[TUTORIAL] Theme Installation

Discussion in 'iOS Themes and Customization' started by Vince, Sep 17, 2009.

  1. Vince

    Vince Active Member

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    This thread is for the installation of non-cydian themes (themes that aren't available on Cydia).

    I feel the need to make this thread for those new to the community and jailbreaking that don't know how to install themes. Frankly I'm tired of someone asking in just about every single release thread. This guide was written by me, currently running firmware 3.0 on an iPod Touch 2G (just in case things change in the future). Hopefully this will eventually spread to also include custom theme setup guides (such as iNavs) so that we can have them all in one spot. To start, I'm only putting the simplest (imo) way to do things, if the thread is popular and used I'll expand to alternative methods too.

    Firstly, you must be jailbroken to theme your iPod

    Regular theme install w/wifi (any theme without special instructions given for install, fully utilizes the 4x4 structure of the springboard to fit 16 icons on a single page):

    Things you'll need to start:
    •a computer
    •a jailbroken iPod Touch/iPhone

    To make my life easier, you're going to have to learn how to SSH on your own. Spoonforknife's tutorial is awesome. I recommend using WinSCP on Windows and Cyberduck on Mac.

    On the device (sorry I'm not gonna type out iPod Touch/iPhone every time) you'll need to download Winterboard off Cydia and reboot your device.

    K install guide time, nice and simple:
    1) Download and extract your newly downloaded theme. We want it to either be in folder form (no extension) or in .theme form. Keep the theme somewhere that's easy to access (the desktop always works).
    2) SSH into your iPod
    3) Navigate to /private/var/stash/Themes.xxxxxx (the "x"s represent random letters and/or numbers specific to your device, don't mess with them)
    4) Stick your theme folder in that directory. We're done with the comp once the transfer finishes.
    5) Go on your device, open Winterboard. Whatever the name of what you just added was, it should be somewhere on that list (IE if I named my file "Vince's File.theme", that's how it would show up in Winterboard).
    6) Tap the name of your theme, it should put a checkmark next to it. Then use the right side of the screen to drag that file to the top of the list of items in Winterboard (this will allow it to overwrite all other things in Winterboard).
    7) Hit the home button, this will close the app and trigger a respring. Unlock your device afterwards and your theme will be applied.

    Regular theme install without wifi

    Basically the same steps, except instead of SSH'ing we're going to use a USB transfer.
    On your comp download iphonebrowser or i-funbox (for windows) or iphone explorer (for Mac).

    You won't need openSSH (to my knowledge) on your device. Plug your device into your comp and launch whichever app you downloaded above.

    Proceed to follow steps 3-7 of the above guide.

    Single Icon Replacement

    So for those of you who don't have full themes, you might want to consider single icon replacement. I'm not going into the Winterboard method of doing this because for that you can use one of the above, we're doin' this the old fashioned way. Since I haven't updated this guide in a while this part might not flow as well as the previous stuff.

    Requirements: Use the requirements for either of the above, but Winterboard isn't necessary.

    1) Save your new icon on your computer as "icon.png" capitalization does matter.
    2) SSH into your iPod
    3) Go into /Applications and find the application the icon is for (IE if I'm replacing a Cydia icon I'd find Cydia.app)
    4) BACK UP the icon.png in that folder (transfer it to your desktop, rename it, do something)
    5) Overwrite the icon.png with the new one from your computer
    6) Respring (not sure if this is necessary, I respring but a simple sleep/unlock might activate it too).

    This can also be used for retrieving icons from the device, which is very useful for theme makers. Problem is that the icons aren't always readable by comps, if your desktop can't read it check this tutorial by Will4042

    For Theme Makers:

    As a lot of you using this tut are new to theming, I also assume some of you are interested in creating themes. It's not quite as simple as simply sticking what you want in the directory, you need to know image names and folder structures to get the themes to apply. Gitykin's guide is an amazing tutorial that still holds up to date, I know I've used it plenty of times and if there's anything you can't find in there you can check the FAQ guide by Manic linked there.

    iPhone Folders

    Because it's 12:34 (

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    ) am right now I wanted to add this but I don't feel like researching it and am not really sure where to categorize it in the existing guide. iPhone Folders is a free Windows program that will allow you to access your device's system files in a simple window as if it were a hard drive, so it's very user friendly. I'm not quite sure if it requires internet or not to actually use and also I'm unsure as to whether you can use it wirelessly (which of course will require wifi) or if it needs to be connected. If someone who knows a bit can add some information I'd appreciate it or I'll look it up tomorrow. Link

    Conclusion:
    I want this thread to be used and helpful. Hopefully in the future it will be useful even to experienced members. If you have any suggestions on how to improve the thread, requests for theme install guides, and/or ideas on this subject, leave a post and it will be greatly appreciated and given consideration. Also if it's requested I can add links to the apps listed and I can provide screenshots for the step-by-step walkthrough.

    Updates
    1: Added links provided by Baggy Spandex in post 6. THANKS BAGGY!
    2: Dug up spoonforknife's excellent tutorial on SSH'ing.
    3: Single Icon Replacement
    4: Because the problem came up, I added a theme makers section, which is really just a link to gitykin's thread.
    5: Honorable mention of iPhone Folders for Windows users.
  2. DigitalSoul

    DigitalSoul New Member

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    Nice job Vince. But my iFunBox is not working ever since I upgraded to iTunes 9.
    Have any ideas?
  3. Ralzaider

    Ralzaider New Member

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    I use WinSCP.
  4. ninesevennine_979

    ninesevennine_979 New Member

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    You'll need to download the latest version of iFunBox before it will work with iTunes 9.
  5. SumDaii

    SumDaii Active Member

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    I'll stick with the SSH'ing, the USB one doesn't really appeal to me.
  6. Baggy Spandex

    Baggy Spandex Active Member

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  7. Vince

    Vince Active Member

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    Ooo thanks Baggy.

    Also thanks everyone for the positive comments, glad to hear I didn't do a crappy job.

    Just on a personal note, I'm running Snow Leopard using Filezilla (gotta love the ole SSH) but if my iPod is charging I use iPhone Explorer because typically it takes longer for me to connect over wifi than to actually transfer the files.
  8. taptaptouch

    taptaptouch Active Member

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    iphone folders is the best
    its basically an explorer window that lets you get deep in your idevice
  9. Vince

    Vince Active Member

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    Yeah I remember seeing that, and it's simplicity deserves an honorable mention but seeing as it's Windows only it personally does me no good.
  10. Aquatard

    Aquatard New Member

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    hey, great post. but when i open up i-funbox or iphonebrowser i dont see the necessary files ( /private/var/stash/Themes.xxxxxx) so i cant put my theme folders into it. im using the non-wifi way. any help would be appreciated

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