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Editing the Xperia Play (slide open) app

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By deepestblue, Junior Member on 4th June 2011, 08:21 PM
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See Post 21 for guide on how to add modify your apps to appear in the launcher....

Orignal post below...


Hi,

Ok, it really annoyed me that when I flipped open the game pad I could only see the apps Sony Erricson allowed.... I have made some progress on this front, just not a 100% working fix yet

I'm not an expect, so please don't flame me if this is useless info!


Here goes the instructions....

I will warn those who have little skill in editing files this is not for you!

Here is how I added Solitare (free app from the android market) as a test to the Xperia Play Launcher....

First browse to

data/data/com.sonyericsson.semcsuite/databases

copy the to content.db file to your computer

edit the content.db
with SQLite (which you can download for free)

The info you need to edit is under browse data in SQLite, you need the pkg name of the app you want to include inside, as well as the full name of the app you are inserting… I simply replaced an app I wasn't bothered about in the launcher, my assumption would be that you can insert more by following the numbering convention used!

In the cover column you need to use -1 as the cover name and false under the menu...

then save the file

Now reboot the phone open the xperia play app, click on more games…. Then copy over the file…. I copied over the file while on more games….

Then kill the app in the settings (in mine shows as Android System), finally reopen the app and the added applications will show!

You then have the added apps you want in the launcher :)


Here is a screenshot of the added solitaire app as a test:
imageshack.us/photo/my-images/821/screenshot2zm.png


The big problem I have found so far is that the app very frequently ovewrites the .db For example on reboot or sometimes randomly, so at the moment it's not an actual fix...

I have attempted making the file read only but this crashes the app on opening...

But progress is progress any ideas moving forward? It would be nice to be able to slide open your play and see a bunch of emulators

Chris
4th June 2011, 08:30 PM |#2  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndroHero

Look in the database.db file in /data/data/com.sonyericsson.semcsuite/database

Sent from my R800i using Tapatalk


i told them all they needed to edit the database.db but no1 beleved me lol
4th June 2011, 09:38 PM |#3  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndroHero

i told them all they needed to edit the database.db but no1 beleved me lol

Just found your old thread, damn could have been here sooner! Oh, well progress still made

So much better knowing I can slide open my play and see all my emulators!

I've found out that once you get the hacked.db file on the play and get it to open correctly provide you press the home button and not the back button then it stays put Hopefully it should stay in place unless I accidently quit the app or need to reboot!

Still not a permanant fix, but close enough until we figure out how to stop the app replacing the edited file!

Here are two new screenshots completed with emulators hehe
imageshack.us/photo/my-images/853/screenshotye.png/
imageshack.us/photo/my-images/200/screenshot1kv.png/

The only downside is that the app blows up the icon of the edited in app, so it looks a bit pixelated - but I really don't care about that!

Chris
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4th June 2011, 10:08 PM |#4  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deepestblue

Just found your old thread, damn could have been here sooner! Oh, well progress still made

So much better knowing I can slide open my play and see all my emulators!

I've found out that once you get the hacked.db file on the play and get it to open correctly provide you press the home button and not the back button then it stays put Hopefully it should stay in place unless I accidently quit the app or need to reboot!

Still not a permanant fix, but close enough until we figure out how to stop the app replacing the edited file!

Here are two new screenshots completed with emulators hehe
imageshack.us/photo/my-images/853/screenshotye.png/
imageshack.us/photo/my-images/200/screenshot1kv.png/

The only downside is that the app blows up the icon of the edited in app, so it looks a bit pixelated - but I really don't care about that!

Chris

that looks really cool maybe a line in one of the .xml files can be changed in the .apk to get it to read from a diffrent (modded) file, then it dosent matter if it rewrites the database.db file
5th June 2011, 04:23 AM |#6  
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Yes, we know, this is nothing new. We've already known about this for weeks. The problem of course is that it has to be populated manually. We've been searching for a way to do this automatically just by looking at how it works and doing what needs to be done to tell it "hey, I should be on this list" whenever it rebuilds the database.
5th June 2011, 11:35 AM |#7  
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Well so far good news, the xperia play app has yet to overwrite the file, so I guess leaving it the app open and not quiting, is possibly a very good temporary solution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndroHero

that looks really cool maybe a line in one of the .xml files can be changed in the .apk to get it to read from a diffrent (modded) file, then it dosent matter if it rewrites the database.db file

Unfortunately, after taking a look at the xml files no joy
There doesn't seem to be any reffrence to writing to the .db or that location...

Within the apk, there is a searchable.xml file though where the app is asking to search. So, possibly changing this so it searches for something else? hmm
The problem is if you change it to something else then I assume it would create a blank .db file! LOL But this might be a way forward... Feel free to take a look at the included xml file of the launcher here:
mediafire.com/?2eqtw1f0358omp2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Logseman

Could the whole db edition be done through an app?

Probably, if someone wanted to create such an app... But editing the .db file is not so hard, provided you are not wanting to change things all the time! I'd write up step by step instructions, so it should be fairly easy...

The problem at the moment is that it is not a full solution to our problem...

Quote:
Originally Posted by zerojay

Yes, we know, this is nothing new. We've already known about this for weeks. The problem of course is that it has to be populated manually. We've been searching for a way to do this automatically just by looking at how it works and doing what needs to be done to tell it "hey, I should be on this list" whenever it rebuilds the database.

I've had a scan though the past posts, and yes your right the .db file was known about for weeks... But unfortunately not followed though, no one actually attempted to edit the .db file nor get the edited file to work or at least not that I can see.... It's a shame really as we could have been here sooner...

Actually, I have an idea of how the app decides what should go into the database... I believe it is rather simple how the app works... The app will search installed apk, then my assumption would be that it would look at the AndroidManifest.xml of said installed apps for an xperiaplayoptimized_content tag.

An xperiaplayoptimized_content tag can be seen in the AndoridManifest.xml of two free apps on the market Cyberlords - Arcology, Happy Vikings.... I've not checked any other apps from the market, but please check more - maybe I'm wrong .

The problem is if this is how the app works and is needed in every app, it would mean adding to evey app we wanted to be included in the launcher and removing from every app we did not want to appear in the launcher, sigh...

I suppose if someone wants they could check this for certain by adding an xperiaplayoptimized_content tag to an app or removing the tag from an app and seeing what happens...

So, I'm thinking three possible options? Unless any can think of any further solutions?

a) Change how the Xperia Play app searches - possibly by editing the searchable.xml file - although I'm not sure what to change the search to?

b) Add the xperiaplayoptimized_content tag to every maifest of every app we want included - that's also, assuming xperiaplayoptimized_content is the correct tag!

c) Leave things as they are - you just lose the changed .db file on reboot or when you close the application by mistake. Perhaps even a simple app to replace .db file when this happens?

Sigh, so much work/effort for something simple - damn you Sony Erricson! LOL

Chris
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5th June 2011, 02:44 PM |#8  
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Hurray, it works

Added this line:
Code:
<meta-data android:name="xperiaplayoptimized_content" android:resource="@drawable/icon" />
right before:
Code:
</application>
you can probably use the @drawable to make it any icon you want.

The happy viking game uses a resolution of 170*170 I believe.

Now is there anyone with the skills to have the android manifests modified of allready installed apps with a nice menu where you could select wich app you want to have the line added to the manifest? If that's possible at all.

Edit: updated the app I use for testing stuff so it shows up in the game launcher: http://forum.xda-developers.com/show...3#post14451093
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5th June 2011, 05:55 PM |#9  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by svenk919

Hurray, it works

Added this line:

Code:
<meta-data android:name="xperiaplayoptimized_content" android:resource="@drawable/icon" />
right before:
Code:
</application>
you can probably use the @drawable to make it any icon you want.

The happy viking game uses a resolution of 170*170 I believe.

Now is there anyone with the skills to have the android manifests modified of allready installed apps with a nice menu where you could select wich app you want to have the line added to the manifest? If that's possible at all.

Edit: updated the app I use for testing stuff so it shows up in the game launcher: http://forum.xda-developers.com/show...3#post14451093

Great work , just tested your app! Awesome we now know for certain that xperiaplayoptimized_content is the correct tag...

Ageed it needs someone skilled - but an app that acutally modifies the manifests already installed apps is far beyond what I can do
As you say I'm not even sure such a feat is possible?

An alternative may be to decompile your apps and recompile them... Apktool, should do the trick...
code.google.com/p/android-apktool/

Hmm, tempting... I think I might have a go with one app, see how long it takes to decompile, edit and recompile an app!
5th June 2011, 06:03 PM |#10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deepestblue

Great work , just tested your app! Awesome we now know for certain that xperiaplayoptimized_content is the correct tag...

Ageed it needs someone skilled - but an app that acutally modifies the manifests already installed apps is far beyond what I can do
As you say I'm not even sure such a feat is possible?

An alternative may be to decompile your apps and recompile them... Apktool, should do the trick...
code.google.com/p/android-apktool/

Hmm, tempting... I think I might have a go with one app, see how long it takes to decompile, edit and recompile an app!

Maybe an app along the lines of ninjamorph but more dedicated to editing the android mainifest

Sent from my R800i using Tapatalk
12th June 2011, 03:23 PM |#11  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndroHero

Maybe an app along the lines of ninjamorph but more dedicated to editing the android mainifest

Sent from my R800i using Tapatalk

Hi, I tried ninjamorph but it didn't actually decompile the the android manifest...

However apktool did!

So, it's a simple matter of copying your apk, decompile with apktool, add the xperia play optimized tag, recompile with apktool and then install

It's a much quicker process than it sounds, and to add the tag to an app in total takes about 15 mins with install...

If anyone wants step by step instructions let me know!

It's so much better having the apps you want in the launcher....
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