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Monday, September 12, 2011

Android app on windows using Eclipse

First all please go through this blog which guides developers like me who are basically .NET developers but having an interest on building Android application using windows platform.

The blog post will guide anyone on how to setup the environment and run your first app, but I want to highlight some of the issues I faced and which are quiet common and resolutions/work around those issues. First of all the 4 things that needs to be setup are

1. Java Development Kit (JDK) 6 – self-explanatory; the Java runtime and development libraries.

2. Eclipse – an IDE (integrated development environment) for Java and other languages.   If you don’t have it installed, grab the Eclipse IDE for Java Developers version, which will suit the needs of this tutorial.  The Windows download doesn’t contain an installer, so extract the ZIP in an accessible location, such as D:\eclipse.

3.Android Software Development Kit (SDK) – The heart of Android development.  This provides all of the necessary tools and libraries required to build applications for the Android platform.  Extract it to an accessible location on your hard drive and run the setup executable, which will download and install a set of components.

4.Android Development Tools (ADT) Eclipse Plugin – This plugin adds Android-specific development tools and project templates to Eclipse.  Instead of a separate download, it installs within Eclipse – you can follow the instructions here to get it installed.

ISSUE 1 At step 3, when you try to run the executable to install Android SDK, then that might give errors because it might not be able to detect the JDK. Instead of cancelling the installation, just click "Previous" button and go the previous screen and then "Next" button ,it will detect it this time for sure.

ISSUE 2 To install the ADT as in Eclipse plugin, follow the steps below to first download it as a plugin
1. Start Eclipse, then select Help > Install New Software....
2. Click Add, in the top-right corner.
3.  In the Add Repository dialog that appears, enter "ADT Plugin" for the Name and the following   4. URL for the Location:

    Click OK

    Note: If you have trouble acquiring the plugin, try using "http" in the Location URL, instead of    "https" (https is preferred for security reasons).
    In the Available Software dialog, select the checkbox next to Developer Tools and click Next.
    In the next window, you'll see a list of the tools to be downloaded. Click Next.
    Read and accept the license agreements, then click Finish.

    Note: If you get a security warning saying that the authenticity or validity of the software can't be established, click OK.
    When the installation completes, restart Eclipse.

ISSUE 3 After creating your first Android virtual device, when you try to run the application, you can get an error like 
Emulator] PANIC: Could not open: C:\Documents and Settings\UserNAme\.android/avd/Android2.2.ini
This happens because if your Android SDK location is in any other location than C drive, the eclipse tool will not be able to locate that folder .android, so the solution would to look for the folder *.android and copy it over to the location sorted by the eclipse tool. In my case, I copied the folder .android from a location in my D: drive to C:\Documents and Settings\UserNAme\.android.
ISSUE4 While launching the new emulator, you might again get an error like
 Emulator] invalid command-line parameter: Files\Android\android-sdk\tools/emulator-arm.exe.
 Emulator] Hint: use '@foo' to launch a virtual device named 'foo'.
 Emulator] please use -help for more information

To get around this issue change the SDK location path in eclipse to D:\PROGRA~1\Android\android-sdk for a 32 bit machine or change to D:\PROGRA~2\Android\android-sdkfor a 64 bit machine if your SDK installation is on D: drive or else the drive accordingly. 

This issue is because of the fact that eclipse will not be able to SDK location if SDK location contains any spaces.

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