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How to use the C++ REST SDK on Android (2.3+)

The easiest way to use the C++ REST SDK on android is to add the "C++ REST SDK - Android" NuGet package available via Visual Studio 2015 (including the free Community Edition). Go to Using NuGet to add the C++ REST SDK to a VS project for general information about adding NuGet packages.

After adding the package, you will need to enable exceptions, rtti, c++11, and the GNU standard library (gnustl_static). These options are all found under Configuration Properties as follows:
  • General -> Use of STL = gnustl_static
  • C++ -> Code Generation -> Enable C++ Exceptions = Unwind Tables (-funwind-tables)
  • C++ -> Language -> Enable Run-Time Type Information = Yes
  • C++ -> Language -> C++ Language Standard = C++11

Finally, you will need to add some small initialization code detailed under StaticLinking. In addition to the instructions mentioned here, you can get a walkthrough with a simple sample application from this blog post.


First, follow the steps here: Setup and Build on Android

You will need to link against the following from your project:
  • build.armv7.debug/Binaries/libcpprest.a
  • Boost-for-Android/build/lib/libboost_*-clang-mt-1_55.a
  • libiconv/armeabi-v7a/lib/libiconv.a (removed in version 2.6.0)
  • openssl/armeabi-v7a/lib/libssl.a
  • openssl/armeabi-v7a/lib/libcrypto.a
  • libm (math library, link with -lm)
  • liblog (logging library, link with -llog)

You will also need to include the headers for boost and the C++ REST SDK:
  • ../../Release/include
  • Boost-for-Android/build/include/boost-1_55

Use the included documentation with your NDK to add these prebuilt libraries and include paths. An outdated version of the relevant documentation is hosted at

Static Linking and Initialization

The C++ REST SDK prefers static linking for Android since version 2.3. This makes it much simpler for both Native Activities and Java-based Activities since there is only one shared object file in the final app bundle.

However, in order to prevent conflicts with other code, you must provide a pointer to the JVM to the SDK before it can initialize. This pointer is provided through the method cpprest_init(vm) which is located in the pplx/pplxtasks.h header file.

Note: If you do not do this, your application will terminate upon attempting to create a task.

Native Activity (android_main)

For most NativeActivity projects, if you have an entry point like
void android_main(struct android_app* state) {

You can add the following code at the top of the android_main function:

Other Shared Libraries (JNI_OnLoad)

For most shared library projects, you will simply need to copy the following code into your main cpp file:
extern "C" jint JNI_OnLoad(JavaVM* vm, void* reserved)
    JNIEnv* env;
    if (vm->GetEnv(reinterpret_cast<void**>(&env), JNI_VERSION_1_6) != JNI_OK)
        return -1;

    return JNI_VERSION_1_6;

Last edited Jun 22, 2015 at 6:56 PM by stevetgates, version 12