Tag Archives: Google

Android without Google and GNU/Linux with APK


* GNU/Linux on your phone now
* GNU/Linux with Android APK compatibility layer
* Dumping an APK installed on the device
* Removing closed source spywares from your current Android system as a transition phase

Android will move from Linux kernel and open specs APK format to a more closed package format and to their closed source Fuschia kernel going away from Free Open Source software (FOSS) that make Google, Android, ChromeOS grow, but also that are used on most of the internet servers, on most of supercomputer in the world, on most spacecrafts, on most internet boxes, TVboxes, etc…

GNU/Linux on your phone now

At the same time GNU/Linux distributions for mobile grow a lot the 2 recent years, thanks to availability of PinePhone for developers for about 2 years. There are now at least 15 Linux distributions for phone and applications maturated a lot, including since few month MegaPixels hardware accelerted camera application, that use GL and other processor to accelerate rendering/computing of what camera receive.

PostMarketOS is a GNU/Linux distribution available for a bunch of available market phones, but not everything is managed an all devices.

GNU/Linux with Android APK compatibility layer

Just like there is Wine to run Windows application on GNU/Linux, there are also several systems allowing to run Android APK on your phone if needed. Jusr as Wine, beside the possibility of running Android in a qemu VM, you can also run these application inside your the standard GNU system.

AnBox allow to run APK/Android application inside a snap packaged container.

Google goes away from FOSS, afraid by the lost of market share, and they probably loose a lot from this, as Microsoft does by the past. Chinese company, thanks to Trump restrictions, embrace more FOSS.

Huawei the maker of the probably highest quality phones, that was going in first seller position just ahead Samsung, when Trump blocked it, already very active in Linux kernel and community for years, made HarmonyOS for their devices, a system, that continue tu uses Linux kernel for their power devices, and LiteOS for their low end/old devices. LiteOS is a FOSS embedded devices oriented light kernel. They keep the EMUI User Interface they used previously on Android, moving step by step away from it, and at the same time keep a compatibility layer with current APK open-source format.

Another Chinese company, JingOS, made high quality tablets, based on GNU/Linux distribution, that derivates from Ubuntu, with KDE tools and Android APK application compatibility using Anbox. And they are active with KDE and open source communities. Few demos here and here.

Dumping an APK installed on the device

you need adb command available on android-tools package on Arch Linux.

You need first to find the path of the APK with the commande adb shell pm path :

adb shell pm path com.sec.android.app.myfiles

Then you can use this path (remove the initial package:) to backup it on your file system with the adb pull command:

adb pull /system/app/SecTabletMyFiles.apk

Removing closed source spywares from your current Android system as a transition phase

Beside long time F-droid Free software apk app repository (I use it for year as main source of APK).

You can remove Android pre-installed (memory+cpu+bandwidth thieves) applications, including NSA compliant one like Google, Amazon, FaceBook, Microsoft ones using from a computer with adb. This allowed me to have less bloated phone and to gain few more days of on-battery usage.

So you need adb command available on android-tools package on Arch Linux.

List packages:

adb shell pm list packages

See which one are related to facebook:

adb shell pm list packages facebook

For easier copy paste and have only the package name without package: prefix

adb shell pm list packages | cut -d: -f 2

The corresponding application, can be checked by using in a web browser, this does not work for some system applications, for example, for com.google.android.videos:


Remove never at least first seen, never used application:

# FaceBook spyware

adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.facebook.katana
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.facebook.system
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.facebook.appmanager

# Microsoft stuff
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.microsoft.office.excel
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.microsoft.office.onenote
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.microsoft.office.powerpoint
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.microsoft.office.word
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.microsoft.skydrive # data thief

adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.apps.docs # Google Drive (data thief)
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.apps.photos # Google photos (data thief)
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.googlequicksearchbox # Google Search box (behavior thief)
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.gm # GMail
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.talk # Hangouts
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.music # Google Play Music
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.videos # Google Play Film & Series
adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.youtube # Youtube application

To be checked

adb shell pm uninstall --user 0 com.google.android.gms # Services Google Play

Disable Google spies from default WordPress during update time

This method is for a default WordPress archive taken from WordPress.org site, without external plugin. The explaination are against WordPress 3.8.3, upgrading from version 3.8. We will assume here, that your public web directory is www/, but it depends on hosting service, distribution or your own configuration.

Before starting the update, SAVE YOUR FILES AND DATABASE. I also assume that you use the default wordpress directory for serving your blog and database named wordpress.

tar cf wordpress.tar www/wordpress; gzip -9 wordpress.tar     # Archive directory containing WordPress installation.
mysqldump -a wordpress >wordpress.dump; gzip -9 wordpress.dump         # Dump the associated mysql database

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Roundcube Webmail send all written messages, at writing time, to Google(/NSA) by default

Seen in Roundcube webmail default configuration (same problem than WordPress default), everything that the user type is by default sent by RoundCube to Google for spell checking. This nor good for the industrial spying nor for private life respect as Google and USA renseignements agencies past and present practices tend to use them, as showned by Edward Snowden.

Example for version 1.0.0:


In previous versions, that was in main.inc.php.dist (that display default values), so you need to cp it to main.inc.php and change those values, for obvious security purpose:


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WordPress and Google

By default, WordPress sent everything you type when you edit a page to google, “to help you correct your spell”:

In the file wp-includes/js/tinymce/plugins/spellchecker/config.php, you will see the default :

        // General settings
        $config['general.engine'] = 'GoogleSpell';
        //$config['general.engine'] = 'PSpell';
        //$config['general.engine'] = 'PSpellShell';
        //$config['general.remote_rpc_url'] = 'http://some.other.site/some/url/rpc.php';

        // PSpell settings
        $config['PSpell.mode'] = PSPELL_FAST;
        $config['PSpell.spelling'] = "";
        $config['PSpell.jargon'] = "";
        $config['PSpell.encoding'] = "";

        // PSpellShell settings
        $config['PSpellShell.mode'] = PSPELL_FAST;
        $config['PSpellShell.aspell'] = '/usr/bin/aspell';
        $config['PSpellShell.tmp'] = '/tmp';

        // Windows PSpellShell settings
        //$config['PSpellShell.aspell'] = '"c:\Program Files\Aspell\bin\aspell.exe"';
        //$config['PSpellShell.tmp'] = 'c:/temp';

Replace in the first packet of rules Google by pspell (a host working spellchecker) pspell/aspell must be installed on your server,, and the php version you use :

        // General settings
        //$config['general.engine'] = 'GoogleSpell';
        $config['general.engine'] = 'PSpell';
        $config['general.engine'] = 'PSpellShell';
        //$config['general.remote_rpc_url'] = 'http://some.other.site/some/url/rpc.php';