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Posts Tagged ‘jailbreak’

ProSwitcher – Awesome Multitasking Demo

January 7th, 2010 1 comment

I’ve recently re-jailbroken my iPhone.  Primarily this was to get access to two apps that the App Store refused to carry (uMonitor and GV Mobile), plus I really like skinning my interface (hint hint, Apple!  For a company that claims to be about individuality, you make it damn difficult to customize your products).  I have a 3G iPhone so I can’t do much with it.  But I saw a few posts on a variety of iPhone and gadget blogs talking about a multitasking application called ProSwitcher.  It looked interesting enough that I wanted to try it out.  I’ve been using it for about two weeks now and I gotta say that these guys have a great idea.

The basic concept of ProSwitcher is to replicate on the iPhone an interface similar to that of the Palm Pre.  It is a front end to Backgrounder, an app that allows you to set certain apps to run in the background.  Backgrounder is a must-have app for jailbroken iPhones but it has a distinctly minimalist interface, plus switching among the various running apps requires the standard interface actions so it’s hard to keep track of what’s running in the background.

When installed, ProSwitcher creates an icon plus a Settings entry.  You never need to touch the ProSwitcher app itself – everything is handled through its Settings.

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The settings primarily revolve around how ProSwitcher is activated, though there are a number of other parameters that can be set using the interface.

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The activation options are many and varied, and you should play around with them to figure out which method works for you.  When activated, ProSwitcher cards look very Pre-like.

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There are a small set of dots underneath the application title – these describe the number of running apps.  To switch between the apps, just flick the cards left or right.  To close a running app, just hit the “X” button in the top left corner.  You can activate any of the dock icons directly as well as flicking between the active apps.  And that’s pretty much it.

The main issue I had with ProSwitcher was that I didn’t have an iPhone 3GS.  On the faster processor with the larger free memory, I’m sure this app would have been really amazing.  But on a 3G, the lack of RAM plus the slow processor makes this app worthless for running more than three or four apps at the same time, and since two of those slots are typically taken up by the Mail and Phone apps, and since I use my iPod app more than just about any other app on my phone, I was pretty much only single-tasking anyways.  But if you’ve got a jailbroken 3GS, definitely check out ProSwitcher.  I think it’s a great little app, and the fact that it’s (currently) freeware is even more amazing.  I was going to buy MultiFl0w, the other highly rated multitasking manager, but I’m glad I tried ProSwitcher first.  Not because it’s necessarily better, but because it showed me that I really don’t multitask very much.

ProSwitcher is available via Cydia.

Just borked my iPhone

September 10th, 2009 3 comments

fail-whale 2Because I’m sometimes a total idiot, I decided to upgrade my jailbroken iPhone 3G to OS 3.1 last night, despite all warnings from the Dev Team to NOT do this until they’d had a chance to check out the 3.1 firmware.  Because I have an almost child-like faith in the ability of the interwebs to find a workaround to jailbreak the iPhone, I figured I’d be out of sorts for no longer than a month or two before I got back to my jailbroken goodness.  And who knows, I may still be saved from my own stupidity.  However as of this point, my iPhone is officially borked.

So here’s the background.  Following the lead of our fearless leader Quang, I jailbroke my phone using the easy-as-cake redsn0w tool about two months ago.  And life was good, though not super-wonderful.  The main point of my jailbreak was to get access to deep customization and themes, plus a couple of apps that Apple refused to allow in the Apps Store (GVMobile and the uTorrent monitoring app).  I really didn’t need background apps or tethering, so a lot of the real benefit of jailbreaking was lost on me.  Still, I’d grown pretty accustomed to being able to change the look and feel of my device on a whim.  And I got kind of obsessive about monitoring the free memory of my iPhone.

When OS3.1 came out, a lot of the features it contained (Genius mixes and apps organization specifically) were things I wanted to play with so I figured I’d upgrade, try it out, and return to jailbroken freedom in due time.  Well the upgrade went fine (btw, jailbroken iPhones will sync just fine with iTunes 9), but now my iPhone does not display all the apps I’ve installed on it.  I believe that this is due to my use of a jailbroken app called Categories, which allows you to create folders into which to place your apps.  I think that the linkage between Springboard and Categories (which hides the app once it’s been placed in a folder) still exists and that the iPhone thinks the apps are installed but that Springboard has them set to hide because that’s what Categories told it to do.  I only noticed this issue this morning so I’ve tried a hard reboot to see if that would fix the problem.  No dice.  I’ll have to wait until I get home to do a full restore, and then if that doesn’t work I’m going to try to remove all my apps and re-add them to the iPhone and see if that does the trick.  If not, then I’m well and truly hosed and I might have to return to factory defaults as a last resort.

So word of advice – don’t upgrade your jailbroken iPhone until the Dev Team gives the all clear!

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