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IDEA: Unlocking WP 8 Phones with emulated Marketplace-Server

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By brill-eots, Junior Member on 8th July 2014, 03:10 PM
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Hello guys,

I plan to have a look on the upcomming Nokia Lumia 930 at my local provider store. As always I keep the unlock-question in mind.
I can't post to the Dev and Hacking forum, due to insufficient posts. Maybe a Mod can move this Thread to this section if he thinks this idea got a chance to be realised.

Wouldn't it be possible to emulate the Marketplace communication on your local PC? WP devices are able to access the internet vie USB connection and Zune. But the Marketplace on your phone blocks accessing it, when it detects a Zune-Connection. Maybe there is a way to establish the USB internet connection without the phone blocking the Marketplace. Another idea is to connect the phone to the PC via Wifi (Tethering).

Once we connected the phone to the PC and it's not blocking the Marektplace access. The PC could catch the Marketplace request to the MS servers and deliver emulated Server communication. Faked App-list and of course App-Download from the PC to the phone is the next step.

I know nothing about encrytion, certificates, signing and so on. So all I can do is to share this idea with you more experienced guys.

Yours sincerely ,
9th July 2014, 02:18 AM |#2  
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Props for good thinking, but this has been discussed before. If you knew about certs and sigs, maybe you would have been able to follow the previous discussions on this topic...

1) WP8.x does not use Zune anymore, and does not use the USB cable to access the Internet the way WP7 did (I find this change mildly irritating, since it means I have to connect the phone to my PC over WiFi instead if I want to intercept all the phone's traffic, but c'est la vie).
2) In WP8.0, you can spoof the marketplace for browsing purposes by installing a root certificate and then using its private key to sign fake marketplace certs. However, you can't install apps this way; they won't even download. The store probably uses a technique called "certificate pinning" for app downloads, which prevents the spoofed cert from working.
3) In WP8.1, you can't even do that much.
4) Even if you could do this, you couldn't use it to unlock the phone as you would need to sign the apps using Microsoft's keys for them to be trusted to do things like modify the registry.
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