microG - What you need to know, A conversation with its developer : Marvin Wißfeld

Well, it has been intensively discussed whether it is against the goals or not and obviously it is not, as /e/ is going to implement it.
And telling people that it is “activated” is (I hate this expression, but in this case it seems correct): fake news. At least as long the switch is set to “off” in factory state, which I can’t check as I will only come back to /e/ when the implementation is completed and a stable build for FP3 is available.

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Fear is a bad counselor…


Well, English isn’t my native language, too.
But I understand enough to tell that your linked article has absolutely nothing to do with what we are discussing here. And I suppose your English is also good enough to understand that your linked article has absolutely nothing to do with what we are discussing here. You even admit that it has absolutely nothing to do with what we are discussing here.
The API, especially the implementation in microG doesn’t send any data to google, so where is the connection? You yourself are doing a lot of research about connection to Google’s servers, have you ever observed any connection between Exposure Notification implemented by microG and Google? If so, I think the Open Source community and /e/ would be very glad if you would share your findings.


Would you please finally stop to spread FUD? As @andrelam correctly pointed out: Fear is a bad counselor, so could we please just objectively stick to the facts and not some delusion of what might or might as well not be happening? As you said yourself, the mentioned article from The Register has absolutely nothing to do with the API discussed here and the FUD that is spread is an absolute waste of everybody’s time.


Im sorry, that my post was used to start again this discussion. With my post, I just wanted to point out that the API is now in the sources after all, although Gael promised to integrate a modified version into eOS. That’s all I wanted, because these discussions about the sense and purpose of the API lead nowhere. Everyone has his own opinion about it and will not change it.
From my side I will (try to) say nothing more about it. I will only smile if it is known that the interface sends data to google, the government or anyone else.
For me, this is closed now


In contrast to the stable previous version (COVID apps compatible) the option ‘Exposure Notifications’ is not displayed in the current microG version GmsCore

Is there a separate switch for the ‘Exposure Notifications’ option that I missed - and if so, where?

I have learned that the ‘new’ MicroG version is only available in unofficial user builds

@andrelam, a recognized coder of its kind, says that version microG is COVID apps compatible. Is there an on/off switch in the settings?

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Probably the exposure notification is enabled by default in 0.2.13

I remember this post, just in case anyone want to remove microg

(How remove microG of /e/ os?)

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And I remember the fact that an enabled Exposure Notification only happens if one actively installs an app which utilises this feature and explicitly enables the feature.

Now ask yourself: can’t this be part of a unbelievable sophisticated conspiracy? Who says the switch wasn’t simply removed to fool us all?

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“Probably” is too vague for me. I attach importance to concrete “knowledge”.


This “fact” is not my personal experience. In GmsCore v0.2.12.203315 the option ‘Exposure Notifications’ is displayed by default and looks at ‘OFF’ by default. Several tests on different devices have shown this.

For all installations without exception the “Exposure Notifications” were set to “Off” by default. Only when an application explicitly asked for “Turn on Exposure Notifications” and confirmed with Tap on the button “Turn on”, the activation took place. [Source]

An example of several:


I don’t ask this question because I don’t have any conspiracy theories.

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Things go well as long as everything goes well, but then at a certain point things suddenly change and nobody expected it…

So I wouldn’t be so sure that maybe one day some pieces of software, now harmless or inactive, can be used for other purposes…

Anyway, as we say here in Italy, who will live will see (chi vivrà vedrà)


Sometimes I come to the conclusion that people who tell me that my attempts to be ironic are often not understandable are right.


Its off and you cant turn it on unless an app has requested this feature. After install of a Covid app the switch can be toggled.


Hi @andrelam, I’m familiar with the functionality of microG GmsCore with Exposure Notifications API. I’ve demonstrated it several times in the near past here in the forum.

The crux is this: On my device with microG version GmsCore does not show the option ‘Exposure Notifications’, no matter if ‘OFF’ or ‘ON’. The brand new UK NHS Covid-19 app version 3.10 (100) 100 from 05.11.2020 can be installed but not used.

Please also compare with image #1 in posting obove.

This may not be any help for you, but I can confirm that version of microG does include the ‘Exposure Notifications’ framework / API. I am running it under Lineage 17.1 with the latest NanoDroid (NanoDroid- on a Sony Xperia XZ1 Compact (lilac). The version of microG is GmsCore - same as @SuzieQ’s, but the microG Settings page shows ‘Exposure Notifications’ under ‘Location modules’ as in @andrelam’s image.

I have installed the UK NHS Covid-19 app, version 3.10 (100), Date of release 09/2020, which runs, and the Contact Tracing function (which uses the Exposure Notifications) seems to be working.

So I think it’s not a problem with the microG version, but with maybe with how it is setup on your device. (And I know you know more about this than I do :wink: )

@petefoth, thank you for your statement. Your LOS 17.1 with microG is GmsCore installed via NanoDroid- is not the same as an unofficial /e/ OS with preinstalled microG GmsCore Optically almost identical “like an egg”, but internally different “like apple and pear”.

Another test with two different COVID-19 Apps on an Samsung Galaxy Tablet with unofficial /e/ OS ROM e-0.13-Q including microG GmsCore shows the same negative result. Among other things I get the following message:

CAUSE: 3 Something went wrong. Your Covid-19 app is correctly installed, but the Covid-19 Exposure Notifications System is not available on your smartphone's operating system.

Up to now, running various Covid-19 apps under microG GmsCore v0.2.12.203315 was absolutely easy and without any obstacles. But now …?!

That must be the new /e/ “feature” :nauseated_face:

same issue as @SuzieQ overhere.
Fairphone3 with e 0.12-q-2020111084008-dev-FP3 and MicroG
Exposure Notifications are just not there in MicroG settings