How to Connect Your Android-Based Phone to a PC
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Since its market release, back in October 2008, there was much talk about the possibility to synchronize Google's Android-based smartphone with a PC. While the developer of the Android platform doesn't officially support this option, there were some statements that promised a future possible synchronization with Microsoft's Exchange.
Moreover, Cemaphore has released a unique application called MailShadowG, which allows users of the G1 to synchronize their email, contacts and calendars with a Microsoft Exchange server. Unfortunately, the application doesn't make a direct connection between the mobile device and the Exchange Server. MailShadowG provides bi-directional synchronization of email, calendars, and contacts by working through Microsoft Outlook running on a PC.
Basically the email received on the Exchange Server is forwarded to Outlook on the user's desktop. It is then synchronized by MailShadowG with the Google Gmail server, which pushes it out to the G1, and vice versa.
Other companies are working to offer a more direct approach, but for now MailShadowG is the only application available for customers who are using Microsoft Exchange for their business. You can find a 15-day trial here
Until the Microsoft Exchange synching process will be available, let's discuss another aspect of the connectivity options of G1. Just as the title says, this is a short tutorial of how G1 (or any other Android-based smartphone) can be connected to a PC.
First of all you need 2 pieces of software installed on your PC, Java and the latest Android SDK. You can find both here
. After installing Java, download and extract Android SDK to a new folder on your computer. The SDK is compatible with Windows XP and Vista, Mac OS X 10.4.8 or later (x86 only) and Linux (tested on Linux Ubuntu Dapper Drake). After unpacking the SDK you'll have to point out a Path to where the Java has been installed on your computer. Right click on My Computer – Advanced tab, Environment Variables. Where it says PATH you need to click the Edit button and paste the link to the folder where the java.exe file has been installed. In my case, as you can see from the screenshots, it's C:\Program Files\Java\jre6\bin.
There are some settings that you must change on your smartphone also. Go to Settings, Applications, Development, USB Debugging (must be checked). For those who want only quick access to their memory card, it's possible without using Android SDK. Connect your phone with the USB cable. The PC should detect the phone and will ask for the drivers. These are found in the SDK directory (after unpacking), under the 'usb_driver' folder. Point out where the driver is and check out your smartphone screen. It will show a little trident icon in the upper left corner, which means that the phone is connected to the PC.
BUT, to really have access to your SD card, you have to click on that notification icon (check screenshots). Click on the 'USB connected' window and choose to mount your SD card. That's the faster way to connect your Android-based smartphone to a PC.
Those who want access to the phone's memory or other complex features should follow the subsequent instructions. Go to where you unpacked Android SDK and click the 'ddms.bat' file, found in the Tools folder. What opens up is a debugging tool called Dalvik Debug Monitor. Android ships with this free application, which provides port-forwarding services, screen capture on the device, thread and heap information, logcat, process, and radio state information, incoming call and SMS spoofing, location data spoofing, and more. The interface is pretty intuitive, and you can pull or push files from the phone's memory, make screenshots and check out system info.
In case you didn't manage to connect your G1 with the PC, bear in mind that the smartphone is only compatible with USB 2.0, so if you have a USB 1.0 PCI card, it won't work. Also, I heard that some USB cables are not working with the G1, so I suggest keeping the one in the sales package. I hope this helps, but if you have any problems please leave us your comments below.Note
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|Comment #1 by: Harold Fuchs on 08 May 2009, 11:09 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Errm. I'm confused. The start of the article talks about *synchronising* a G1 with a PC. But the last part of the article talks about moving files between the two devices. Moving a file is *not* the same as synchronising the data in that file. A real synchronisation process of, say, contacts, incorporates changes on either device into a common, consolidated version. Thus I should be able to add a contact on the phone and a different one on the PC and then, after the synchronisation, both contacts should appear on bot devices. A real synchronisation process weill also have a proper policy-driven mechanism for handling conflicts such as those caused if I alter the same contact on both devices.
So, how do I *synchronise* the contacts/calendar/... of my G1 with my PC?
|Comment #2 by: Cosmin Vasile on 08 May 2009, 12:49 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Well, in the first part of the article I have described a method that will enable you to sychronize you Android device with the PC. The second part of the article explains how can you connect your Android device to a PC.
Basically, there are two distinct parts in this article. If you read it carefully I'm sure you'll understand.
|Comment #2.1 by: RKR on 28 Feb 2011, 10:48 GMT|
Option given here 'MailShadow" by you for Sync does not work anymore. The download never starts but takes this link to Camphore's website. Can you suggest any other option than 'MailShadow'
Thanks in advance
|Comment #3 by: michaela on 27 Jun 2009, 18:26 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I tried the steps you suggested, but still can't connect my phone to my computer. Every time I connect the USB and mount the computer says:
"Please insert a disk into Removable Disk (F:)"
I was able to connect before the cupcake update. Now I can't. It's really frustrating. I've tried power cycles on both computer and phone, I have it plugged into a USB 2.0, the SD slot cover is closed all the way, I've removed the SD and put it back in, I've tried uninstalling and reinstalling the USB, I safely remove each time, and this is happening on BOTH phones that we just got 3 days ago. It has connected again randomly twice. I have windows Vista, but I've seen people on T-mobile forums having the same problem with XP. We have 2 different HP laptops that we have tried to connect to. Neither phone or computer combination will work. Any advice would be much appreciated. :)
|Comment #4 by: paris drake on 29 Aug 2009, 22:19 UTC|| reply to this comment|
It worked for me, it took alittle time to download the sdk, but it does work
|Comment #5 by: shree on 12 Sep 2009, 15:51 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Nice article. Thanks. But it didn't work for me. Can you help in recommending a better option.
|Comment #6 by: paul on 13 Sep 2009, 18:17 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I am trying to retrieve the contact list from my G1 which has a blank display. I turn off auto sync on the phone so there are a lot of newly added contacts that are not on the cloud (google server).
Are these steps "There are some settings that you must change on your smartphone also. Go to Settings, Applications, Development, USB Debugging (must be checked)."
"you have to click on that notification icon (check screenshots). Click on the 'USB connected' window and choose to mount your SD card."
absolutely necessary? Is there any ways around that since I can't make those things happened on the G1 with a blank display.
|Comment #7 by: kaz on 18 Dec 2009, 22:48 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Perhaps a lot of people here, like me, aren't having trouble understanding how to do all this, they are experiencing this bug where the phone simply does not always reliably connect.
It's no use telling me to swipe down the notification for the SD card... half the time when I connect my phone, I don't even GET the SD card notification... only the USB debugging one.
I have latest version of HTC Sync installed and sometimes it connects, sometimes it doesn't. This is the same when I am just connecting it as a flash drive.
Sometimes the only way I can get the PC to "see" the phone is to reboot the phone... annoying!
My opinion is that the problem is with Vista!
VISTA IS THE PROBLEM! rar!
|Comment #8 by: Lance on 18 Mar 2010, 19:01 UTC|| reply to this comment|
hey i tried everything u said and um when i got to the dalvik debug monitor i got stuck there..i see u cud choose the device tab option but when i get to that point i go on the device tab and cant click anything in there..and also in the sdk directory theres i no folder named usb drivers..
|Comment #8.1 by: Cosmin Vasile on 19 Mar 2010, 10:06 GMT|
Yes Lance, you are 100% right, the new Android SDKs don't include the USB drivers folder. The reason you cannot take screenshots is because your device is not properly installed and Dalvik's Debug Monitor doesn't detect your smartphone.
What you need to do is follow this guide and install the proper driver for your smartphone:
Let me know if you have anymore troubles. Good luck.
|Comment #9 by: Lance on 19 Mar 2010, 17:05 UTC|| reply to this comment|
hey i got it to work but theres a but..lol..um..ive been tryin to figure this out but i dont get it..dalviks debug monitor is used for exactly wat..when i do install the SDK wat exactly is it gonna do..the reason i want to try this is cuz i wanna install astro manager on the phone and i dont have internet connection on it..so i want to do that without using the android market..so i hope i really hope u cud clear a few things up for me..thanks a million by the way..hope im not annoyin u or anything..thanx..
|Comment #9.1 by: Cosmin Vasile on 22 Mar 2010, 10:53 GMT|
Hey Lance, you don't need to use any Android SDKs or Dalvik's Debug Monitor to install any application on your smartphone, as long as you have the necessary .apk file downloaded on your PC. Basically, you need to download Astro .apk file on your computer and then synchronize your smartphone with your PC. This requires an USB cable, which you usually get into the sales package. Your computer will automatically detect your microSD card, but don't forget to check that option on your smartphone. Then simply copy the .apk file into your microSD card and install it from there. Good luck.
|Comment #10 by: Diane Wells on 31 Mar 2010, 18:18 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I am trying to display my Google Nexus One device on my PC. I have followed all the instructions exactly but the Android Screen Monitior does not detect my Google Nexus One device. This device is not a phone and does not have the USB debugging set option. So that may be why. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you for posting the instructions.
|Comment #10.1 by: Cosmin Vasile on 01 Apr 2010, 06:58 GMT|
Google Nexus One HAS the USB debugging option, you can find it here: Settings - Applications - Development - USB Debugging (needs to be checked). If you have any further problems post here and I'll try to reply as soon as possible.
|Comment #11 by: mhor on 23 Apr 2010, 06:19 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Hi, nice topic you got there. Is there a way where I can use my PC as notifier for my sms and calls while the android device is plugged in the USB? Please enlighten me how. Thank you and God bless!
|Comment #12 by: Demiurg on 05 May 2010, 23:14 UTC|| reply to this comment|
thank you for this topic, it's very helpful! I tried to debug my vodafone HTC Legend from Ubuntu and came to this step http://news.softpedia.com/images/news2/How-to-Capture-Screenshots-on-the-Google-Nexus-One-13.jpg It looks like the Debug Monitor doesn't know HTC Legend, it shows me only few question marks instead of the phone model and doesn't show any infos about the phone.
|Comment #12.1 by: Cosmin Vasile on 06 May 2010, 09:24 GMT|
The reason your Debug Monitor doesn't recognize your HTC Legend is because there are no drivers installed. I'm not sure which drivers you are using, but I recommend that you visit and read this thread about installing the SDK on Linux distributions: http://developer.android.com/sdk/installing.html#troubleshooting
|Comment #13 by: Sean on 20 Oct 2010, 05:23 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Do you know what is up when it says: device software was not installed - please consult with your device manafacturer for assistance getting the device installed MT6516
|Comment #14 by: sunshine on 23 Oct 2010, 07:53 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I have a G1 phone and vista on an HP lap top, when I tried to mount the phone to my lap top I kept getting the message;
"Please insert a disk into Removable Disk (F:)"
It was driving me crazy so thanks very much for this article, I followed the general steps in order and it worked perfect for me, my phone mounted almost on the first try and I didn't even have to reboot my compter plus I did not have to point out the path, I just downloaded the Java, then the SD driver, pluged in my USB which at first my computer did not recognize so I tried again and it worked perfectly, I am very happy, thank you.
|Comment #15 by: rahrah on 16 Nov 2010, 05:59 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I've installed the drivers, but I still can't get DDMS to recognize my phone. I've got auto usb debugging on, and I've mounted the sd card. Still no recognition by DDMS. G1 phone.
|Comment #16 by: boschetaru on 06 Jan 2011, 13:39 UTC|| reply to this comment|
hello. I've got a htc legend with o problem. I can't connect to pc. It said usb device not recognized. I tried to connect on 4 pc with different windows, change cablefrom pc to phone. I install the sdk and adb. It still not recognized. I dn't know what to do. It can have something with it fall on the asphalt and enter some snow in the usb. It oxidized little but I clean ther. I what some answers and sorry for my english. Thanks
|Comment #17 by: ER on 19 Jan 2011, 11:07 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I'm trying to connect Motorola Blur but DDM not detected the device, all option grey out except, preference and static port setting only. I need help
|Comment #18 by: RKR on 28 Feb 2011, 10:27 UTC|| reply to this comment|
I have done everything by the book, as explained by you here. I can connect my android phone to my Laptop and I can only access my storage card on the phone. I am still not able to connect my phone to my LT per say. I have tried as explained by you here..
I have downloaded java and skd and even created the path as explained, but when i tried to point out where the usb driver is..it says software for the phone is not found..
I can be happy to have connected my LT to storage card on the phone, but what i desperately need is to sync my new andro phone to my outlook express where i have more than 6k contacts stored. By the way Cosmin your MailShadow link given here does not work anymore.
Cosmin? can you help? thanks in advance
|Comment #19 by: WickedNinja667 on 12 Mar 2011, 23:55 UTC|| reply to this comment|
What if I don't get the USB Trident when I connect? It used to connect fine, but now, the computer won't even show that the phone is attached, though it plays the connect sound. The phone charges, but I can't get into it.
|Comment #20 by: simeh on 07 Apr 2011, 02:21 UTC|| reply to this comment|
hi, I would to find which programming language to use to create a desktop application that can pull settings information from android phone such as installed application. What would be the communication protocol between android OS and a PC desktop application? Thanks
|Comment #21 by: Eddie on 10 Apr 2011, 14:15 UTC|| reply to this comment|
My Epic 4g is only charging when i hook it to the USB. And even my phone doesn't read it. So any advice on what to do?
|Comment #22 by: Bogdan Tanase on 25 Jun 2011, 18:09 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Well, I have done all you say but my pc still asks for a CD or a flash drive to install it, I mean it's a smartphone, you should connect it to the pc and done
|Comment #23 by: Buddha on 26 Jul 2011, 12:22 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Thanks a ton, for armed with this set of instructions, I fnally threw away the buggy Samsung Kies, and connected my Android phone to the PC :)
|Comment #24 by: aung on 25 Aug 2011, 13:54 UTC|| reply to this comment|
i want to ask something?
i want to instrall apk file for phone with pc . eg for x10
|Comment #25 by: sbpc on 29 Sep 2011, 23:11 UTC|| reply to this comment|
i tried everything you said and it still won't work!! The Pc nor the android phone is registering that they are connected to each other!! please help.
|Comment #25.1 by: rattman on 31 Jan 2012, 21:46 GMT|
try going on the android market and download the free apps for tethering..easytether is one and Pdanet 3.02 is another...i have used both and found easytether was the best...no mod's or rooting is needed
|Comment #26 by: kaparman on 21 Dec 2011, 17:19 UTC|| reply to this comment|
huawei 845 not seen thru pc suite
|Comment #28 by: Sly on 24 Jun 2012, 07:25 UTC|| reply to this comment|
please give me step by step on how to connect my samsung galaxy Ace smart phone to PC
|Comment #30 by: Anna G. on 25 Nov 2012, 06:03 UTC|| reply to this comment|
Ten Fast and Easy Steps on How to Connect your Android Phone to your Laptop for a Free Internet Connection (Without needing Wi-Fi)
1.Make sure you have a USB cord that connects between your phone and the computer.
2.Do NOT connect your phone to the computer with the cord until you get to step 7
3.On your android phone, go to your list of apps (not home screen), and tap “settings”
4.In settings, select “applications”
5.Once you’re in applications, tap on “development”
6.In development, there should be a box to check to allow USB debugging. Make sure that box is checked.
7.Now, connect your Android phone to your laptop via cord.
8.When the menu pops up on your screen for choosing why you’re connecting, select “disk drive”. If a menu does not appear, slide your finger down the screen from the top of your phone where your notifications are located. In this drop-down screen, tap on the row with the USB symbol. This will take you to the menu that includes “charge only” and “USB tethering”. On this menu select “disk drive”.
9.Now, on your laptop, a screen will pop up for PDAnet. Select “Connect Internet”. If it doesn’t pop up, move your mouse down to the bottom toolbar with the little icons and look for one that looks like a PDA. Click on that icon and it will have a little pop-up with “Connect Internet” as the first choice. Click “Connect Internet”.
10.A few seconds later, another pop up menu will appear saying you are connected to the internet.
|Comment #30.1 by: jaybee on 20 Jan 2013, 22:24 GMT|
I successfully did steps 1-7....after connecting the USB, neither of the devices are showing recognition of one another. Please help.
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