Fix Android device not showing up on Windows 8

I’ve been doing, or trying to do, some Android development on my new Windows 8 machine, but every time one problem gets fixed a new one seems to pop up.

Problem: Can’t debug using my Android tablet.

Step 1: Confirm computer can’t see device:

  1. Open a command window
  2. Navigate to <sdk-install>\sdk\platform-tools where you have adb.exe
  3. Enter ‘adb devices’
  4. If your computer can see your device you will see it’s serial number



Quick Fix: Switch the device into PTP mode (under Settings -> Storage -> USB Computer Connection.) and connect to computer. Let it install, switch back to USB mode and plug in again. This sometimes is enough.

Step 2: Enable USB debugging on your device:

On pre-Version 4.2 developer mode is just an option in settings.

On Version 4.2 or higher or higher you have to perform a weird/cool sequence to unlock usb debugging:

  • Open up “Settings”->
    • “About phone” or “About tablet”.

    Scroll to the bottom and tap on “Build number” seven times.

    • If done properly you will see a “You are now a developer!” message
  • Don’t skip this > Now you can toggle USB debugging any time from:  “Settings” -> “Developer Options” -> “Debugging” ->” USB debugging”.

Step 3: Install USB driver (Windows auto install is not good enough)

  1. Download the USB driver with the SDK Manager:
  2. Install it using Windows Device Manager:

Step 4: Repeat Step 1 to test if it’s now working.

Still broken?

Restart your computer and device, and try Step 1 again.

Check this StackOverflow for some good hints: