[android] How to restart adb from root to user mode?

Basic question on ADB.

adb root restarts adb as root. But what i want is to restart it back to user after some time.

I tried the following :

adb kill-server
adb start-server

doesnt work..

ps -A -> noted the process number of adb and killed it.. even this did not work. Finally i am restarting my device. Is there any way i can come back from root adb to general adb?

Thank you.

This question is related to android adb root

The answer is

This is a very common issue.

One solution is to kill adb server and restart it through command prompt. Sometimes this may not help out.

Just go to Window Task Manager to kill adb process and restart Eclipse.

Will work perfect :)

Try this to make sure you get your shell back:

enter adb shell (root). Then type below comamnd.

stop adbd && setprop service.adb.root 0 && start adbd &

This command will stop adbd, then setprop service.adb.root 0 if adbd has been successfully stopped, and finally restart adbd should the .root property have successfully been set to 0. And all this will be done in the background thanks to the last &.

For quick steps just check summary. If interested to know details, go on to read below.

adb is a daemon. Doing ps adb we can see its process.

shell@grouper:/ $ ps adb
shell     133   1     4636   212   ffffffff 00000000 S /sbin/adbd

I just checked what additional property variables it is using when adb is running as root and user.

adb user mode :

shell@grouper:/ $ getprop | grep adb                                         
[init.svc.adbd]: [running]
[persist.sys.usb.config]: [mtp,adb]
[ro.adb.secure]: [1]
[sys.usb.config]: [mtp,adb]
[sys.usb.state]: [mtp,adb]

adb root mode :

shell@grouper:/ # getprop | grep adb                                         
[init.svc.adbd]: [running]
[persist.sys.usb.config]: [mtp,adb]
[ro.adb.secure]: [1]
[service.adb.root]: [1]
[sys.usb.config]: [mtp,adb]
[sys.usb.state]: [mtp,adb]

We can see that service.adb.root is a new prop variable that came up when we did adb root.

So, to change back adb to user from root, I went ahead and made this 0

setprop service.adb.root 0

But this did not change anything.

Then I went ahead and killed the process (with an intention to restart the process). The pid of adbd process in my device is 133

kill -9 133

I exited from shell automatically after I had killed the process.

I did adb shell again it was in user mode.


So, we have 3 very simple steps.

  1. Enter adb shell as a root.
  2. setprop service.adb.root 0
  3. kill -9 (pid of adbd)

After these steps just re-enter the shell with adb shell and you are back on your device as a user.

adb kill-server and adb start-server only control the adb daemon on the PC side. You need to restart adbd daemon on the device itself after reverting the service.adb.root property change done by adb root:

~$ adb shell id
uid=2000(shell) gid=2000(shell)

~$ adb root
restarting adbd as root

~$ adb shell id
uid=0(root) gid=0(root)

~$ adb shell 'setprop service.adb.root 0; setprop ctl.restart adbd'

~$ adb shell id
uid=2000(shell) gid=2000(shell)

I would like to add a little more explanation to @user837048's answer. on my OSX Yosemite and Galaxy S3 which is rooted and using firmware CyanogenMod 11 and KitKat I have done the below proceedings to Enable and Disable root prompt.

Please make ensure below

  • On your system

    • Make sure you have installed Android SDK and you have set paths to binary files. type which adb on your shell. It must give you somewhat result. $ which adb /Applications/Android Studio.app/sdk/platform-tools/adb
  • On your Mobile

    • Settings > Developer Options> Android Debugging = ON
    • Settings > Developer Options> Root Access = Apps and ADB

If you don't see Developer Options in your settings, Goto Settings > About Phone. Scroll down to Build number and tap there 7 times. I know its crazy. But believe me it works :D

Connect your phone via USB Cable. type on your computer's terminal

$ adb shell

you will see a prompt similiar, If any prompt has been shown on your mobile, to trust the connection, tap 'Always Trust' and 'OK'

shell@m0:/ $

now type

shell@m0:/ $ id
uid=2000(shell) gid=2000(shell) groups=1004(input),1007(log),1011(adb),1015(sdcard_rw),1028(sdcard_r),3001(net_bt_admin),3002(net_bt),3003(inet),3006(net_bw_stats) context=u:r:shell:s0

See you are not root

Now exit from shell, which will fall back to computer's prompt

shell@m0:/ $ exit

Now activate root

$adb shell
* daemon not running. starting it now on port 5037 *
* daemon started successfully *
root@m0:/ #

Wow.. you are root

root@m0:/ # id
uid=0(root) gid=0(root) context=u:r:shell:s0

I tried many solutions to go back to normal non root prompt. But didn't worked except @user837048's solution.

root@m0:/ # stop adbd && setprop service.adb.root 0 && start adbd &
[1] 32137
root@m0:/ #

This might exit you from Adb prompt to normal prompt. Now connect again.

$ adb shell
shell@m0:/ $

Well.. You are Non root

if you cannot access data folder on Android Device Monitor


(Where you located sdk folder)

C:\Users\bscis\AppData\Local\Android\sdk\platform-tools>adb shell
generic_x86:/ $

C:\Users\bscis\AppData\Local\Android\sdk\platform-tools>adb kill-server
C:\Users\bscis\AppData\Local\Android\sdk\platform-tools>adb start-server
* daemon not running. starting it now at tcp:5037 *
* daemon started successfully *

C:\Users\bscis\AppData\Local\Android\sdk\platform-tools>adb root


working fine.....

i've been with this issue using elementary OS loki. For like one day and i solved it restarting the adb using this command:

./adb kill-server


./adb start-server

You need to be in the Sdk folder >Platform Tools

Now, restart your phone this will restart all the process in your phone.

And that's how i fixed it.

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