Connecting your Android device to your PC with the help of ADB (Android Debug Bridge) can open up a world of possibilities. Whether your goal is transferring files, installing, or debugging apps, or executing a special command on your mobile device, ADB can make the process much easier. That is, unless you run into an error along the way.
ADB failing to detect the device you are trying to connect can have several causes. Oftentimes, this issue is related to faulty drivers. Read the troubleshooting steps below.
Enable USB Debugging
Before you move any further with the troubleshooting process, make sure USB debugging is enabled on your Android device. Turning on this option will grant you access to your Android’s file system when connected to your PC. To enable USB debugging, you’ll need to turn on developer options first.
- Open your Android’s settings and find the “System” section.
- Tap “Developer options.”
- Scroll down to the “Debugging” section.
- Enable “USB debugging.”
Once you’ve completed this step, try connecting your device to your PC again. If you still can’t install your Android, move on to the next step.
Remove Faulty Drivers
After enabling USB debugging, it’s time to fix the driver causing the issue. Removing the incorrect driver before installing a new one isn’t always necessary, so you can try updating your ADB right away. However, taking this extra step can prevent further issues down the line.
- Plug in your Android device. Click the Windows button and search for “device manager.” Open your Device Manager.
- Locate and expand the category where your phone is located. This may be “Android Devices,” “Portable Devices,” or something similar. ADB Interface will be right under.
- Right-click and select “Uninstall.” Then press “Delete the driver software for this device” before hitting “OK.”
Next, eliminate other potentially faulty drivers. You can use a utility to detect your USB devices and remove any that aren’t working correctly.
- Download NirSoft’s USBDeview tool.
- Right-click and press “Extract All” to unzip the package and run the tool. You’ll see a color-coded list of your USB devices. Remove any grey item that contains words like “ADB,” “Android,” “Google,” or “Linux.”
Your PC usually installs drivers automatically, so you don’t have to worry about removing something you shouldn’t have.
Update Your ADB Driver
Next, you’ll have to download the ADB driver you need. If you’re not sure which one you need, you can simply use a universal driver that will work with all Android devices. Here are the steps to update your ADB driver.
- Download ClockworkMod’s Universal ADB Drivers.
- Right-click on the file and select “Install” to run the downloaded file and follow the steps in the installation wizard.
Once installation is completed, it’s time to update your Android’s driver.
- Connect your Android device to your PC with a USB cable.
- Go to your Device Manager.
- Find the category of your Android device (“Android Devices,” “Portable Devices,” etc.) and click the arrow next to it.
- Right-click your device and select “Update driver.”
- Press “Browse my computer for drivers” in the popup.
- Next, choose “Let me pick from a list of available drivers on my computer.”
- You’ll see a list of available drivers. If Android Composite ADB Interface isn’t there, click “Have Disk…” Browse the Universal ABD Driver you just installed and hit “Ok.”
When the installation is complete, you can close the window and restart your PC. Next time you connect your Android to your computer, your ADB interface will recognize your device properly.
Tip: If you run into an issue while updating your drivers on Windows 7, your Android device may be connected to a USB 3.0 port. Try plugging it into a USB 2.0 port instead to prevent the system from automatically installing its default drivers.
Troubleshoot Bad Drivers
Windows installs most drivers automatically, but when you’re having issues connecting your Android device, you might need to take things into your own hands. Follow the instructions above to update your ADB driver, and you’ll be able to establish a connection.
Did you manage to troubleshoot your driver problem? Do you have any tips for other users who are still stuck? Let us know in the comments section below.