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[How-to] Pokemon Go 0.37+ on Aqua Fish (and likely other Sailfish devices)

asked 2016-09-13 18:49:03 +0200

moofang gravatar image

Thought I'd make a thread for this. So the latest Pokemon Go update (0.37.0) notoriously refuses to run on rooted Android devices - and apparently Alien Dalvik counts as one. I'll document a workaround that I found here: and that I have tested on my own Aqua Fish. This isn't about the general problem of running Pokemon Go on Sailfish devices - it's for the case where you have already been playing previous versions of Pokemon Go on your device but are not able to continue to do so due to the new root check built into version 0.37.0 onwards.

Workaround: You simply need to hide the su binaries in Alien Dalvik. The su binaries are /opt/alien/bin/su and /opt/alien/usr/bin/su - just move or rename them. You'll need developer mode and devel-su.

For people who are unfamiliar with how to do this, do the following in the terminal. First get root powers:

> devel-su

Type your password, then run the following two commands:

> mv /opt/alien/bin/su /opt/alien/bin/su_moved
> mv /opt/alien/usr/bin/su /opt/alien/usr/bin/su_moved

Of course, this would probably jeopardize any android root apps that you may be running - if you're running any (I'm not). There are no other consequences that I am aware of so far.

There are probably other ways with other tradeoffs to work around this problem, this is the one I'm using. Feel free to post if you know of another one. Also feel free to feedback if this works/does not work on your device.

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I think I'll rather boycott the game and hope many others on Android will.

Giacomo Di Giacomo ( 2016-09-13 19:28:24 +0200 )edit

It's kind of a duplicate of, maybe it was enough to edit the accepted answer and confirm that @coley 's comment is the good thing to do.

Sthocs ( 2016-09-14 00:59:46 +0200 )edit

Not sure what's the duplicate policy here, but the reason I made a thread is to make it searchable for people facing this specific problem with specifically pokemon go. Even though the nature of the problem is similar to that thread, I'm pretty sure most people - myself included - would not have been able to find that thread and the solution therein. Also, I'd say it's not necessarily clear (even though it may happen to be) that what works for the Barclay's app will work for Pokemon Go - afaik there is no absolutely standard way for an app to check for root, so having two threads isn't without sense imo.

moofang ( 2016-09-14 09:42:43 +0200 )edit

Thanks @moofang but it doesn't work for me (on jolla 1) Maybe it's because I'm using a modified APK for Android 4.0.1

pierrehegr ( 2016-09-14 10:29:25 +0200 )edit

Fair enough! I actually tried to do that and it appears to not work on my Jolla 1. I didn't try to rename the real binaries, the best might be to follow Giacomo advice in the end!

Sthocs ( 2016-09-15 13:40:10 +0200 )edit

4 Answers

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answered 2016-09-18 17:40:28 +0200

tigeli gravatar image

updated 2016-09-18 17:43:09 +0200

This does not work anymore with Pokémon Go 0.37.1 as Niantic started using Google's SafetyNet API which will perform various checks if the device is rooted or compatible with various stuff. Eg. Android Pay uses this same API.

There are few workarounds and by using those you can fake the SafetyNet tests as passed but IMO not really worth it.. as it seems to clear that Niantic does not want that the game is played. ;)

And oh.. this happens when you try to play Pokémon Go with SailfishOS devices:

E/SafetyNetService(12690): Got error from SafetyNet internal_error
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I'm actually on 0.37.1 right now and I seem to be running it fine - did nothing except what was in the post. What device are you on? Are you using Google Play Services? I'm on Aqua Fish and running with whatever version of Play Services that came with it. Not sure if things would break if I actually tried to update Play Services.

moofang ( 2016-09-18 19:57:47 +0200 )edit

answered 2016-09-19 21:06:33 +0200

updated 2016-09-19 23:39:08 +0200

Managed to make it work in Jolla C after a factory reset. Probably having moved Android storage to sdcard got previously counted as "root".

Here's a step-by-step guide how I got it to work (mainly to remind myself in case I have to do it again). I followed this guide to install Google Play: . After that I did what you did for /opt/alien/ folder. Setting: Factory reseted Jolla C.

  • Set up Jolla and Google accounts, install Mail, Alien Dalvik and Aptoide
  • Developer mode on, set password
  • Download this package with pc:
  • Extract with 7zip, use data cable to copy GmsCore.apk, GoogleLoginService.apk, GoogleServicesFramework.apk and Phonesky.apk to the phone (I used folder Downloads)
  • Stop Alien Dalvik
  • Open terminal and type:

cd Downloads
cp GmsCore.apk /opt/alien/system/priv-app/
cp GoogleLoginService.apk /opt/alien/system/priv-app/
cp GoogleServicesFramework.apk /opt/alien/system/priv-app/
cp Phonesky.apk /opt/alien/system/priv-app/
chmod 664 /opt/alien/system/priv-app/GmsCore.apk
chmod 664 /opt/alien/system/priv-app/GoogleLoginService.apk
chmod 664 /opt/alien/system/priv-app/GoogleServicesFramework.apk
chmod 664 /opt/alien/system/priv-app/Phonesky.apk

  • Restart Alien Dalvik from Phone Settings, then go back to terminal and type:

cd /opt/alien/system/priv-app/
apkd-install Phonesky.apk

  • Wait for Google Play to install and then launch it
  • Accept everything Google offers
  • Install Google Maps
  • Launch Aptoide and add "apps" store
  • Update Google Play and Google Maps
  • Install Pokemon GO (0.37.1), go back to terminal and type:

mv /opt/alien/bin/su /opt/alien/bin/su_moved
mv /opt/alien/usr/bin/su /opt/alien/usr/bin/su_moved

  • Launch Pokemon GO and enjoy all the Pidgeys
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Note: After updating tp Fiskarsinjoki ( yesterday, Pokemon GO started to give "Unable to authenticate" (using Google account, not Pokemon account). Haven't yet figured out a solution, but at least reinstalling the app or refreshing Google account doesn't help.

Edit: Never mind. Turns out that the update had creates new /opt/alien/bin/su ans /opt/alien/usr/bin/su. Renamed those and the Pidgeys are back. Interesting that last time the app told that device isn't compatible and now it says that authentication doesn't work. Nevertheless, the solution is the same as before.

Moshroom ( 2016-10-09 14:04:24 +0200 )edit

Does it still run for you after the SafetyNet update today? Seems to no longer work on mine. I hear they block custom roms now.

moofang ( 2016-10-13 19:56:14 +0200 )edit

No, haven't manged to log in since tuesday. It gives "failed to log in". Not a big deal though, since playing the thing isn't nearly as fun as trying to make it work :).

Moshroom ( 2016-10-13 21:38:11 +0200 )edit

not working anymore since tuesday.

meldolion ( 2016-10-14 15:15:38 +0200 )edit

No solution in sight?

Eminem ( 2016-10-17 21:47:59 +0200 )edit

answered 2016-10-21 02:09:40 +0200

updated 2016-10-21 02:17:50 +0200

It sometimes gives "Unable to connect to server." and "Failed to log in.". Just press "ok" and "retry". It will eventually log in.

Edit: Before trying it after 2 weeks of failures I had installed this: It first seemed to make it log in again, but after a couple of tries Pokemon Go seems to log in even when this is uninstalled. Not sure whether installing it changed something/anything. Maybe the SafetyNet was updated in the meantime making it possible to log in with Jolla C regardless of any additional hacks (this seems probalbe, since other people have also made it to work without this app). Since not sure, I'll just leave this here.

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Get the same message and something about error. Haven´t been able to login for about a week. Are there any more root/su files that Pokemon Go can react to or is it the latest update to Sailfish OS that is the bug?

Eminem ( 2016-10-27 17:46:35 +0200 )edit

About 12 hours after I posted the last message it crashed once (saturday 22.10 around 2 pm Helsinki timezone) and after that hasn't moved past the rolling pokeball on white background (between clicking "log in with google" and showing the actual loading game screen). Another Safetynet problem? (Haven't looked on the issue since, because I had to move back to the old Jolla after my friends got frustrated not being able to contact me because Jolla C has the lose-connection-and-can't-get-it-back-without-reboot problem.

Moshroom ( 2016-10-28 01:46:43 +0200 )edit

answered 2016-12-31 08:40:09 +0200

this post is marked as community wiki

This post is a wiki. Anyone with karma >75 is welcome to improve it.

updated 2016-12-31 17:42:54 +0200

Karthikeyan gravatar image

Guys, I think there's a way to do this. If we can make the pogo, not to check for updates. It can be possible to make it run. That is, if we could remove the line with check for updates in PoGo, as all the apk files are command lines (as android is linux based too). Correct me, if I am wrong. Thx

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Asked: 2016-09-13 18:49:03 +0200

Seen: 2,555 times

Last updated: Dec 31 '16