Signing a freeware un-signed app for a Symbian phone

When you install an app on a Nokia phone these days it won’t install unless it’s been signed with a trusted certificate. Problem is you have to pay to get a certificate you can use to allow anyone to install software. That’s why you get a lot of free software for Nokias at the moment that you just can’t install because they haven’t been signed.

So how do we install the software?! The only easy solution is to get a certificate that only works on your phone, and is locked to your phone’s IMEI number. The easiest way to do this is to use a free site in China that will give you the bits you need.

1. Go to http://cer.opda.cn/en
2. Click register at the top right
3. Fill in the details and register
4. Once you’ve registered click the “My Certificate” link at the top and log in
5. Now click the orange “Apply cer” button near the top right
6. Fill in the details, the only bit that matters in this page is your IMEA number (get it using *#06# on your mobile), the rest of the fields are to help you identify your certificate
7. After clicking the button you’ll go to the My Certificate page where you certificates get listed. It’ll show your newly applied for certificate and that it’s in the ‘apply’ stage
8. Now go down the shops or play your favourite computer game and wait a few hours. It took about 3 hours for my first one to get approved. Perhaps they’re running the system on a 486 or maybe it’s a manual approval thing, either way it takes a while. I’ve heard it ‘can’ take 24 hours sometimes. So keep coming back every few hours. The site will time our after a little while so you’ll need to log in again.
9. When your certificate is approved you will be able to click the “Signing” link on the certificate line that’s been approved. You can then upload your .sis file that you want signed and then download a signed version.

Easy! Pity the Symbian Foundation or Nokia couldn’t make it that easy.