3

I was searching for a way to root an Android emulator.

I was very thankful for finding an answer to how to root an Android Virtual Device here: Root Android virtual device with Android 7.1.1

The guide (see URL) works and successfully roots my emulator (API level 25 Google APIs on x86). However, it's stuck in a boot loop once the device gets restarted.

Is there any way to avoid this since performing the steps to root the device on every startup is quite inconvenient?

  • 1
    Greetings! I am currently troubleshooting this issue, will get back to soonest :) I think system image gets corrupted but will bring results :) – xavier_fakerat Jul 31 '17 at 16:18
  • Thank you for your time by looking into this issue. I look forward to your findings. – BiggetjeKnort Jul 31 '17 at 17:18
  • Strangely, the system image is getting fried for no reason :(, will shortly upload the logs – xavier_fakerat Jul 31 '17 at 17:55
  • @xavier_fakerat when can we hear from you – Ankit Srivastava Sep 8 at 21:28
3

Been busy working on the issue for a couple of hours now...

I have tried to reproduce the boot loop issue and I think when you update the su binaries somehow the system.img file is getting fried for no reason, so I tried to get the logs, but they don't have any useful information:

FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000
VCPU shutdown request
EAX=00000000 EBX=00000000 ECX=00000000 EDX=00000663
ESI=00000000 EDI=00000000 EBP=00000000 ESP=00000000
EIP=00000000 EFL=00000002 [-------] CPL=0 II=0 A20=1 SMM=0 HLT=0
ES =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
CS =1000 00010000 0000ffff 00009b00
SS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
DS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
FS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
GS =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00009300
LDT=0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008200
TR =0000 00000000 0000ffff 00008b00
GDT=     00000000 0000ffff
IDT=     00000000 0000ffff
CR0=60000010 CR2=00000000 CR3=00000000 CR4=00000000
DR0=00000000 DR1=00000000 DR2=00000000 DR3=00000000
DR6=ffff0ff0 DR7=00000400
EFER=0000000000000000

So instead I opted against updating su binaries and as expected the emulator boots properly (no bootloop), but root is not preserved.

After a bit of digging, I came across this thread: Android AVD root access fail

So the problem is in that line from documentation:

emulator -avd aosx -qemu -nand -system,size=0x1f400000,file=<sdk_path>/system-images/android-16/default/armeabi-v7a/system.img&

Writers of documentation expected that Android Emulator will not change, but Android SDK have been updated and this line doesn't work. System.img file doesn't change and all modification made to system dir haven't saved. So there are 2 solutions to that problem:

First, if you want just root working, modify AVD with YAFFEY2 https://code.google.com/p/yaffey/ and add replace there file /system/bin/su with file from https://github.com/idanr1986/cuckoo-droid/tree/master/utils/android_emulator_creator/binaries with name su.

Second, if you want also Xposed Framework working, that is necessary for work of Droidmon, u need start Android emulator. Just emulator -avd aosx (all other parameters aren't necessary). After that do : "adb remount". Then, copy replace /system/bin/su file, as I've said earlier. Then install Xposed Framework like it said in documentation.

So, now the main part. If u will close emulator now, nothing will be saved. But all your changes already saved to temp file of system.img. This file located at /tmp/emulator-/emulator- on linux(on windows: %profilename%\AppData\Local\Temp\AndroidEmulator).

Just copy this file somewhere and then replace your system.img in /system-images/android-16/default/armeabi-v7a (save your original file somewhere, maybe you will need it sometime) with it.

You can also make the system partition persistent if you just copy the initial system.img file to your .avd directory as system-qemu.img, then set the proper file ownership, and you are ready to go.

Somehow qemu, is failing to get required permissions, ideally we have to replace the system.img and rename it to system_qemu.img but use correct file permissions

In the meantime, I just modified a script to automate rooting of virtual device upon booting so you don't have to do it manually, basically the system is mounted with write permissions and su binary is pushed and all the necessary steps performed such that when the virtual device is booted, you already have root.

%profilename%\AppData\Local\Android\android-sdk\tools
Just edit the necessary lines below.
cd %profilename%\AppData\Local\Android\android-sdk\
.\tools\emulator -avd {AVD_name} -partition-size 2047 -no-snapshot-load -verbose
echo wait for boot
pause
.\platform-tools\adb root
.\platform-tools\adb remount
.\platform-tools\adb push C:\%USERPROFILE%\Desktop\rootemu\x86\su.pie /system/bin/su
.\platform-tools\adb shell su root
.\platform-tools\adb shell cd /system/bin
.\platform-tools\adb shell chmod 06755 /system/bin/su
.\platform-tools\adb shell su --install
.\platform-tools\adb shell su --daemon&
.\platform-tools\adb shell setenforce 0

Will continue to bring more updates....

Acknowledgements

  • 1
    Thank you for that extensive research! The script included in your answer makes it indeed more convenient to root the device on start-up. I'll probably use that for now. However, I'm not sure if the solution will work for installing modules that need a reboot, e.g. Xposed framework. I am in the possession of one physical rooted device, so I can preform the necessary test there. I will therefore leave it at this for now; I guess I just hoped it'd be a bit easier but unfortunately it doesn't seem so. Greetings BK – BiggetjeKnort Aug 2 '17 at 12:53
  • @xavier_fakerat, can I personally contact you for some small paid work related to rooting emulators? – Ankit Srivastava Sep 5 at 16:57
  • I am unable to find this temprorary img file in temp folder – Ankit Srivastava Sep 6 at 5:25

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