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Cyanogen Mod Wiki

CyanogenMod (pronounced /saɪ.'æn.oʊ.dʒɛn.mɒd/) is an open source replacement firmware distribution based on the Android mobile operating system for smart phones and tablet computers. It offers features and options not found in the official firmware distributed by vendors of these devices.

Features supported by CyanogenMod include native theming support, Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) support, a large Access Point Name list, an OpenVPN client, an enhanced reboot menu, support for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and USB tethering, CPU overclocking and performance enhancements, soft buttons and other "tablet tweaks", toggles in the notification pull-down (such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS), app permissions management, as well as other interface enhancements. According to its developers, CyanogenMod does not contain pre-installed spyware or bloatware.[3][4] CyanogenMod is also stated to increase performance and reliability compared with official firmware releases.[5]

CyanogenMod is developed as free and open source software based on the official releases of Android by Google, with added original and third-party code.

Although only a subset of total CyanogenMod users elect to report their use of the firmware,[6] as of 6 July 2012, CyanogenMod has recorded over 2.5 million installs on a multitude of devices.[7][8]

History and development

Soon after the introduction of the HTC Dream (named the "T-Mobile G1" in the United States) mobile phone in September 2008, a method was discovered to attain privileged control (termed "root access") within Android's Linux-based subsystem.[9] Having root access, combined with the open source nature of the Android operating system, allowed the phone's stock firmware to be modified and re-installed onto the phone.

In the following year, several modified firmwares for the Dream were developed and distributed by Android enthusiasts. One, maintained by a developer named JesusFreke, quickly became popular among Dream owners. In August, 2009, JesusFreke stopped work on his firmware, and suggested users switch to a version of his ROM that had been further enhanced by developer Cyanogen (Steve Kondik) called "CyanogenMod".[10]

CyanogenMod quickly grew in popularity, and a small community of developers, called the CyanogenMod Team (and informally, "Team Douche"[11]) made contributions. Within a few months, the number of devices and features supported by CyanogenMod blossomed, and CyanogenMod quickly became one of the most popular Android firmware distributions.

Like many open source projects, CyanogenMod is developed using a distributed revision control system with the official repositories being hosted on GitHub.[12] Contributors submit new feature or bug fix changes using Google's source code review system, Gerrit.[13] Contributions may be tested by anyone, voted up or down by registered users, and ultimately accepted into the code by one of a handful of CyanogenMod developers.

A version of ADW.Launcher, an alternative launcher (home screen) for the Android operating system, became the default launcher on Cyanogenmod 5.0.8. The launcher provides additional features not provided by the default Android launcher, including more customization abilities (including icon themes, effects, and behavior), the ability to backup and restore configuration settings, and other features.[14][15]


On 4 April 2012, CyanogenMod.com unveiled "Cid" (pronounced /sɪd/), the new CyanogenMod mascot, which replaced the previous mascot, Andy the skateboarding "bugdroid".[33] Designed by user Ciao, Cid (C.I.D.) is an abbreviation of "Cyanogenmod ID".


The CyanogenMod source code repository also contains the ClockworkMod Recovery (a "recovery image", maintained by Koushik "Koush" Dutta), which is used to install CyanogenMod and other custom upgrades. A recovery image is a special boot mode, which is used to backup or restore the device's storage and repair or upgrade system software. ClockworkMod Recovery can be automatically installed onto many rooted devices supported by CyanogenMod with Dutta's companion app, "ROM Manager", which is available on the Play Store.


Until version, CyanogenMod included several proprietary software applications by Google, such as Gmail, Maps, Play Store, Talk, and YouTube, as well as several proprietary hardware drivers. These packages were included with the vendor distributions of Android, but not licensed for free distribution. After Google sent a cease and desist letter to CyanogenMod's chief developer, Steve Kondik, in late September 2009 demanding he stop distributing the aforementioned applications, development ceased for a few days.[45][46][47][48] The reaction from many CyanogenMod users towards Google was hostile, with some claiming that Google's legal threats hurt their own interests, violated their informal corporate motto "Don't be evil" and was a challenge to the open source community Google claimed to embrace.[49][50][51]

Following a statement from Google clarifying its position[52] and a subsequent negotiation between Google and Cyanogen, it was resolved that the CyanogenMod project would continue, in a form that did not directly bundle in the proprietary "Google Experience" components.[53][54] It was determined that the proprietary Google apps may be backed-up from the Google-supplied firmware on the phone and then re-installed onto CyanogenMod releases without infringing copyright.

On 28 September 2009, Cyanogen warned that while issues no longer remain with Google, there were still potential licensing problems regarding proprietary, closed-source device drivers.[55] On 30 September 2009, he posted an update on the matter. He wrote that he was rebuilding the source tree, and that he believed the licensing issues with drivers could be worked out. He added that he was also receiving assistance from Google employees.[56] On 16 June 2012, the CyanogenMod 7.2 release announcement stated, "CyanogenMod does still include various hardware-specific code, which is also slowly being open-sourced anyway."[57]

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