It’s fair to say that unless you’ve spent some time digging around inside APK files and making some heavy duty modifications to apps or the Android OS itself, you probably haven’t come face-to-face with a .smali file in its natural environment. They are a common component in many of the most popular Android tweaks and hacks out there such as adding toggles, extending the power menu, and adding CRT screen off animation.
The files themselves can often be found nestled inside APKs and become available for modification once that particular file is decompiled with a utility such as APKTool. Unfortunately, these smali files sometimes have a tendency to squirrel themselves away inside the classes.dex of a JAR file and make themselves a little more awkward and time consuming to reach and manipulate. Following on from his recent guide to ADB commands, XDA Senior Member iamareebjamal has put together a one-click tool that will allow you to decompile the classes.dex from any APK or JAR file with ease.
Simply place the relevant file in the input folder, decompile, make any necessary changes to the newly available files, recompile, and check the output folder for your modified version. It’s as simple as that. Obviously there are a few prerequisites to this, namely some kind of personal computing device running Windows, Java (ideally in software and liquid form), the relevant files and tools (notepad++, an archive manager etc), and some idea of what you’d actually like to achieve as the end result. If you have all of those at your disposal, this could prove to be a great little time saver and well worth a visit to the original thread.
November 19, 2012 By: Conan Troutman
If you spend a lot of time taking apart APK files, you’re probably already intimately acquainted with APK Tool. For the unaware, it’s the go-to tool for decompiling, recompiling, and generally tinkering with APK in any way you want. Despite it’s incredible functionality, some people still prefer to use a nice simple GUI when performing basic tasks, as opposed to the menu driven interface of APK tool. It’s for this very reason that XDA Senior Member elesbb has put together a couple of simple little applications to allow basic APK editing from a GUI.
Both of these programs require Microsoft’s .NET Framework 4.5 to be installed. If you don’t already have it, links to the installer are provided in the forum threads for each program. Be sure to check out the threads linked above for each tool for more info and download links.