February 10, 2014 By: Tomek Kondrat
ADB and Fastboot are invaluable tools for almost every Android user. Without them, flashing a kernel or system image would be much more difficult or even impossible. If you are an experienced user, you can download the Android SDK, click few times, add ADB and Fastboot to $PATH and happily torture your device with latest ROMs and kernels without worry that one small mistake will result as a plastic brick.
If you are a Linux, ChromeOS, or Mac user, you may find a tool made by XDA Forum Member corbin052198 very useful. The Nexus Tools script automatically detects your OS, and then downloads and configures almost everything you need to use ADB on your machine. The only missing thing is a udev list, which makes the device “visible” for debugging, but this can be easily fixed by visiting this thread.
The script runs as root, so don’t be surprised when it asks for sudo and copies all necessary files to usr/bin, which makes them available system-wide. ChromeOS support is experimental and may not work as intended, so please keep that in mind.
If you are planning to set up your PC to work with Android devices, Nexus Tools is a perfect choice. All you need to do is visit the original thread to give it a go.
If you’re an Android device owner who happens to use a Macintosh, you may feel a bit left out at certain times, especially with regards to toolkits and other software for your device. Sadly, the majority of toolkits run only on Windows PC, with Mac and Linux support unfortunately low on the list of priorities. Thankfully, there’s good news for Moto X and Mac owners, as XDA Forum Member mjphillips1981 developed a nice toolkit that helps you perform various Moto X tasks from the comfort of Mac OS X.
Inspired by a previously featured toolkit for the Moto X, the Moto X toolkit for Mac allows you to do pretty much everything you need to get your Moto X all set up (and maybe a bit more). These actions include:
This toolkit should work with any Moto X, even those carrier locked to Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint. But it should be noted, especially by those with slower Internet speeds, that the tool is quite hefty in size, coming in at 87.15 MB.
If you would like to give this a go, head over to the original thread for more details and download.
A couple of months ago, we talked about the beta release of CyanogenMod installer. The installer, was intended for new users otherwise unfamiliar with the custom ROM world. It essentially serves as the fastest and most streamlined way of installing CyanogenMod onto your device, with little to no effort expended. CM Installer was removed from the Google Play Store not too long after due to developer agreement violations, but that did nothing to halt the project’s development.
One major limitation of the CM Installer previously was that it was only compatible with Windows. While the vast majority of the world runs on Windows, quite a few of us enjoy alternative platforms like Linux and Mac OS X. Now, the CyanogenMod Installer has reached opened its doors to a whole new world of users by offering beta support for Mac OS users.
If you’re a Mac user, you can get started by joining the CyanogenMod Installer for Mac Google+ community. From there, follow the directions in this post and install the top post (“About this community”), and get cracking. The currently supported devices are the same as on the Windows version, and it can be found on the CM Installer Wiki. Then of course, don’t forget to head over to your device’s home forum on the XDA-Developers forums to get in on the discussion.
December 14, 2013 By: wildstang83
Android is a mobile device OS that the open-source community has come to know and love since its inception in 2007. The seemingly endless possibilities of what can be achieved with the OS are intriguing, and they have rekindled the spirits of developers worldwide. As mobile device owners, we often use our interest in Android to push our devices further and customize them to become truly our own.
As with any modifications or customization, tools are necessary. This has led to the creation of tools like Themer, an app that can be downloaded and used to easily select and apply custom themes directly on the device within a matter of seconds.
But where do tools like Themer come from? How are they built? Perhaps an even better question to ask is how is Android built? The answer to these questions is actually very simple: a build environment.
A build environment is a set of tools and directories that a developer has setup on his or her computer. This build environment allows the developer to download the Android source code, which can then be used to create a custom ROM, themes, apps, or anything else related to the OS. Some components of a build environment include a computer, the Java Development Kit (JDK), the Android SDK, the Android source, and of course, a little bit of time and patience.
Finally getting to the point, I want to bring your attention to a build environment that only a handful of developers use: OS X 10.9 Mavericks from Apple. With the right know how and proper setup, working on Android in an OS X build environment can be just as enjoyable as working in any other OS like Linux or Windows.
If you own a Mac, setting up your build environment has now been made simpler thanks to good folks like XDA Recognized Contributor jakew02, who wrote a very thorough guide on setting up a build environment, specifically in OS X Mavericks. While his guide won’t show you exactly how to build things like a custom ROM or kernels, it helps you make sure you and your Mac are better prepared to start your Android development journey.
Being a Mac owner, I’ve used the guide, and have found it to be very helpful. It is really nice coming across jewels like this on XDA. If you are a Mac user ready to start developing, head on over to jakew02’s guide thread to learn more.