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Join Date: Feb 2012
APK file to .Bar file BBHTool conversion for Blackberry Playbook
I know that many people who purchased Blackberry Playbook have been disappointed that the version of Android operating system on it doesn’t support applications in .apk format. Not many applications are available in .bar format which the Blackberry Playbook supports; some people have devised a way to convert the applications in the .apk format into .bar format. For doing this conversion and also transferring the license, you will need to have .p12 files that are registered along with your .csj files. The tools that will be needed are Android-SDK, Adobe Air SDK, and Blackberry Playbook operating system for Adobe Air
- The first thing that you will need to do is to get a .csj file. This file has to be obtained from BlackBerry Jam Zone which is part of Blackberry’s official website. You will need to fill the form with the details that have been asked. The most important part of this form is the company name and the PIN. The key should be for ‘Blackberry Tablet OS Code Signing Key’. Once done, your name and other details will be registered with RIM who will then send you a signing key. It may take more than two hours to receive it.
- Now you can install the softwares that I had mentioned previously in your computer. One thing that you have to note is that you will need to install Android-SDK in the C: Drive of your computer only.
- Open the SDK manager and configure it for Android 2.3.3. Under the option for SDK 2.3.3, you’ll find a subfolder in which you will need to select Install Packages.
- Wait for the .csj files that you requested to be sent. Once sent, you can download them. After downloading all the content, you will find that there will be two files namely, client-PBDT-XXXXXXXXXX.csj and client-RDK-XXXXXXXXXX.csj in the package. You will need to use these files when converting .apk files to .bar format. One thing I’d like to tell you is that you shouldn’t use these files directly. My recommendation is that you make a backup copy of these files and then use them.
- After this, you will need to go in the folder where you have installed Blackberry Playbook tablet OS for Adobe Air. In my system it is found in C: Drive’s Program Files folder under ‘Research in Motion’ folder. C:\Program Files\Research In Motion\blackberry-tablet-sdk-1.1.1, this is how it looks in my computer. Here in this folder, fin the bin folder. Once found, you can copy both the .csj files in it.
- Now after you have copied all the files in the bin folder, you will have to work them by using the command prompt. You can start the command prompt by typing ‘cmd’ in the Run option in your Windows operating system. Now you need to navigate to the bin folder where you have saved the .csj files using the cmd prompt. To do this, use the cd command, this is how it is to be done, cd C:\Program Files\Research In Motion\blackberry-tablet-sdk-1.1.1\bin.
- Now you will need to enter the pin that you had used on the BlackBerry Jam Zone to get the .csj files. The command for it will be, blackberry-signer -csksetup -cskpass <insert PIN here>.
- To get the .12 files, you will again need to register the two .csj files, that is, the pbdt and rdk files. To achieve this, you will need to insert another command. The command will be blackberry-signer -register -csjpin <insert PIN here> -cskpass <insert PIN here> client-PBDT-putyourfilecodehere.csj
- When performing this, see to it that you don’t get any error. When an error free process is completed, you will get a message saying that you are connected to the RIM servers successfully and also registered successfully. You will also receive an email regarding it on the email-ID you mentioned in the form.
- Now that the PIN has been registered, you need to register the code of the .csj file you got. To do it, you will need to use the previous command again, but with a different end. Let me show you how, blackberry-signer -register -csjpin <insert PIN here> -cskpass <insert PIN here> client-RDK-[file code].csj This whole process again should be error free. It will register the file code on the RIM servers and also send you an email and notification regarding it.
- Now after all this whole process, you are ready to create a .p12 file which will help you to convert .apk file into .bar file and also preserve its license. To generate a .p12 file, you will need to use another command, that is, blackberry-keytool -genkeypair -keystore Techarena.p12 -storepass <insert PIN here> -dname "cn=<company name as mentioned in form >" -alias author Here I have mentioned the name of the newly generated .p12 file as Techarena, but you can use any name of your choice here. This .p12 file will be created in the bin folder where you had redirected the command prompt to. Again, I’ll recommend you that you shouldn’t use the currently generated .p12 file directly; you should create a copy of it, which you can use. If you use this file directly and anything goes wrong in further steps, you will have to perform all the previous steps again just to achieve it back.
Now that you have registered the PIN, your company’s name and file code on the RIM servers, you are now ready to convert the .apk file into .bar file for use in your Blackberry Playbook.
- The first thing that you will need to do is to install the BBHTool that can be found by searching on Google. After downloading it, install it in your computer.
- After installing the BBHTool, on the top you will find an option for ‘Playbook’. Now you will find an option for ‘APK Converter’.
- Now switch on to the Android-SDK and set the folder to save data from it. I have set it to C: Drive in my computer.
- Now open the Conversion info of the Android-SDK to set the destination where you will save the .bar files after being converted from .apk file. Here in the Conversion info, you will also find an option by name ‘Sign Converted File’ which needs to be marked. Once marked, it will open a Windows Form which will prompt you to select the folder where you have saved the .p12 file.
- Now the Android-SDK will ask you for Keystore Password and CSK Password. Don’t worry about these passwords as they will be created when creating the .p12 files. If you have noted the points in the tutorial for creating the .p12 files, then I have made you use the PIN you used to register for .csj file as your Keystore Password and CSK Password. So in the textboxes for these passwords, just insert the PIN you used for initial registration.
- Now when you are done with all these steps, click on the ‘Add Files’ option and navigate to the folder where your desired .apk files are. Select the files and click on the ‘Convert/Sign it!’ After some process time, you will find the .bar files in the designated folder. Though there is an option and the Android-SDK allows you to convert multiple .apk files into .bar files, I don’t prefer doing it. It is recommended to convert single .apk file at a time into .bar file.