Hacker News new | comments | show | ask | jobs | submit login
Cyanogen services shutting down (cyngn.com)
289 points by robin_reala on Dec 24, 2016 | hide | past | web | favorite | 73 comments

To avoid confusion, CynagenMod will still be available, but I don't know how long it can continue without Cyanogen Inc. Cyanogen Inc. is what is shutting down.

But this probably means no more OTA updates for current OnePlus's

For the record, Cyanogenmod existed for 4 years before cyanogen inc. We will have a short transition period as 'inc' shuts down and cyanogenmod is rebranded, but cyanogen himself says he is happy to rebrand (https://twitter.com/cyanogen/status/804890637505966081)

CyanogenMod only available until December 31st. [1]

[1] https://www.xda-developers.com/the-death-of-cyangenmod-and-w...

OnePlus phones haven't used Cyanogen in a while. They run OnePlus' skin, OxygenOS.

Some of us still have the earlier models that do. (Although it seems they now ship Oxygen backports for the One)

I do.

Is there a way to "upgrade" to oxygenOS? Or even re-install with oxygenOS?

Yes see https://forums.oneplus.net/threads/oxygenos-2-1-4-for-the-on...

Given this news will probably try this.

I used Oxygen OS on my One Plus One since it was released and love it. Feels much lighter than CyanogenMod. Also, I think only old Oxygen OS are available and no newer ones

The only model released with CyanogenOS was OnePlus One.

OxygenOS is actually base on AOSP base. It's not just a skin. It's an Android flavour built from scratch

Originally OnePlus One shipped with CyanogenOS, but the Cyanogen Inc fuct up and sold exclusive rights to CyanogenOS to a domestic carrier in India.

This blocked the sale of OnePlus One phone in India until this could get resolved. OxygenOS was the answer to this. Fork of Cyanogenmod with some rebranding and a few added things.

Personally I bought the OnePlus One because it came with Cyanogen. I wasn't happy with all the added cruft in CyanogenOS, so I reflashed to Cyanogenmod soon after a stable version was available.

I'm currently using OxygenOS on my OnePlus 3, but will flash to Cyanogenmod eventually to run more bleeding edge and get some features back that I miss.

This shouldn't effect OnePlus 3 as they terminated thier agreement with Cyanogen Inc after the India licencing problem.

> but the Cyanogen Inc fuct up and sold exclusive rights to CyanogenOS to a domestic carrier in India.

It's boggling there has been no official word from Cyanogen Inc on why this happened. I never liked the OnePlus marketing or press, plus I had a OnePlus One with that terrible grounding/touchscreen crazy issue.

Just judging from OnePlus's support, I have a feeling Cyanogen was getting sick of them too. I'm sure there's much more to their fallout than what's been made available. Considering my experience with OnePlus's product, I'd probably side more with Cyanogen.

There was a lot of controversy in the open source community about Cyanogen's partnership with Microsoft. It seemed like good idea when you think of Microsoft pushing more Android products and their internal divisions trying to break away from their own failing phone market. But I guess that effort failed as well. Did they ever release any phones with CyanogenOS + Cortana?

Could you say any more or point me to any references about problems with OnePlus, please? I'm looking at getting a new phone soon and was thinking of one of theirs, and your comment is the first substantial negative comment I've seen about them so far.

Not carrier, but manufacturer in India - Micromax

and unlike CM (unsure about COS) they do not transparently provide any of their patches to the Android components or other non-vendor-NDA addons that they include in their image.

that isn't exclusive to OP, though, of course - every other vendor I can imagine does the exact same to any non-hardware customizations they apply to the OS.

This has to do more with Google and the Open Handset Alliance (OHA) and their terrible restrictions. A company can't distribute a phone with Gapps if they product Amazon Fire devices. Samsung even got shit for using Skyhook instead of Google for location services (Skyhook is still battling this in court):


Skyhook lost the suit against Google in 2014

OnePlus 3 is underated, it is awesome. I have a Google pixel XL and the OnePlus 3 is as fast but thinner and lighter and about half the price. I wish them. More success.

I have the 3 and I love it. I can't compare it to a real flagship (like Galaxy or Pixel) but for $300 I got a really great phone that people always comment on.

Not only do I completely agree, but I'd also choose my OnePlus 3 over my old Galaxy S6.

You can throw my vote in for the OnePlus.

I used to switch phones pretty regularly and since getting my OnePlus 2, the only phone I'd upgrade to would be the 3 or the new 3T.

The one thing I absolutely loved was not having all of the bloat of the carrier apps on the phone when you get it. Totally stripped down and fully customizable.

Just to clarify, OnePlus is completely unaffected by this? I've been considering buying a ONePlus recently which is why I ask.

Yes, their stock Oxygen OS ROM is quite stable and you should be perfectly happy with it, there's a pretty good community around it even if CyanogenMod were to completely vanish too.

OnePlus has had some build quality issues when they were first setting up their supply line, but lately I've had very good luck with their devices. Great specs for cheap, like the Nexus line used to represent.

Excellent, thanks for the clarification. I'm looking forward to making this my next phone. Cheers.

Only OnePlus One came with Cyanogen. They have released 4 phones since then.

I don't know much about the team behind Cyanogen, i just know i love it and don't want it to die but it looks like management is starting to make some silly calls. I'm definitely getting that abandon ship feeling I've learned to trust over the years. Are there similar projects worth looking into? Ill go back to my Nokia 8210 before i go back to vendor controlled Android.

Their management had a huge fiasco in India a couple of years ago. They already had an exclusive deal to sell Cyanogen branded phones with One Plus earlier, and they broke it and made another deal with Micromax company overnight. There was a large shitstorm in the android and open source world, and Cyanogen's image had suffered.

I have had CyanogenMod on my phones for the past few years of nightlies. I am sad they are dissolving. Other roms I liked:

http://en.miui.com has some nice UX

http://paranoidandroid.co is nice if you want security

http://aokp.co has been around for years and stays cutting edge

Paranoid Android has NO additional security mechanisms over AOSP. It's based on CM with added UI/UX features. The name is not indicative of the type of ROM it is.

CopperheadOS is what you want if you're concerned about security.

Ahh, well that is a disappointing name. Thanks for the correction.

To be honest, you should probably not recommend something as secure if you have not fact-checked to make sure that the thing you have recommended actually emphasizes security at a minimum.

While I am happy Copperhead OS is around, it only supports a very limited set of Nexus devices. Back in the pre-Signal days Open Whisper Systems started their own work on an Android fork called WhisperCore. I'm curious if any of the features from WhisperCore ever made it into a new ROM, or if it was all quietly abandoned.

It was all abandoned, but many similar features made it into CM. Things like separating the seeding passphrase/PIN/pattern for FDE from the lockscreen and lockscreen PIN randomization were once features in CyanogenMod.

The former, FDE key separation, feature is gone and you'll need to either use adb or a 3rd party application [0] to achieve it.

It shouldn't be too hard to pull kernel patches from CopperheadOS and apply it to a clean AOSP tree for different devices -- this is obviously after they have done all the heavy lifting.

0. https://github.com/xmikos/SnooperStopper

You shouldn't need the whole tree for kernel patches.

As you've been using nightly builds, you haven't been using Cyanogen, but been running Cyanogenmod. CyanogenOS is closed source fork of Cyanogenmod. Available for only certain devices. That means that Cyanogenmod is actually a good alternative to Cyanogen

Ah, correct. I have been using Cyanogenmod, not CyanogenOS. I will update my post.

Nothing about paranoid android was security oriented to my memory. They used to have some cool features like HOLO and dynamic DPI switching, but basically lost all of that as android versions came out and they didn't keep up.

AOKP hasn't released anything tangible in years. It's sad too, since they were one of my favorite ROMs back in KitKat.

The big question I have is regarding the current CyanogenMod nightly builds. Will Cyanogen continue to run the build servers for the time being or will a current user need to setup an Android build environment for any newer CyanogenMod ROM builds?

The article is only 2 sentences long, and says no: "all services and Cyanogen-supported nightly builds will be discontinued no later than 12/31/16"

You mean OnePlus Ones

As someone running CyanogenMod on a devices that shipped with CyanogenOS, I am wondering what it means for CyanogenMod. The source is available today and will continue to be available in the future, but what about nightly builds and other infrastructure?

Steve Kondik wrote[1]:

    It costs a lot of money to keep the servers running at this scale, and I figure we have about two months to GTFO.
That at least suggests that nightly builds of CyanogenMod will not be available until a new setup is put in place. Steve Kondik also suggest in that post that CM will have to re-brand to avoid IP conflicts with Cyanogen Inc.

There is some speculation that Lineage Android Distribution might be the new name. LineageOS on github[2] also uses that name and mirrors CM repositories.

[1] http://www.androidpolice.com/2016/12/01/steve-kondik-blames-...

[2] https://github.com/LineageOS

Speculation is confirmed by this:


Here are some prior details on what is going on with the company: http://www.androidpolice.com/2016/12/01/steve-kondik-blames-...

The last two times I bought a smartphone, I deliberately chose a slightly older model that was proven to be fully supported by Cyanogenmod. I never even bothered to explore the stock ROM on those phones. I rooted them and installed Cyanogenmod as soon as I confirmed that the hardware was working.

I'm planning to get a new phone sometime in the next 6 months, but I don't plan to check for Cyanogenmod compatibility this time. I have no idea what's going on with that company these days. The future of Cyanogenmod seems to be getting more uncertain and less open every time I hear an announcement like this.

We have no need for the Year of Linux on the Desktop anymore, because Linux on the Phone already commands a very large market share. Unfortunately, every year the Android ecosystem feels less like the Linux I know and love, and more like just another proprietary platform. I hope I'm wrong. I hope Cyanogenmod and other Android forks thrive. But in the meantime, I'll have to use a non-Cyanogenmod phone.

Sir, you are unfortunately misinterpreting the article. Cyanogen does not equal Cyanogenmod. CyanogenOS is a Cyanogenmod fork with added binaries and Microsoft apps added by default. It's available and maintained only for a certain amount of devices. This news doesn't have any connection whatsoever to the open-source project named Cyanogenmod

The leadership and financial stability of a major sponsor and decision-maker does have an impact on the future of any open-source project. Especially if said sponsor did their best to make it look like they were the official guardian of the project.

Of note in this instance is that the VC-backed for-profit sponsor was established years after the project itself was self-sufficient. Also the original project founder is onboard with the fork

But aren't they running the build servers and everything?

I haven't found anything about that. The last update post I've found is from 2012. At that time, Cyanogenmod was running their own servers. Personally, I don't think Cyanogen is in charge of the CM build servers


"Yesterday, Cyanogen Inc (Cyngn) announced that they were shutting down the infrastructure behind CyanogenMod (CM)."

A close reading of the original blog post (which mentions "Cyanogen-supported nightly builds" being stopped and provides a workaround to "anyone who wants to build CyanogenMod personally") clearly suggests that the post is primarily about the CyanogenMod build servers, and not about CyanogenOS.

Take a look at Sailfish OS or Ubuntu Touch, Android always was a proprietary platform, with ever more functionality going unmaintained and being absorbed into Google Play Services.

Here is CyanogenMod's Post: https://www.cyanogenmod.org/blog/a-fork-in-the-road

All of this is so sad. At least for me.

I've used Steve Kondik's CyanogenMod on my ADP1 and have used CM until I got a Nexus 5. It was just so much better than anything the OEMs could produce at that time and had great customization features. Only Android 6.0 has stopped my yearning for CM. I think it had a profound impact on Android or at least it's technically oriented community. Even MIUI started as a CyanogenMod Mod, afaik, before Xiaomi even produced Android smartphones.

I couldn't understand the rage in the community when Steve wanted to create a business around CM and to this day think that their business model has only benefited CM. pfSense and nginx seem to do just fine with a similar approach.

Did Cyngn (Cyanogen Inc.) fuck up? Did Steve make mistakes along the way? Were his business partners toxic to the company and CM? - Probably yes and no to some degree to all of these questions but hey, it was mostly great I think.

Sad to see the company go and sad to see CM probably die slowly. At least in the form it exists in today. Hope dies last so I hope that CM will somehow survive...

"As part of the ongoing consolidation of Cyanogen, all services and Cyanogen-supported nightly builds will be discontinued no later than 12/31/16. The open source project and source code will remain available for anyone who wants to build CyanogenMod personally."

It doesn't say very much, does this mean that CyanogenMod will no longer be available? Or just the nightly build service will stop, therefore actual releases will still be available?

The speculation is that the name and logo all belonged to the company, so apparently most/all the devs are upping and leaving with the open source portions of the code and rebranding as Lineage OS.

The domain is registered, github organisation created and currently tracking with CM's repos, and the channels are registered on freenode.

I'm mainly hoping that there'll be someone willing to pay for all the build hosts tracking the mainline repositories and churning out 'known-clean' builds for all the 'officially-supported' devices.

Android is a beast to build by hand.

The company also confirmed its next open-source initiative Lineage OS with some of the original team on board carrying forward CyanogenMod development, however, in a new avatar: "Embracing that spirit, we the community of developers, designers, device maintainers and translators have taken the steps necessary to produce a fork of the CM source code and pending patches. This is more than just a 'rebrand'. This fork will return to the grassroots community effort that used to define CM while maintaining the professional quality and reliability you have come to expect more recently," added the team in <a href="http://www.latestone.com/power-banks" rel="nofollow">blog post</a>.

Perhaps this would be useful these days to find stock AOSP type devices https://www.stockdroids.com/

Was posted in hn https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13000120

No big surprise. Their business model was to add a lot of "value added software" back to Cyanogenmod, which absolutely nobody wants. The first thing to do if you bought a phone with their commerical offering was to install the open source version instead.

The question now is how this will affect the open source version. I understand they have become quite reliant on infrastructure from the commercial company. I also think the founder sold all the trademarks and so on, but should they have to change their name it can only be for the better. A poisonous gas might be a cool name for a certain demographic, but it's not likely to mainstream very well.

Looks like they were going after a solid market but failed to execute. This happens all the time. Pity though, could have been a great company and product.

Whom to contact to help with the open source effort?

Probably cyanogen himself [1].

1. aka Steve Kondik: the original founder of the open source project which preceeded Cyanogen Inc, of which he was a co-founder before he bailed.

So the OnePlus team took away the Paranoid Android team and now CM too. I understand the difference between CynaogenMod and Cynaogen. But cyanogen is the only popular AOSP fork on which a huge number of AOKP projects are based. This would have a massive effect on the xda community.

But I guess this gives more space for the new OSs like Sailfish, nextbit Etc.

Also in IMHO, AOSP was useful majorly because of CM. Even though this decision might not close CM. It's affect on the self hacking Android community would be interesting


What does OnePlus have to do with this? I'll admit I'm not down in the trenches on ROMs, etc. but my understanding from what I've read over time is that it runs like this:

CyanogenMod is a popular and widely used ROM

Core developers of CyanogenMod and possibly some business folks decide to turn it into a company and provide said ROM (with customer-desired tweaks) to small hardware vendors who don't want to do their own in-house development

Two of the client companies are OnePlus and someone in India, but contract screwups mean that because of this OnePlus can't sell their phones in India. Displeased with losing a huge market for inexpensive phones, they drop Cyanogen and go their own way for future products.

Further drama and possibly not enough sales ensue

Internal drama at Cyanogen leads to the founder of CyanogenMod leaving

Cyanogen the company shuts down.

I'm sure there's a ton of nuance, hurt feelings, betrayal, etc. involved (aka "drama"), but blaming OnePlus for Cyanogen shutting down makes no more sense than blaming Cyanogen for OnePlus shutting down if they'd gone under due to the whole "can't sell in India" thing.

>What does OnePlus have to do with this?

They have nothing to do with this. I was merely stating that out of the 2 biggest AOSP forks, OnePlus bought the entire PA team to make OxygenOS[1]

CyanogenMod was the official ROM of OnePlus One till they signed a side deal which brought about OxygenOS.

They have done nothing here directly. But the AOSP project could sure do with some diversity which this move just might bring in.


PS: Not implying that OnePLus was responsible for Cyangen's shutdown. Merely lamenting here about the AOSP community now that 1 major player is out and the second one is going to "rebrand"

Didn't Microsoft want to buy this company in the past?

Afaik, they gave them some cash, announced partnership: the very next 'security' update for my OPO , when I dug deeper, had Cortana and other MS bloatware.

Microsoft gave Cyanogen a partnership that allowed them to bundle some Microsoft IP in their ROM. Don't know how much it really helped in the end.

As for a full buyout, I didn't see anything indicating that.

Sorry for not bothering to find a source on it in my orig post. Here it is [1].

[1] http://news.softpedia.com/news/Microsoft-Wants-to-Buy-Custom...

What about yuphoria ??

Site is broken.

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact