ADB on Mac tutorial

Rooting an Android phone on a mac is slightly more complicated than on a windows pc and its not well published how to use ADB on a mac. I made this for fellow members on Android Central who may be timid to do the rooting process on a mac. One other note, since mac’s are Unix based, all slashes are forward slashes, unlike windows which has backwards slashes.


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  • Do you have USB Debugging on? On 4.2 devices you have to enable Developer Options by tapping Build Number in About Phone. Also, ADB has been moved to Platform-Tools so you need to access that folder instead.

  • No problem. It was likely a driver not installed on your windows partition. Every android phone has its own driver and likely, you would need to go to the manufacturer's website to get it. Drivers aren't needed for mac/linux, but linux is a pain in the arse, too. You have to setup a rules.d file for you to use adb with your phone.

  • Well, no. Adb is os specific. It isn't the same file as windows nor linux. I'm not quite sure how you'd make it work in your java based program, but i imagine that's how doubletwist works. All the one-click tools for rooting and backing up devices use the os specific adb file in their resource files and create .bat or .sh files to run commands to use it.

  • Absolutely! To send to the phone: ./adb push FILENAME.EXTENSION /LOCATION/ON/INTERNAL/OR/EXTERNAL/STORAGE/ To get files, the process is reversed. ./adb pull /LOCATION/ON/PHONE/FILENAME.EXTENSION. files being pushed must be in the same folder as adb and files being pulled end up in the same folder as adb.

  • @aslan2323232 Have you tried the reset button on the bottom? I was looking up your tablet online and saw that. Not sure what it will do. Do you know if there is a stock recovery with a menu?

  • @RobangVids lol, sorry. Got the full version. Newer videos are recorded with that. I didn't know it would make a huge watermark over everything.

  • @thetommantom Maybe try downloading fastboot-mac from somehwere else? I can e-mail you my copy if you want to try that. pharmerandy2010 AT if you want. Shoot me an e-mail

  • @thetommantom yeah, s-off is unlocked
    how about
    ./fastboot boot [Recovery Name].img
    does that work for booting into TWRP?

  • @thetommantom Is your bootloader unlocked? Unfortunately that can only be done using a windows pc. Either by revolutionary method (before 1.5) or by HTC's method (if you have hBoot 1.5).

  • @thetommantom OK… When you try to flash the recovery, are you putting it in the same folder as adb and fastboot? I have both items in platform-tools in the adb (you have to download fastboot-mac from the internet). rename fastboot-mac to fastboot and then change directory in terminal to your folder with everything in it. Command is "./fastboot flash recovery [Recovery Name],img"
    Forgot to mention the ./, but its like adb

  • @gatorman55 ok thanks ill try that. Im used to on window typing fastboot boot recovery.img.
    You have to flash it every time since I have hboot 1.5. Thanks for your help ill tell you later if it works

  • @thetommantom Have you flashed TWRP yet? first, you will need fastboot-mac you can browse the internet to download it. place it in your platform-tools folder. Use terminal to cd into your platform-tools directory. Place the TWRP recovery into the platform-tools folder as well. Then type: fastboot flash recovery [RecoveryName].img

  • @thetommantom because that command you gave me boots into the phones recovery which works but i want to boot into twrp recovery, its a much better touch interface.

  • @thetommantom For most devices: "./adb reboot recovery" should work. What device are you trying to reboot into recovery?

  • @jarooFLtutor To double check, you are using a Mac, correct? What device are you using? Have you tried a different cable?

  • @gatorman55 yeah, i know its in platform tools, but that wasnt what was going wrong for me. i followed a guide on xda and i managed to do what i wanted
    thanks for your reply anyway 😀

  • @eejin96 I finally got around to editing this video this morning (long overdue, sorry). adb is no longer in android-sdk-mac_86/tools
    it is now in android-sdk-mac_86/platform-tools/
    that should fix your problem.

  • got it working now. i am tryimg to flash a cm7 hboot image on my desire according to the alpharev website instructions. i type in the command but nothing happens. i also tried to give terminal a path for the .img im trying to flash by drag and drop onto the terminal window too. terminal seems to be unable to execute commandt to my phone while in bootloader/fastboot. can you help me out

  • @kz121xp You shouldn't need to do anything with bash to get it working.
    just cd to the file where adb is located (newest versions of the sdk is in platform-tools). you shouldn't get an error doing that unless the path you inserted is incorrect. make sure usb debugging is enabled on the nook color (haven't played with my mom's yet, so I'm not familiar with the settings). ./adb devices should show the nook connected to the computer.

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