Friday Jun 13, 2008

iPhone users, get FileBrowser over MobileFinder


Today morning when I started the Terminal (vt-100) application on my iPhone, I got the following error.


mv: cannot stat `/var/root/.profile.tmp': No such file or directory
'MobileFinder will now upload the contents of ~/Library/MobileFinder/Sync to ~/iPhone on 192.168.3.29
and then download the contents of ~/iPhone on 192.168.3.29 to ~/Library/MobileFinder/Sync.
You may be asked for your password twice.
/usr/bin/rsync -avz --progress
~/Library/MobileFinder/Sync/ @192.168.3.29:~/iPhone
ssh: connect to host 192.168.3.29 port 22:
Operation timed out
rsync: connection unexpectedly closed (0 bytes received so far)
[sender]rsync error: unexplained error (code 255) at io.c(453)
[sender=2.6.9]/usr/bin/rsync -avz --progress @192.168.3.29:~/iPhone/ ~/Library/MobileFinder/Sync
ssh: connect to host 192.168.3.29 port 22: Operation timed out
rsync: connection unexpectedly closed (0 bytes received so far)
[receiver]rsync error: unexplained error (code 255) at io.c(453)[receiver=2.6.9]
Upload and Download completed.
Press enter to exit...


The terminal wouldnt get to the prompt even after pressing 'enter', and hence terminal was unusable. The problem seemed to be with the MobileFinder (1.8.0) application which I had installed a few days ago. I uninstalled that application but the error persisted.

Google revealed this post that seemed to have the steps to fix this issue. This post has all the steps for Mac users which I am not one. Windoze is then the only alternative. The steps in that post are pretty straight forward and thanks to Stefan. The root cause is the  line,


'. /var/root/Library/MobileFinder/.MobileFinderProfile'
in the file, '/private/var/root/Library/.profile'.


I tried to look for this file using iPhoneBrowser on Windoze and realized that there are some restrictions with iPhoneBrowser software. You cannot look at the real root of the iPhone and also that you cannot look at the hidden files (which .profile is one). The other option of using winscp over a wireless network was not available to me at that time and while looking through the available packages, I stumbled upon File Browser application which seemed to do the trick.

FileBrowser (1.7.0) is actually very smart. It can cut/copy/paste files (but I couldn't get this to work for directories). What more, it can also edit text files with a built in text editor. That is just what I wanted. Open and edit the file is then as simple as it is on the desktop. The only limitation I found of this application is that, even if you edit the 'Settings' to modify the home directory to '/' or '/private', it will always show you files in /var/mobile/ directory. A bit more googling will answer that I am sure, I am just happy to have the current problem fixed at the moment. I found only 'Squid' can show you ALL the files on your iPhone, so far.

So, I will recommend FileBrowser to all iPhone users and squid is also good to have, MobileFinder has some more work to do.

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