How to enable USB debugging mode on all Android 4.2 Jelly Bean and higher devices (Nexus 4, Nexus 10, Nexus 7, etc.) [Guide]

If you like playing around with your Android device (e.g. rooting or installing custom ROMs), then you probably are familiar with Android’s ‘USB debugging mode’. However, USB debugging mode is really intended only for developers and people who don’t know what they are doing may accidentally enable it and put their device at risk. This is why starting in Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, Google has hidden the ability to enable USB debugging mode. If you want to know how to enable USB debugging mode in Android 4.2 and higher, this guide will show you exactly how to do that.

The following steps work on all Android devices running Android 4.2 and higher. That includes Nexus 4, Nexus 10, Nexus 7, Galaxy Nexus, and any other device.

How to find and turn on USB debugging mode in Android 4.2 and higher

To see the option for USB debugging mode in Android 4.2 or higher, do the following:

  • Open up your device’s “Settings”. This can be done by pressing the Menu button while on your home screen and tapping “System settings”
  • Now scroll to the bottom and tap “About phone” or “About tablet”.
  • At the “About” screen, scroll to the bottom and tap on “Build number” seven times.
    • Make sure you tap seven times. If you see a “You are now a developer!” message pop up, then you know you have done it correctly.

Done! By tapping on “Build number” seven times, you have unlocked USB debugging mode on Android 4.2 and higher. You can now enable/disable it whenever you desire by going to “Settings” -> “Developer Options” -> “Debugging” ->” USB debugging”.

Conclusion

That was easy. The best part is you only have to do the tap-build-number-seven-times once. After you do it once, USB debugging has been unlocked and you can enable or disable at your leisure.

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37 comments

  1. SEID

    that is good i would also want to know how to enable DEBUGGING MODE IN ANDROID 4.2 in order to flash it with sp flashing tool as my phone stacks on huawei logo how to connect it any idea…

    thank you

  2. Dachande

    Hi all, it does not work with about phone – 7 tap. before doing so i could see the Developer Options above About Phone, but the Developer Option contained only USB Debugging. Now i done 7 taps and still nothing more at Developer Options. Maibe the problem is the android version or phone itself ? Allview A5Quad – Android 4.2.2,

  3. Paul

    WOW, thats annoying. I’ve been developing for a while now and yave never had a problem finding the developer options. Because of the new update I now have press seven times to unlock this options.
    I wonder why android thought it would be a good idea to hide this option? Who are they trying to keep out of these options?

  4. bhawani148

    Hi all,
    I switched the developer mode on by mistake..
    I need to completely switch it off so is there any way out to that ??
    Also, does switching the developer mode on void any parts of the warranty ??
    Thanks :)

  5. Rod Nine

    Hi everyone,

    I was on the same case but i find something on XDA.
    You need to use TERMINAL EMULATOR for this action :
    launch terminal then :
    SU
    setprop persis.sys.usb.config mass_storage
    reboot
    at the end of each line, press enter.
    After that you should be able to launch usb on your phone.

  6. Jaydee Dusenberry

    opposite problem, after Jellybean auto update, every time I plug into PC to charge, USB debugging was auto turned on. Finally found developer options slider, and after verifying that usb debugging was turned to off, turned off Developer options too. Now every time I plug into PC, Dev options stays off, but usb debugging turns back on. I absolutely never want usb debugging on, but apparently my phone thinks otherwise

  7. Thomas Will

    Hello,

    thank you for this 7x tapping the build number, it works of course.

    *****
    Now the question of the day:
    I can deactivate USB debugging in the menu, ok so far but how can I get rid off the developer mode again?
    *****

    7x tapping build number does not work.

  8. Bibblode

    [@stuchl4n3k]

    They aren’t truly Xenophobic they just don’t want incompetent people accidentally ruining their phones then run crying to google for help because they released 4.2 on the Nexus 4 which was only sold through google same with the Galaxy Nexus.