Swap your Palm Profile between multiple webOS 2.x phones (homebrew) | webOS Nation

Swap your Palm Profile between multiple webOS 2.x phones (homebrew)

by Adam Marks Fri, 11 Jan 2013 10:02 pm EST

This tip is only for devices running webOS 2.x

Activate palm ProfileOne of the most frequently requested features for webOS phones has to be the ability to simultaneously activate your Palm Profile on multiple devices and swap between phones as necessary. This ability was added to webOS 3.0 on the TouchPad, but does not exist for webOS phones. So, if you were ever to activate an existing Profile on a second webOS phone, it will send a wipe command to the original phone and you need to re-activate it from scratch when you want to return to that first phone. You can use some homebrew trickery to prevent the phone from performing a total wipe of the device by removing your profile from it, but what happens if you want to go back to that phone later on? Having to perform a full activation of the device is not a good answer.

Thanks to the geniuses as WebOS Internals, you can use those steps mentioned above to prevent your device from being wiped, and then extende it to activate your Profile on multiple devices without requiring the need to erase and re-setup your phones each time you need to swap. It may not be the most elegant solution, but it works, albeit with a few caveats that you should review below. In order to swap profiles between devices, you will need to have the homebrew app Impostah installed on your device and take advantage of two previous PreCentral tips: Bypass Activation [webOS 2.x] and the aforementioned Prevent device wipe when activating another phone.  Continue after the break for directions on how to set up your devices and swap your profile between them.

Before starting this process, be sure to read this entire tip and make sure that you understand every step. Also, be aware that while this should work in theory, there always runs the risk of adverse side effects occurring, including, but not limited to, your device accidently being wiped. Proceed with caution.

On your device that has already been activated (herein known as "Device #1"), you should go to the Backup app and perform a "Backup now". Also, refer to our Definitive Guide on backing up/restoring your device to ensure you have a good backup of your data before proceeding. 

Once complete, follow the steps listed below on Device #1 to prevent the device wipe when activating another phone. Be sure to follow step #9 and make sure you reboot when you are completed prior to activating the second pone

  1. Install Impostah
  2. Make sure you read step 9 carefully.
  3. Select Palm Profile
  4. Make sure you read step 9 carefully.
  5. Tap Reset Palm Profile
  6. Make sure you read step 9 carefully.
  7. Tap Delete
  8. Read the next step *VERY* *CAREFULLY*. If you get the next step wrong, you will wipe your device.
  9. Tap Cancel. Do not tap Ok. Cancel is the button with "Cancel" written on it, not the button with the letters "O" and "k" written on it. If you hit "Ok" when it says "Your device will now restart", your whole device will be wiped, thereby negating the whole point of this page, so don't do that.
  10. Hopefully you read the previous steps carefully and did not wipe your device.
  11. If the device is a GSM device (i.e. it has a SIM card) and you plan on removing the SIM card, turn off the phone, remove the SIM card and put it in the other phone. Unless you absolutely can not avoid it, do not turn the phone back on without the SIM card in it. In my experimentation, turning on the phone without a SIM card sometimes causes my phone to reset and I lost all my apps on the device (which defeats the whole purpose of performing this tip)
  12. If you have a GSM phone that is keeping the SIM card or if it's a CDMA device, simply perform a full reboot of it now (not just a Luna restart)
  13. On the device that you want to move to (herein known as "Device #2"), you will need to go through a full device activation at least one time in order to pull in your profile data. So, either perform a webOS Doctor on the phone or perform an Erase Apps & Data to reset the phone back to the initial activation screen.
  14. Log in to your Profile on Device #2 and let it reinstall all your apps and data.
  15. You can follow the steps on our Definitive Backup/Restore guide and our Advanced backup/restore tip to restore all the remaining data to your phone.

At this point, you should be able to retain access to Device #1 with all your apps and data, but you will not be able to access the App Catalog or the Backup app. Instead, since Device #2 is now connected to your Profile, you can now access the Catalog from that device, even purchasing apps if desired. When you choose to return to Device #1, you will need to follow a modified version of the steps above.

  1. On Device #2, open Impostah and follow the steps listed in Prevent device wipe when activating another phone (and copied above). Be sure to follow step #9 and turn off the phone or perform a device reboot once complete. Stop at step 12 above.
  2. On Device #1, you will not want to go through the full activation of the device, but rather use Impostah to re-attach your Profile to the phone, as documented on the Bypass Activation [webOS 2.x] tip: In Impostah, select "Activation", choose your country and language, enter your existing Profile email address and Password and select "Log in To Profile". You should get a confirmation of success that your profile has been activated on that device.
  3. You are now logged back in to your profile on Device #1 and have full access to the App catalog. You can even go into the App Catalog and re-download any apps you purchased while using the other device.
  4. Just follow these modified set of steps again the next time you want to move from Device #1 to Device #2.

There are a few details that you need to be aware of, some of which are documented on the WebOS Internals' Wiki. The majority of these issues relate to how your data is backed up to your Palm Profile. While the Palm Profile saves things such as contacts and calendar entries saved to the Palm Profile account, it also saves data such as a listing of synergy accounts (e.g. Google, Yahoo, LinkedIn, etc), some system preferences, Linked relationships between contacts, Launcher settings, and more. So, even if you do not use the Palm Profile for your contacts, calendar, memos and tasks, you still want to ensure that you do not lose or corrupt this data. A few tips on how best to handle your Profile data:

  • Maintain one "master" device that will contain what you consider to be your full set of data.  Whatever device this is, always perform a "backup now" before removing your Palm Profile from the device and immediately once you reactivate that device.
  • Utilize synergy accounts (such as Google) for your contacts and calendar. This will ensure that your PIMS data stays in sync between devices and you do not need to remember to add / update the data in your Palm Profile account on your main device.
  • If an app gets update, you will not be able to update it on the device you are not currently using until you reactivate your profile on that device. Any attempt to update the app will get a failure notice.

Have you tried these steps above? Document your results in our comments to let us know if you ran into any issues or if it works as advertised.

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