server
* daemon not running; starting now at tcp:5037
* daemon started successfully

C:\Users\lisa>"c:\program files (x86)\Minimal ADB and Fastboot\adb.exe" devices
List of devices attached
g142ef0c        device

Something interesting about the adb log data – it can include an hour or more of history. Which is awesome if your app crashed a few minutes ago and you want to capture historic data, but for a reproducible error … well, there’s no need to slog through thousands of lines to find where the problem actually started. Clear the log buffers first then start capturing the adb log data:

"c:\program files (x86)\Minimal ADB and Fastboot\adb.exe" logcat -b main -b system ^
-b radio -b events -c&&"c:\program files (x86)\Minimal ADB and Fastboot\adb.exe" logcat ^
-v threadtime -f "C:\temp\SessionLog.txt"

 

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