Android 201: How to turn on USB debugging | Android Central

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USB debugging

Here's one you see every now an then -- like when you're running a program that will root your phone without you doing any command line work. In a nutshell, USB debugging is a method of opening up your phone to work with the Android SDK. You can have the SDK installed on your computer all you want -- plugging in your phone won't do anything with it until you've turned on USB debugging.

That's also one of our favorite causes of facepalms around here. If you want to take screen shots using the Dalvik Debug Monitor (which is how we end up with those cool little icons like you see in the top left here), or use the command line for adb access, you have to have USB debugging turned on. Otherwise, you get questions like "Why won't this damn thing recognize my phone?"

If you need to turn on USB debugging, press the Menu button, then Applications>Development.

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Reader comments

Android 201: How to turn on USB debugging


nice tip, I always wondered what you use debugging for. Congrats on the new 201 level tips, cant wait to see more. thanks

I just realized that I missed (forgot) this step when I flashed back to stock last night using Odin. I don't see any ill effects of this. Might I have problems from not doing that later down the road?

I would like to turn on USB Debugging from a Windows 7 PC or something, because my touchscreen is NOT working (due to ROM, not hardware failure). Without USB Debugging turned on, I cannot Root the phone, which in turn means that I cannot flash with a different ROM. Is there a way out for me? Thanks for helping.