Forked F-Droid apps use the same ID as original apps

I noticed that the F-Droid that Iodé forks use the same ID as the original ones, for most apps, as mentioned on GitHub:

All these apps are sligthly modified versions w.r.t. to the original ones, even if we sometimes kept the same package ID to avoid inconvenienc[ing] iodéOS users with apps that we forked after being first included in iodéOS in their original versions.

This makes it difficult to install the original apps, which is problematic for several reasons:

  1. Users might want to compare the original app to the forked one. There is no general description of what changed; you have to review the individual code commits at apps · GitLab.

  2. The Iodé-forked version does not get updated immediately when the original one does, so there is probably quite a delay in getting the latest updated apps. (I assume the forked apps are only updated at every version of Iodé?)

  3. The changes are so minor in many cases that it may give users the impression that they are working with the original app.

Also, in case you are able to install the original app because it does not use the same ID (like for Open Camera), the changes are so minor that it is difficult to see which app is being used (the original one or the forked one). In my opinion Iodé should change at least the icon of the forked app, and if possible the look and feel.

Also I’m not sure how to circumvent the forked app. In the repo it says:

Unless you know what you are doing, [and] prefer using the original versions, [these] can be downloaded from their upstream repo or through the original f-droid app.

I guess that I can remove the forked apps using adb (is there also an easier way for novice users maybe?). Nonetheless, I would prefer if any changes deemed necessary by Iodé be made in the respective upstream repositories or just not made at all. More so because I have the feeling the changes are just more of a preference of the Iodé team, and otherwise they could be useful to other people as well. Right now, users have no option to choose or even have the wrong idea that they are using the original app.

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In the Settings app go to Apps > Preinstalled apps and you can select apps for removal at next reboot.

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Thanks, that makes it a bit easier. For now I will remove all Iodé-forked preinstalled apps, which are:

  • OpenBoard (not sure what changed compared to the original)
  • PdfViewerPlus (note that the original app has not had updates for a year and has been removed from the original F-Droid repo since)
  • Open Camera (By the way, I don’t like the menu with much more options, among which is the “photo stamp” function to burn in a date in the photo, which I doubt anyone wants to use often)
  • GeometricWeather (I wonder why it was forked)
  • F-Droid (maybe I will add the Iodé repo ( if necessary, although with these apps removed I think just the main F-Droid repo will suffice)
  • Aurora Store (not sure what this fork contributes)
  • Iodé Browser (this is a proper fork with a new ID, but I’d rather have a Firefox fork directly from a dedicated team)

Maybe this list is useful for others as well.

Another reason for using the original apps is that when you’re not on the original repo you would have to keep track of two change logs for every app in order to see what is updated in each version.

To add, I noticed that OpenBoard is not in the Apps > Preinstalled apps list. Any idea why?

A second complication is that when I install the original F-Droid, the Privileged Extension does not work any more. I get an error: “The privileged permissions have not been granted to the extension! Please create a bug report!”

Strangely, the “F-Droid Basic” app (which I installed through Iodé’s F-Droid) works with the Privileged Extension.

I uninstalled OpenBoard by just removing the APK using ADB. I had to disable AVB/dm-verity for that and mount the partition as writable. All is fine and I can install the newer versions of OpenBoard.

BTW, the main OpenBoard project on Github is not maintained any longer. A fork is in the making which even has regular beta releases, which is what I use now. T̶h̶e̶ ̶v̶e̶r̶s̶i̶o̶n̶ ̶o̶n̶ ̶I̶o̶d̶é̶ ̶i̶s̶ ̶v̶e̶r̶y̶ ̶o̶l̶d̶,̶ ̶b̶a̶s̶i̶c̶a̶l̶l̶y̶ ̶p̶r̶o̶v̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶m̶y̶ ̶p̶o̶i̶n̶t̶ ̶t̶h̶a̶t̶ ̶i̶t̶’̶s̶ ̶t̶r̶o̶u̶b̶l̶e̶s̶o̶m̶e̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶i̶n̶c̶l̶u̶d̶e̶ ̶f̶o̶r̶k̶s̶ ̶w̶i̶t̶h̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶s̶a̶m̶e̶ ̶I̶D̶ ̶i̶n̶ ̶a̶ ̶R̶O̶M̶.̶ EDIT: As @AlphaElwedritsch says below, Iodé already uses the fork. Very nice!

IodeOS is using this fork as default

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Just to understand it better: Can someone explain to me what the advantage is for me if I use the Iodé version of F-Droid?

Or in other words: What are the disadvantages of switching to the original F-Droid app and adding the Iodé Repro?

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