How to Access the Facebook Hidden Settings Menu on Android

How to Access the Facebook Hidden Settings Menu on Android

The Facebook app, much like its counterpart the Facebook Messenger app, also has its own hidden internal menu using by Facebook engineers for debugging and testing. This Facebook hidden settings menu cannot be permanently enabled, unlike the Messenger’s internal menu. Much like Messenger you need root access or a modified APK by XDA Senior Member evilwombat to access this menu. As in the Messenger tutorial, you will also need to use the Android Debugging Bridge (ADB) or a terminal app such as Termux. If you are using ADB, USB debugging needs to be enabled which can be found in Developer Options on your device.

You will need root access on your phone to follow this tutorial. You can get root access by either flashing Magisk or SuperSU after unlocking your device’s bootloader. Note, that using the modified APK linked above requires you to uninstall any existing Facebook apps you have and instead use all of the modified Facebook apps from the same developer that you plan to use.


Access Facebook’s Hidden Internal Menu

Using ADB

Download the ADB tools of your choice. These can either be “Minimal ADB & Fastboot” from our forums or the official binaries released by Google. Once installed or extracted, in the folder containing the ADB binary hold shift + right click and click “Open command window here” (if you’re on Windows). If you’re on Mac or Linux, then you’ll need to preface the “adb shell” command below with the directory to the ADB binary.

Connect your phone to  your computer and grant debugging access. Next, type the following commands in the command prompt:

adb shell
su

Grant superuser access to “shell” when prompted on your phone.

am start -n "com.facebook.katana/com.facebook.katana.internsettingsactivity.InternSettingsActivity"

You will now see the internal menu open on your phone.

Using terminal

Open the terminal app of your choosing. Personally I use Termux, but anything that can access the terminal will work fine. Type the following commands.

Termux
Termux
Developer: Fredrik Fornwall
Price: Free
su

Grant superuser access when prompted on your device.

am start -n "com.facebook.katana/com.facebook.katana.internsettingsactivity.InternSettingsActivity"

The internal menu will open on your device.


Explanation

We are using adb or the terminal to start the InternSettingsActivity which is the name of the hidden internal menu activity. This is an unexported activity defined in the AndroidManifest file; meaning it cannot be accessed normally from third-party apps. Inside of this internal menu are some settings and tweaks that users of the Facebook app may benefit from. This menu is meant to be only accessed by developers and testers of the Facebook app, so there’s a lot you can do. Scroll down to see some examples.


Example Features of the Facebook Internal Menu

Data Saver

This is my favorite feature within the internal settings. You can enable a data usage monitor, which will stop the app transferring data once it reaches a certain limit. This is good for those of you on metered connections, as Facebook can be incredibly data intensive. It is filled with videos and pictures, so it’s no surprise. Thanks to this menu, you can simply set the amount of data you want to allow the app at maximum, and also reset the counter if you want to allow yourself to use more data. This limiter works on WiFi or mobile data, so those of you on restrictive data caps on your WiFi can make use of this too.

Force App Update

Another interesting feature is a “force app update” feature. It seems to download the latest version in-app and update, though I didn’t get a package install attempt even though a toast told me it was downloading. This feature may be broken, but it seems interesting nonetheless.

Video Stats

Within the internal menu you can enable video specs for playing videos to display the metadata (file information) while you watch a video. You can also enable logging, play videos muted and force autoplay videos. Autoplay settings are in the app already, but it’s still interesting to see them slightly more advanced here.

 

And that’s all, if you find any other useful features hidden away in the Facebook app, let us know down below in the comments!

Discuss This Story

You might also like