Gallery app for Android 5 Lollipop

gallery-aosp_100.pngIf you have recently updated your Android device to the latest Android version 5 “Lollipop“, you may have noticed that the “Gallery” app has been replaced by Google’s brand-new “Photos” app which depends on Google Plus. If you don’t like the idea of linking your photos to Google’s social network, or if you have disabled/uninstalled the Google Plus app altogether, there is a way to get back the familiar Gallery app without compiling it yourself by pulling it from a CyanogenMod image. Here is how.

  1. Go to http://wiki.cyanogenmod.org/w/Devices and find the device corresponding most closely to your phone. This shouldn’t matter, really, since the .apk file should be the same everywhere. But it can’t hurt, either.
  2. On the device page, click the big green icon that reads “Release channel
  3. Download the latest “snapshot” version of the CyanogenMod image, or anything above that (i.e. release candidate or stable), to make sure that the file contains everything we need.
  4. Compare the MD5 checksum of the image file you downloaded against that given on the download page, to make sure your download is safe and has not been tampered with. On Linux and Mac OS X, you do this by running md5sum cm-*.zip from a terminal.
  5. Now open the image file in your favourite archive manager, navigate to /system/app/ and get the file “Gallery2.apk” from there. Transfer the .apk file to your phone.
  6. On your phone, use your favourite file manager to locate the .apk file you just transferred and click on it to start installation. Make sure you enable “Unknown Sources (Allow installation of apps from sources other than the Play Store)” from Settings -> Security first, and turn it off again when you’re done (it’s a good idea to keep it disabled most of the time).

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