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Summary:

The now non-existent iPhone developer NDA seems to have been holding back a flood of useful and diverse information. IBM has contributed to this information deluge with their release of a tutorial (registration required), authored by PJ Cabrera, on how to use the Eclipse C Development […]

The now non-existent iPhone developer NDA seems to have been holding back a flood of useful and diverse information. IBM has contributed to this information deluge with their release of a tutorial (registration required), authored by PJ Cabrera, on how to use the Eclipse C Development Toolkit (CDT) to program native applications for the Apple iPhone with open source tools.

Unfortunately, any application you create will not be headed for the App Store any time soon since it requires you to jailbreak your device by using any one of the more popular utilities (e.g. QuickPwn, XPwn, Pwnage, and WinPwn). While many iPhone users have used these tools to “free” their devices, I am still not a proponent of doing this since the practice is not supported by Apple in any way, and their use may void the device’s warranty if Apple has evidence of third-party software modification. You also open yourself up to device corruption and security problems due to the fact that jailbroken applications have free reign over every bit of data in your phone. If you do go this route, your application will reach the widest audience via Cydia.

IBM continues the tutorial by listing what you must have installed to begin development – cygwin for Windows and standard/core development libraries/packages you probably already have installed if you are a linux/BSD user. The author then covers how to download and access the data in the iPhone firmware image files in order to build the “toolchain” which will form the foundation of your development environment.

The article goes on to cover the installation of the Eclipse IDE and the configuration required to support C/C++ development for the iPhone using the toolchain. They start showing actual code with the most basic of all introductory applications, “Hello, World!”. Finally, you get an idea of how to work with the Cocoa Touch libraries with a full-fledged Objective-C code bundle that extends the “Hello, World!” example from the command-line to the iPhone graphical user interface.

The article/tutorial is a good read just for the “Resources” section (tons of good URLs for both iPhone development and coding in general), but I still strongly discourage folks from jailbreaking their devices. I realize Apple left Windows/Linux developers out in the cold, but there are other ways to protest such decisions besides doing something which could render your expensive device utterly useless.

If you are a Windows/Linux developer and have started down this path via these techniques, drop a note in the comments with your experiences.

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  1. Jailbreaking doesn’t void your warranty. If you have a problem with your iPhone, just perform a factory restore before you send it in to Apple, and they will never know the difference.

    I had no idea you could use IBM tools for iPhone app development! I have been struggling with using the poor command-line only tools for jailbroken app development. Being able to use Eclipse would make it SO much easier! Thanks!

  2. To DJFelix – of course jailbreaking voids your warranty. All you’ve done is present a method so that Apple can’t prove that you’ve voided your warranty.

  3. I put that in the possible, not probable category. In the entire life-cycle of the iPhone, I have never heard of an instance where a previously jailbroken device was denied warranty service. The only thing I have ever heard of is the the “Genius” at the Genius Bar won’t help you jailbreak it, and won’t help you with jailbroken apps.

    Telling everyone that jailbreaking your device automatically voids your warranty isn’t entirely honest, as it has never happened, and is not likely to happen.

  4. IBM introduce una plataforma de desarrollo iPhone para Windows/Linux | Canal Apple Tuesday, October 7, 2008

    [...] publica un manual en PDF de cómo programar el iPhone para crear aplicaciones nativas en el iPhone usando [...]

  5. DJFelix …..”If you have a problem with your iPhone, just perform a factory restore before you send it in to Apple, and they will never know the difference.”

    That is IF you are able to do it….since IF you have a problem….you MIGHT NOT BE ABLE TO RESTORE……..

  6. The thing I don’t like about jail-breaking is so many people who advocate it are so juvenile and apparently of such limited reasoning ability. The comments here are a perfect example.

    Whereas the article clearly says “may” void your warranty, the very first comment is from a jailbreaker who calls out the author for an assertion that was not even made. He then offers a convoluted piece of non-logic about how it doesn’t void the warranty, because if you do it right no one will find out? This display of poor reasoning is supposed to inspire confidence in their advocacy of jailbreaking?

    Jailbreaking advocate number two, (comment three), then calls out the author (or perhaps commenter two), for their “(dis)honesty” in telling people jailbreaking their iPhone “voids (their) warranty” by resorting to some sort of God-like prescience. They say such has “never happened,” when in fact they have no idea if it has or not, and that it “never will happen” when in fact they have no idea if it will or not.

    When the advocates for jail-breaking have such limited faculties of reason and are willing both to spread un-truths themselves as well as call out others as liars for things that they didn’t even say, it makes one wonder why anyone should believe anything *they* say. At best, it shows that they either don’t read what is right in front of them, (think licences and legal agreements here also), engage in some serious magical thinking or have a really biased world-view that colours everything that they *do* happen to read.

    Only fools follow fools. Jailbreaking may or may not void your warranty, but I have yet to meet anyone I respect intellectually come up with a good argument for the average consumer or iPhone owner to use jailbreaking.

    1. I am a developer for the iPhone. I must say that what I have seen so far would categorize the “Average consumer or iPhone owner” as a non power user. I personally am, and enjoy my jail broken iPod touch; it enables me to do powerful things. These things would include applying skins and having a more diverse (and free) pool of 3rd party applications to chose from. Jail breaking may be wrong according to apple. That is fine. It is my device. If you are not stupid then jail breaking an iPod or iPhone is 100% harmless. End of story, do not argue that with me because you will be wrong. If you are an “average iPhone user”, then sure, don’t jail break it. If you are a power user and find iPhoneOS to be limiting and holding back its own capabilities, then I would suggest finding out more about it for yourself.

      Questions? Opinions? francesjfarmer@gmail.com

    2. Wow Gazoobee, after reading so many bla bla something just came up to my mind: “This guy should drink with the nose out of the glass”

      Anyway, keeping it simple 4u:
      Jailbreaking = I can use other carrier’s Sim

  7. Who said anything about the “average consumer” in reference to jailbreaking?

    I can guarantee you that if Apple -*ever*- “voided” a warranty due to a jailbreak, it would be news. It would be CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, New York Times, Wired, etc etc. I haven’t read any articles about it, and the people I know at Apple have never heard of it.

    My only comment is that I believe that saying “may void your warranty” is nothing more than FUD. It has never happened, as far as I can tell. I don’t suspect that Apple will ever endorse jailbreaking, but when companies like IBM are publishing articles on jailbroken iPhone deveopment (which was published on Jan 29, 2008 and written by Adam Houghton. Well before the NDA was retired) it establishes quite a bit of legitimacy.

    And to answer the question of “what if you can’t factory restore.” If your iPhone is that far gone, any indication that you may or may not have jailbroken your iPhone is long gone, or not worth searching for.

    The only evidence that I can find of tampering resulting in a warranty void have to do with unlocking. That’s a whole different ballgame. If you try to hack your baseband and kill the phone, that’s not Apple’s fault. If you need to use a non-Apple approved SIM card, just use one of the unlock shims that doesn’t require you to change your baseband at all.

  8. It´s quite interesting (bud also quite hopeless) to see that the tutorial has vanished (the page has been removed by IBM). I guess not everyone was so happy about the contents of the article.

    That´s a shame, I didn´t get to read it, but I guess that with the NDA on its way out many of those tutorials will appear, and probably not from corporate sources but from private ones. These will be more difficult to fight.

  9. It’s still there. I never could get the link in the article to work, but here it is:

    http://www.ibm.com/developerworks/opensource/library/os-eclipse-iphone/

    It was posted in January this year.

  10. Hum, then I guess IBM had some problem with one of their servers, it relly wasn´t possible to get to this page before.
    Thanks for the link anyway.

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