Modifications to Google Chromium for removing Google integration and enhancing privacy, control, and transparency (mirror)

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README.md

ungoogled-chromium

A lightweight approach to removing Google web service dependency

Help is welcome! See the docs/contributing.md document for more information.

Objectives

In descending order of significance (i.e. most important objective first):

  1. ungoogled-chromium is Google Chromium, sans dependency on Google web services.
  2. ungoogled-chromium retains the default Chromium experience as closely as possible. Unlike other Chromium forks that have their own visions of a web browser, ungoogled-chromium is essentially a drop-in replacement for Chromium.
  3. ungoogled-chromium features tweaks to enhance privacy, control, and transparency. However, almost all of these features must be manually activated or enabled. For more details, see Feature Overview.

In scenarios where the objectives conflict, the objective of higher significance should take precedence.

Content Overview

Motivation and Philosophy

Without signing in to a Google Account, Chromium does pretty well in terms of security and privacy. However, Chromium still has some dependency on Google web services and binaries. In addition, Google designed Chromium to be easy and intuitive for users, which means they compromise on transparency and control of internal operations.

ungoogled-chromium addresses these issues in the following ways:

  1. Remove all remaining background requests to any web services while building and running the browser
  2. Remove all code specific to Google web services
  3. Remove all uses of pre-made binaries from the source code, and replace them with user-provided alternatives when possible.
  4. Disable features that inhibit control and transparency, and add or modify features that promote them (these changes will almost always require manual activation or enabling).

These features are implemented as configuration flags, patches, and custom scripts. For more details, consult the Design Documentation.

Feature Overview

This section overviews the features of ungoogled-chromium. For more detailed information, it is best to consult the source code.

Contents of this section:

Key Features

These are the core features introduced by ungoogled-chromium.

  • Disable functionality specific to Google domains (e.g. Google Host Detector, Google URL Tracker, Google Cloud Messaging, Google Hotwording, etc.)
  • Block internal requests to Google at runtime. This feature is a fail-safe measure for the above, in case Google changes or introduces new components that our patches do not disable. This feature is implemented by replacing many Google web domains in the source code with non-existent alternatives ending in qjz9zk (known as domain substitution; see docs/design.md for details), then modifying Chromium to block its own requests with such domains. In other words, no connections are attempted to the qjz9zk domain.
  • Strip binaries from the source code (known as binary pruning; see docs/design.md for details)
  • Add many new command-line switches and chrome://flags entries to configure disabled-by-default features. See docs/flags.md for the exhaustive list.

Enhancing Features

These are the non-essential features introduced by ungoogled-chromium.

  • Add Suggestions URL text field in the search engine editor (chrome://settings/searchEngines) for customizing search engine suggestions.
  • Add more URL schemes allowed to save page schemes.
  • Add Omnibox search provider "No Search" to allow disabling of searching
  • Add a custom cross-platform build configuration and packaging wrapper for Chromium. It currently supports many Linux distributions, macOS, and Windows. (See docs/design.md for details on the system.)
  • Force all pop-ups into tabs
  • Disable automatic formatting of URLs in Omnibox (e.g. stripping http://, hiding certain parameters)
  • Disable intranet redirect detector (extraneous DNS requests)
    • This breaks captive portal detection, but captive portals still work.
  • (Iridium Browser feature change) Prevent URLs with the trk: scheme from connecting to the Internet
    • Also prevents any URLs with the top-level domain qjz9zk (as used in domain substitution) from attempting a connection.
  • (Iridium and Inox feature change) Prevent pinging of IPv6 address when detecting the availability of IPv6. See the --set-ipv6-probe-false flag above to adjust the behavior instead.
  • (Windows-specific) Do not set the Zone Identifier on downloaded files

Borrowed Features

In addition to the features introduced by ungoogled-chromium, ungoogled-chromium selectively borrows many features from the following projects (in approximate order of significance):

Supported Platforms and Distributions

See docs/platforms.md for a list of supported platforms.

Other platforms are discussed and tracked in this repository's Issue Tracker. Learn more about using the Issue Tracker under the section Contributing, Reporting, Contacting.

Downloads

Download binaries from here

NOTE: These binaries are provided by anyone who are willing to build and submit them. Because these binaries are not necessarily reproducible, authenticity cannot be guaranteed; In other words, there is always a non-zero probability that these binaries may have been tampered with. In the unlikely event that this has happened to you, please report it in a new issue.

These binaries are known as contributor binaries.

Also, ungoogled-chromium is available in several software repositories:

Source Code

This repository only contains the common code for all platforms; it does not contain all the configuration and scripts necessary to build ungoogled-chromium. Most users will want to use platform-specific repos, where all the remaining configuration and scripts are provided for specific platforms:

Find the repo for a specific platform here.

If you wish to include ungoogled-chromium code in your own build process, consider using the tags in this repo. These tags follow the format {chromium_version}-{revision} where

  • chromium_version is the version of Chromium used in x.x.x.x format, and
  • revision is a number indicating the version of ungoogled-chromium for the corresponding Chromium version.

Additionally, most platform-specific repos extend their tag scheme upon this one.

Building the source code: See docs/building.md

Mirrors

List of mirrors:

FAQ

See the frequently-asked questions (FAQ) on the Wiki

Building Instructions

See docs/building.md

Design Documentation

See docs/design.md

Contributing, Reporting, Contacting

Credits

Related Projects

List of known projects that fork or use changes from ungoogled-chromium:

  • Bromite (Borrows some patches. Features builds for Android)
  • ppc64le fork (Fork with changes to build for ppc64le CPUs)

License

BSD-3-clause. See LICENSE