How to debloat, remove crapware from Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro smartphone

Never look a gift horse in the mouth..

If you are one of those who is a technology connoisseur and love to compare specifications of smart phones before making a purchase decision, you need to be aware that the Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro with 6 GB Internal RAM, best display and camera is a very good specification smart phone. You get sold the phone, but it leeches off your data packs to serve advertisements wherever it wants and in whatever manner. Some software, with known privacy or security issues is installed on the device. This include UC Browser, Clean Master, Avast Antivirus, Facebook and more. Who needs the bloatware and ads… but you traded your mobile internet data packs and got the high-end hardware specifications Xiaomi wished to give you :-).

But, all good things in life come with a catch. The catch with that phone is that it serves advertisements in any pages or internal app and you can do nothing about it… at least uptil now. There are several posts on debloating, removing or disabling bloatware from this device.

To implement the steps below, make sure you have a full data backup of your data, that you are willing to accept the risk of the device not starting up and also willing to reset the device with the default firmware if anything goes wrong. Lastly, you should have a basic understanding of the technical steps outlined. You perform below at your own risk and consequence.

Note you need to install the Nova Launcher and Google GBoard app first, before removing the MIUI launcher on the phone.

The below steps were performed using a Linux system. To start off, open a terminal window. In that window, type the following commands:

  1. Install ADB and Fastboot Utilities on computer
    To do this, type the command as below:
    $ sudo apt-get install adb fastboot <enter>
  2. Enable Developer Options on the Phone
    Click on Settings->About Phone->MIUI Version. Tap 7 times on the MIUI Version. Thereafter, you will see a popup saying “You have enabled Developer Option” on your phone screen.
  3. Enable USB Debugging on the Phone
    Go back to Settings->Additional Settings->Developer Options. Within the options displayed, find and enable USB Debugging. After this, you will be able to perform the following steps below.
  4. Connect phone to computer
    Connect the phone to the computer. Since we are using Linux, just plug the USB cable supplied with the phone into the USB port of the computer, and the other end to the phone.
  5. Check Phone connected to Computer with ADB
    On the computer in the computer terminal, type following command to check if the phone is connected to the computer and can use ADB.
    $ sudo adb devices <enter>
    If it returns a device number, then you are okay, but if it returns an error that reads “insufficient permissions for device: user in plugdev group; are your udev rules wrong?”, then follow the steps listed at
  6. Start up ADB shell for phone on computer
    Once the connection is successfully established between the phone and the computer, start up the ADB shell on the computer by typing the following command:
    $ sudo adb shell <enter>
    This will start up the shell prompt from the computer and you will see whyred:/ $ prompt on the screen. This indicates that you are now logged into the phone.
  7. Using ADB to uninstall apps from the phone
    You can uninstall apps from the phone using the ADB shell. To uninstall apps, the command is as follows:
    whyred:/ $ pm uninstall -k –user 0 <package_name> <enter>
    where <package_name> is the name of the package you want to remove.
    Note that once you uninstall a package, it is no more available for the user for whom you removed it. However, it can come back by performing a Factory Data Reset on the Redmi Note 5 Pro. This also includes bloatware.

    The table below lists the apps that can be removed using above method.
Package NameNotes
com.miui.homeUse Nova Launcher
Install from Google
Play Store Firefox/Chrome
com.facemoji.lite.xiaomiDo not remove
com.miui.galleryGoogle Photos
VLC / Poweramp
No Xiaomi Cloud

Exercise appropriate caution when de-bloating, as it may cause unexpected results.