So, I've got a once-coveted Blackberry Pearl, which I love to death. One of the strange things I've discovered though, is that they are susceptible to their own little problems and bugs.
On this page, please find my fixes for the occaisional annoyances of the Blackberry 8100. Please note, these tricks may work on other models, however YMMV.
It's pretty trivial to host OTA (over-the-air) installs, provided you've got a web server and the correct mime types configured. This example is for Apache web servers. This is also assuming you've got a working Apache installation. Paths are from a FreeBSD system, and may differ from Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows servers.
- Find your mime.types configuration file, located in /usr/local/etc/apache22/mime.types on FreeBSD, and add the following lines to the bottom:
text/vnd.sun.j2me.app-descriptor jad application/vnd.rim.cod cod application/java-archive jar
- Restart the Apache server process
- Upload your application or theme. Please note, if you're using FTP to transfer your files, you MUST use binary mode for COD files. ALX and JAD are standard text files and will work fine with ASCII-mode transfers. You'll get an 'Invalid COD 907' error if you transfer CODs with ASCII-mode.
- If you upload all the files to your web root directory, the install should work without a problem.
- If you change file names or put your COD files in a different location than your JAD files, you need to edit the JAD as follows:
- Update each line that starts with RIM-COD-URL to point to the full path of the file name, relative to your web directory.
- If you have more than one COD, make sure you get ALL of the RIM-COD-URL lines. Missing one will result in a 404 error during install.
- Update the rest of the fields as appropriate.
- Test your install.
|MIDlet-Version||The version number for your application. (eg 1.0)|
|RIM-COD-Module-Name||The name of your theme or application.|
|MIDlet-Name||The name of your theme or application. This field and RIM-COD-Module-Name should match.|
|RIM-COD-Size||Size, in bytes, of your COD file.|
|RIM-COD-URL||URL in which your COD file can be downloaded.|
|MIDlet-Description||A brief description of your theme or application.|
|RIM-COD-SHA1(optional)||The SHA1 hash of your COD file. This is an optional field.|
|MIDlet-Vendor||The name of the vendor or author.|
Here's what the JAD looks like for my basic theme, with a single COD:
MIDlet-Version: 0.3 RIM-COD-Module-Name: SCN Today MIDlet-Name: SCN Today RIM-COD-Size: 44968 RIM-COD-URL: scn.cod MIDlet-Description: Hosted at http://bbthe.me for free! RIM-COD-SHA1: 36 01 59 8c 02 49 63 8b ed ce fb 01 d3 91 c1 ab 54 38 2c 95 MIDlet-Vendor: Secure Computing Networks
If all this seems like a pain, let me host your application or theme. See bbthe.me for more information. It's free!
Within this section are the fixes and/or work arounds I've found for the bugs that seem to crop up.
Call Logs/Email/Etc Disappear
After having my Blackberry for about 3 months now, my call logs started to clear out (read, there would never be more than 2 calls in the log), and emails started to disappear. The emails didn't bother me so much, as pretty much everything that goes to my phone, is also being sent to my laptop. The call logs, however, were another matter.
Short Term Solution
I found out that, much like Windows, the Blackberry is not impervious to memory leaks in the software that's running. If you never restart your phone, as I don't, your Blackberry can run out of memory. When this occurs, the first two things to go are the call log and email. The quick fix is to pull the battery or just restart your phone.
Long Term Solution
Update: T-Mobile has release an updated software pack for the Blackberry Pearl, which includes a fix for this bug. You can view T-Mobile updates for the blackberry, and instructions on how to upgrade you phone at http://www.t-mobile.com/bbupgrade/
A longer-term solution is to program your phone to automatically restart at a specified time. To do this, make sure you do not have a PIN set on your SIM card (for those carriers that use them). You can disable the PIN setting by going to Menu->Options->Advanced Options->SIM Card When there, you should see your SIM ID number, as well as your phone number. Pressing the MENU key again should display an option to Disable Security. Your Blackberry will ask for your PIN before actually disabling the feature on your SIM card.
Once you've got security turned off on your PIN, you can set up a schedule to restart your phone. Get to the correct menu by going to Menu->Options->Auto On/Off. In my case, I programmed my phone to turn off every weekend and every weekday at 03:00, and to turn back on at 03:01.
Please Note: You do not have to turn off SIM security to make this trick work. What will happen if security is enabled, however, is your phone will await the entry of your SIM PIN before allowing the phone to function. In my case, I don't want to miss calls or email alerts.