Debuggable Attribute

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last updated: 2018-02

To make debugging possible, Android supports the Java Debug Wire Protocol (JDWP). This is a technology that allows tools such as ADB to communicate with a JVM. While JDWP is important during development, it should be disabled prior to the applicaiton being published.

JDWP can be the value of the android:debuggable attribute in an Android application. Xamarin.Android provides the following ways to set this attribute:

  1. Created a AndroidManifext.xml file, and setting the android:debuggable attribute there.
  2. Including the ApplicationAttribute in a .CS file like so : [assembly: Application(Debuggable=false)] .

If both the AndroidManifest.xml and ApplicationAttribute are present, the contents of AndroidManifest.xml take priority over what is specified by the ApplicationAttribute.

If neither AndroidManifest.xml and ApplicationAttribute, then the default value of the android:debuggable attribute depends on whether or not debug symbols are generated. If debug symbols are present, then Xamarin.Android will set the android:debuggable attribute to true.

Note that the value of the android:debuggable attribute does NOT necessarily depend on the build configuration. It is possible for release builds to have the android:debuggable attribute set to true.

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