The “iOS Development Bridge” or
idb, is a command line interface for automating iOS Simulators and Devices for development. It has three main goals:
- Remote Automation.
idbhas a “companion” that runs on macOS and a python client and cli that runs anywhere. This enables scenarios such as a “Device Lab” within a Data Center or fanning out commands to large numbers of iOS Simulators.
- Simple Primitives.
idbexposes granular APIs that enable building more sophisticated workflows on top. This means you can use
idbfrom an IDE or build an automated testing scenario that is more than just running a set of tests. All of these primitives are consistent across OS Versions and between Simulators and Devices. The cli is intended to also be easy to use for humans as well as automation, as such it provides terse and self-documenting commands.
- Exposing missing functionality. Xcode has a number of features that aren't available outside it's own UI.
idbexposes many of these features so that they can be used within other GUI-less automation.
idb is largely built from the
FBDeviceControl Frameworks, contained within this repository. These Frameworks can be used independently of
idb is likely to provide the simplest install and the most sensible defaults for most users.
We've given a talk about
idb at F8, so that you can learn a bit more about what
idb is and why we built it. A recording of the talk is available here.
Under Construction please bear with us. the quick start steps might not be working for you yet.
idb is made up of 2 parts, each of which needs to be installed separately.
Each target (simulator/device) will have a companion process attached allowing
idb to communicate remotely.
idb companion can be installed via brew or built from source
brew tap facebook/fb brew install idb-companion
Note: Instructions on how to install brew can be found here
A cli tool and python client is provided to interact with
It can be installed via pip:
pip3.6 install fb-idb
Note: The idb client requires python 3.6 or greater to be installed.
Please refer to fbidb.io for detailed installation instructions and a guided tour of idb.
Once installed, just run the list-targets command which will show you all the simulators installed on your system:
$ idb list-targets ... iPhone X | 569C0F94-5D53-40D2-AF8F-F4AA5BAA7D5E | Shutdown | simulator | iOS 12.2 | x86_64 | No Companion Connected iPhone Xs | 2A1C6A5A-0C67-46FD-B3F5-3CB42FFB38B5 | Shutdown | simulator | iOS 12.2 | x86_64 | No Companion Connected iPhone Xs Max | D3CF178F-EF61-4CD3-BB3B-F5ECAD246310 | Shutdown | simulator | iOS 12.2 | x86_64 | No Companion Connected iPhone Xʀ | 74064851-4B98-473A-8110-225202BB86F6 | Shutdown | simulator | iOS 12.2 | x86_64 | No Companion Connected ...
list-apps will show you all the apps installed in a simulator:
$ idb list-apps --udid 74064851-4B98-473A-8110-225202BB86F6 com.apple.Maps | Maps | system | x86_64 | Not running | Not Debuggable com.apple.MobileSMS | MobileSMS | system | x86_64 | Not running | Not Debuggable com.apple.mobileslideshow | MobileSlideShow | system | x86_64 | Not running | Not Debuggable com.apple.mobilesafari | MobileSafari | system | x86_64 | Not running | Not Debuggable
launch will launch an application the application:
$ idb launch com.apple.mobilesafari
Head over here for more details on what you can do with idb and the full list of commands.
Building from Source
idb is made up of 2 parts.
To build the python part make sure you are in the root of the repo and run:
pip3 install .
To build the objective-c/c++ part:
Make sure you have installed gRPC dependencies:
brew tap grpc/grpc && brew install grpc
This will open an xcode project that you can build and run.
Find the full documentation for this project at fbidb.io
idb because it's a big part of how we scale iOS automation at Facebook. We hope that others will be able to benefit from the project where they may have needs that aren't currently serviced by the standard Xcode toolchain.
Code of Conduct
Facebook has adopted a Code of Conduct that we expect project participants to adhere to. Please read the full text so that you can understand what actions will and will not be tolerated.
Read our contributing guide to learn about our development process.