Category Archives: Geeking Out

iTunes could not connect to the iPhone “iPhone” because it is locked with a passcode

屏幕快照 2009-10-23 下午07.35.35.png

My iPhone 3GS was working just fine, then it suddenly stopped booting. Now I get a message on the screen saying: “iTunes could not connect to the iPhone “ryphone3gs” because it is locked with a passcode. You must enter your passcode on the iPhone before it can be used with iTunes”. [Cancel] [Try Again]

Of course, while displaying this message, my iPhone simply displays a “swipe for emergency call” message and provides no way to actually unlock the phone.

When going into Hardware restore mode, I simply see “Error 23” in iTunes, which according to some online information may mean my hardware is toasted.

I tried using “irecovery” to get at the source of the issue, but each time I boot up, I get:

Boot Failure Count: 0 Panic Fail Count: 0
Radio failed to respond.
Radio failed to respond.
Pinging Radio Failed, 4
Entering recovery mode, starting command prompt

Apparently I’m not the only one having this “pinging radio failed” problem.

The last ditch effort may be to prepare a custom Apple iPhone RAM disk apparently called “Bypass_Passcode.bin” (created with iLiberty+) and use irecovery to load that RAM disk onto the iPhone, and then use the disk to disable the password. Seems like a lot of work considering that my iPhone is new, that it’s never been hacked, jailbroken, sim-unlocked or anything else.

There’s also some information about downgrading the 3GS from 3.1 to 3.0, but that seems specific to the sim-unlockers and jailbreakers of the world. Sad that even playing by Apple’s rules, the iPhone still isn’t very reliable.

Following the directions of the Apple support website, I entered in my serial number and other iPhone information and submitted my case, only to get an error from the Apple support website saying: “We’re sorry, but we’re unable to complete your request at this time. Please try again in a few minutes or start over now”. Of course after a few minutes I started over and did the process again, and got the same error. Forgive me for being a skeptic about AAPL at $300/share.

屏幕快照 2009-10-23 下午09.39.04.png

iPhone Wallpaper: 30 Years of US/China Relations

30 years ago Nixon and Kissenger agreed with Beijing on the “One China Policy“, breaking off relations with Taiwan as the “Republic of China” and officially recognizing the People’s Republic of China as the legitimate government of China. The US Embassy in China put together a nice logo in honor of the event, and combining it with an iPhone wallpaper template I’ve converted it into a nice iPhone wallpaper. For reference the Chinese says:

30 Years of USA – PRC Diplomatic Relations

Click through the image below to download the “wallpaper” version or the Photoshop template.


Twitter Alternatives

Unfortunately Twitter in China is blocked by the Great Firewall, so if you are in China and want to Micro Blog, you should choose from one of the local alternatives.

  1. Komoo
  2. Zuosa (做啥网 zuòshá wǎng)
  3. Taotao (滔滔 tāotāo)

Previously there were several other local alternatives such as Fanfou, Digu and Jiwai, but all of these are either under “server maintenance” or simply offline.

UPDATE: SINA just launched an online twitter service that should never be blocked by the great firewall.

Twitter Alternatives

Unfortunately Twitter in China is blocked by the Great Firewall, so if you are in China and want to Micro Blog, you should choose from one of the local alternatives.

  1. Komoo
  2. Zuosa (做啥网 zuòshá wǎng)
  3. Taotao (滔滔 tāotāo)

Previously there were several other local alternatives such as Fanfou, Digu and Jiwai, but all of these are either under “server maintenance” or simply offline.

Online Network Diagnotics

If you can’t get to a website, or if your company has a website or other system that you would like to know whether or not are “online”, the following tools may be of use:

  • Run the “TraceRoute” command from servers in a variety of locations to see if there is a routing problem. See TraceRoute in Shanghai.
  • InternetSupervision: Check how a given URL is responding to traffic from nine locations across the planet. Including Beijing, LA, DC, Sydney, UK, etc.
  • Check if the website is working properly for others – or if it’s only offline for you.
  • Free online monitoring tool to check any port on any site. SMS notification, high frequency polling, and a monitoring client that can be installed on your systems are all available as paid services.

Synchronicity. Nirvana.

We’ve got Plaxo to keep our contacts and calendars synced up
We’ve got Dropbox to keep our important documents synced up
We’ve got IMAP servers to keep our email synchronized across many devices
We’ve got Google Reader and Reader Notifier to keep our RSS feeds synchronized across many devices
We’ve got MobileMe to keep our Preferences and Dock Items in sync
We’ve got Evernote to keep notes, website clips and other scraps of information sync’d up
We’ve got 1Password to keep all of our passwords, credit cards and licensed synced
We’ve got Teleport to keep our mouse, keyboard and clipboard in sync while we’re working
And we’ve now got and DeliciousSafari to keep our bookmarks in sync


The only places that I’m not in sync now are: Things for my Task Management, true Video Chat and Skype support inside Adium and some unified, synchronized storage format for all of the logs from the Skype integrated version of Adium.
[From DeliciousSafari]

Google 2084

Last night I noticed that Google took the liberty of installing a Google Update Daemon on my computer. I did a quick check of my Applications folder but noticed that there were no Google applications even running on my computer. The only google related software installed is excellent 3rd party Reader Notifier to keep in sync with the Google RSS Reader.

While searching my computer to see if anything Google related was still installed (other than the Google Update Daemon), I came across this Google 2084 shot:


In case you haven’t seen Terminator II recently, this part might bring back some memories.

By the time Skynet became self-aware it had spread into millions of computer servers across the planet. Ordinary computers in office buildings, dorm rooms; everywhere. It was software; in cyberspace. There was no system core; it could not be shutdown. The attack began at 6:18 PM, just as he said it would. Judgment Day, the day the human race was almost destroyed by the weapons they’d built to protect themselves. I should have realized it was never our destiny to stop Judgment Day, it was merely to survive it, together. The Terminator knew; he tried to tell us, but I didn’t want to hear it. Maybe the future has been written. I don’t know; all I know is what the Terminator taught me; never stop fighting. And I never will. The battle has just begun.


If you just want to remove the Google Update Daemon, then you’ll want to run:

sudo launchctl unload -w /Library/LaunchDaemons/
sudo rm -fR /Library/Google
sudo rm /Library/LaunchAgents/
sudo rm /Library/LaunchDaemons/

Skip .mac/mobileme synchronization for specific preference files


Generally, MobileMe is the easiest way to keep all of your Mac data synched up. Occasionally though, you’ve got an application that you really don’t want the same configuration for in two places. Scouring the SyncServices Developer Documentation, I was finally able to figure out a way to do exclude specific configuration files. Simply execute:

defaults write -bool YES

Where is the plist file name without after truncating the trailing “.plist”. For example, there’s an application called Zooom/2 I use to effortlessly move and resize windows. When using it on a MacBook, I prefer to base activation on the “fn” key located on the lower left of the keyboard, but on an iMac this key isn’t convenient so I should use a different shortcut. Rather than having to give up all of my mobileme preference syncing, or having to deal with desktop style settings on my MacBook, I just close the application and run:

defaults write com.coderage.Zooom2Settings -bool YES

Note that there’s also an “” array that you can add to the plist file to exclude an array of specifically named keys from the mobileme sync. For full details see the Apple Developer Connection Sync Services Programming Guide.

OS X: Get the Print to PDF menu fixed…


The Mac OS X “Print” menu can easily become quite a mess! Applications like Aperture, iPhoto, Yojimbo and others all automatically add convenient shortcuts to your PDF menu that make it far too clumsy to use. Of course there’s the “Edit Menu…” button at the bottom of the list to help get things back in order.

More interestingly though, you put Aliases or Automator Workflows directly into the following two folders:

~/Library/PDF Services
/Library/PDF Services

Macworld has an Mac OS X hints article including this note about PDFs and a few other good tips. You can download more automator actions direct from While you’re getting the PDF Services menu under control, you might also check out Service Scrubber to get all the junk you don’t use out of your services menu! 控制时间!

Have a meeting scheduled but you’re not sure when localtime?
Need to a meeting across several timezones?
Need to know what time it is somewhere right now?
Need to countdown to a specific event?
Want to create an easily accessible “Personal World Clock” for the timezones you need most?
Everything you could imagine doing with time is all free at:!

Select time and place to convert from

Select place to convert to

Location Local time Time zone
Los Angeles (U.S.A. – California) Wednesday, April 1, 2009 at 5:30:00 PM UTC-7 hours PDT
Shanghai (China) Thursday, April 2, 2009 at 8:30:00 AM UTC+8 hours
Corresponding UTC (GMT) Thursday, April 2, 2009 at 00:30:00

SBP Mobile Shell…

SBP Mobile Shell can be quite fugly, especially because of the lack of custom icons and full customization of the menu screen. Also, the completely “windows” themed icons can be quite annoying.

Customizing the SBP Mobile Shell Icons:

all dat files – zip it closed password (applies to SPB Plus) Password b0fm18zq
If even simpler: open file in PhotoShop, make a copy on a copy! — draw with layers and so forth – with copies in the copy buffer – impose on the original – link sectors – remain with “SAVE” – SHELL and PLUS – very sensitive palette to change – if the file is simply to preserve the “SAVE AS ….” and the changing palette of color and depth.

not difficult.. not impossible.
1. copy all of the graphics (png’s)
2. make new ones and name them the same way (using Photoshop)
3. Stop the processes associated with SPB all of them and more. basicaly put it into “safemode for a ppc” kill all but the essential processes.
4. replace the old files with the new ones and reboot.

Note: the new files have to be identical in format (ex: PNG 24bit 96pxlX96pxl) not that it is the actual format.
Good luck.

Customizing for SQ320 (320×320) resolution: Some downloadable files are available, there’s also a theme from

SBP Now Screen as Today Screen:

This can be happen and after soft reset. Just edit the mobile shell’s shortcut in the windows\startup folder with a file manager(I use total commander) and remove the “-noshow” option. If there is not exist an spb mobile shell shortcut, just create one from the executable.

You can go to the Now screen with the “\Program Files\Spb Mobile Shell\Menulauncher.exe -now” command. You can assign it to a button, or a FTouchFlo gesture.

1.) Copy the “MobileShell.exe” application from \Program Files\Spb Mobile Shell, and
2.) create a shortcut “Shortcut to MobileShell.lnk” in \windows\StartUp, then
3.) Perform a Soft reset.
Now the Mobile Shell Spb Menu (Application) screen auto loads after the soft reset. No Reg edit required for this…

TheDumbKid posted a file called “” that will automatically return you to the new screen whenever you hit the today screen.

Other essential Windows Mobile programs include:

Windows Mobile Programs:

Windows Mobile Programs:
– Reboot App (Leon Braginski)
– Audible AudibleAir
– ColinJun SongTi Chinese Support
– DayHand PlumSIP6 Pro
– Google Maps
– Google Search
– Nomad PlumSIP Treo6 TreoPro AddOn
– Pocket Tunes
– Opera 9.5 Beta
– Plaxo Sync
– Pleco Engine
– Pleco Instant Access Launcher
– Shubaroo Group SMS
– Skype
– SBP Insight
– SBP World Clock
– SkyBook (Facebook App)
– TwitToday v1.3

– PIM Backup
– PHM Tools RegEdit
– Screen Capture

Treo Today Screen – Remove the Wireless Logo

Use a Registry Editor, such as the free PHM Registry Editor, and go to:

Enabled -> 0

Change “Enabled” to 0 (decimal) and restart, perhaps with MSDN’s free soft reboot utility.

If you would like to add the wireless item back to the Today screen, the default settings are:

Name: “Flags” – DWORD: “00000000”
Name: “Options” – DWORD: “00000000”
Name: “DLL” – String value: “netui.dll”
Name: “Order” – DWORD: “00000000”
Name: “Enabled” – DWORD: “00000001”
Name: “Type” – DWORD: “00000004”

In the WM6 “Notes” program, be sure to go into Menu / Options and choose Save to: Storage Card.

Additionally, use the Registry Editor to move “My Documents” to the Storage Card via:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows CE Services and create a REG_SV
FileSyncPath -> \Storage\My Documents

Once all of your Documents are on your Storage Card, then just download PPC PIM Backup to safely move all of your SMS’s and Call History to your Storage Card. More info at xda-developers.

Last up, if you’re carrier insists on popping up a message upon network connection, you can disable this popup by disabling the “STK” dll.
dll = <empty> (Originally the value was set to STK_Service.dll)