Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Worth updating to Android SDK Tools 20.0.1: fixed multiple emulator instances, and VirtualBox too?

Android SDK Tools 20.0.1 didn't download for me via the Android SDK Manager. (This was a week ago so it might be updated now.) I had to uninstall SDK Tools from Android SDK Manager, then manually install 20.0.1 from http://developer.android.com/sdk/index.html. I should mention I'm running Windows 7 64-bit.

It was worth doing the manual update because the biggest regression, inability to run multiple emulator instances simultaneously, was fixed. Phew. I was getting tired of having this decent PC with tons of RAM--which I had upgraded specifically for running virtual machines and emulators!--and not being able to run multiple emulator instances.

Then surprisingly, although maybe completely coincidentally, when I tried running an Ubuntu guest on VirtualBox, it was really snappy. I didn't remember it being this fast before. I do remember having the same Ubuntu guest in the past be somewhat slow, with some input lag and just overall sluggishness, and that turned me off from using it very much. I also remember reading something to do with VT-x being blocked by Intel HAXM.

But now VirtualBox is fast. Fast like using HAXM with Android running an Intel Atom image. I can think of a few possible causes:

  1. Android SDK Tools 20.0.1 and Intel HAXM 1.01 finally behave well with virtual machines. VT-x is no longer blocked by the Android emulator, allowing VirtualBox to take full advantage of the virtualization speedups.
  2. Or, maybe the Ubuntu VM image was sitting on some bad sectors on my SSD. It somehow moved to good sectors, speeding up the VirtualBox performance.
  3. Or, I could be getting old and everything seems fast at age 25.
Whichever it is, I'm really glad I can make full use of my development machine now when it comes to VMs and emulators. My 16 gigs of RAM are smiling.

1 comment:

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