make non-root mountable encrypted disk shares
Java C++ C Shell Makefile
Latest commit 368bafe Sep 18, 2015 @eighthave eighthave generate to AARs: complete "standalone" and only IOCipher
If an app is using SQLCipher-for-Android already, then that app just needs
the IOCipher libs.  If the app is not using SQLCipher at all, then the
standalone version includes the required SQLCipher shared libraries.
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external update to latest libsqlfs to get gcc 4.8 and clang3.5 build fixes Feb 17, 2015
jni do not set compiler version, build now works on all supported in NDK … Feb 17, 2015
res include empty res/ folder to make Eclipse/Android ADT happy Feb 17, 2015
src/info/guardianproject delete every container file even if a prior ones failed to delete Mar 23, 2015
.classpath Eclipse ADT wants to update .classpath again... Aug 22, 2014
.cproject run ${ANDROID_NDK}/ndk-build as part of the Eclipse build process Sep 3, 2014
.gitignore generate to AARs: complete "standalone" and only IOCipher Sep 18, 2015
.gitmodules purge all references to libnativehelper and include only what we need… Mar 28, 2012
.project run ${ANDROID_NDK}/ndk-build as part of the Eclipse build process Sep 3, 2014
AndroidManifest.xml add blank <application /> tag to placate the test framework demons Sep 3, 2014
IOCipher.pom generate .pom file for maven repos like jCenter and mavenCentral Sep 18, 2015
LICENSE.txt add LGPLv3 license and explain the details of the licenses for all th… Mar 28, 2012 generate to AARs: complete "standalone" and only IOCipher Sep 18, 2015
build.gradle Add Gradle build file Feb 17, 2015
compare-to-official-release script to compare self-made builds to downloaded releases Feb 17, 2015
custom_rules.xml generate to AARs: complete "standalone" and only IOCipher Sep 18, 2015
lint.xml ignore AllowBackup lint warning, this is a library project Sep 3, 2014
make-release-build make-release-build: automatically detect and find Android NDK Feb 17, 2015 is no longer needed, android.library=true is enough Sep 3, 2014

IOCipher: Encrypted Virtual Disk

IOCipher is a virtual encrypted disk for apps without requiring the device to be rooted. It uses a clone of the standard API for working with files. Just password handling & opening the virtual disk are what stand between developers and fully encrypted file storage. It is based on libsqlfs and SQLCipher.

If you are using this in your app, we'd love to hear about it! Please send us an email at

Adding to your project

If you are using gradle, then add this to your project:

compile 'info.guardianproject.iocipher:IOCipherStandalone:0.3',

Apps that are also using SQLCipher-for-Android should use the version that only includes IOCipher itself. The standlone version includes and, and they will conflict with SQLCipher-for-Android. Then include this in your gradle:

compile 'info.guardianproject.iocipher:IOCipher:0.3'

Getting Supporting Libraries

IOCipher is built upon SQLCipher, which is required in order to use this library. You can get SQLCipher-for-Android here:

For example, SQLCipher for Android v3.1.0 binary is available here:

And the signature is here:

The releases should be signed by this key:

$ gpg --recv-keys D1FA3A2A97ED25C2
$ gpg --fingerprint
pub   4096R/97ED25C2 2014-04-22 [expires: 2017-04-21]
      Key fingerprint = D83F 5F9E B811 D6E6 B4A0  D9C5 D1FA 3A2A 97ED 25C2
uid                  Zetetic LLC <>
sub   3072R/67FD0322 2014-04-22 [expires: 2015-04-22]
sub   3072R/D4DFEDA7 2014-04-22 [expires: 2015-04-22]
sub   3072R/B1C49DF6 2014-04-22 [expires: 2015-04-22]


This app relies on OpenSSL libcrypto, sqlcipher, and libsqlfs, which are all "native" C code that needs to be built before working with the Java. First, make sure you have the build prerequisites:

apt-get install tcl libtool automake autoconf gawk libssl-dev

Point ant to where your Android NDK is installed, either by setting ndk.dir in your or setting the environment variable:

export ANDROID_NDK=/opt/android-ndk

Now build everything:

git clone git submodule update --init --recursive android update lib-project --path . ant clean debug

The iocipher.jar is in bin/. The shared library .so files are in libs/armeabi and the libsqlfs.a static library is in external/libsqlfs/.libs/libsqlfs.a.

Building Native Bits for Eclipse

If you are using Eclipse with this library, you can have the NDK parts built as part of the Eclipse build process. You just need to set ANDROID_NDK in the "String Substitution" section of your Eclipse's workspace preferences.

Otherwise, you can build the native bits from the Terminal using:

make -C external ndk-build


When taken as a whole, this project is under the the LGPLv3 license since it is the only license that is compatible with the licenses of all the components. The source code for this comes from a few different places, so there are a number of licenses for different chunks.

  • Apache 2.0 (Android Internals): Much of the code here is taken from the Android internals, so it has an Apache 2.0 license.

  • OpenSSL License: It is linked to the OpenSSL that is provided with Android, so it should be covered under Android's handling of the advertisement clause.

  • LGPL 2.1 (libsqlfs)

  • BSD-style (sqlcipher)

We believe the LGPLv3 is compatible with all reasonable uses, including proprietary software, but let us know if it provides difficulties for you. For more info on how that works with Java, see:

Included shared library files

In external/libs are some binary .so files, these are all binaries pulled from other sources so that the C code can have something link against. comes from Android emulators. They are included here so that the C code can link against openssl's libcrypto, which Android includes but does not expose in the NDK. If you want to build this library from source, then do this:

git clone
cd openssl-android
ndk-build -j4

These shared libraries must not be included in any real app. Android provides /system/lib/ and you should get SQLCipher directly from the source, listed above.