Development issue/problem:

What is a feature of the emulator you can’t do without?

What major shortcut, console command or unknown launch option do you think all other Android developers should know?

Share with us your wisdom as an emulator.

How can I solve this problem?

Solution 1:

F6 – Starter ball emulation

If you are working with a high-resolution screen, you can reduce the size of the emulator to fit better on the PC screen: AVD Manager – Start – tick the Full Scale box and set the screen size to the correct value (6 works for me).

Solution 2:

This is not exactly a function of the emulator, but a related function.

When using Eclipse for Android development, the automatically generated debug certificate is only valid for one year. When it expires, it is difficult to delete all your developing .apk files because the new certificate won’t match and you won’t be able to update it in all your DSAs. We need to get another API MAP key for development. The published recommendation is to simply delete the debug.keystore file and Eclipse (ADT in fact) will create a new one for you, with an expiration date of one year. However, you can create your own debugging certificate in debug.keyystore with any validity period. Do it in the .android folder in the HOME directory:

key tool -geniet-v -keystore debug.key -alias androiddebugkey -storepass android -keypass android -keyalg RSA -validity 14000

ADT puts the first and last name in the certificate on Android Debug, the organizational unit on Android, and the two-letter country code on the US. You can leave the values for Organization, City and State as Unknown.

Solution 3:

You can activate/deactivate the emulation network with F8

Ideal for testing service interruptions when your application is connected to a web service.
You can therefore only deactivate very quickly when the web service is loaded or started.

Solution 4:

You can turn it around: Ctrl + F11.

Solution No 5:

You can try a number of tricks with the keys on the keyboard, taken from the official Android documentation. See image below.

Solution No 6:

You can run Android Market in the emulator.

Solution No 7:

Demonstration of the Android application from a USB stick

Let’s say you want to show your application to a friend/customer and their computer doesn’t have the Android SDK, Eclipse or even an up-to-date JRE, you can put everything you need on a USB stick without affecting your development environment.

Create an androidem folder on a stick, copy the minimum sdk (no docs or samples needed) with the desired platforms and the java runtime in your own directories.

Open a DOS box in the root directory of the USB drive and set the local environment variable ANDROID_SDK_HOME in the root directory of the drive. (This env-variable is called a bit wrong if you use Eclipse because it is useless and selects the SDL location in Android’s general settings). However, it checks where the DAVs are created, so if you h: (for example), you can go to the Tools folder on the stick and create DAVs in the usual way – they will end up as .android on the stick.

If you copy the desired .apks (make sure they are signed with the share key) to a USB stick and then from another DOS box (using ANDROID_SDK_HOME as defined above), you can use the adb commands to install the apks to the DSA you created.

All you have to do is catch the stick on the target machine, reopen the DOS box, install ANDROID_SDK_HOME, prepare the JRE for the path, and run the emulator with the name of the target AV.

You can simplify the process by creating batch files on a stick to define the env and path variables.

Solution No 8:

Keep the emulator open during development to avoid charging times.

(Source: Hello Android Pragmatic Programmers Book – Ha, I just read it yesterday).

Solution No 9:

You can use the DDMS to take screenshots of applications running on the hardware. Just press Ctrl-S from the DDMS program. Excellent for taking screenshots for the Android Market, especially if your application does not work properly on the emulator.

I took screenshots of the emulator and trimmed them with Image Magick until a colleague told me.

Android Emulator Tips and Tricks –

Solution No 10:

The use of DDMS to debug a service that has no activity.

Assuming you have written a service in a custom apk used by another application, it is not possible to define breakpoints in the service application’s code and activate them when another application starts and calls the service.

However, if you go to the DDMS perspective, find the service wire and mark it, click on the error icon in the DDMS, the breakpoints will be triggered.

This answers one of my own (unanswered) questions.

Good luck!

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