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Fix adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing..

In this comprehensive tutorial, we will show you the steps to fix the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error. As far as the xx in the above error is concerned, well it depends on the ‘two’ ADB versions currently installed on your PC. With that said, I have usually seen these numbers lying between 30-40, keeping a few buffer margins at hand. Among all the ADB and Fastboot issues that we have covered here, this seems to have infuriated the maximum number of users.

The reason for the same is the fact that its fixes are a little bit more on the complicated side (for the newcomers). Keeping that in mind, we have listed out the instructions in the simplest of manners without incorporating any technical terms. As usual, with each fix, comes its associated screenshots as well that will aid you in rectifying this issue. So without further ado, let’s start off with the guide to fix the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error.

Fix adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…

There isn’t any universal fix for this issue, so you might have to try out all the below mentioned fixes until you achieve success. So without further ado, let’s get started.

Fix 1: Killing the alternate ADB Servers

It might be the case that there are two or more instances of ADB already running on your PC. This conflicting nature will surely lead to a few issues. It doesn’t matter if you have only one CMD/PowerShell window opened that isn’t the general yardstick of identifying the total number of ADB servers.

  1. So then how to stop the other ADB servers running in the background? Well, with the help of a single command! Just head over to the Command Prompt window that you have opened inside the platform-tools folder and type in the below two commands:
    adb kill-server
    adb start-server

    adb kill start server fix server version doesn't match this client

  2. The first command will kill off all the running ADB servers whereas the second one will restart only the required server. So once you have executed the above commands, see if it fixes the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error.

Fix 2: Manually Stopping the ADB Server

If the above method didn’t manage to fix the issue, then you may also take the manual approach towards the same.

  1. To begin with, execute the below command in the CMD window:
  2. adb version
  3. You will now get two different versions of ADB as the output. It should be something along the following lines:
  4. Android Debug Bridge version 1.0.41
    Version 29.0.1-5644136
    Installed as C:\Users...\AppData\Local\Android\Sdk\platform-tools\adb.exe
    Android Debug Bridge version 1.0.41
    Version 30.0.4-6686687
    Installed as C:\Users...\AppData\Local\Android\Sdk\platform-tools\adb.exe
  5. These two versions will be the same numbers as depicted in the error message! So your aim is to kill one of the servers (the third-party ADB tools) while keeping the other one (Google’s platform-tools) up and running.
  6. So head over to the non-Google ADB binaries that you have installed and type in CMD in its address bar. This will launch the Command Prompt window.
  7. Now type in the below code to kill its server:
    adb kill-server
  8. Once that is done, it is also recommended that you delete that third-party ADB Tool.
  9. Then head over to the platform-tools folder, and open the CMD window there.
  10. Now type in the following command to start the ADB server in this directory:
    adb start-server
  11. Once the server has started there, it should have fixed the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error. To verify the same, you may again execute the adb version command and this time, you will only get a single ADB version, as shown below. [I have deleted older ADB Version 29.0.1-5644136, so I only have the newer ADB version 30.0.4-6686687] However, if you are still getting this issue, then here are some other methods that deserve your attention.
    delete adb version fix server version doesn't match this client

Fix 3: Uninstall the Conflicting ADB Software or Change its ADB Source

This is among the most common reason for this issue. So here is what really happens. If you have any ADB or Fastboot Tools/Software or installed or have any app that uses these binaries, then they instruct the PATH environment variable to point to their directory rather than the one belonging to the platform-tools. Dell PC Suite and HTC Sync are two perfect examples of the same.

So there are three different approaches to deal with this issue. The first one is to simply uninstall these type of softwares from your PC. This will then fix the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error. While this is definitely a shorter route to fix this issue, but it isn’t a viable approach. This is because some of you might actually be needing this software for other related tasks.

On the other hand, the second approach is to change the ADB settings from within the app itself. The plus side is that it will fix the issue in no time whatsoever. But on the flip side, not every all has this functionality. The best way to check for the same is to go to the app’s Settings page and check out the ADB section. If they are using their own ADB binaries, then make it switch to the platform-tools ADB.

fix genymotion adb server version doesn't match this client
Credits: Stack Overflow

As an example, many users have reported facing this issue while using the Genymotion for a virtual device. So if you are among those set of users, then launch the app and go to its Settings tab. Then head over to the ADB section and you would notice that by default it is using the Genymotion ADB Tools. Now select Use custom Android SDK Tools. Then click Browse and navigate to the platform-tools folder and select it. Once this is done, kill and restart the ADB server (adb kill-server and adb start-server) via the instructions given in the first fix.

That’s it. The second method to fix the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error.  stands complete. Let’s check out the third one. The third and final method is to manually change the ADB PATH environment variable and make it point to the platform-tools binary rather than to any other app or software. Since it is a slightly longer fix, I have mentioned it in the below section. Follow along.

Fix 4: Add/Change/Delete the ADB PATH Environment Variable

This section will deal with two instances. In the first one, we will show you the steps to change the ADB Path Variables and make them point to the platform-tools folder. This will come in handy if your tool or software doesn’t have a native option to change the ADB directory, such as the one that Genymotion had.

On the other hand, as far as deleting the ADB PATH Environment Variable is concerned, it will come in handy if your system is pointing to two different ADB locations. This usually happens if you have more than one ADB binaries installed. For example, if you have both Google’s Android SDK Platform Tools and Minimal ADB and Fastboot installed. This ends up creating two instances of the ADB in your variables path which in turn confuses the tool which one to ultimately go for.

In that case, the best route is to delete the second ADB path. And it goes without saying that it is recommended to delete the ADB path of third-party tools and keep Google’s platform-tools intact. But what if the ADB directory is missing from the Environment Variable? Well, there is a pretty easy way to add the platform-tools as well. So without further ado, let’s check out all these methods (change/delete ADB path) to fix the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error.

Instructions to Add/Change or Delete the ADB PATH Environment Variable

  1. To begin with, head over to the Start menu and search for View Advanced System Settings.
  2. Then go to the Advanced tab and click on the Environmental Variables button.
  3. You should now see two sections: User Variables and System variables. We will have to keep our focus on the latter one.
  4. So select the Path field from the System Variables section and click on Edit.
  5. It will bring up the Edit environment variable option. Now if you see two different ADB variables added to this list, select the one that belongs to a third-party ADB Tool. In other words, select the one that isn’t Google’s platform-tools.
  6. Once you have made the selection, hit the Delete button. With that, you should now only have the single ADB directory inside the Environment Variable, and that should be the platform-tools one. However, if you don’t have any platform-tools folder, then move directly to STEP 8.
  7. Likewise, the path will also be visible in System variables under Environment Variables, as shown in the below image. Click OK to close this dialog box as well. That’s it. Your error now stands rectified.
  8. Since you have come to this point, it’s just because you don’t see any platform-tools variable. Fret not, the fix is pretty easy. All you need to do is click on the Add button from the right menu bar.
  9. After this, browse to the location where you have the platform-tools folder, select it, and hit OK.
  10. That’s it. These were the steps to add, delete, or change the ADB PATH Environment Variable. With this, you would have fixed the adb server and client mismatch error as well.

So with this, we conclude the guide on how to fix the “adb server version doesn’t match this client; killing…” error. We have shared four different methods to rectify this issue. Do let us know in the comments which one spelled success in your case. Likewise, if you have any issues concerning the aforementioned instructions or any issue related to ADB or Fastboot, do let us know in the comments. We will get back to you with a solution at the earliest.

  • command: netstat – ano | findstr “5037”

    Look for the PID with the last displayed value in example 18052 and end it in the task manager.

  • leonardo

    No idea wth the step six means….


    • Sadique Hassan

      Sorry for that. Non-Google ADB binaries means any other third party ADB Tool, apart from the one provided by Google (which is platform-tools).