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iPad Jailbreaking, and Must Have Apps

by on May 30th, 2010

Since there are now a lot more Canadians with iPads, as of this weekend, I thought it would be a good idea to go over jailbreaking, and why it might be for you. We may have talked about this already, but I’m sure there are quite a few new visitors to the site, now that the iPad is finally available in Canada.

Let’s start fresh. What is jailbreaking? Jailbreaking is a way to bypass the locks and restrictions Apple puts on the device, allowing you to install 3rd party applications that you will not find in the App Store, customize the look of your iPad, and much more.

The process of jailbreaking your iPad is incredibly easy, on the current firmware. It is a free, simple tool called “Spirit”, available cross platform, Mac, Windows, and Linux. You can download it from their website: www.spiritjb.com. Once you have downloaded it, unpack it to your desktop, and open it up. Connect your iPad to your computer, and Spirit will recognize it automatically. Click the “Jailbreak” button, and your iPad will flash for a second, and then have a pinkish, celestial image on the screen, with a progress bar. Your iPad will reboot, when it’s finished.

Here’s a quick video of the process:

When your iPad has finished rebooting, you’ll have a new app store on your home screen called Cydia. This is where you find some great mods hacks and tweaks for your iPad, as well as some great apps that were submitted to the Apple App Store, but were rejected for some reason. You’ll find free and paid apps here, just like Apple’s App Store. You will also find plenty of great themes.

Here’s a short list of free apps from Cydia, that I recommend downloading right away.

1. Backgrounder – This will be the main reason most people jailbreak their iPad. Backgrounder gives you multitasking on your iPad, something Apple will not offer until OS 4.0 for iPad is released in the fall. This allows you to run multiple applications, at the same time, having them run it the background, while you perform other tasks. You choose how you want to activate and deactivate Backgrounder and you will see a badge on the app’s icon, letting you know it’s running in the background. This will run your battery down a bit faster, but it a very useful feature.

2. SBSettings – This is a great addition to your iPad, that gives you quick access to some of your settings, with a quick swipe of the status bar. It can be accessed from within any app, so you won’t have to quit what your doing.

3. Winterboard – This is what you need, if you want to change the look of your iPad. There are many iPhone themes already compatible with iPad, and there a more and more iPad specific themes coming out everyday. Themes can contain different icons for your apps, fixed wallpapers, different docks, different sounds, and more. You’ll have to play around with this, to see what you like. Here’s a sneek peek at a new theme I’m working on, called OS X Tiger for iPad.

Click to enlarge

There are some great paid apps to look for in Cydia, like WiFiSync, which allows you wirelessly sync your iPad to iTunes on your computer, over your home WiFi network, and Infiniboard, which allows for vertical scrolling of your pages and the ability to add a lot more apps.

If you like games there are some great Nintendo and PlayStation game emulators available. The newest, and best one (in my opinion) is SNES (HD). This is a full featured Super Nintendo emulator, that uses an iPhone as the controller, over BlueTooth. This does a great job of recreating the Super Nintendo experience.

So that is just a brief glimpse into the world of jailbreaking. There is always the risk of your iPad becoming “bricked”, or inoperable, but this is usually fixed by doing a fresh restore in iTunes. If you decide this is for you, you do this at your own risk, as we cannot take responsibility for anything that might happen in the process.

If you’d like to learn more about jailbreaking, you can visit www.iEvolution.ca, and you can follow me on Twitter: @rorypiper

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Posted under: App Store, iPad Firmware, iPad News, Jailbreaking, Tutorials, Videos

  • wuju

    So Winterboard works perfectly with iPad now?

  • Delta_T

    Why jailbreak your iPad? OS4 will come soon and a lot of 'wannahave' features will be standard.

  • Frank

    Hey what sbsettings skin is this? It's nice.

  • rorypiper

    Well, it's stable. There are some things thare a lot different from the iPhone, and aren't working on iPad, but for the most part you can use pretty much any theme.

  • rorypiper

    OS 4 won't be available for iPad until the fall, so this should get you through the summer. 😉

  • rorypiper

    It's called Black iPad SBSettings.

  • al

    FYI: i just used the guide, thanks; just found out aGPS doesnt work after JB..:(

  • Brian

    That was such an awesome easy jailbreak, Activator make the iPad space so much more functional and backgrounder is a must of course.

    I went to buy SNES from Cydia, but was quite disturbed when Saurik first wanted my Google account and password, then after hesitantly agreeing it asked for me to give Saurik access to my email and contacts list, why? When I declined I kept getting an error. I quickly went and changed my password, I don't remember this before.

    Does Rock want personal info like that? I'd prefer that someone hacked my facebook (the other option), but the privacy of my google contacts is valuable to me.

  • Excellent guide. Highly recommend everyone to check out @rorypiper as he's always on top of the latest jailbreak news.

  • rorypiper

    Add the developer's repo. It is wherethewoozlewasnt (dot) com (slash) cydia. SNES HD is the one you want, and it's free here.

  • stonee

    It's a bad idea to jailbreak your ipad on the time that you got it from the “ups”. Like me bought my dell vestro with linux, the next day i have it replaced by windows xp. But i think my dell work in linux with higher performance than windows xp, because it was tested by developers under the linux. That aren't the reason why we can't jailbreak it, just do it according the better post like this like that.

  • yvrgal

    I will not jailbreak my iPad simply because I don't want to lose the warranty with Apple. Even if you restore your iPad or iPhone, Apple will know it was jailbreaked. My iPhone is already jailbreaked. That's good enough for me.

  • Edge


  • Edge

    I love my iPad, and couldn't imagine not having it jailbroken (a couple months ago I wasn't sure it was necessary, but now, totally sure). First I did after opening up my iPad – put on an anti-glare screen protector from Boxwave (keeps down on the finger prints and glar). Second thing – I jailbroke it. Only then did I go to set it up and install all the apps.

  • Brian
  • Brian

    Actually better yet follow this, solution 2 http://www.kilrathy.net/sites/ipad-location-ser

    The former will only work until a reboot, this will work with every reboot

  • al

    @Brian; thks for the links, unfortunately I am using a PC so cannot make use of the solution….:(

  • al

    @Brian; thks for the links, unfortunately I am using a PC so cannot make use of the solution….:(

  • Actually you can if you download putty onto your windows machine, then just follow the same steps

  • zaraly

    About Jailbreaking for iPad.This article have clear description.

  • Full force has become a jailbreak must for me, scales iPhone apps to look great on the iPad unlike the crappy pixel doubling. Facebook and simple tweet look grest with full force.

  • al

    Wat is putty? Is this is..? http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/put


  • Actually, once you restore, you can't tell!

  • Pingback: ProSwitcher Comes to the iPad | iPad in Canada Blog - Canada's #1 iPad Resource()

  • Chris Windsor7747

    you are 100% wrong. If anything goes wrong when its jailbroken you can restore it than bring it to apple. And if it is super screwed than it wont turn on. I have taken my iPhone in dozens of times and it is always jailbroken. As long as cydia is not on our device when you bring it in they dont care/ know.

  • Gr

    sdfsd fg fsdgag fa

  • Fku


  • Skradz

    not true.. its now legal in the US, not in canada yet, but my iphone was jailbroken many times and they dont check.. i went twice in a month they fixed my iphone thats it.