Well it was… good while it lasted? A little less than a year after launching a platform that would allow Samsung Galaxy smartphones to run a full-fledged Linux environment on their phones when connected to an external display and keyboard, Samsung is shutting down its Linux on DeX platform.

To be honest, I’ve heard surprisingly little about this whole thing since it first launched, so I guess it’s not shocking to see that Samsung is scrapping the whole thing… although it’s unclear whether the reason is limited user uptake or the fact that Samsung was never all that invested in the first place.

According to Android Police, Samsung is emailing folks who had participated in the Linux on DeX program to let them know the beta program is ending and that the software won’t work on devices running Android 10.

Theoretically you could keep using Linux on DeX indefinitely… as long as you never update to Android 10 or later.

There are still ways to run Linux on Android. A handful of apps in the Google Play Store including Complete Linux Installer and Linux Deploy will walk you through the process of setting up a Linux environment on an Android device — but both require a rooted device. Linux on DeX did not.

Update: Apparently there are some third-party Linux-on-Android apps that do not require root access, including AnLinux and UserLAnd. Thanks Dominic!

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  1. Linux on Dex has better alternatives that provided above. one of them is andronix which is my personal like. it has better support team and has more developement than anything out there.

  2. Doesn’t Samsung abandoning Linux on Dex has something to do with Android 10’s new security policies?

  3. Too bad what I’m personally looking for is being able to use desktop apps (even desktop browsers) both while mobile and docked so I was never really excited for these types of devices that only give desktop access while docked. Also, root or not, the Linux on Android apps are just too clunky.

  4. Now Samsung has successfully eliminated the last feature that was in favour of their overpriced phones.

    Moreover, as far as I konow, LoD never made it out of beta so Samsung never actually made it production ready, unlike Google with the Linux support on their Chromebooks.

    1. It’s out of beta on Chromebooks? I thought that I’ve still seen a little beta banner in settings. It’s working ok, but it’s very easy to break. I still use it, but I lost count how many times I had to remove the Linux files. Also it’s too easy to fill the space entirely and you can’t shrink the disk image, so you have to copy over the files, trash the whole thing and install again.

      On my cheap Chromebook (being cheap is their main sale point) you can’t run Linux and Android at the same time. I mean you can, but it’s just too fucking slow. So I don’t bother with Android apps anymore. Having said that I don’t see much value in Chromebooks anymore.

    1. Both are available from F-droid. I’m using the UserLAnd + MultiVNC + Hacker’s Keyboard with Debian XFCE on Android 7 which is working fine.

      So far I was depended on mobile phone, now I’m looking for 10″< tablet to explore the full potential of Android 10. 🙂