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Old September 29th, 2012, 10:10 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Google Play Services apk

I recently received a dl from Google, in a rather sneaky way on their part. The only reason I knew about it was Link2sd notified me it was linking it after a reboot. It only does that with new apps. I figured, I'd get a response here as the real techs hang here. It's has no icon, but, it's in my apps list. Does anybody have an idea what it does? Is it something I need to be concerned with? Google wasn't upfront about it is why I ask. Its not Play Store as I have that too. Thanks for any replies.

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Old October 21st, 2012, 05:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Oh that I have that too. I think it's needed if you download a app that needs to connect to Google.

Like if you download the Google Calendar app it will say you need the Google Play Services app. So it's safe.

Now I'm guessing that's what it does. If not then please correct me.
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Old October 22nd, 2012, 12:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The only info I can find on it, is that its a dev kit, or needed to make ROMs. I don't make ROMs and if I delete it, it downloads automatically the next reboot. I can freeze it, like an app, but it has no icon. Just seems a bit shady on Google's part.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 09:54 AM   #4 (permalink)
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When I forced stopped it and cleared it's data, when I when on Google Play on my PC, my phone was no longer available on there. Once the Google Service APK refreshed itself on my phone, it came back after about 20 minutes.
So it definitely has something to do with syncing your phone with Google.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 11:16 AM   #5 (permalink)
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What it's syncing is what has me concerned. I'm sure, after talking to a Google tech, they can get anything from any handset if they had the desire.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 08:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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It aggressively reinstalls any time you run Google Play, and on my phone, whenever the phone is turned on, Google Play starts up just to download the damn thing... so I rolled back to the (now useless) hardware version of "Market" to solve that problem. Another option is to boot the phone with WiFi and Data turned off, then terminate the Google Play app as well as any update-related aps.

But when you consider Google makes the OS itself, all this really does besides waste your space, is save them (and you, if you aren't unlimited) a ton of bandwidth. Not nearly as much bandwidth as you'd save simply NOT HAVING ANNOYING ADS in the first place, but, greed knows no bounds, even in the open source community this advertising pollution is forced on users. Oh well.

What is it? It's basically a 3166208 byte version of G+ just for aps...
600k of PNG files
232k of XML files
1356k in "classes.dex"
890k in "resources.arsc"
and some licenses

resources.arsc has some binary stuff up front, and is cram packed with text in every language known to mankind. They really could have saved half a meg by simply only including the license/instructions/etc in the language relevant to the user; this bloated approach is a standard software-industry tactic to eventually force hardware upgrades (and related embedded software "sales" via manufacturers - all the crap many of you rooted to get rid of in the first place. lovely!)

the classes.dex file is apparently a big ole bunch of java-based extensions for getting your identity from google for enabled aps, showing ads, hitting google analytics servers, that sort of thing.

Oh, and there's an Apache user license in there too:
/res/raw/oss_notice.txt

Basically, Google just jacked 2% of your 160meg partition so they can show you ads faster & cheaper. Think it will be enough to offset that miserable third quarter report? Doubt it!

google earnings - Bing News

Owning Google hardware has given me a new appreciation for the accuracy of bing search results... which generally suck, but seem far more accurate on this particular subject :-)
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 10:20 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Feel free to let 'em know how you feel:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.google.android.gms

I'm contemplating a solution, some sort of stripped out/hacked version that still passes the "is it there" test, to permanently inhibit the spyware functionality, but it seems like a tall order. Maybe I'll just see what happens if I strip out the graphics first.
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Old June 20th, 2013, 08:43 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Here it is, as promised: Block Google Play and Google Play Services:
[Bash] Prevent Google Play & Google Play Services on HUAWEI M865 - Pastebin.com
CAVEAT:
if you want to KEEP access to Google Market, uninstall Play and Play services FIRST, right before the creation of the directories... you won't need to rm the apk's.
if you want to BLOCK Google Market too, proceed straight to the commands. Then, play never gets fully uninstalled (assuming it ran at least once in the first place) because of its data file; which disables Market also...


# Keep the Google Market active on a HUAWEI M865 without rooting:
# First, you must use HUAWEI's DRM enforcement package!
# Apply your GPL-given legal rights to /data/app (instructions not provided - figure it out! NO ROOT!)
# Then run this script while logged in as shell via adb:
#
cd /data/app
#
mkdir com.android.vending-1.apk
mkdir com.android.vending-1.apk/empty
chmod 555 com.android.vending-1.apk
chmod 555 com.android.vending-1.apk/empty
#
mkdir com.google.android.gms-1.apk
mkdir com.google.android.gms-1.apk/empty
chmod 555 com.google.android.gms-1.apk
chmod 555 com.google.android.gms-1.apk/empty

The instructions for Huawei-GPLDRM:
Opening a Huawei m865 - Pastebin.com
$ cd /data$ rmdir drm/rights
$ ln -s /data /data/drm/rights
$ cd /data/HWUserData
$ rmdir ContactIcons
$ ln -s /data/data ContactIcons
$ rmdir Recordings
$ ln -s /data/app Recordings
$ rmdir Videos
$ ln -s /data/cust Videos
$ rmdir Pictures
$ ln -s /data/system Pictures
$ reboot

#***THEN***#

$ cd /data
$ rm drm/rights
$ rmdir drm
$ ln -s /data drm
$ ln -s /cache rights
$ reboot

So basically, before you can do the first pastebin, you're going to need to do at least the one that opens /data/app from the second pastebin, and reboot. Then you can shell on in and cleanse.

If this confuses your launcher, see my other posts and/or delete your launcher's data file so it can rebuild itself.
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Old June 20th, 2013, 08:55 PM   #9 (permalink)
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While you're at it, update "Voice Search" then do the same thing with it; put an end to it's constant running of "Logging Service" - that's suspicious as hell, especially in light of the recent revelations that Google sold out to NSA.
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