I managed to run pure Debian (debootstraped) ON my Android-based device. That means that my Nexus 5 runs a perfectly normal GNU/Linux system but with the CyanogenMod 11 Linux kernel (has some model-specific patches).

I have serial connection to the phone (through 4-pin modded headphone jack) and I can see the full kernel log.

The problem is that although the system DOES boot and work I can't find a way to interface with it, as I can't find the correct tty settings I need to use.

First of all the system is for sure alive, as I put something like /sbin/ls /dev > /hello in the inittab (where the getty should be) and I got the directory listing.

The serial port is on /dev/ttyHSL0 and I've tried a lot with getty and the last is /sbin/getty -8 -L -m -w 115200 ttyHSL0 with no luck at all. I've tried the other 2 ports that the listing reported (tty1 & ttyS0) without any luck as well...

Note: I tried to initiate WiFi on boot so I can get SSH but it did not work, it would not connect to the network and I don't know why. When I have a bash prompt, I'll be able to debug it...

Note 2: This is NOT a chroot system, it's Debian running on the device purely. This has nothing to do with Android.

  • seems like you might want to look at a netconsole kernel parameter config and eschew the jtagged headphone jack thing - at least for dmesg.
    – mikeserv
    Jan 20, 2016 at 10:46
  • with an android device? How am I going to set up a receiver?
    – dzervas
    Jan 20, 2016 at 14:14
  • I'm not sure I follow - you mean because you are mobile or because the WiFi if is not up in time? I think the second problem is only a matter of which modules get compiled in.
    – mikeserv
    Jan 20, 2016 at 14:16
  • The wifi is not functional and I can't debug it. Also there is no "ethernet" interface. I solved the problem though, thank you
    – dzervas
    Jan 20, 2016 at 15:53

1 Answer 1


Well after a lot of debugging (and head banging against the wall) in the init script that I was using to switch_root to the directory where debian is, I did not mount /dev, /proc and /sys...

The correct tty was actually 1:2345:respawn:/sbin/getty ttyHSL0 115200


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