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Android Development
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Android Virtual Devices and the Emulator

To use the emulator, you first must create one or more AVD configurations. In each configuration, you specify an Android platform to run in the emulator and the set of hardware options and emulator skin you want to use. Then, when you launch the emulator, you specify the AVD configuration that you want to load.

To specify the AVD you want to load when starting the emulator, you use the -avd argument, as shown in the previous section.

Each AVD functions as an independent device, with its own private storage for user data, SD card, and so on. When you launch the emulator with an AVD configuration, it automatically loads the user data and SD card data from the AVD directory. By default, the emulator stores the user data, SD card data, and cache in the AVD directory.

To create and manage AVDs you use the android tool, a command-line utility included in the SDK. For complete information about how to set up AVDs, see Android Virtual Devices.

Controlling the Emulator

You can use emulator startup options and console commands to control the behaviors and characteristics of the emulated environment itself.

When the emulator is running, you can interact with the emulated mobile device just as you would an actual mobile device, except that you use your mouse pointer to "touch" the touchscreen and your keyboard keys to "press" the simulated device keys.

The table below summarizes the mappings between the emulator keys and and the keys of your keyboard.

Emulated Device Key Keyboard Key
Home HOME
Menu (left softkey) F2 or Page-up button
Star (right softkey) Shift-F2 or Page Down
Back ESC
Call/dial button F3
Hangup/end call button F4
Search F5
Power button F7
Audio volume up button KEYPAD_PLUS, Ctrl-5
Audio volume down button KEYPAD_MINUS, Ctrl-F6
Camera button Ctrl-KEYPAD_5, Ctrl-F3
Switch to previous layout orientation (for example, portrait, landscape) KEYPAD_7, F11
Switch to next layout orientation (for example, portrait, landscape) KEYPAD_9, F12
Toggle cell networking on/off F8
Toggle code profiling F9 (only with -trace startup option)
Toggle fullscreen mode Alt-Enter
Toggle trackball mode F6
Enter trackball mode temporarily (while key is pressed) Delete
DPad left/up/right/down KEYPAD_4/8/6/2
DPad center click KEYPAD_5
Onion alpha increase/decrease KEYPAD_MULTIPLY(*) / KEYPAD_DIVIDE(/)

Note that, to use keypad keys, you must first disable NumLock on your development computer.

Android Development
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