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Dreamberry: better profile management

This annoyance has happened to me four times: lose all my profiles. First, one application reset all my ringtone profiles. Then another one did the same a few months later. “That’s what backups are for,” you must be thinking. But that is not so simple.

First off, I am a Linux user. I run Windows on VMWare very occasionally, so I don’t have the habit of making copies of my Blackberry data, and effective backups have to do with habit. It won’t work well if you don’t have the habit. My backups were all stale and I had to reprogram my profiles manually.

Then I upgraded my OS to 4.5. Of course I did a backup, but the restore operation did not work on the ringtones. On the ringtones only. So I lost them for the third time.

Then one day I woke up to a strange sound. It was my Blackberry telling me I had mail, but that sound was not familiar. Long story short: my profiles had all been reset while I was sleeping and I have no idea how that happened. It just happened. Four times in total. OK, this time I had a backup. But which is worse: reprogram everything by hand again…

or

launch VMWare, wait for Windows to boot up, connect device, enable USB connection, wait until it is really working (USB is extremely unstable in VMWare), launch Desktop Manager, wait until it recognizes the device, click about 14 interface elements to find the latest backup and tell Desktop Manager which one I want to restore, pray that the USB connection doesn’t drop during the operation, oh but it will, say profanity, disconnect, connect, wait until Desktop Manager detects it again, click 9 interface elements, see USB drop again, smoke in the collar, slam desk, curse RIM, disconnect, connect, try again…?

I always end up reprogramming everything by hand. It’s even less of a hassle than restoring my backup.

Note that by this time I don’t bother reprogramming ALL the profiles anymore. I just reprogram the “Normal” profile and that’s what I use all the time. And there goes a nice feature remarkably underused.

Alright, enough with the sob story. The problem with reprogramming all my profiles is that the existing management application is remarkably dumb. Let’s remember what is in that application’s screen:

First problem: I don’t like the LED flashing. It drives me nuts, it is like a child tugging on my sleeve. And I don’t even have kids. But that is the default in all events and most profiles. So I have to disable it in each single goddman event in each darn profile. Why can’t I disable it in ALL the events and profiles wholesale? All events, not just the phone or SMS. Everything.

Second problem: number of vibrations. Defaults to 2 in all events. I hate that. I use 2 vibrations for the phone, which means “someone is calling, attention required immediately”. For everything else, I want one vibration only. Again, I have to tweak each single damn event and profile.

And there is the volume. It’s too low, especially since I installed OS 4.5. Change each one individually to Loud etc. ad infinitum. Nightmare.

Also, why can’t I make one profile be a complete and exact copy of another profile? Then I would just need to make a couple of adjustments. For example, I want all my ringtones to be exactly the same in the Normal and in the Quiet profiles. I also want the same In Holster/Out of Holster behavior. I just want the volume to be different. Ideally, I should be able to “copy” or “clone” the Normal profile into the Quiet profile, then change the Quiet profile by changing the volume of all events from Loud to Medium or Low in one single stroke. Easy as pie.

But none of that is possible with the current profile management application. Nothing is possible with it except manually change each single one of all 11 options of each one of all 10 or so events in each one of the four or five profiles freaking in-di-vid-u-al-ly.

Man, I hate it when the man is forced to work for the machine. It has to be the other way around, always. (Please refrain from the Linux jokes – I’m with you!)

I don’t expect RIM to solve that problem for me. RIM has already shown us what they’re up to in relation to profile management. I need some developer to tackle this and make me a happy camper. Any takers? Am I the only one who hates the stock profile changer?

10 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. A very well articulated and appropo disertation :)

  2. I wish Desktop Manager had a Profile Editor. FAR easier (IMHO) to create/edit a profile on the PC and thus only need the on device profile editor to tweak them on occasion.

  3. Far easier… if you use Windows. :-\

  4. True that, but on my gov’t issued work laptop I have no choice but WindowsXP. At least they allow me add something like DM.

  5. Definitely a good idea!
    The current profile management on the bb devices is the worst part of all bb’s!

  6. when you configure your profiles, instead of using the “Normal” Profile as a template, use another one that matches more your needs, like the “Phone Only” profile. Then you have less modifications to do.

  7. How does one choose what template to use when creating a new profile Xandrex? Running 4.5 here and find no such option. And I don’t find such a thing in 4.7 on my Storm either.

  8. David B:

    I was saying : instead or taking the “Normal” profile and modify it, just take the “Phone only” profile and modify it.

    I am not saying you have a way of taking a profile and copy it.

  9. 3 problems, Xandrex:
    1) What’s the point of having so many and so customizable profiles if we’re prone to sticking to only two? And all that because of the profile manager’s clumsy design.
    2) Normal and Vibrate are the main ones. For example, those are the ones you get when you press/hold # on the Bold and on the Pearl. So using “Phone only” as you suggest would not be convenient.
    3) No matter how much any one given profile “matches more my needs” as you put it, it is riddled with default options that I dislike. So I have to change each one of those manually. I mention that in the article.

    Thank you for your input.

    • Luciano ES :

      yes, my answer was from my own usage, where I use a single profile and select the behavior with the holster in/out.
      (I have never used Normal and Silent for example).

      Profile configuration is very rich on BlackBerry devices, but profile management is very arid. The message in your article is very true.

      I think RIM has understood that, so they changed a lot of things on the Storm (and it gets quite complicated to understand, there are many articles in the public KB about that and I still have not understand everything). But there are still things missing like profile copy or automatic profile switcher (there are 3rd party apps that can do that).

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