Hacking the ADB USB Driver for Acer A500

; ACER Iconia Tab A500
%SingleAdbInterface%        = USB_Install, USB\VID_0502&PID_3325
%CompositeAdbInterface%     = USB_Install, USB\VID_0502&PID_3325&MI_01

I wanted to access my Acer A500 via ADB (Android Debug Bridge). When I connected it I was able to access it as a USB Mass Storage device, but ADB didn’t see it as a device. I found a page describing how to install the USB ADB drivers, but Windows said the drivers were not valid for my hardware.

I looked in the android_winusb.inf file and it lists a number of individual supported devices, but the Acer A500 wasn’t there. One of the reasons I picked the A500 was that it runs straight up Android, and not a modified version. So in theory the stock driver should work fine (yes, it is a hardware driver, but I figured what the heck.) It is possible that Acer has a download for this too, but 3rd parties tend to bundle extra junk, so I thought I would try the stock driver.

In theory this should work just as well for other Android devices. Proceed at your own risk.

1. So I went into Device Manager and found the tablet under Unknown Devices:

Other Devices

2. To get the Hardware ID’s for right click and select Properties, Details tab, then select Hardware Ids from the Property drop down:

ACER Iconia Tab A500 Properties - No Driver

3. In the android_winusb.inf file I added the following in the [Google.NTamd64] section.

; ACER Iconia Tab A500
%SingleAdbInterface%        = USB_Install, USB\VID_0502&PID_3325
%CompositeAdbInterface%     = USB_Install, USB\VID_0502&PID_3325&MI_01

The line with the semicolon prefix is a comment. You will see that the other lines match with these.  The ID’s come from the Hardware Ids in device manager (compare to screen shot.) If you are trying a different tablet then yours may be different.

4. Tell Windows to Update Driver (driver tab) then browse to that folder. My folder was “C:\Dev\android-sdk-windows\extras\google\usb_driver\” but if you installed the SDK in a different path then yours may be different. It will warn you that it can’t verify the publisher of the driver. I clicked “Install Anyway”.

Now Device Manager shows it as an Android Composite ADB Interface under Android Devices, and it shows that a driver is loaded.

Android Composite ADB Interface PropertiesI could further edit the inf file to change the name that is displayed, but now it works with ADB for deploying and debugging my Android projects.

Update: Acer does have a USB driver for download, but it doesn’t provide an ADB driver.

11 Responses to “Hacking the ADB USB Driver for Acer A500”

  1. Krzysztof Koziol says:

    Thank you for that guide. It was really useful for me.

  2. Ariel says:

    Your are a killer…couldn’t solve this issue with my iconia A500 and win xp64 until i found this post

    Thank you very much works perfectly now i can root my device

  3. Paul says:

    Excellent tip, thank you! Also works for Packard Bell Liberty Tab (an A500 clone).

  4. Marco Martinez says:

    Thanks a lot! Great tip!

  5. William PRide says:

    Thank you, solved my problem getting Eclipse to acknowledge my a500 immediately. Excellent guide.

  6. Trinidad says:

    This worked for me. Thanks so much for making this knowledge available!

  7. gary says:

    Thank you very much for this, it helped a lot!

  8. John says:

    I am running windows 7 home prem (64bit). I have installed sdk and google usb driver .where is the android_winusb.inf file and what do I use to edit it?Where did the dev folder come? There are more than 20 or 30 blogs,articles,you tube videos to run adb all claim to work.

  9. Jim McKeeth says:

    @John: The default install location on 64-bit Win 7 is “C:\Program Files (x86)\Android\android-sdk\extras\google\usb_driver” so you will find the android_winusb.inf file there. I would suggest copying everything in that folder to another folder, editing the android_winusb.inf file, and then installing the driver from there. . . .

  10. David Compton says:

    This worked on Windows 8 – however first I had to use the instructions found at the following URL to allow installation of an unsigned driver.

    http://forums.laptopvideo2go.com/topic/29596-using-unsigned-drivers-in-windows-8/

  11. Andy Benson says:

    Thanks a bunch! worked on windows 8 – also used the guide that allows unsigned drivers ^ (thanks David). I can now build games to my device with Unity :)