Halium for Android-IA/Clovertrail+

Ilya Bizyaev posts on the Intel Android-IA mailing list about working to get Halium port of the ASUS ZenFone5:

I am writing to announce that I am working on a Halium (halium.org) port for ASUS ZenFone 5, a Clovertrail+ based phone. Porting Halium base to this Intel platform enables numerous open-source projects, including Ubuntu Touch (ubports.com), Plasma Mobile (plasma-mobile.org), LuneOS (webos-ports.org) and Mer (merproject.org) to use all of the Clovertrail+ devices for development and testing. I am proud to report that as of now, the Halium build system supports using custom Intel boot tools, and the device boasts a stable 3.10 kernel and Android 7.1-based system build that has Wi-Fi, touch sensor, hardware keys, LEDs and vibrator working.

Full post:  android-ia@lists.01.org archives.


Hmm, I didn’t know about Halium…



From the Halium blog’s initial post:

Over the years, various efforts have been made to bring GNU/Linux to mobile devices (for example Maemo, Meego, Mer, SailfishOS, Ubuntu Touch, Plasma Mobile). They have either achieved their individual goals or are working in direction of achieving them. During the development of such projects it was suggested multiple times that these communities should work together as their ultimate goal is the same. However due to various reasons this never happened in the past. However we believe that it is time to change this situation. Currently distributions like AsteroidOS, LuneOS, Mer, Plasma Mobile, SailfishOS, and Ubuntu Touch have one thing in common that they use the libhybris to interact with the android binary blobs and they also run the various android daemons using different methods. And there is lot of fragementation on how this task is handled even though these parts don’t need to be different as their essential goal is to make use of android binary blobs. Project Halium is the effort by the community which aims to bring the common grounds for different distributions and have a common base which includes the Linux kernel, Android Hardware Abstraction Layer, and libhybris. Project Halium also aims to standardize the middlewares used to interact with the hardware of the device. By having these parts shared, we believe that it will reduce the fragmentation we have currently.[…]




CopperheadOS: business model concerns

CopperheadOS is “A security and privacy focused mobile operating system compatible with Android apps.“.

It appears the company is having problems trying to monetize an open sourced operating system. I hope they can solve things, they’re doing interesting security things with Android.



Android 8.0 and Project Treble



“The Android 8.0 release includes Project Treble, a major re-architect of the Android OS framework designed to make it easier, faster, and less costly for manufacturers to update devices to a new version of Android. Treble is for all new devices launching with Android 8.0 and beyond (the new architecture is already running on the Developer Preview for Pixel phones).[…]”


Android: Untethered initroot

Untethered initroot (USENIX WOOT ’17)
By Roee Hay (@roeehay)
August 30, 2017
CVE-2016-10277 ALEPH-2017024

In USENIX WOOT ‘17, that took place earlier this month in Vancouver, we presented our paper, “fastboot oem vuln: Android Bootloader Vulnerabilities in Vendor Customizations”, covering a year’s work in Android bootloaders research. Our paper also includes some previously undisclosed details on CVE-2016-10277, a critical kernel command-line injection vulnerability in the Motorola Android Bootloader (ABOOT) that we had found and blogged about. In the previous couple of blog posts, we demonstrated a tethered unrestricted root exploit against that vulnerability, that we later extended to other Moto devices – G4 & G5. Additional Moto devices have also been confirmed by the community. In the WOOT’17 paper we describe a natural continuation of that exploit – a second stage untethered secure boot & device locking bypass (tested to be working on the vulnerable versions of Nexus 6, Moto G4 & G5). Moreover, we also present in the paper and this blog post other second stage exploits, such as persistent kernel code execution in Nexus 6, the ability to downgrade critical partitions (such as the bootloaders chain and TrustZone), unlocking a re-locked Nexus 6 bootloader, and more. As usual, our PoC exploit is publicly available in our GitHub repo. DISCLAIMER: Unlike the previous ephemeral jailbreak, the one presented today may brick your device. For example, during the development of it, we had to unlock our (luckily unlockable!) Moto G5 device in order to unbrick it.[…]



Android Oreo docs on keymaster3 and HIDL

In Android 8.0, Keymaster 3 transitioned from the old-style C-structure Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL) to the C++ HAL interface generated from a definition in the new Hardware Interface Definition Language (HIDL). As part of the change, many of the argument types changed, though types and methods have a one-to-one correspondence with the old types and the HAL struct methods.[…]








Android Oreo Verified Boot’s Rollback Protection

This flew under our radar back at I/O, but it’s big news. On compatible devices, the new Verified Boot changes in Android 8.0 Oreo will prevent a device from booting should it be rolled back to an earlier firmware. The new feature is called Rollback Protection. So if your phone is flashed with older software, you (and your data) are protected from whatever potential security vulnerabilities may have been present in earlier versions. For 99% of users, the new Rollback Protection is great news. If a phone is lost or stolen, it further decreases the number of potential attacks which could be used to gain access, providing better safety for your data.[…]





Collabora: Changing the Android boot animation

Quick hack: Changing the Android boot animation

Posted on 21/04/2017 by Robert Foss

For various reasons you might want to change the Android boot animation to something other than the stock one, this is how you do it. There exists official documentation for how to create a custom boot animation, but unfortunately it is lacking in actual examples. So this guide is a bit more hands-on. Without covering too much of the same gound as the documentation, let’s have a quick look at what is in a simple bootanimation.zip.[…]