In an interesting and exciting breakthrough, the CyanogenMOD team took to their official blog to release a statement regarding the future of CM9 and the necessity for root access. Security has been at the epicenter of much debate regarding devices with root access enabled and/or running custom ROMs. To take appropriate measures, the CM team has merged 3 new patches into CyanogenMOD 9 that selectively disable root access in a configurable manner. Going forward, users will be able to set their exposure to root as:
- Enabled for ADB only
- Enabled for apps only
- Enabled for both
Users will also be required to explicitly enable root access, meaning they will be fully aware of the security risks they face from any application which requires root access. These apps will then be flagged by the SuperUser application and the user will be forced to grant selective access.
As an Android user since the T-Mobile G1, I’ve done my fair share of rooting. I’ve rooted upwards of ten Android devices, all of which with the intention of installing a custom recovery and ROM. Aside from using Titanium Backup (which requires root), there aren’t many times when I’ve actually needed root. While, some devices that didn’t get CM support may have also needed it for taking screenshots, in most cases the feature was built into CyanogenMOD, so I was already set. That being said, it will definitely be nice for users to have a way of selecting when and how they want to be able to turn root access on.
Along the way, I’ve also seen the evolution of CyanogenMOD and I’m thrilled with how the project has come along. I’ve always felt as though the ROMs produced by the team were more reliable than those from the OEM itself and I’ve never had any major issues on any device with a CM ROM installed. That being said, bravo to everyone involved with the project for your hard work, dedication and concern for the community. You guys are AWESOME.