Creating a Cydia repository and adding your first package

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Cydia is a third party distribution system for installing programs onto jailbroken iPhones. It is similar to Apple's own App Store, except the overwhelming majority of programs on it are free. This tutorial will show you how to create your own repository (or repo) and package your own applications, graphics, and audio files for distribution. Someone would simply have to enter the URL to your repository, and they would have access to any files or programs you put into it.

This tutorial would not have been possible had I not stumbled onto a tutorial over at ModMyi.com here. All I did was change the way some things were performed in that tutorial. So a big thank you goes out to "itouchr".

Saurik (the creator of Cydia), has a tutorial on how to create a Cydia repository. It is meant for programmers as it assumes working knowledge of Debian and package management. That article is here.



Step 1.

Install XCode from the Mac AppStore.

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Once it is installed, go to your Applications folder and launch the Install Xcode.app.

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Click Install.

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The program will launch upon completion. You can close it.

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Step 2.

Next we'll install a program called Fink. Unfortunately there isn't a Fink binary for OS X Lion, so we have to do a little more than just click a button to install this program. The Fink installer will prompt you with a lot of questions before it begins installing. Because of this I'm not going to screen shot the entire installation process. Most of the questions it asks can be answered with the default reply.

Download Fink here. Make sure to pick the version that applies to you. Double click this file and you'll receive a folder.

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Go to your Applications folder, then to the Utilities folder and launch a program called Terminal.app.

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Type the letters cd and then leave a space after it. Go to the fink folder on your desktop (or wherever you downloaded it to) and drag it into the Terminal. You'll see the path to that folder added after the letters cd. Press enter. Your prompt has now changed to the location of that folder.

Enter the following command:

./bootstrap

Then press enter. Make your selection at the prompt. I chose 1, then pressed enter. I was prompted for my password.

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You'll be asked to choose the Fink installation path. I selected the default /sw.

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Once it has finished installing enter the following commands:

cd /sw/bin

./pathsetup.sh

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This message then appeared. Click OK.

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Step 3.

Download a trial version of BlueHarvest here. Double click the .dmg that downloads and install the program.

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Step 4.

Create a folder on your desktop called MyProgram.

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Create folders called Applications and DEBIAN inside the MyProgram folder.

Note: I'm installing a program in this tutorial. In another tutorial I will demonstrate how to install a theme. All programs must go into the folder called Applications. This is because the contents of the Applications folder will be installed into the /Applications folder on the iPhone.

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Now place your application into the Applications folder. In my example I am using a program called Terminal. This program is already on Cydia, but I'm not a programmer so I don't have my own application to make an example with. This version of Terminal will not work on iOS 5.0 so you won't want to install this.

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Step 5.

Go to the Applications folder on your Mac, and launch the program TextEdit.

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Verify the following preferences are set. In the New Document pane, check the box for Plain text.

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In the Open and Save pane, uncheck the box for Add ".txt" extension to plain text files.

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Open a new file. Paste the following text into your file.

Website: http://www.yoursite.com
Maintainer: You.
Name: Name of package.
Package: Bundle identifier.
Section: Where in Cydia it wil appear.
Version: Package version.
Architecture: iphoneos-arm
Description: Information about package.
Sponsor: You. (Make sure to press return after this line. There must be a blank line under this entry!)


My text looked like this after I edited it.

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Click File, Save. Name the file control and select Unicode (UTF-8) as the encoding method. Click Save.

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Place the control file in your MyProgram/DEBIAN folder.

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Click here to go to page 2.




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