Better app management

Discussion in 'iPod touch' started by ardee, Dec 27, 2008.

  1. ardee macrumors newbie

    Dec 1, 2008
    I have written a program in VBA (inside Access) that enables/disables iApps (apps made for the iPhone or iPod touch) on your PC based on user-selected checkboxes. Behind the scenes, it does this by moving the iApps' files between their regular folder and an alternate folder. The program is tentatively called "iApps Helper."

    Unlike in iTunes, in iApps Helper you can see a lot of information about each iApp, including its revision, its filename, its size, and its date. You can also sort by any of these columns (or by the state of the afore-mentioned "Enabled" checkbox). After you use iApps Helper to enable/disable iApps on your PC, the next time you run iTunes the ones you'd disabled will have disappeared from iTunes's list altogether (they return if you use iApps Helper to re-enable them). iApps Helper is meant to completely replace iTunes' app management feature -- you just set iTunes to sync "all" apps and forget about it (iTunes will only see the apps checked in iApps Helper).

    iApps Helper also allows you to enter a display name for each iApp (like the name that shows up in iTunes, which is often VERY different form the app's filename), comments about the iApp, and a subjective rating for the iApp -- and it REMEMBERS what you entered. It has a few other saved columns for you to optionally enter info into (category 1, category 2, and iTMS rating at the moment) and to sort by.

    iApps Helper currently runs only on Windows, but it could be ported to the Mac in the future.

    Other benefits of using iApps Helper include: it loads much faster than iTunes does; by moving unchecked iApps out of iTunes' field of vision, it causes subsequent loads of iTunes to happen faster; it does a decent job of recognizing which part of each iApp's filename is the real name and which part is the version, so that when you get a new version of an iApp it still recognizes it and pulls up any info you may have previously entered about that iApp (like display name, comments, rating); and it tells you HOW MANY iApps you have enabled (since the device only shows the first 144). One more thing: with iApps Helper, unlike in iTunes, you can use the keyboard to move through the screen and select/deselect checkboxes for what should get sync’d.

    Limitations: iApps Helper will get slightly confused (but will not crash) if two completely different iApps have the same base filename or if an author changes an iApp's base filename between versions. Also, when you disable an iApp that you'd previously sync'd to your iPhone, iTunes will ask if you want to upload it; you should say NO, or else you'll end up with copies of that iApp in both the "enabled" and "disabled" folders.

    Is anybody interested in iApps Helper? It's currently not polished for widespread distribution (I wrote it for myself) -- but it could be made so fairly quickly, I think.

    By the way: Since I have an iPod touch 2G, my device is currently NOT able to be jailbroken. iApps Helper works WITHOUT jailbreaking; it works with iApps you have purchased (or gotten free) from the iTunes store, NOT with apps designed to be used only on jailbroken devices.
  2. ardee thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 1, 2008
    Need beta testers!

    The above-described application has been made stand-alone (no longer part of Access) and is available to be beta-tested at Feedback appreciated here or at the site!

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