Installing LineageOS on ancient device

Posted: 2024-06-18 16:56:26 by Alasdair Keyes

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This week I finally upgraded my phone from my ancient OnePlus 2 I bought in 2015 to a more modern Samsung.

For years, I've wanted to install LineageOS, an open Android variant. I always held off from installing it on my only phone in case I bricked it and was left up the creek without a paddle.

Now that I have the OnePlus 2 spare, I decided to finally go for it. Unfortunately, the device is now so old that LineageOS no longer hosts the installation images for it.

Thankfully, with https://archive.org/ I was able to gather all this data and thought it might be useful for others in the same situation. I will use my OnePlus 2 as an example, but obviously substitute this for your device.

  1. Visit https://wiki.lineageos.org/devices/ - Using the Filter Options unselect the Hide discontinued devices check box then find your device. If it does not appear LineageOS never supported your device.

  2. Navigate to the page for your device (For me https://wiki.lineageos.org/devices/oneplus2/). From here it's worth noting the latest LineageOS version that was available for your phone under Previously supported versions (17.1) and you will have access to the installation instructions via the Installation link. (The installation instructions will tell you to build the image from source, but ignore that, we will get the pre-built image).

  3. As the build images are no longer kept we will have to go to https://archive.org/ to hunt for it. When at archive.org enter the URL https://wiki.lineageos.org/devices/oneplus2/ into the Wayback machine search box. You will need to browse around all the snapshots to find the last snapshot that has the heading Get LineageOS for the OnePlus 2 and a Get the builds here link.

(Using a manual binary search on the snapshots is probably the quickest way to find this).

For my device, this URL was https://web.archive.org/web/20210518101444/https://wiki.lineageos.org/devices/oneplus2/

  1. From this archived page click on the Get the builds here link. This page doesn't link to the image files any more, but it does show the image names, which we can use.

  2. Go back to https://archive.org/ and in the search make sure Search Metadata is selected and enter the image name lineage-17.1-20210605-nightly-oneplus2-signed

If archived, it will show the files available. If it doesn't you're probably out of luck. There are other sites that provide builds, but I would only trust archive.org to not have tampered with the images.

You may wish to play around with the search function and enter just nightly-oneplus2-signed and scan the results for an even later version that may have been archived. The numbers in the filename 20210605 are the concatenated year/month/day that the image was generated.

For the Last LineageOS 17.1 build on the OnePlus 2 this page is https://archive.org/details/lineage-17.1-20210605-nightly-oneplus2-signed_202108 - You can download the image via HTTPS but be a friend to archive.org and use the Torrent instead to help save them data costs.

Follow the installation instructions we found in Step 2.

The TWRP recovery image and Google Apps image are still available at LineageOS through the links provided in the installation instructions. From here you should have everything you need to install LineageOS on your ancient device.


If you found this useful, please feel free to donate via bitcoin to 1NT2ErDzLDBPB8CDLk6j1qUdT6FmxkMmNz

© Alasdair Keyes

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