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Getting Started

This tutorial will cover integrating the Bort SDK into a system running Android 10.

Integration Steps#

Create a Project and get a Project Key

Go to app.memfault.com and from the "Select A Project" dropdown, click on "Create Project" to setup your first project such as "smart-sink-dev".

Once you've created your project, you'll be automatically taken to an integration guide which includes your project key. Copy it to follow the rest of the guide.

Clone Bort SDK#

Using a Git client, clone the bort repository from:

https://github.com/memfault/bort.git

Add this repo to your tree at vendor/memfault/bort (i.e. add it to your repo manifest).

Patch the SDK#

Apply AOSP patches using the bort_cli.py tool (requires Python 3.6+).

vendor/memfault/bort/bort_cli.py patch-aosp \
--android-release 10 \
<AOSP_ROOT>

Decide on an application ID for the Bort application. By placing the application under your domain, you may later upload it to the Google Play Store if necessary. We suggest appending bort to your reverse domain name. For example, com.mycorp.bort.

The OTA application ID must also be set, if using the OTA Update Client. For example, com.mycorp.bort.ota.

Patch the default application ID with your own:

vendor/memfault/bort/bort_cli.py patch-bort \
--bort-app-id <YOUR_BORT_APPLICATION_ID> \
--bort-ota-app-id <YOUR_BORT_OTA_APPLICATION_ID> \
<AOSP_ROOT>/vendor/memfault/bort/MemfaultPackages

This command will patch bort.properties, setting the BORT_APPLICATION_ID/BORT_OTA_APPLICATION_ID properties to <YOUR_BORT_APPLICATION_ID>. The --bort-ota-app-id/BORT_OTA_APPLICATION_ID is not required, if not using the OTA Update Client.

Add the SDK Components to your build#

note

We recommend placing the includes below at the end of the respective Makefiles. This is because include directives are used to append to variables in the build script; placing them at the end of the file reduces the chances that subsequent lines in the Makefile do not redefine those variables and discard the effect of the include. If it is not possible to place the include at the end of the file, ensure that the respective variables are not redefined (look for the := syntax).

Add this line to your device.mk file to get the components included in your build; this appends to the PRODUCT_PACKAGES variable:

include vendor/memfault/bort/product.mk

Add this line to your BoardConfig.mk file to get the sepolicy files picked up by the build system; this appends to the BOARD_SEPOLICY_DIRS and BOARD_PLAT_PRIVATE_SEPOLICY_DIR variables:

include vendor/memfault/bort/BoardConfig.mk

Configure the Bort & UsageReporter apps#

You must set your Project Key in the Bort app. This is set in MemfaultPackages/bort.properties; the app will not compile without this property.

We also recommend updating the other properties as necessary, for example, updating the SDK levels to match the API level of your OS and updating the build tools version to what is available in your environment.

If your devices will have Google Mobile Services (GMS) and must run the Compatibility Test Suite (CTS), you may need to update the Bort target SDK version to match the API level of your OS. This can be done by updating the TARGET_SDK_VERSION property in MemfaultPackages/bort.properties.

Additional settings can be configured via the Bort SDK over-the-air SDK settings system.

One setting that is worth calling out, is the option to capture "minimal" bug reports. If system load or bandwidth are concerns for your deployment, we recommend using minimal mode.

You must provide the Android SDK location for gradle. This can either be set with the ANDROID_HOME env var, or by opening the project with Android Studio (e.g. opening the root build.gradle) which will auto-generate a local.properties file with the sdk.dir property.

Create a keystore for the Bort app#

The bort app requires a Java keystore file so that the app can be signed.

Instructions on how to create a keystore in Android Studio can be found here. If you plan to update the app via the Play Store, you may wish to follow the additional instructions on that page.

caution
  • The key that is used to sign the Bort app must NOT be the platform signing key, otherwise updates to the Bort app may be rejected by the Play Store.
  • The key must ONLY be used to sign the Bort app and no other apps. Special permissions are assigned to Bort based on the signing certificate.

Once you have a keystore, set up a keystore.properties file and provide the path to it via the bort.properties file:

BORT_KEYSTORE_PROPERTIES_PATH=keystore.properties

The keystore.properties file must contain these properties:

keyAlias=myKey # e.g. key0
keyPassword=mySecretKeyPassword
storeFile=myKeystore.jks
storePassword=mySecretStorePassword

Create a keystore for the OTA Update Client app#

This step is only required if using the OTA Update Client

If using the OTA Update Client, a separate keystore should be created, following the same steps as for the Bort app.

Once you have a keystore, set up a ota_keystore.properties file and provide the path to it via the bort.properties file:

BORT_OTA_KEYSTORE_PROPERTIES_PATH=ota_keystore.properties

Build the Bort APK#

The MemfaultBort app is built using gradle. Building the release APK will automatically invoke a task to copy the resulting APK and place it in the root directory where it will be picked up by the AOSP build system.

cd MemfaultPackages && ./gradlew :bort:assembleRelease # Or gradlew :bort:assembleRelease on Windows

This will create a signed MemfaultBort.apk and MemfaultBort.x509.pem file. The pem file is a public certificate used by the system when enforcing the SE policy.

Build the OTA Update Client APK#

The MemfaultBortOta app is built using gradle. Building the release APK will automatically invoke a task to copy the resulting APK and place it in the root directory where it will be picked up by the AOSP build system.

cd MemfaultPackages && ./gradlew :bort-ota:assembleRelease # Or gradlew :bort-ota:assembleRelease on Windows

This will create a signed MemfaultBortOta.apk and MemfaultBortOta.x509.pem file. The pem file is a public certificate used by the system when enforcing the SE policy.

Build the UsageReporter APK#

The MemfaultUsageReporter app is built using gradle. Building the release APK will automatically invoke a task to copy the resulting APK and place it in the root directory where it will be picked up by the AOSP build system.

cd MemfaultPackages && ./gradlew :reporter:assembleRelease # Or gradlew :reporter:assembleRelease on Windows

Validating the SDK Integration#

The bort_cli.py tool can be used to check for issues with the SDK installation. To use it, install a build containing the Bort SDK on a device that you wish to validate. Connect that device via ADB (verify via adb devices) and run the script:

./bort_cli.py validate-sdk-integration --bort-app-id your.app.id

If you have multiple devices connected, use the --device flag to specify the target device. For more information on the different options, run the command with the -h flag:

./bort_cli.py validate-sdk-integration -h

Enable the SDK#

By default, the Bort SDK will only run after being explicitly enabled at runtime; this is to ensure no data is collected without user consent.

More information on enabling the SDK can be found in the Enabling the SDK at Runtime section of the Bort SDK documentation.

For the purposes of testing the SDK on a development device, the SDK can be enabled via ADB using the CLI tool:

./bort_cli.py enable-bort --bort-app-id your.app.id

The enable-bort command runs this ADB command under the hood:

adb shell am broadcast --receiver-include-background \
-a com.memfault.intent.action.BORT_ENABLE \
-n your.app.id/com.memfault.bort.receivers.ShellControlReceiver \
--ez com.memfault.intent.extra.BORT_ENABLED true

Upload a bug report#

Once the SDK has been enabled, you can manually trigger a bug report to be generated. Once generated, it will be automatically uploaded to Memfault:

./bort_cli.py request-bug-report --bort-app-id your.app.id

More information on triggering a bug report can be found in Triggering A Bug Report Programmatically; more information on when bug reports are automatically captured can be found in Bug Report Capture Period.

Once the bug report has been generated, uploaded and processed successfully, you will be able to find it in Memfault by navigating to the Fleet > Devices view and finding the device that uploaded the bug report.

If you do not see the bug report, you can check your project's Queue Status feature in the top right hand side of the Issues page. This shows a list of bug reports that were recently received and their processing status.

Troubleshooting#

Here are some steps to assist in diagnosing some possible integration failures.

System components missing during validation#

If the validation is failing due to missing system components, verify if the components are being built by searching the build artifacts.

$ find $AOSP_ROOT/out/ -iname "MemfaultDumpstateRunner"
...
out/target/product/$YOUR_PRODUCT/system/bin/MemfaultDumpstateRunner
...

If the binary is not being built, then verify the Makefile configuration:

  • Is the bort product.mk file included in your device.mk file?
    • Note that this include appends to the PRODUCT_PACKAGES variable: is this variable being redefined elsewhere via an assignment? (:=) after including the product.mk file?
  • Is the bort BoardConfig.mk file being included in your BoardConfig.mk file? Similar to PRODUCT_PACKAGES, verify that the BOARD_SEPOLICY_DIRS and BOARD_PLAT_PRIVATE_SEPOLICY_DIR variables are not being over-written. This could be solved by:
    • Placing this include at the end of the file, or
    • Ensuring subsequent assignments append to these variables (+= not :=).

If you have confirmed the binary is being built, the next step is to verify if the binary is inside the (system) image as expected. To do this, you can mount the system image and search inside it. You should see the following files included in the system image:

$ sudo find /path/to/volume/ -iname memfault\*
/path/to/volume/system/priv-app/MemfaultUsageReporter
/path/to/volume/system/priv-app/MemfaultUsageReporter/MemfaultUsageReporter.apk
...
/path/to/volume/system/priv-app/MemfaultBort
...
/path/to/volume/system/priv-app/MemfaultBort/MemfaultBort.apk
/path/to/volume/system/bin/MemfaultDumpstateRunner
/path/to/volume/system/bin/MemfaultDumpster
/path/to/volume/system/etc/init/memfault_dumpster.rc
/path/to/volume/system/etc/init/memfault_init.rc

If these files are not present, then there may be an issue with your build process, you may be inspecting the wrong system image, or the SDK may be included in a different image.

Bug report is generated but fails to upload#

If the SDK is enabled, a bug report is generated, but the logcat logs show that the upload has failed, then capture and upload a bug report manually over ADB so that we can assist with a detailed investigation:

$ adb bugreport upload-failure.zip

Then navigate to Issues in Memfault and upload the bug report via the Manual Upload button in the top right hand side.

Bug report contains fewer logs than expected#

If you are viewing logs from a bug report and the timespan covered by the logcat logs or device timeline is less than expected, this may be because:

  1. The device recently rebooted and its non-persistent data was wiped.
  2. The system is logging a lot (being very "chatty") and is quickly filling up the buffer, causing older logs to be quickly evicted.

Logcat logs are collected by dumpstate with the command:

logcat -v threadtime -v printable -v uid -d *:v

This means that the bug report will collect whatever logs are available in the system buffer. Making the logs less chatty or increasing the size of the log buffer are two possible solutions.

Making the logs less chatty is likely to be the more effective solution. However, you can quickly evaluate effect of changing the size of the log buffer over adb using logcat -G (docs). Note that this setting is transient and will be lost when the system reboots. To change the log buffer size permanently, use the persist.logd.size system property; see also android_logger.h source.