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I need an Android ROM for a Samsung Galaxy S II (i9100).

  • The software should be as free/libre as possible. Apart from proprietary drivers (where necessary), it should ideally come with free/libre software only.
  • It should still get security updates. Ideally as quickly as possible, of course, and preferably in such a way that it’s easy/hassle-free to update.

I’ll only use a browser, an email client, Conversations, and an OpenStreetMap-based mapping app (via F-Droid).

ROMs I found

  • Replicant (available for the S2) is, as far as I know, the most free/libre ROM you can get, but the latest update seems to be from 2015, so I fear that there might be unfixed security issues.

  • LineageOS (available for the S2) is, as far as I know, the most active ROM (as it’s a fork from the popular but now discontinued CyanogenMod), so it might be a good choice w.r.t security updates, but I’m not sure how good it’s w.r.t. free/libre software, and I fear that it might not be stable enough yet.

  • I don’t know what to expect from OmniROM (available for the S2).

  • I don’t know what to expect from AOKP (available for the S2).

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    I guess you can strike OmniROM. Stuck on Kitkat, last update AFAIK was 2015. AOKP doesn't sound a bad choice to me (and is still kept fresh it seems), but I've never tried it myself. – Izzy Feb 14 '17 at 23:02
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    considering Replicant: according to this official statement there will definitely be an update for the Galaxy S II. - unfortunately i don't have any clue of the eta, but i didn't really seared for it. – DJCrashdummy Feb 15 '17 at 8:15
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The real answer to your question is: Go buy a new phone... Let me somewhat explain.

In the ROMs I found section of your question you seem to be overly optimistic about all the ROMs available, but you are simply mistaking. Let me go through the list one by one.

  • Replicant: Available for the S2. But the latest update is from September 2015, build replicant-4.2-i9100.zip which is built on the ancient Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. And even that old build is far from completely functional as it is missing (see Replicant status page) 3D graphics, Bluetooth and USB audio, WiFi and Bluetooth (without non-free firmwares), NFC and GPS.

  • LineageOS: Is not available for the S2. It has an automatically generated landing page for the phone with some info on it, but here is the builds page https://download.lineageos.org/i9100, and it is empty. (oddly enough I see on Web Archives that there was a recent nightly build available but it is now removed. Might be it was too rough.)

  • OmniROM does have a build for the S2. but it is from May 2015 and -As Izzy pointed out in the comments- based on Android 4.4 KitKat.

  • AOKP though available for the S2, it is only available as a nightly build (which is officially unfinished and has bugs) and while the latest build is aokp_i9100_mm_nightly_2017-01-20.zip which seems to be quite recent, it is an automatically generated build every few days and mustn't be it has changed anything since years ago.

If you do want to use this device and looking for the best available, my recommendation would go to the CyanogenMod! While they are officially dead their work may still be found if you really want it.

They have a 12.1 Stable Release (download it here from Web Archive) from late 2015, but while not that much newer from the two available above it is built on Android 5.0 Lolipop, so at least the Android version isn't that ancient... Even better would probably be to use their latest nightly build, from December 2016 (on Web Archive here) which is version 13 and is built on Android 6.0 already. (more info about that nightly build you can find in its page here.)

There are some other, lesser known, options. One of then is Resurrection Remix ROM which is based on CM but is very much fully up to date based on Android 7.1! More options may be found by looking around in the aforementioned Xda-developers forums section for this phone https://forum.xda-developers.com/galaxy-s2

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    Thanks! -- Regarding Replicant’s missing features: That’s the price of software freedom with smartphones, and I’m fine with that (as far as I read, I could use a libre WLAN USB stick with an OTG cable). Regarding LineageOS’s missing builds: yes, they still were there a few days ago (they were also removed temporarily in January, IIRC). According to their post from yesterday, they still support the S2 and a missing build could mean that it’s too unstable or that it will be built in the next set. – unor Feb 15 '17 at 6:08
  • Regarding CyanogenMod: I do understand it correctly that there definitely won’t be any more (security) updates, right? So while it might be fine for now, I would have to switch to another ROM eventually. Regarding Resurrection Remix ROM: Sounds interesting. I’ll try to find out what their view on proprietary software/apps is (or do you happen to know?). – unor Feb 15 '17 at 6:08
  • @unor Replicant I think is out of question given how old the OS is. Lineage, even when available, still hadn't had a stable release for this device at all so the device might be really unstable and even worse. – Yisroel Tech Feb 15 '17 at 6:53
  • @unor you are certainly right about Cyanogenmod not getting updates. Resurrection seems to be the only one actively updating this device with official releases. About what you are worried on proprietary software, I'm not really sure what your worries/issues are, I'm not even sure exactly what you mean by that (I'm that much in these kind of things) but obviously if you come to some more info or conclusion please share it! – Yisroel Tech Feb 15 '17 at 6:57
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    according to this LinageOS-log the Galaxy S II will get 14.1-builds, it will be just a matter of time... – DJCrashdummy Feb 15 '17 at 8:24

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