Is CalyxOS enough?

I’m on a Pixel 3 XL, and I’m now running GrapheneOS. I started by CalyxOS and switching to GrapheneOS 6 months later, for testing. Now GOS has sandboxed Play Services, no problems of compatibility. But, I find it a bit slower than COS, maybe it’s not the case for newer phones.

I don’t have a very high threat model, just avoid big tech companies and tracking as much as possible. My question is: is CalyxOS good enough for my needs?

And I would like also to have the point of view of Henry on GOS/COS since the Play Services are now implemented :sweat_smile: (the Techlore compare video is now about one year old).


Exec spawning is probably the slow-down you are noticing. I’ve heard that it’s noticeable on the Pixel 3 but not so much on the recent Pixel 5 and 6 generations.

If it’s bothering you enough to consider switching ROMs, maybe try simply disabling exec spawning before jumping ship:

This feature can be disabled via Settings ➔ Security ➔ Enable secure app spawning if you prefer to have faster cold start app spawning time and lower app process memory usage instead of the substantial security benefits and the removal of the only known remaining direct device identifiers across profiles (i.e. not depending on fingerprinting global configuration, available storage space, etc. or using side channels).

In my opinion, if you don’t have an advanced threat model and you’re more focused on decent security practices with more privacy than before, I think that Calyx is fine. Like it’s been said all over the place in the privacy space, if you can make Graphene work for you, then you’re probably better off using Graphene, but it it seems like both are probably private enough for you.

From what I’ve seen, Calyx is in between stock Android and Graphene, and that’s more where I would like to be because my threat model doesn’t require me to give up that much functionality. If (hopefully when) I muster the courage to flash a ROM, I’ll go with Calyx.

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