I need a non-technical person to get their Android log.

Before Android 4.1, apps like "Log Collector" did this easily.
Starting from Android 4.1, apps can only read their own logs.

The Android log can still be seen via USB with the Android SDK's logcat command.

QUESTION: Is there an equivalent which would be easier to install/use than the SDK?


  • Get Android log via USB cable (or any better solution).
  • Run on Windows, hopefully Mac/Linux too.
  • Free.
  • May I refer you to our sister site: Is there a minimal installation of ADB? I guess that would perfectly fit your needs. (Not sure whether I should cross-post my answer from there to here, so for now the link should do)
    – Izzy
    Apr 6, 2014 at 21:20
  • Interesting question and answers there. Your answer is the best, but I wouldn't trust binaries on file-uploaded.net... I guess there are legal reasons that prevent more formal distribution? If yes, an open source re-implementation would be the best.
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Apr 7, 2014 at 2:54
  • I understand your concerns. Wouldn't have linked them there if the original context was not clear (it seemed to be to me). Alternatively, you could also use the downloads from Alex' answer, and just extract the few binaries really needed (as described in my answer). The downloads can also be found here, but those originate at the same place (I'm using the Linux files myself).
    – Izzy
    Apr 7, 2014 at 10:43

1 Answer 1

  1. Connect your Android device to the computer via a USB cable.
  2. Enable developer options
  3. Change the connection type from "For charging" to "For file transfer"
  4. Download the latest adb-binaries-<xyz>.zip file at https://android.izzysoft.de/downloads that matches your OS (windows or osx or linux).
  5. Unzip the file.
  6. Launch a command prompt and change directories (cd) to the folder that contains the content of the zip.
  7. Type adb logcat (or `./adb logcat on Linux and OSX) then Enter.
  8. The logcat should appear. If not, you may need to install drivers for your Android device.

Free. Around 2 MB.

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