Debugging and logs with Android OS (Device/Emulator)


We all know that when developing a mobile application (In this case, for Android) we need to have runtime live data throughout the testing life-cycle.

We want to understand how the processes are handled, if something goes wrong, to get live logs and output to share with the developers, and add to defect reports etc.

In the Android SDK and Emulator we have as of today (Android SDK R18) few tools which can ease our testing activities and provide live data:

– Android Emulator itself allows to easily plug-in several Emulators to simulate real device skins (Motorola Razr, Samsung Galaxy Tab e.g. and many more).

In the Emulator you can use the most common debugging utility called Logcat (simply run adb logcat with its various command line options and write the logs to a file in which you can perform searches etc.).

In addition to the Logcat tool, there is a free utility which comes with the SDK called DDM (Dalvik Debug Monitor). This free utility which you can launch as a batch file from the tools directory, allows the users to perform much more that just view logs. With the DDM user, can simulate incoming call/SMS, lost of network, roaming , test location-based applications etc. –> Highly recommended!

So far, we have the Android SDK (Which can be plugged into Eclipse IDE from which users can get more capabilities) with its Emulators, ADB Logcat, DDM – But this is mainly useful for desktop simulators.

What if we want to get the logs from a running device?

Same as above – A user which connects his device via ADB to the PC, can still run ADB Logact into a file, and then perform adb pull to the saved log, and bring it from the device to his PC for further analysis. On top of this there are also good and useful android apps in the market which provides similar capabilities – a strong and useful App which i cam across is the “Logger Collector” which allows to collect ru time logs from the device, and then share it either by mail, BT or other methods.

To end this short blog, a tip –> Google also provides a web site developer/s to easily test their web using a free tool and get detailed report with guidelines and check lists –> Go to this link for more info:

For more info – feel free to contact me


Eran Kinsbruner

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