How to: Symbian Sign your freeware applications (so you can install stuff like RotateMe)

December 18, 2007 by  

This guide is no longer valid, a new guide is available here:

How to: Symbian Sign Applications using Open Signed (without a Publisher ID)

In this guide I’ll explain everything you’ll need to know to sign and install unsigned software such as Samir’s RotateMe application in a few minutes, but first some information.

Symbian signed applications are great, they allow users to feel secure about the applications they use and protect them from virus infections and other malicious software. We all hope the guys at Symbian knew what they were doing when they decided to implement the Symbian Signed system and some hope this decision was not entirely based on ‘making-money-from-the-developers’ issues. As new open operating systems are emerging, Symbian might reevaluate the Symbian Signed procedure, however at the moment Symbian’s main strategy is to make the signing process easier. I’m all for everything that becomes easier and can only establish that it still needs some work.

The problems really start when users start using freeware applications that are not signed or are still waiting to be signed. It’s also a problem for small time developers and freelancers with small or no budgets. These type of developers usually make their freeware as a way to learn coding for the platform. Learning as we all know means making errors and thus, these developers want and need to constantly update their software and let the community try them for feedback. With the current Symbian Signed procedures this can be a time and money consuming (not to mention very confusing for most!) effort which causes them to not bother. This results a real Kafka-like situation where great applications are available for free, but as the developer lacks the funds or the time to get it signed, most users are not able to use it. A classic example of this is the RotateMe application which most of you have heard about but were able to install.

I’ve read hundreds of posts on various forums where people post their IMEI-codes and beg others to get a certain application signed. DON’T DO THAT! It’s a foolish thing to do, much like posting your home address on the Internet for everyone to see. Remember the IMEI-code is your phones serial number and is used to track and identify it.

So I thought why not give you guys a guide on how to Symbian Sign your applications yourselves once and for all? Wouldn’t you love to run the RotateMe, the NokMote or any of the other freeware applications out there that require you to first get them Symbian Signed? Continue to read my guide then!

Alright, enough of the blabbering, let’s get our hands dirty!

This is what you need

  • A computer with internet connection
  • About 20 minutes of time

As usual SimplySymbian.com cannot be held responsible if you during the following procedure manage to destroy your phone, blow up your computer or in any other way destroy your equipment

Register a Symbian Signed account

  1. Go to https://www.symbiansigned.com and register a new account.

    Click the ‘Register now!’ link which can be found in the green login form. They’ll send you a verification email which you’ll have to confirm.
    Note: Symbian Signed does not accept web based emails such as hotmail or gmail, you’ll need a pop3 email.

Download necessary tools and create a Developer Certificate

  1. Download and install the SignSIS GUI tool which you can find at:

    http://www.gosymbian.com/SSIS_download.html

  2. Run the DevCertRequestControl application from your Windows Start menu (it should be in the SignSIS-GUI application folder if you installed it right).

     

    SignSIS GUI 1 How to: Symbian Sign your freeware applications (so you can install stuff like RotateMe)

    the DevCertRequestControl application

     

  3. Click the DevCertRequest button to create a Developer Certificate. A new window will open and you’ll be required to enter your IMEI-code. The IMEI code consists of 15 digits and can be found by typing *#06# in your phones idle screen or by checking at the sticker under your battery.

    Make sure you don’t touch anything after you’ve clicked OK, as your computer will become alive and several dialogs will flash on your screen.

  4. When you see the ‘Finished’ dialog, your Developer Certificate file is ready and placed in your ‘My documents’ directory.
  5. Go back to the Symbian Signed website, log in if you haven’t done so already.

    Click on ‘My Symbian Signed’ – ‘Open Signed’ – ‘Request’.

  6. Enter the security code shown in the image and attach your Developer Certificate file found in your ‘My documents’ directory. It should be called something like SignSIS_35xxxxxxxxxxxxx.csr.
  7. Click the ‘Send’ button, if you’ve entered everything right, you’ll come to a Request DevCert where you’ll see your certificate and how long it’ll be valid. If not you probably misspelled the security code, try again until you succeed.

Download your certificate and sign your application

  1. On the Symbian Signed website, click on ‘My Symbian Signed’ – ‘Open Signed’ – ‘My DevCerts’. You’ll find a list of your certificates (you’ll probably only have one).
  2. Download the certificate by clicking the ‘Download’ button. You’ll be asked to save a file named something like SignSIS_35xxxxxxxxxxxxx.cer. Save it to your ‘My Documents’ folder.
  3. Run the SignSIS-GUI application from your Windows Start menu or by clicking on the SignSIS button in the DevCertRequestControl application shown in the above image.

     

    SignSIS GUI 2 How to: Symbian Sign your freeware applications (so you can install stuff like RotateMe)

    the SignSIS GUI application

     

  4. Add your .cer file found in your ‘My documents’ folder in the DevCert input box.
  5. You don’t need to add anything in the KeyFile input box as it should contain the standard SignSIS.key file. If it doesn’t you’ll find this file where you installed the SignSIS GUI application, normally in the C:\Program\SignSIS-GUI folder.
  6. Key should be 0123456 if you’re going with the standard SignSIS.key file.
  7. And now, finally, add your unsigned freeware file in the Input.sis(x) box and click the ‘SignSIS!’ button.

If all went well, you’ll be prompted with a new dialog stating you succeeded. A new file will be created in the same folder as your old ‘unsigned’ file. Transfer the new ‘signed’ file to your phone and enjoy!

Send me your questions and feedback using this link

[Source: Gosymbian]

button How to: Symbian Sign your freeware applications (so you can install stuff like RotateMe)

Comments

64 Responses to “How to: Symbian Sign your freeware applications (so you can install stuff like RotateMe)”

  1. Antony Pranata on December 19th, 2007 01:06

    The account at SymbianSigned.com is actually for developers only. No end user is allowed to create an account there.

    A couple of months back, Symbian has suspended some accounts that are not for development purpose.

  2. Dario Soltani on December 19th, 2007 01:55

    I’m not sure that is the case Antony. I talked to some Symbian officials when I was in Budapest about 2 weeks ago and they told me Symbian Signed will offer a freeware signing function, which it now does.

  3. Antony Edwards on December 19th, 2007 15:59

    A new process called “Open Signed On-line” will be released in the next few weeks. This will allow individuals to sign freeware applications (restricted to their IMEI). The process will not require the submitter to have an account.

    Also — responding to the “making-money-from-developers”. Note that Symbian gets $0 revenue for signing events and $0 for publisher IDs. When you add-up the infrastructure costs and people to administer and support the service it’s a significant cost — so the result is that Symbian certainly makes no money and in fact makes a significant loss on Symbian Signed. So why does Symbian do it? Simple – it’s the only way that the industry will allow the devices to remain open (how many other mobile devices shipping in >10 million units provide a native interface?).

    So please keep an eye open for Open Signed On-line and send us your feedback.

    Also — we’d be really happy to hear suggestions from the community about how to handle freeware better. For example — is anyone interested in setting up a group that reviews freeware to ensure it complies with the test criteria?

  4. Dario Soltani on December 19th, 2007 16:32

    Wow, hi Antony. It’s great to see Symbians Vice President of Developer Product Marketing (am I right?) actually replying to my posts, not to mention reading my blog! Thanks for sharing your information with the community. This kind of direct communication between the users and the companies is something I hope will we’ll see more of in the future.

    I spoke to Eric Jacobson from Symbian in Budapest and he told me some of the plans Symbian had about making the signing process easier for the community, it’s great to see these things are actually happening.

    I’m sorry about the profit issues, of course there must be huge costs to keep Symbian Signed running. Hopefully the ‘Open Signed On-line’ service will make life easier, I’ll make sure to report about it once it’s ready to use.

    About how to handle freeware better we first need to know what your needs are. Tell us about the problems and your solutions, perhaps we can brainstorm together and come up with something neat?

    Anyone interested in starting something like ‘The Symbian Signed Freeware Group’? If so, contact me – I’ll give you the webspace and the tools to make it happen, but don’t have time myself to review more applications.

  5. Antony Edwards on December 20th, 2007 19:27

    Hi Dario,

    We can never spend too much time talking to developers and understanding the problems that they face. One of the great things about working with developers is that they’re never afraid to tell you their opinion straight ;-) .

    BTW — don’t get me wrong — we’re certainly not complaining about the cost of running the Symbian Signed service. It keeps the devices open for native C++ development (which means developers can access all the latest functionality) and with ~8,000 C++ applications available and loads of developers spending their time programming on Symbian OS, we’re definitely getting value for money. I just like to make it clear to people that we do Symbian Signed to make sure developers continue to have access to the native interface; not to make money.

    Regarding freeware — our problem is actually exactly the one you mention. To become signed a known entity (i.e. someone with a publisher ID) has to ensure that the application meets the test criteria. So how can this work for freeware? The only way we can think of is for some known entity to review the freeware, test it to ensure it meets the test criteria, and then sign it (these days using Express Signed). Very few freeware applications would pass the test criteria first time around; from our investigations we’d expect about 3-5 iterations for a first-time Symbian developer and 1-2 for an experienced developer. Unfortunately we simply don’t have the bandwidth to do this for the available freeware. So our problem is simply finding someone with a publisher ID willing to review freeware. Cellmania are doing this today, but the turn-around times have not been what people are after. I’d be happy to pay for the publisher ID, it’s just the time that is a problem for us.

    Open Signed On-line will solve the freeware problem for individuals; i.e. individuals will be able to install freeware on their own phones (with a warning at installation time). The above approach is only needed to get freeware properly signed.

    BTW — we actually wrote to the FSF about 3 years ago when we were first starting Symbian Signed asking them for their input, but never received a response. Personally I think that many of the “Symbian” issues people talk about today are really “mobile vs desktop” issues and it’s simply because Symbian leads the market that they are labelled as “Symbian” issues. With all the new desktop OSs coming into mobile 2008 is going to be really interesting on that front. So if anyone who wants to create the “Free Mobile Software Foundation” — I think they’ll be meeting a real industry need.

    Cheers,
    Antony

  6. "Rotateme" rotates your N95 screen like the iPhone | Simply Symbian on December 23rd, 2007 18:54

    [...] Update: You’ll find download and signing instructions here. [...]

  7. steven on December 30th, 2007 00:56

    hey dario. i just want to say thank you for all the information you’ve been sharing with us in the online community. i’ve been here since i bought my n95 in june and you’ve been nothing but good fortune and great help. i just followed through this how-to and it was simple. thank you!!!

  8. Dario Soltani on December 30th, 2007 11:22

    Hi Steven, thanks alot :) I’m glad you like what I’m doing here!

  9. Geoff on January 5th, 2008 04:46

    I get the following message: “Could not verify signature with known algorithm, exiting. encryption error, not a DSA certificate”. What am I doing wrong?
    Thanks.

  10. Dario Soltani on January 5th, 2008 23:31

    Hi Geoff, what devcert are you using and which software are you trying to sign?

  11. gregg on January 7th, 2008 22:31

    hey, when symbian signed produces the certificate its not a .cer file but a html file could this be bacuse when it does the dev cert request it said an error happened but still produces one. please help me. many thanks in advance

  12. Dario Soltani on January 8th, 2008 09:28

    Hi gregg, try again – I belive either you have a browser problem or Symbian Signed had a server problem at the time you tried. Anyways, try again now, turn off any download applications if you use those and try to use a different browser?. Let me know how it works.

  13. gregg on January 9th, 2008 00:39

    hey dario, it worked this time!!! yey. just changed from opera to standard IE! now before i go signing this to anything is there any way i can like make a copy of it to use on another program if you get my jist. is it just a copy and paste job to make two? many thanks for your support through this.

  14. Dario Soltani on January 10th, 2008 01:21

    Great gregg :) Well the certificate will time out but you can use it for a period of time (see your Symbian Signed certificate page for info on dates etc) on any unsigned sis file you want.

    Just give it a go and we’ll take it from there.

  15. KO on January 23rd, 2008 03:32

    So far I do everything right until I try an upload the SignSIS_38XX…csr. It keeps saying “File not valid crs file” an gives me a list of reasons why, none of which helps me out in anyway. Am I missing something?

  16. Dario Soltani on January 23rd, 2008 20:11

    KO: are you sure you’re doing everything right?

  17. steven_s on February 20th, 2008 19:47

    hey dario, at symbian signed did they disable uploading the .csr step?

  18. Dario Soltani on February 21st, 2008 09:13

    Hi Steven, it seems some changes have been made. I’m not sure if the .csr step is disabled only during office hours GMT or not but I’m trying to get some answers from Symbian Signed. More on this asap.

  19. steven_s on February 21st, 2008 20:15

    hey dario, i think the open signed is disabled and i was rummaging through the forum on symbiansigned it seems it has been disabled (at all times of the day) for quite some time now. the other options mentioned above won’t work unless you have publisher ID and the.pkg file used to create the software. That being said, i’m sure you have more authority to tell us when it’ll be back up and running again ;)

  20. ANdy on February 22nd, 2008 11:31

    Hi,

    the webiste is not letting you get anything signed without publisher ID have you got one and would you be willing to sign my application? – Please Email me

  21. steven_s on February 22nd, 2008 17:00

    hey, no i don’t have a publisher’s ID. Currently the public open-signed option is disabled and will undergo maintenance on the week of the 25th. After that it should be up and running :)

  22. dedo on February 27th, 2008 03:43

    hey i need help i have all what i need but when i go to Request appear Your request has failed. Reason:
    - Developer Certificates will be ENABLED for users who have a Publisher ID ONLY. (during GMT office hours)
    what i have to do

    thanks

  23. Dario Soltani on February 29th, 2008 15:03

    Hi everybody, symbian signed is currently disabled for non publishers. It will eventually be re-enabled again but as of now we don’t know when this will happen and how it will affect us.

  24. dedo on March 4th, 2008 03:03

    symbian have new massege en website

  25. Dario Soltani on March 4th, 2008 09:19

    thanks for the tip dedo :)

  26. Adrian on March 6th, 2008 04:12

    Hi,

    I signed 1 of my application, however, when I tried to install it in the phone, the phone fail to check if the software certificate is revoked, it is not possible to obtain the certificate status. Then the installation of my application is abort…….Why is it so? How to solve??

    Thanks,

    Regards

    Adrian

  27. Dario Soltani on March 10th, 2008 00:32

    Read the top of the post. Symbian signed has changed and a new post has been written accordingly.

  28. Geo on March 12th, 2008 12:20

    HY, I hav only 1 question, is it possibile?…

  29. CHRIS HARRISON on March 17th, 2008 21:47

    I have tried to load the sis on the request option and when i do it says i need a publisher id. Can you help?

  30. Dario Soltani on March 19th, 2008 11:58

    Geo and Chris: It is possible for most applications, but you need to read my new instructions, see top of the post for link.

  31. STEVEN on March 21st, 2008 03:07

    Hi, is anyone know how to get signed on symbiansigned? when i try to open request, it said failed on request without publisher ID. any Idea? your reply very much appreciated. thanks

  32. r.a.k on April 15th, 2008 20:16

    yeh Steven…its precisely that as the confirmation told you! the open request is only open to developers who have a publisher id…seeing as most people like yourself and me included don’t want to spend $200 on getting a publisher id which only lasts 12 months…i just hope SymbianSigned realise how much they have hindered quite a considerable part of their community and quick! and yes i do know that open request online is available but its a bit hard when you keep getting error messages after trying to sign freeware where the UID is not registered to your email address!!…the whole notion of freeware is practically thrown out the window…anthony i really hope you’re reading this…

  33. DJSnooTy on April 16th, 2008 18:02

    Cant we use rotateme on E65? :( please let me know guys..

    Mail : L.karpat@gmail.com
    Msn : L.karpat@gmail.com

  34. Dario Soltani on April 17th, 2008 08:56

    So many questions and no time to answer any of them.

    DJSnooTy: No the E65 does not have an accelerometer sensor as far as I know.

  35. Sintoni on May 1st, 2008 04:47

    Developer Certificates will be ENABLED for users who have a Publisher ID ONLY. (during GMT office hours)
    same problem with dedo…
    solution,guys?

  36. Nokia N95 Rotateme application | Cell Phone Reviews on May 18th, 2008 15:28

    [...] PROBLEMS? Read this:http://www.simplysymbian.com/2007/12/…rotateMe v2.0 on N95 with auto rotation function like an iphone.Available (unsigned) end [...]

  37. Phill on May 21st, 2008 13:36

    Hi,

    I use linux. All the signing software is not helpful to me. Can’t I just use Rotateme 2.0 on my N95 8GB? The iphone and iPod touch don’t seem to have this problem.

    I hope I haven’t made a mistake buying this phone.

    It’s way too hard….

    Cheers
    Phill.

  38. Phill on May 21st, 2008 15:45

    Hi list,

    I tried to use the OpenSign web page thing.

    It says the UID (whatever that is – and believe me – I don’t want to know) in the application is not registered to my email address.

    Of course it only tells you after spending considerable time being tortured by validation code system. The system tries to trick into entering the wrong code (several times in my case) when registering for an apparently now useless account.

    It would seem that I can only use this system if I write my own application for my own phone and embed my own UID in the said application. Hmmm, not so useful to me.

    It seems I am barred from using rotateme.

    Does anybody know how to make this signing thing work? It seems the documentation has an infinite loop in it.

    Silly question but I may as well…. why? What on earth has possessed Symbian to do this really weird signing thing?

    Please don’t answer that, I won’t feel any better…. It’s for my own good… am I right?

    Cheers
    Phill.

  39. Batman26 on May 29th, 2008 14:17

    I was wondering if anyone can help me as i’m beginning to lose my hair. I am trying to sign the RotateMe2 application. I have signed upto symbian signed as instructed and follow all the steps but the web page just freeze’s when i try to upload my sissign.xxxxxxx.csr file. I have also tried another way of signing the application by using GenialSiS application which is an auto sign program, but that comes up with an error of ” you cannot sign more than 1 csr file within 24hrs” and then close’s. But i haven’t tried siging anything for a few days! Is there anyone that knows any other ways of getting the application certificate from symbiam or is it possible somebody could do it for me. I don’t want to post my IMEI number over a forum so if anyone could help it would be greatly appreciated. If you could email me at ndavenport84@yahoo.com.

    Thanks

  40. athar on May 31st, 2008 07:53

    hey guys..
    i have a nokia n95 and i hav bin tryin to install the rotate me software. it just keeps sayin invalid certifcate or certificate expired..
    help please.

  41. stefan on June 10th, 2008 02:46

    Ok,so for those who want rotate me on nokia n95 8gb. Install new firmware 20016 an you will have options i display auto rotate you click ON..and just instal acelerometar SIS…you can find it anywhere signed ..and you will have your rotate me on nokia n95 8gb…

  42. Kristoffer on June 18th, 2008 11:12

    I just have to say I totally dispise Symbian for this signing process, it hinders and makes application development/testing such a annoying pain that it shouldn’t be possible. Such companies deserves to rot and go bankrupt. Freeware applications being hard to use, that’s classic.

  43. idan on June 19th, 2008 22:21

    Can I ask what Email can I use for the registration at the symbian site?

  44. usman on June 25th, 2008 10:08

    Dear users if u want to sign ur application which are of symbian series 60 3rd edition then u can easily download secman_crack tool.It is symbian security manager tool .Just download it and perform 3 simple steps .No need to give ur IMEI and no need to upload any file or create cer file.Just see the help file included in this file.Take care.and have funn…..
    Here is the download link for secman_crack tool:
    http://rapidshare.com/files/124673644/Secman_Binpda_crack_tool_.zip

  45. directory submitter on July 25th, 2008 01:53

    directory submitter…

    Many blogs have stopped using trackbacks because dealing with spam became too burdensome. (Blogger now has backlinks – very similar…

  46. Cal on August 12th, 2008 13:48

    Hi. Any other ideas? I’m using linux and symbiansigned will not let me sign up (the ‘accept legal agreement’ part doesn’t load for me :( )

  47. Thijs on August 13th, 2008 18:22

    Useless info. Update the article so it gives a warnig that it is only for developers! Wasted another half hour

  48. May on December 29th, 2008 07:51

    So, it’s true. Symbian is not ‘open’ for developer. it is open for it’s emulator only. what a great platform

  49. sodeli on June 29th, 2009 22:05

    when i use the aplication in step 3 when it trys to add the country info it stucks there and say an error , and ask me to put the country state and company ? what i am supose to do?

  50. cc on July 3rd, 2009 20:27

    when request DevCert… it gave me:

    Open Signed Offline/Developer Certificates are only available to users with a Publisher ID.
    Developer Certificate requests are currently only available to users who have a Publisher Id

    pls help

  51. nico on November 8th, 2009 14:29

    I sign my application in and it works http://www.noubis.com/sign-app-phone.php

  52. alex on December 26th, 2009 14:31

    I sign my applications on the site http://www.noubis.com/sign-app-phone.php and it works really well

  53. this sucks too on February 2nd, 2010 04:04

    this article wastes my time – please delete it

    NOONE has a publisher ID – and without that, you cant get that certificate

    bye bye Symbian, I guess your time is over now

  54. alexandra on March 9th, 2010 14:29

    hi,
    to sign your applications go to: http://www.certif-generator.com/

  55. Elias on June 10th, 2010 02:20

    How about signing apps without additional software? Like via OPDA? http://www.elias-lange.de/how-to-sign-install-unsigned-symbian-s60-apps/

  56. niv on October 19th, 2010 02:19

    tnxs :)

  57. matrixmainframe on January 8th, 2011 18:31

    You must be mad to post your IMEI on any website. The IMEI is the unique identifier of your phone and can be used to kill/block your phone by your service provider or it can be used to create a clone of your phone which could then be used for any number of illegal purposes!!

  58. Elka Firmanda on April 12th, 2011 06:21

    I’ve used Ubuntu,
    how to sign the apps using ubuntu ? :(

  59. Symbian_user on July 6th, 2011 05:11

    I registered at SymbianSigned and it works..
    It not for developers ..

  60. bharat on July 20th, 2011 15:44

    Thanks man………………….Hope this will not cause any serious problem to my nokia……………….
    Thanks again….

  61. muhammad anees on July 31st, 2011 01:37

    where is “my symbian signe” is lookated in website

  62. muhammad anees on July 31st, 2011 01:38

    oops located

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  64. ashok biluniya on January 19th, 2013 05:19

    how get a velid nokia certificed.