photograph: Josh Miller/CNET
Google is bettering an replace equipment for Android as a way to be certain instruments can deploy new OS versions and demanding patch updates even when there’s no storage space.
Ars Technica noticed the alternate in new Android documentation for Google’s A/B or Seamless device Updates, which Google added within the Pixel and Pixel XL. The system is borrowed from the update engine in ChromeOS.
This seamless device allows clients to continue the use of the machine right through an update and does not require the cache partition to keep OTA replace packages.
Android gadget makers can put into effect A/B on Android 7.1 and up, however it’s not clear any have. in the event that they did, it might support Google enrich Android’s traditionally terrible patching list.
for example, Google notes seamless updates helped make certain Pixel homeowners install its monthly security updates sooner. As of might also, 95 % of Pixel house owners had been running the latest protection update after one month, compared with 87 p.c of Nexus users.
Seamless makes use of two sets of bootable partitions — known as slot A and slot B — with one containing a group of lively partitions and the different slot containing unused partitions to roll again from in the adventure of an error. All replace pastime takes vicinity on partitions within the unused slot.
although it enables a far better replace journey, seamless nevertheless requires consumer storage space for downloading the update applications.
In Android eight.0 Google is adding a ‘Streaming updates’ characteristic to the seamless replace device, so that they can handle scenarios the place gadgets lack house in consumer /statistics storage and most effective requires a sliver of space in brief storage.
“users do not all the time have satisfactory house on /data to down load the replace equipment, and neither OEMs nor users want to waste space on a /cache partition; so some clients go devoid of updates because they have nowhere to keep the update package,” Google notes.
“A/B updates have the choice of streaming the update to handle this concern: streaming writes blocks straight to the B partition as they’re downloaded, without needing to store them on /records. therefore, streaming A/B updates want essentially no temporary storage and want simply ample for roughly 100kB of metadata.”