Ah, what a breath of fresh air. After today's SDK Tools r9 and ADT 9.0.0 update that I talked about earlier this morning, I noticed another new feature in the SDK Manager that has been requested for years. As if the near-instant AVD restart support due to the new snapshotting was not enough of a present, developers can now edit properties of existing AVDs!

Before this update, once you've created an AVD, the AVD Manager did not let you touch any of its properties, forcing you to create a brand new virtual device for any tweaks. This was a giant pain for developers who needed to change or add a property, such as density, resolution, allocated memory, or API level. As evident from the below screenshots I just took, the Edit button brings the sexy back.

Thank you, Google!

SNAGHTML23f92f66 SNAGHTML23f9ea99

Source: SDK Tools

Artem Russakovskii
Artem is a die-hard Android fan, passionate tech blogger, obsessive-compulsive editor, bug hunting programmer, and the founder of Android Police.
Most of the time, you will find Artem either hacking away at code or thinking of the next 15 blog posts.

  • http://www.brandonvfletcher.com Brandon

    I really wish I understood what I just read. It sounds awesome. :(

    • Scooter

      Try what I did: Immerse yourself in the SDK Manager for a day or two, play around, and search AP and xda for tips and tools. I'm far from fully understanding the Manager, but I now know what this post was relevant to (again, thanks to Androidpolice).

    • http://www.AndroidPolice.com Artem Russakovskii

      It's actually quite simple. I can explain in easier terms.

      Basically, when you download the SDK, you can create virtual Android environments - kind of like virtual phones, so you can do your development on them.

      Before today's changes, once you created one such device, you could no longer change its properties. For example, you couldn't change its screen size or resolution, or what version of Android it runs.

      After today's release, we can.

      We can also have Android create snapshots at any point in time and then boot into those snapshots instantly. In contrast, a full boot into Android rather than a snapshot takes anywhere from 20 seconds to 1 minute or even longer.

      Does this explain things adequately?

      • mobuksh

        @Artem - :D

        @Scooter - Like Artem said, just seems to mean that when you are building new apps, you can test them on your computer first. To test the program you are working on, you run it inside a simulator that looks and works like a phone (on your computer).

        Before you can test it though, you have to tell the simulator what kind of phone you want it to behave like. So you tell it what screen size the phone has (etc.), and it runs your program with that screen size (etc.).

        However, in the past, the problem was that when you wanted to change this simulation to a different type of phone, you couldn't. You had to create a new simulation from scratch. Which is a waste of time.

        With the new update to the simulator, you can edit your phone simulation as much as you like - you can change the type of test-phone as needed.

        Also, this update lets you go into these simulations much more quickly then before.

        Hope this is a little less technical.

        Though Artem's explanation was much more accurate.

      • http://www.brandonvfletcher.com Brandon

        Awesome! Thanks. I visit XDA frequently. I dont post much but I do read whats going on and try to understand things. I thoroughly enjoy it. Not sure how deep I would go though. It'll be one more thing added to the plethora of things in my brain. Maya (thats hard enough in itself), Flash, Photoshop, After Effects, and still trying to draw lol. Sometimes I wonder how my life wouldve been if I went into computer science. Thanks again