I am a massive, and unashamed CyanogenMod fanboy. Sure, other ROMS offer more settings (AOKP), or are super fast (CodenameAndroid), but both these ROMS have their issues. I find that AOKP’s settings aren’t as elegantly-incorporated into Android as CM, nor is it as smooth; and despite its speed, I found that CodenameAndroid was just not stable enough for my liking on my Nexus S.

CyanogenMod is just awesome. It’s fast, it has a stack of useful features that aren’t clumped together in an incoherent mass of toggles and it supports pretty much any device you can imagine, with pretty awesome stability. So, because of my fanboism, I try to keep up with the latest and greatest nightly builds. The recent CM Updater made it a lot easier to stay current, but it disappointed me that you still needed to download the full 200 (ish) MB zip file every day. This is where CyanDelta steps in, and it is absolutely the greatest thing to happen to Android customisation since the ClockworkMod recovery (which is not unlike the sliced bread of the Android world).

CyanDelta takes the zip file for your most recent nightly update, works some dark magic, and somehow gains the ability to check releases on get.cm against the zip file you fed it to determine what exactly has changed between your current release and the newest nightly. It then downloads only the difference, which works out to be a file of about 5 – 10 MB. It then works from this delta file in future to determine what needs to be downloaded to keep your build current.

There are a few neat tricks as well – it can check for updates at prescribed intervals (polling only, not push notifications unfortunately), which can be disabled once the battery level falls below a certain point. The application also has the ability to be programmed to install custom zip files after updating, to save you the bother of rebooting again to install custom kernels or other tweaks.

The application is free, but ad-supported, and you can donate to remove ads if you’re that way inclined. It only works on official CyanogenMod builds that you can download from get.cm, and requires TWRP or ClockworkMod-based recoveries.

Source(s): Android Police
  • drdrewdown

    wtf is a TWPM?

    • James Finnigan

      Whoops, typo. It should be TWRP. I’ll fix that now.

  • Frustrated

    I’m not a developer and so can’t assume that this is an easy task but if a small team (I understand that CM as a whole isn’t small, but the developer base for each individual phone is) compared to a company such as HTC/Samsung can develop nightlies and apps such as Cyandelta, surely it shouldn’t take as long as it does for updates from Google to reach the consumer.

    For instance, I am sure that people on 4.1.1 are going to wait for months just to get 4.1.2 (if at all) which is the smallest of incremental upgrades, so why isn’t a similar development tool in place whereby small incremental upgrades can be sent out by Google to manufacturers who again, simply send only the upgraded components of the software to the users.

    I don’t even understand the need for “carrier testing” anyway. Why is it only Android that requires carriers to mess around installing bloatware and other rubbish before they can send out an update? It’s not like the update is changing the radio hardware and might not work with the network.

    • Obliterator

      The companies you mentioned cannot use the same technique as that of CyanDelta because every update offered by those companies is not an incremental one. CyanogeMod nightlies are incremental upgrades and thus switching in the changes to the android coding from the previous nightly works.

      So for example, if you were to have Gingerbread on a Samsung Galaxy S II, and decide to update to Jellybean, it simply is not possible to switch in and out the lines of codes that have been changed as there is a significant change made to the base coding.

      Similarly, there’s no point releasing an application to upgrade users from 4.1.1 to 4.1.2 as the frequency of these incremental upgrades outweigh the related costs and the time and effort needed to maintain it. This works for CyanogeMod due to their system of nightlies, in comparison to the mentioned manufacturers who do not have this system implemented.

  • http://profiles.google.com/gregeden1950 Greg Eden

    Thanks for this information. I have CM10 on my Galaxy S. I just set up CyanDelta and it worked a treat. A quick 7mb download and I am updated. Plus it was all pretty much automatic. The gapps update themselves through the play store, so effectively I have a system that takes care of itself. Now for my Xoom!

  • Doug

    Awesome app thanks!

  • lobie81

    I love CM too. Been running it on my Defy for ages now in various forms. CM7 was/is far superior, in every aspect, to the stock software that Moto was able to produce at the time. Might check this out. Would be nice to not have to wait till I get home to my wifi connection before I can download a new nightly…