Setting up an Android Development Environment on Windows

So you want to give Android development a go, but don’t know where to start? That’s easy – start by setting up a development environment of course!

STEP 1 – Install Java Development Kit

Android development requires at least JDK 6 (note JRE alone is insufficient). If you need to install the JDK, you can grab it from Oracle’s website (link to JDK7: http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/java/javase/downloads/jdk7-downloads-1880260.html).

STEP 2 – Add your Java directory to system Path

First, make note of the JDK binary directory (e.g. C:\Program Files\Java\jdk1.7.0_21\bin).

Next go to Control Panel > System and Security > System. Click on “Advanced system settings”:

1_systemproperties

From the “System Properties” popup, click on the “Advanced” tab; from there, click the “Environment Variables” button:

2_systemproperties

The “Environment Variables” popup has 2 lists of variables, and we are interested in the second list (“System Variables”). Scroll down in the list and highlight the “Path” variable before clicking the “Edit…” button:

3_environmentvariables

The “Edit System Variable” popup will appear. Add a semi-colon to the end of “Variable Value” and then append the directory path for the JDK binary. Note, “append” – do not overwrite! Then click OK.

4_editpath

STEP 3 – Download the Android SDK

Go to http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html and click on the “Download the SDK” button.

Unzip the downloaded file and run eclipse.exe.

That’s it!

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