I connect my device to my PC in recovery-mode, when I write adb devices I get:

 List of devices attached
 4d00ededbeaca0bd        sideload

However, when I try to adb shell I get:

error: closed

Most places online suggest to adb kill-server and adb start-server (to re-start the adb), but it doesn't work. adb usb doesn't work either.

   > adb kill-server
   > adb start-server
  adb server is out of date.  killing.
  * daemon started successfully *
  >  adb shell
  error: closed
  >  adb usb
  * daemon not running. starting it now on port 5037 *
  * daemon started successfully *
  error: closed

Also, most online places comment that ADB has issues with each other. However, I only have a single instance of ADB, so I guess that's not the issue. Do you guys have any idea?

  • You are probably using a stock Recovery. It's obvious you would see such message (error:closed) since adb shell in Recovery means getting full control of the device which OEM wouldn't want, that's why they limit the device to "sideloading". That's just my theory based on three Mediatek devices; I could be proven otherwise. Also, if you want adb shell in Recovery then try a custom Recovery. – Firelord Jul 5 '15 at 20:52
  • Thanks for the answer. Excuse me for my ignorant question, but how do I try an alternative Recovery mode? My cellphone has a screen shattered, so I am trying to "activate the debbug mode" via ADB shell as described in a few pages (just a few shell commands to change a few text files and you are done). I am guessing those people were using rooted phones, which would explain why they never encountered this problem. I know there is the option to compile a whole new kernel (with the debbug mode enabled by default) and then sideload it, but that sounds like way too much work for me to handle. – Sudo Apt-Get Ubuntu Jul 5 '15 at 21:21
  • 1
    I see. Which Android version and device do you have? As for the Recovery is concerned, there is no alternate Recovery mode but the Recovery only. If only your device can be flashed with a custom Recovery you can access adb shell. For that, we need to know is the bootloader unlocked, does your device has a support for flashing from fastboot mode, what are other ways to flash custom Recovery in your device without booting into Android OS? // Some terms might be new to you I suppose. – Firelord Jul 5 '15 at 21:26
  • [A] I have a "Samsung Galaxy S4 19500" with "android 4.42". [B] Fastboot is already installed in my PC (it came with Android Studio). I have no idea if the device has support from fastboot, I will have to google that. [C] However, there is a "bootmode" to install custome OS on the device (is that the same as fastbootmode?) that can be accessed via a "secret handshake" (downvolume+start+power) [D] To enter recovery mode I use a different "secret handshake" (upvolume+start+power), but I am unaware if there are other ways possible. – Sudo Apt-Get Ubuntu Jul 5 '15 at 22:10
  • Sorry! because I have no experience with Samsung devices. I could try to guide you but that would be shooting in the dark, and you're already in a mess, so it would be best in our interests if I leave now. // I'm aware of some users here who would probably help you out, and for sure resolve this issue. So please wait patiently, and good luck. :) – Firelord Jul 5 '15 at 22:14

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