Magisk 26 is leaving Android Lollipop in the rearview

We get a new Android version every year, but in order for the ecosystem to advance, older versions will, eventually, need to be abandoned by developers. Android 4.x is a relic of the past by this point, with almost all developers dropping support for these ancient versions. The same thing is happening to Android 5.0 and 5.1, better known by their iconic dessert name Lollipop. This Android version had many flaws, but it was a massive step forward in many regards, most notably being the very first release using Google’s then-new Material Design user experience. The legendary Magisk modding interface is just the latest to drop Lollipop support.

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Magisk v26 has been released, coming with a slew of improvements compared to its predecessor. Perhaps its most notable one, however, is a big change in the versions it supports. This update starts laying the groundwork to support Android 14, which is currently in development. But at the same time, it’s dropping support for Android 5.0 and 5.1, with the minimum SDK version now being Android 6.0 Marshmallow.

According to Magisk’s creator, John Wu, Magisk has been broken on Lollipop devices for “a very long time,” something that went mostly unnoticed as he also notes that “nobody really cared.” It’s also not something the Magisk team can fix anyway. No active Magisk developers have Lollipop hardware around for testing, and Lollipop emulator images by Google don’t have SELinux support, so they really have no way to test out a potential fix. And frankly, given the number of users that are currently running Lollipop in 2023, fixing it would benefit only a tiny amount of people.

If you’re still using a Lollipop device, you’ve needed an upgrade for a few years anyway, but this could be the tipping point for getting you to switch.

There are plenty of additions, all of them detailed in the following changelog:

  • [General] Bump minimum supported Android version to Android 6.0
  • [General] New magic mount backend. It supports loading modules into system with overlayfs files injected
  • [Zygisk] Release new API version 4
  • [Zygisk] Prevent crashing daemon in error
  • [Zygisk] Rewrite zygote code injection with new loader library approach
  • [Zygisk] Rewrite code unloading implementation
  • [MagiskBoot] Support amonet microloader devices
  • [MagiskBoot] Always use lz4_legacy compression on v4 boot images. This fixes boot image patching issues on Android U preview.
  • [MagiskInit] Support replacing existing *.rc files in overlay.d
  • [MagiskInit] Rewrite sepolicy.rules mounting and loading implementation
  • [App] Make stub patching 100% offline
  • [App] Support patching init_boot.img for Samsung ODIN firmware
  • [MagiskPolicy] Fix minor bug in command line argument parsing
  • [MagiskPolicy] Update rules to support Android U

The new version of Magisk is already up on Github — make sure to check it out now.

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