Fire TV Stick USB Port Not “For Power Only” — ADB over USB Confirmed

fire-tv-stick-its-alive
Amazon has stated the USB port on the Fire TV Stick is “for power only”. That’s not entirely accurate. I’ve discovered that connecting to the Fire TV Stick via ADB using a USB cable is possible and fully functional. Simply plug the Fire TV Stick’s USB “power” cable into a Mac or Linux computer, open a terminal window, run the command adb start-server, and then run the command adb devices to see that the Fire TV Stick is detected as a connected device. I was able to sideload apps and navigate the file system as you would expect with any ADB connected device.

fire-tv-stick-adb-over-usb

Due to the lack of drivers, I was not able to make this work with a Windows computer. I tried installing Amazon’s Fire Drivers, but still had no luck. Currently there isn’t much you can do via ADB over USB that you can’t already do via ADB over Wifi, but this does confirm the USB port is alive. Having a functional USB port may lead to future abilities that have yet to be uncovered.

Update

Thanks to a tip in the comments from ges, Windows users can install MoboRobo, an Android Phone Manager, in order to get drivers for the Fire TV Stick. Install MoboRobo, then plug in your Fire TV Stick and it will detect and install drivers. Be sure to exit MoboRobo before trying to connect to the Fire TV Stick via ADB. You can also uninstall MoboRobo once your Fire TV Stick is working in Windows and the drivers will remain. Note that MoboRobo will install some junk apps on your Fire TV Stick.

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37 comments
  1. Y314K says:

    Has anybody tried connecting a mouse or keyboard thru a Y OTG cable. But not the regular OTG setup but more like the HP TouchPad style of setup (The HP TouchPad can’t power itself on OTG)…

    All the possible styles are listed here… http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1582771

    BTW, love the Young Frankenstein picture…

  2. ges says:

    Try with kingoroot http://www.kingoapp.com/ to see if you can root it.

  3. ges says:

    To install adb drivers for windows, install first moborobo http://www.moborobo.com it will install the drivers automatically in windows. i use it to install drivers for all my chinese hdmi sticks.

  4. David says:

    Sorry for posting this question here, but, can I create an account in the site?

  5. Will says:

    Sorry for the noob question but would this allow a factory restore? I made the dumb mistake of side loading settings.apk and then turning of Bluetooth. As one might expect the remote not longer works.

  6. Gerhard says:

    So is there a safe way to use a BT keyboard with a fire TV stick? Is there a guide for this?

    • Robert Grant says:

      This method of using the MotoRobo program with a USB cable to install the settings APK is very slick. It totally replaces the ADB connect method. After you install then launch the settings app, you’ll see the Bluetooth selection submenu. If you avoid turning off Bluetooth here, and just search for and pair the keyboard, you’ll never have to worry about turning off Bluetooth again. The option to turn off Bluetooth is only available in the settings app. After you’ve paired the keyboard, you will have both the remote and the keyboard available for use.

  7. Curlyp says:

    Question is there an alternative to powering the fire stick without plugging into a power outlet? When I use the USB port, the stick keeps boot-looping.

  8. Helios says:

    Hi,
    i got one and i will install kodi on it :)

    i’m runnin linux mint 17 kde, i need a few addons on kodi that i can get only through “install from zip” so can i connect the AFTVS with the usg-cable and put some zip files somewhere, where kodi can access them?

    someone knows which kodi version is the best for the AFTVS?

    thx

  9. Herniko Kosch says:

    Whiterat from XDA found a whitelist!

    Is this helpfull?
    Can we edit this?

    http://forum.xda-developers.com/showpost.php?p=58597234&postcount=14

  10. Thero says:

    Thanks so much for this useful program.
    Searched for hours to find ways in install
    Firestarter for fire tv stick. As I was unable through all the other was on the Internet.
    Gem of a program…

  11. What do I need to install Kodi using an Vga to hdmi converter box, or can I use usb to HDMI to jail break using a windows computer?

  12. john says:

    Hi. I have a fire tv stick that keeps rebooting and won’t load the home. Just the options on the left side of the screen. The remote does not respond either. A friend asked me to see if I can restore it. Any ideas how to restore it?

  13. ADB guy says:

    you need to put it into the microwave for 3 seconds. dont leave it in any longer; just 3 seconds!

    when you plug it back into your tv, it should have restored to facory settings.

  14. Mark says:

    Has any one been able to change the settings to allow other (not blessed) USB devices based on the following?

    http://forum.xda-developers.com/showpost.php?p=58597234&postcount=14

    “`
    CONFIG_USB_OTG=y
    CONFIG_USB_OTG_WHITELIST=y
    “`

  15. Garth says:

    Hey there, anyone know the best powered otg cable I can buy to expand fire stick memory…?

  16. pcs says:

    Tried using moborobo to connect fire stick; no luck. Didn’t recognize it.

    My issue is that I have a firestick; lost remote like a year ago, have been using the mobile remote and then router broke a few days ago. Can’t access network settings on the firestick to get it connected to new wifi credentials.

    Any suggestions short of buying a new remote? I tried someone else’s remote and it wouldn’t pair.

    • AFTVnews says:

      If you have access to someone else’s remote, keep trying to pair it since it doesn’t always work the first try. Power on the Stick, then once you see the Home screen, press and hold the home button on the remote for 10 seconds. If it doesn’t work, vary how long you hold the home button and when you start to press it.

    • billbones77 says:

      use the amazon fire tv android app or apple app from the stores … simples

  17. firekid says:

    hello, I istalled moborobo, connected my firestick to my pc, imported addon files and as mentioned, I exited from moborobo. Now when I connect firestick to tv, it does not turn on. It does connects back to pc again. Have anyone had this problem?

  18. Eric says:

    No matter what I do, my windows 7 pc, won’t recognize the firestick when I plug it into the usb port. I’ve downloaded drivers, mobo, adb, etc. It’s not that I am trying to recognize the Firestick itself, but, as an “other device”. I would expect that windows would give me at least a message saying “Unrecognized device connected, do you wish to search for drivers…”, but, I get nothing, yet when I plug it into the TV hdmi port, it works fine, so I know it’s working. All help appreciated.

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