Proot, defeating security by ignoring it in user-space

From the proot project site :

PRoot is a user-space implementation of chroot, mount –bind, and binfmt_misc.

Android among other Linux systems creates a very restricted user mode where the end user is denied the root user privileges. This is annoying as to ‘root’ a phone can be incredibly complicated l, and beyond a normal user that wants to use their phone for more than some kind of cat video social machine (don’t tell me the incredible popularity of cat videos isn’t toxoplasmosis!).

Many new phone SOC’s are supporting external HDMI, and USB host capabilities allowing you to dock your phone and use it with a keyboard and mouse.

Well thanks to the app, aptly named UserLand, running a light weight Linux distro is just a few screen presses away!

What is cool is that by emulating a scant few system calls it makes the deployment quick and seemingly trivial. And a lot more lightweight compared to docker, User Mode Linux, or Qemu (in full system emulation). But it can invoke qemu to run foreign architecture binaries to give Intel users an Arm UserLand.

Yes, via VNC you can run X11! And yes on my phone it shows all 8 Cores.

Although I’ve been using qemu, UML and other strategies to sidestep restrictive environments, proot proves itself as an exciting new tool!

1 thought on “Proot, defeating security by ignoring it in user-space

  1. The CARE (Comprehensive Archiver for Reproducible Execution) tool from the proot suite is extremely valuable in itself: I used it to “dockerize” a horribly broken software (a mixup of Python2/Cython, Python3, Java and C/C++ with lots of hand-compiled dependencies everyone forgot and ran on a dev machine). See

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.