These days there’s a much better network with Leaked Roms.
But when the HTC Touch Dual came into the picture in 2007, there was none of that early on. The first leak wasn’t a clean Rom dump, it was a direct copy of the Windows folder. Actually it was a leaked and then protected rom from a few “fellow” XDA members. They didn’t want to share their goodies, so we could port the apps to other devices. Little did they know I accepted the challenge of bypassing their protection. And by doing so we ended up with all the files unsorted in one folder. But still it was enough for some @XDA to make something out of it. Most importantly was the new keyboard, as this was the first version ever made by HTC. So that was a pretty big thing and Gullum made that work 😉
This also showed me the importance of anonymity in leaking and protecting your sources. “A Good friend Of XDA”
Later on, the device came into the market and real Rom’s came about, which made putting the apps back together again into installable cabs a lot easier.
I actually make it sound simpler than it was. We had a basic knowledge of how most of the regular folder/package looked like. So we could take those files and sort them out, leaving all the new stuffs all garbled and thrown together. We then had to compare the complete .hives files to an older version from a HTC Touch. Which then left us with all the new reg entries. Pairing the correct reg entries to the new apps was pretty simple as the reg entries gave away the name of the apps they belonged to. We could start adding those entries to regular .reg files. Most of the new apps used .xml files for their graphical lay out. Others we had to use hexedit to find the graphics in the source .exe file. All in all we had the first working installable cab files online in 2 hours. Which probably upset the guys that had protected the rom in the first place. As it wasn’t their intention to share the apps for everyone to use on any device. Hope we thought them a lesson in sharing is caring.