Android - Fastboot freezes on Mac OS Sierra

So this was an official Android fastboot bug. They are currently testing a fix in their QA department.

With the new platform tools release it will be fixed:

Not really a solution but a workaround: I've been having the same issue without finding anything online. Am using a 2016 Macbook Pro, Nexus 4 and a USB A to micro USB cable with an A-to-C adaptor.

I used Parallels to run a virtual Ubuntu machine and installed fastboot there (as per here to minimize storage usage). When I plug my phone in I tell Parallels to connect it to the virtual machine. Not ideal, but at least I can use fastboot!

Google has released an update to Android Platform Tools that fixes this. You can use Homebrew to install the latest version:

brew update
brew install android-platform-tools

Once you update to revision 25.0.4 or above, fastboot will no longer hang on Macbook Pro 2016 / MacOS Sierra. From its changelog:

25.0.4 (March 16, 2017)

  • Added experimental libusb support to Linux and Mac adb

To use the libusb backend, set the environment variable ADB_LIBUSB=true before launching a new adb server. The new adb host-features command will tell you whether or not you're using libusb.

To restart adb with libusb and check that it worked, use

adb kill-server; ADB_LIBUSB=1 adb start-server; adb host-features`

The output should include "libusb".

In this release, the old non-libusb implementation remains the default.

  • fastboot doesn't hang 2016 MacBook Pros anymore (bug 231129)
  • Fixed Systrace command line capture on Mac