Often in my rooted android device, since I have installed xprivacy manager, applications ask me for serial perm in category identification (hardware) (that very often, translation may be approximate), and sometimes /proc perm in same category as seen in the following screenshots. what are these perms? Should I allow or deny them?

screenshot screenshot
Screenshots (click images for larger variants)

  • Just guessing, hence no answer: Serial is most likely one of the device identifiers (IMSI/IMEI etc.). No idea concerning the /proc one, though. Have you checked in the app's settings inside the XPrivacy app itself, where all its permissions are listed? Maybe from the context it gets a little clearer there.
    – Izzy
    Commented Jun 17, 2014 at 21:06
  • Since SERIAL is all-caps, it can refer to android.os.Build.SERIAL: A hardware serial number, if available. Alphanumeric only, case-insensitive. Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 9:18
  • @onik thank you, so should I allow it?
    – Vinz243
    Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 9:20
  • @Vinz243 If you trust the application, yes. Otherwise I'd try to think what the app could use it for, and decide based on that. Maybe try to use the app without allowing it first and see if it works. Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 9:22
  • @onik what does app would need it? I am sorry for being a noob.
    – Vinz243
    Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 9:22

1 Answer 1


/proc/ is a filesystem that contains special files describing the current state of processes and the kernel.

/proc/mounts contains information on the current mountpoints. Mountpoints are similar drive letters in Windows. Since there is only one file hierarchy in Linux, any file systems that aren't the operating system's FS (like an SD card, /proc , etc) need to be grafted onto this solitary tree.

Details on these graftpoints are accessible by reading /proc/mounts. Part of the info that can be retrieved from this file is the current space utilization and capacity of each filesystem.

Because it's a file system usage utility, this app probably needs this info in order to tell you how much free space there is on the SD card and/or the main OS filesystem.

Serial permission allows the app to grab a unique identifier for for your phone. I'm not sure specifically how this app intends to use it.

  • Thank you very much. What about serial? Should I allow it? And not only for diskusage, but also for 98% of y apps.
    – Vinz243
    Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 8:08
  • Edited the answer. I'm not sure why this app needs it, but serial allows an app to get a unique identifier for your phone. For internet enabled apps, should anything need to be stored on an external server, the serial number can be used as your "account name", and can be associated with your data. As stated, though, its unclear how DiskUsage intends to use this.
    – ctt
    Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 10:52
  • fortunately when apps don't need network, I deny inet :)
    – Vinz243
    Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 11:02
  • Yeah. What i usually do is email the developer. S/he may have accidentally left the permission in from a testing phase, or (more likely) could be using a method or package that just requires this permission, giving him/her no choice but yo ask for it. The only sure way to know is to ask. BTW, if this answered ur question, don't forget to mark it as answered.
    – ctt
    Commented Jun 18, 2014 at 11:05

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