Android Development Setup Guide Using Eclipse

Here is a step by step guide to set up a new development environment from scratch, to get an Android project up and running in an emulator.

1. Download and install Java JDK if not already installed. A handy unattended install is available at (select JDK under Developer Tools)

2. Download Android SDK. Here we actually have the option of downloading the installer and android studio bundle but since we use eclipse in this class we should download the standalone SDK. The SDK can be downloaded from and at the time of writing, the latest version is r24.0.2 (download the .zip file). Unzip to location of your choice.

3. Download Eclipse from and extract to location of your choice.

4. Start Eclipse and choose workspace location, and install ADT plugin by going to Help > Install New Software, Click Add, use the location and select all the packages, confirm/accept all dialog boxes, and restarting Eclipse when finished. More detailed guide can be found at

5. Upon restart, set the location of the SDK downloaded in step 2 (Windows > Preferences, Android, SDK Location textbox), and install the build tools from SDK manager if prompted.




6. Create a new Android Application Project (File > New > Project…) and follow the wizard making sure to name your project at the very least. One additional consideration is that by default API level 8 is selected as the minimum SDK version but it does not have the default selected theme, therefore, API level 11 or higher should be set for the minimum SDK version to reduce the chance of errors occurring when creating the project.



7. Once the new project has been created, test that the emulator is functioning correctly by running the application in debug mode. If you do not yet have a virtual device created you will have to do so, first install the necessary system image by adding SDK packages outlined here: This choice is dependent on the virtualization technology present in the CPU. Ideally the Atom x64 system image seems to be the fastest, however older computers do not support this type of emulation and must get the ARM images which is significantly slower. In this scenario, it might be better off to use a hardware device in place of the emulator (on a laptop not supporting the Atom system images it took 10 minutes to load the emulator vs. under 5 minutes on a desktop supporting the Atom images).


8. Further debugging can be performed using DDMS (accessed from Window > Open Perspective > Other… > DDMS) and more information can be found at


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