How to find the source code of the app?

How to find the source code of the app?
How to find the source code of the app?

Here are some ways to find the source code of an APK file:

  • Check if the app is open source. Many apps are open-source, meaning the source code is available for anyone to view and modify. You can find a list of open-source apps on websites like GitHub and SourceForge.
  • Contact the app developer. If the app is not open source, you can ask the developer if they are willing to share the source code.
  • Use a decompiler. A decompiler is a tool that can convert an APK file into its source code. However, decompilers are only sometimes accurate, and the resulting source code may be difficult to read and understand.

How to Find the Source Code of an APK?

The Android Package Kit (APK) file format is crucial in the Android ecosystem. It contains all the necessary components of an Android application, including the compiled code, resources, assets, and manifest file. Accessing the source code of an APK can benefit developers, security researchers, and enthusiasts, as it allows them to understand how an application works, identify vulnerabilities, and customize existing apps. In this blog post, we will explore various methods to find the source code of an APK and discuss the challenges and considerations involved.

Understanding APK Files:

To effectively find the source code of an APK, it’s essential to have a basic understanding of its structure and components.

Definition of APK:

An APK file is the package format used by the Android operating system to distribute and install applications. It is a compressed archive containing all the files and directories needed to run the application on an Android device.

APK File Structure:

The internal structure of an APK file consists of several key components:

1. Resources: These include images, layouts, strings, and other assets the application requires.

2. Assets: The application may need additional files or data during runtime.

3. Manifest File: This XML file contains essential information about the application, such as permissions, activities, and services.

Methods to Find the Source Code of an APK:

There are several methods available to access the source code of an APK. We will explore three popular approaches: decompiling the APK, reverse engineering, and searching in source code repositories.

Method 1: Decompiling the APK:

Decompiling an APK involves reversing the compilation process to obtain the source code. Various tools, such as JADX, Apktool, and JADX-GUI, are available to facilitate this process. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to decompile an APK using JADX:

1. Install JADX and launch the tool.

2. Open the APK file within JADX.

3. Browse through the decompiled code to access the source code files.

4. Analyze the source code using an integrated code editor or IDE.

Method 2: Reverse Engineering:

Reverse engineering involves analyzing the compiled code of an APK to understand its behaviour and extract the source code. Popular tools like Jadx, IDA Pro, and Radare2 can assist this process. Follow these steps to reverse engineer an APK using JADX:

1. Install the selected reverse engineering tool and launch it.

2. Open the APK file within the tool.

3. Analyze the disassembled code to understand the application’s logic and structure.

4. Extract the relevant portions of the code for further analysis or modification.

Method 3: Source Code Repository:

In some cases, the source code of an APK may be publicly available in version control repositories like GitHub or GitLab. To search for the source code of an APK in these repositories, follow these guidelines:

1. Visit the selected version control platform.

2. Use relevant search terms, such as the application name or package name, along with keywords like “source code” or “APK.”

3. Review the search results and navigate to repositories that contain the desired source code.

Challenges and Considerations:

While finding the source code of an APK can be helpful, there are specific challenges and considerations to keep in mind.

Obfuscation and Code Protection:

Developers often use obfuscation techniques to make reverse engineering and decompilation more challenging. Obfuscation alters the code structure and naming conventions, making it harder to understand and extract the source code. As a result, it may require additional effort and expertise to analyze obfuscated code effectively.

Legal and Ethical Considerations:

When accessing and using someone else’s source code, it is essential to be aware of legal and ethical boundaries. Developers should respect intellectual property rights and adhere to licensing restrictions. It is advisable to seek proper permissions or work with open-source projects that allow access to their code. Always ensure that you comply with the applicable laws and regulations.

Use Cases and Benefits of Accessing Source Code:

Accessing the source code of an APK offers several benefits and applications for developers, security researchers, and enthusiasts.

Developer Perspective:

By analyzing the source code, developers can deeply understand an application’s internal workings. This knowledge can be invaluable for debugging, optimizing performance, or extending the functionality of existing apps. Accessing the source code enables developers to learn from others’ implementations and enhance their coding skills.

Security Research and Vulnerability Analysis:

Source code analysis plays a crucial role in identifying security vulnerabilities within applications. Security researchers can investigate the code, analyze potential weaknesses, and report their findings to developers. By identifying and addressing vulnerabilities, applications’ overall security and robustness can be improved.

Learning and Educational Purposes:

Studying source code can be an excellent educational resource for aspiring developers and enthusiasts. It allows them to explore different programming techniques, design patterns, and architectural approaches. Analyzing real-world applications can deepen their understanding of software development concepts and provide hands-on experience.


Accessing the source code of an APK provides valuable insights into the inner workings of an Android application. Various methods can be employed to find the source code for development, security research, or educational purposes. Decompiling, reverse engineering, and searching in source code repositories are practical approaches, each with advantages and challenges.

However, it is essential to recognize the legal and ethical considerations surrounding using source code. Respecting intellectual property rights, licensing restrictions, and obtaining proper permissions are crucial to responsibly accessing and utilizing source code.


How to find source code from APK?

To find the source code from an Android APK file, you need to use a decompiler tool to disassemble and decompile the APK. Popular decompiler tools include jadx, apktool, dex2jar, and jd-gui. These tools can extract the Java source code or bytecode from the APK file, allowing you to examine the application’s code structure, logic, and implementation details.

How to view the source code of an Android app?

To view the source code of an Android application, you need to decompile the APK (Android Package) file using a decompiler tool. This involves obtaining the APK file of the app and then using a tool to extract and generate the source code from the compiled app package. Some popular decompiler tools include jadx, apktool, dex2jar, and jd-gui. After running the decompiler on the APK, it will generate a directory or project containing the decompiled Java source code files organized into packages and classes. However, keep in mind that the decompiled code may not be identical to the original source code due to obfuscation or decompiler limitations. Additionally, decompiling apps without proper permissions may have legal implications.

How do I view the contents of an APK file?

To view the contents of an Android APK file, simply rename the .apk file extension to .zip and extract it like a regular ZIP archive. This will allow you to explore the various components and resources within the APK, such as compiled bytecode, resource files, manifest, and libraries. Alternatively, you can use specialized APK analysis tools or online APK viewers for a more user-friendly inspection of APK contents without manual extraction.

How to edit the APK file source code?

APK files contain compiled bytecode and resources, not the original source code. To edit the source code of an Android app, you need to decompile the APK first using a tool like apktool, jadx, or dex2jar. These tools can disassemble the APK and convert the compiled bytecode back into a form of source code (Java or Smali). The general steps are:

1. Obtain the APK file of the app you want to modify.
2. Use a decompiler tool to extract the source code from the APK.
3. Edit the decompiled source code files using a text editor.
4. Recompile the modified source code back into an APK using the decompiler tool.

It’s important to note that the decompiled source code may not match the original source code due to obfuscation, optimization, or limitations of the decompiler. Also, modifying proprietary apps without proper authorization may violate licensing agreements or copyrights, so exercise caution.

How to extract source code from APK in Android?

To extract source code from an APK in Android, you’ll need a decompiler tool like JADX. Begin by obtaining the APK file of the desired Android application. You can download it from the Google Play Store or extract it from your device. Next, use JADX to decompile the APK. Run JADX from the command line, specifying the path to the APK file and the output directory where you want to save the decompiled source code. Once JADX completes the decompilation process, you’ll find the Java source code in the specified output directory. Remember that decompiled code may not be identical to the original, as it may lack comments, contain obfuscated variable names, or lose certain optimizations. Ensure you have the right to access and modify the code, as unauthorized modification may breach copyright laws or terms of service agreements.

Technology has always been a passion of mine. I love learning about the latest gadgets and gizmos and how they can make our lives easier. I have been writing about technology for over 10 years and have seen the industry change and evolve over that time. I enjoy writing about the latest trends and how technology can be used to improve our lives.