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How to fix launch on boot on the FireTV stick 4K (2nd Gen)

This guide applies to devices running Fire OS 8 such as the 2nd Generation FireTV stick 4K. Devices running Fire OS 7 or below do not need any special steps to enable launch on boot.

You should enable auto-start in the AbleSign app prior to performing this procedure. For details see https://www.ablesign.tv/digital-signage/how-to-autostart-ablesign/

Fire OS 8 Autostart

Fire OS 8 features a revised menu layout that does not have an app permissions section. This causes a problem for apps that need permission to launch on boot (autostart).

Fixing launch on boot

To fix this issue you need to use ADB to send a command to the FireTV stick. If you are familiar with ADB the command is: 

appops set tv.ablesign.app SYSTEM_ALERT_WINDOW allow

If you’re new to ADB follow this guide for step-by-step instructions:

Let's start

Please note we will be installing an app on a second firestick to send the ADB command. i.e. you will require 2 firesticks to perform this operation. 

In this guide we will refer to the firestick on which you wish to enable auto-boot as the target firestick, and the second firestick as the source firestick. Note the source firestick does not need to be running Fire OS 8.

From the home screen on the target firestick go to the settings icon on the right of the page (the cog icon).

Now select the My Fire TV panel and click it.

We need to use Developer Options to enable ADB. If you don’t see Developer Options in your menu you will need to activate it. To do so click on ‘About’

Now click the button on your remote control repeatedly. After 7 times a message should pop up saying ‘No need, you are already a developer’. 

Now press the back button on your remote to return to the previous menu. Now select ‘Developer Options’ from the menu.

Click on ADB Debugging to enable it.

Download Remote ADB Shell

We will be using an App called Remote ADB Shell to send the command to our Firestick. Note, this needs to be downloaded to the source firestick. It does not work if you download it to the target firestick.

To download the Remote ADB Shell app we will be using ‘Downloader’. If you’re not familiar with ‘Downloader’ you can find a step by step guide here on how to install it.

Once installed, start Downloader

firetv downloader home

Press the select button on your remote control to select the entry field.

firetv digital sign select field

Type in 2201.

Click on Go to begin downloading Remote ADB Shell. When the app has downloaded, select Open

An info message is displayed when you first run the app. Click OK.

We are now going to use the Remote ADB Shell app to connect to the Firestick we wish to setup for auto-boot. 

In the IP address field enter the IP address of the target firestick and click Next. Do not enter 127.0.0.1 – enter the IP address of your target firestick.

In the port field enter: 5555 and click Next

Check your settings are correct and then click on CONNECT. You should have the IP address of your target firestick displayed here (not 127.0.0.1) as shown.

A message will pop up on your target firestick asking if you would like to allow USB Debugging.

Select Allow.

Sending the command

At this point, you have enabled ADB debugging and connected to your device. The final step is to send the command to enable Launch At Boot for the AbleSign app.

Click anywhere on the shell page on the source firestick.

Enter the command 

appops set tv.ablesign.app SYSTEM_ALERT_WINDOW allow

Check the command is exactly as shown and then press Run

The setting will be changed on your target firestick and Launch At Boot will now function as expected.

That’s it, you’re all done. Please reboot your target FireTV device to ensure the AbleSign app autostarts correctly.

For security reasons, it is a good idea to turn off ADB debugging from the ‘Developer Options’ menu when you are finished.

Alternate method

A utility called adblink is available for Windows, Mac and Linux that you can use to send ADB commands (instead of using a second firestick).

Start the app and then simply enter the target IP address and click connect. You can then send the ADB command using the ‘ADB Shell’ option.

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