Of course this should be possible, but finding the correct files to modify is the real question.

Assuming we can boot into a custom recovery and have full access to the file system, has anyone investigated the steps for enabling USB debugging?

The motivation for this request is that I have a device that will not fully boot, so a log dump would be very helpful in this case.


1 Answer 1


The correct file to modify is the build prop. Which can be risky to modify. This will enable everything needed. Through the file system modify the build.prop or with a computer. If the custom recovery is TWRP or possibly CWM. Then adb comes pre-enabled. Then you also need root and a computer with adb.

  1. boot into your custom recovery.

  2. Plug your device into your computer and open an elevated command prompt.

  3. Throw these commands.

adb shell


mount -o remount,rw /system

cd /

echo "persist.service.adb.enable=1" >> default.prop

echo "persist.service.debuggable=1" >> default.prop

echo "persist.sys.usb.config=mtp,adb" >> default.prop

echo "persist.service.adb.enable=1" >> /system/build.prop

echo "persist.service.debuggable=1" >> /system/build.prop

echo "persist.sys.usb.config=mtp,adb" >> /system/build.prop

I have done it this way with a nexus 4 and since this is the build prop. Here are some others that have too.

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