Identifying the Current Activity in Android via ADB

Identifying the Current Activity in Android via ADB

22 April 2024 Stephan Petzl Leave a comment Tech-Help

Developers and testers often need to know which activity is currently running on an Android device during the development and debugging process. The Android Debug Bridge (ADB) provides a command-line tool that can help retrieve this information. This article will guide you through the steps to identify the current activity using ADB.

Using dumpsys window windows

To obtain the name of the current activity, you can use the dumpsys command with ADB. The most common approach is to parse the results of dumpsys window windows, which provides information about the current focus and the focused application.

adb shell "dumpsys window windows | grep -E 'mCurrentFocus|mFocusedApp'"

This command outputs details about the current activity, which may include the Keyguard (lock screen) or the Recent tasks list, as they may not always appear as activities.

Filter Specific Output for Current Activity

If you’re interested in filtering the output to show only the name of the current activity, you can refine the command as follows:

adb shell "dumpsys activity activities | grep mResumedActivity"

The output will display the activity that is currently in the resumed state, which is the activity at the top of the stack and visible to the user.

Windows Users

For Windows users, the grep command may not be available by default. In such cases, the find command can be used as an alternative:

adb shell dumpsys window windows | find "mCurrentFocus"

This command will yield similar results, showing the current activity in focus.

Considerations for Newer Android Versions

It’s important to note that newer Android versions may change the behavior of these commands. Always ensure to test these commands with your specific Android version to confirm their reliability.

Automating Your Testing with Repeato

While identifying the current activity is crucial for manual testing, automating this process can save time and improve accuracy. Repeato, our no-code test automation tool, can aid in this by creating, running, and maintaining automated tests for your apps. It’s a versatile tool that works with various app frameworks and leverages computer vision and AI for efficient test execution.

With features like ADB integration, Repeato allows you to execute ADB commands seamlessly within your automated tests. This can be particularly useful when you need to interact with your app at a system level or when you require detailed information about the app’s state during testing.

For more insights on how to enhance your automated testing strategies, explore our blog articles on managing ADB shell with multiple connected devices or troubleshooting ADB device unauthorized issues.

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