Application Lock Makes its Way to Touch Screen Windows Mobile 6.5 Devices

MobileJaw-ApplicationLockBack when Microsoft first released their first Windows Mobile Smartphone based device, they also introduced an application lock that was not found on existing Windows Mobile Pocket PC based devices. This application lock introduced a new level of security that prevents unprivileged applications from accessing certain system functions, files, and registry locations.

During some recent research, it came to my attention that Microsoft has taken this application lock and implemented it on Windows Mobile 6.5 touch screen devices. This means that 3rd party applications won’t have free access to the entire device as they have in the past.

So while I found some documentation that referenced this new feature on touch devices, there were no production devices available to test this on – until now. Mobile Jaw reader, Keith Ramsey posted about his brand new HTC Imagio in this thread, about the problems he is having when trying to install applications on the device. As more carriers release Windows Mobile 6.5 based devices the number of application locked devices will continue to grow.

Previously, I had created a CAB file that would remove security from Windows Mobile Standard devices (non-touch screen devices). So I have now created a similar CAB file that works for touch screen devices. You can read all about application lock – what it is, and how to remove it, along with the download steps over here.

The quickie details are to copy this CAB file to the device, install the CAB and then browse to Start / System / Settings / Remove Programs and uninstall the MobiControl Device Agent from your device. If you want more details about what you’re doing, what the CAB file does, or why you need to uninstall it after it’s installed, then you should read the above linked article about removing application lock. It will answer all those questions.

If anyone else has a new Windows Mobile 6.5 device, please reply and let me know if you’re seeing the same behavior and if so, did this CAB fix things?

About Mike Temporale

Mike Temporale has written 614 posts on Mobile Jaw..

Mike Temporale grew up fascinated by computers since an early age. His first hands on with a computer came when he was 7 years old and a travelling lab of Commodore PET computers made a stop at his school. Hooked on the new world these devices offered, he took any chance possible to get in front of a computer. When Compaq launched the iPaq 3600, he was hooked again. This time on a whole new world of mobile computing. Today, Mike spends his day helping clients deploy and manage their mobile device around the world. From installing custom software, to locking and securing data, and everything in between. He is also the Editor in Chief at Mobile Jaw - a site focused on today's mobile world.

  • http://twitter.com/mobilejaw/status/5115963203 MobileJaw

    Application Lock Makes its Way to Touch Screen Windows Mobile 6.5 Devices – http://tinyurl.com/yl3d5dw

  • http://twitter.com/miketemporale/status/5120774534 MikeTemporale

    RT @MobileJaw: Application Lock Makes its Way to Touch Screen Windows Mobile 6.5 Devices – http://tinyurl.com/yl3d5dw

  • http://twitter.com/mobilityminded/status/5121097348 MobilityMinded

    RT @MikeTemporale: RT @MobileJaw: Application Lock Makes its Way to Touch Screen Windows Mobile 6.5 Devices – http://tinyurl.com/yl3d5dw

  • http://twitter.com/fyiguy/status/5121731602 Steven Hughes

    Parity on WinMo App lock RT @MobileJaw: Application Lock Makes its Way to Touch Screen Windows Mobile 6.5 Devices http://tinyurl.com/yl3d5dw

  • http://msmvps.com/AlbertoSilva Alberto Silva

    Hi Mike!
    I’m not able to connect PocketController Pro to a Samsung Omnia II with WM6.5, so I’ll try to remove the application lock and will let you know how it went :)

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    Interesting… Yes, plesae try this CAB and let me know if it removes the app lock and then if you are able to install Pocket Controller Pro or not

  • http://msmvps.com/AlbertoSilva Alberto Silva

    Mike, I just tried again to control the device using PCpro before doing anything else, and it’s now working… Since my PC is a ‘dev’ machine, I’m now pretty sure the problem was originated by a combination of WMDC, the Device Emulator and an industrial mobile device I had connected before.

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    That’s odd. I wonder if Windows Mobile Device Center was not fully connected or if it was acting up in some way. Without that connection, Pocket Controller Pro will not be able to connect.

    Glad it’s working for you now. Wish we had more of an idea why it didn’t the first time.

  • http://msmvps.com/AlbertoSilva Alberto Silva

    The problem was not constrainded to Pocket Controller Pro, Visual Studio wasn’t connecting either to the device before and now connects, just like Pocket Controller Pro does.

  • Mike Burgenger

    Mike,

    I got pocket controller pro to work on my imagio and made the recommended registry changes. For some reason, my device was still application locked. When I tried to run your cab file, I got a message indicating that the application was signed and couldn’t run. When I tried to use MobiControl to create my own agent with the XML provision attached as written above, it indicated that some application locked WinMo phones might not allow the agent to run. Sure enough, my phone would not. Not sure how to proceed on this one.

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    @Mike B – Can you give me the exact error message when you tried to install the above CAB? Does the MobiControl agent appear in the Remove Programs list on the device?

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    @Mike B – I have an updated version for you to try. It’s a little more manual, but it should work just fine.

    Download the following zip file –

    http://www.mobilejaw.com/content/2009/09/MobileJaw-ClearSecurity-MobiControl-TouchScreen-v201.zip
    (URL updated to reflect the new version)

    Unzip the files to a folder on your PC and then copy ALL of the files to the \Temp folder on your device.

    Then on the device, open file manager and browse to the temp folder. Run the file called “Step 1..” and let it completely install. They run the file called “Step 2…”

    At this point, your application lock will be removed. You can now delete all the files you copied to the device and then go to Remove Programs on the device and uninstall MobiControl Device Agent.

    Please try this and let me know how it goes.

  • Mike Burgenger

    Thanks Mike. I would try the new solution, but when I download the new zip file, it shows as 0kb with nothing to unzip. I tried downloading it using Firefox, Opera, and Explorer all with the same effect.

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    Sorry about that, I typoed the file name. It’s been corrected and the link above now works. :)

  • Mike Burgenger

    I appreciate all of your help Mike, but still not working. I get the same error message when running the “Step 1″ file as I do when I try to install any Google product:

    “Installation was unsuccessful. The program or setting cannot be installed because it is not digitally signed with a trusted certificate.” Might be time for me to give up on this phone and move to the Droid since I’m still in my 30 day return window with Verizon.

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    Ah crap, I know what went wrong there. Let me update that and re-upload.

    How long do you have left out of the 30 day return window?

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    Hi Mike, Here’s an updated file. Can you download this ZIP and try again. This will do the trick. :)

    http://www.mobilejaw.com/content/2009/09/MobileJaw-ClearSecurity-MobiControl-TouchScreen-v201.zip

    Please keep me posted!

  • Mike Burgenger

    Well, I was able to run “Step 1″ and “Step 2″ successfully and got a popup windows stating that security had been disabled on my device courtesy of Mobiljaw. Then, when I tried to install Google Maps, it gave me the unsigned certificate error and cancelled the installation. So are we back to square one or do I need to do a soft reboot or something else when the process is complete?

  • Prashanth

    I am using windows mobile 6.5 device. i can access files on the device using activesync, but my visual studio cannot connect to the device (says bootstrap couldnot be loaded) and cannot deploy or debug applications on to the device. but i could install CAB files on my device.
    will this CAB slove my issue?

  • prahasa

    hey i am using windows mobile 6.5 device.
    installing and uninstalling this cab did not solve my issue, i still cannot deploy application on to my device using VS.

  • http://www.Shivagana.com Shankara Dash Shivagana

    I followed the quickie instructions, which worked! My new (just go it 2 days ago) HTC Imagio can now install 3rd party apps. I’ve only tested it with Google’s mobile app package so far. But, if Google’s apps work, then chances are other 3rd party apps will not be restricted because of certificate issues.

    Thanks!!!

  • Ind

    I have a samsung b7610, did all above but still get unsigned certificate error! Cant install even pocketwit

  • shico

    Why you did that Mike?????
    I can’t remove MobiControl from my mobile!!!!!!

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    @shico – If you install the CAB file from here, then all you need to do is click Start / Settings / Remove Programs (for non-touch devices) or Start / Settings / System / Remove Programs (for touch devices). Then select SOTI MobiControl and click Remove.

    There’s nothing in this that prevents the software for being removed. If you already had MobiControl installed, then chances are your system administrator hasn’t permitted you to remove it. Nothing I can do to help you then.

  • shico

    Anyway….I removed the program now :):)
    the only way to remove it is restoring new software lool..
    its a wired program even after having new software
    I notice that all my files in my memory card have been locked and they useless now (also my videos and my mp3 are locked now)

  • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

    @shico – There is nothing in this software that would lock files on your device. What other programs did you install in order to unlock things? Some other website lists a bunch of extra crap you “need” to install and the last one is this CAB. The ONLY thing you need is this CAB.

    Sorry you had problems, but it’s not from this application. :(

  • peter agbaoye

    hi, i use cingular 8125. i was able to install ur application and remove it but i was not able to install opera mobile on the phone or other applications that i need.
    i downloaded all the versions but still could not install opera 10 mobile, the error message it shows is installation unsuccessful. program is not digitally signed with trusted certificate.
    what did i not do right?

  • Tony

    Hi, I have an HTC Snap running WinMo 6.5, it’s a non-touch screen, and when I try to use your non-touch screen CAB it tells me “Installation was unsuccessful. The program or setting cannot be installed because it is not digitally signed with a trusted certificate.” which is what I’m trying to get around. Any suggestions on what I might try next? Thanks.

  • mik babs

    hi! im using an htc hd2 winmo 6.5 i installed ur MobiControl… but still my apps didnt worked.. untrusted still…. any updates?? thanks in advance!