1. KermEd's Avatar
    Hi Everyone,

    Note: I was writing this up on my Blog and thought I'd share it here in case someone needs the info.

    This is probably not news to a lot of you. But I can show those of you not afraid to mess with files how to change your sleep time past 5 mins. Or access settings you normally can't. I can't promise they will work or stick - but I can show you how to change them beyond the maximums specified by RIM at least temporarily.

    Do so at your own discretion. Keep your original backup files! And play carefully! You can change your sleep length and other factors beyond the OS limits.


    I used to do some strange things to my BlackBerry 8900. Primarily, I would back it up and use a HexEditor to change settings (maximum password retries for example) to use settings not available to other people (setting it to 255 tries).

    This weekend I decided to see what could be done with the PlayBook. If you want to really access settings you normally cannot access this tutorial may be for you. With the exploration, came some information new to me.

    Accessing your Advanced Data

    1. Backup your Playbook (unencrypted) using Desktop Manager 6.

    2. Install WinRAR or another advanced .ZIP utility.

    3. You should have a <filename>.BBB file as your backup. Rename it to .ZIP (lots of companies seem to do this).

    4. Unzip the file.

    5. You should now see the following files:


    Unzip the settings.tar too one later deep.

    Now you have tons of files. All of these files are in plain text XML format. Don't use Windows Notepad to edit them, use something like EditPad Lite.

    When you are done, packup your settings.tar again from the settings subfolder.

    Tip: You need to actually be in the settings folder and zipping from in there

    Now, repackage the entire package and rename it to a different .BBB than you used originally. The original is now your 'safety' backup, this one is your 'hacked' one.

    Using the Changes

    Reload the backup onto your PlayBook.


    BlackBerry occasionally catches on to these things and resets your values or hard-limits them. So if you set your sleep mode to 99 years, its probably going to default back to 300 seconds.

    Cool Files to Edit


    This folder contains all your wifi, vpn and tethering information including certificates.


    This contains your sleep mode settings.

    What does this contain of the file structure?


    (Looks like some options and settings)




    (Looks like application data)


    (Looks like some options and settings)


    Here you will find your book marks etc.

    Folders per the XML files

    In short, think of them as a Unix style file system with the username effectively being 1000.

    Security Risks

    I can see why encrypting these backups is important. I can pull a users username, email address, VPN information, wifi connection information, VPN certificates, etc all from using the methods above

    I hope this helps you find fund things to do to your PlayBook! I suspect this may help with loading information into your PlayBook into areas you might normally not be able to access. And it may be helpful to others.


    Mostly its just a few notes, but hey - that's what you get from a random guy on the internet! Random gibberish . I will take a closer look at all of these and see if building a custom GUI for changing these settings is of value. Maybe something that can handle the file management for you.

    Better testing and details to follow in the near future.


    Last edited by KermEd; 08-26-11 at 11:37 PM.
    DoctorNeutron likes this.
    08-26-11 11:32 PM
  2. FF22's Avatar
    Thanks for sharing. I recall changing the password trials a while back on my bb phone.
    08-26-11 11:58 PM
  3. KermEd's Avatar
    Thats funny! I wrote a terribly bitter tutorial on how to do that with a BB8900 using a hex editor ages ago. But RIM was quick to fix it. I think I can still only hack the password retries to 255 on BB.Phone OS 4.6 or so.

    I tried to sign up for the ndk though so hopefully I can quit using some of these tricks. But I imagine any user setting they grant write access too will still be hardcoded to only accept the gui max values.

    Edit - I think I remember now! You had found some problems with it and were gracious enouh to be one of the people to give me some feedback! Long time ago, and long over due but thank you.
    Last edited by KermEd; 08-27-11 at 12:12 AM.
    08-27-11 12:07 AM
  4. FF22's Avatar
    It is possible. I did a lot of things a long time ago! (g) I'm too lazy to try using Search.

    But you have only 13 posts in all that time or a new id?
    08-27-11 12:23 AM
  5. KermEd's Avatar
    Great question only 13 in all thattime long time reader but not much of a writter
    08-27-11 01:08 PM
  6. FF22's Avatar
    You have a good memory - I did reply in that thread all those (two) years ago:

    08-27-11 06:24 PM
  7. SDM7171's Avatar
    Things this may enable us to do:

    -Switch off backlight dimming while plugged in.
    -Browse via bridge for other filetypes - mp3?

    What else?
    11-06-11 12:18 PM
  8. blackjack93117's Avatar
    Interesting - can't someone just write an app to do this without the inherent risk of messing at such low levels? Oh sorry - you said that. yes please do write the GUI!
    11-06-11 12:35 PM
  9. FF22's Avatar
    My PROBLEM - I can NO longer backup my pb. Not selective or custom or unique or whatever. NO backup at all. So............

    But pounding 7,000 vertical feet of hiking this week got it out of my system!!!!

    Now I'm ready to growl again.
    11-06-11 02:50 PM
  10. brian4591's Avatar

    When you repackage the file do you repackage it as a .zip file then change it to .bbb? Does that work or do you have a compress program that creates .bbb files?


    02-27-12 03:28 PM