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FAQ: How To Backup Your BlackBerry Applications With BBMCP

bbmcp-interface Over the past few months I have shown a few friends how they can backup their BlackBerry apps using some free online tools. Its a shame that RIM does not provide this functionality natively in Desktop Manager but at least it is possible. I mentioned this to Cory from BBGeeks and he was kind enough to respond with a whole How-To guide for backing up your 3rd Party BlackBerry applications using the powerful BBMCP application. He also gave us permission to post it as a guest article on BerryReview.

Check out the guide below and let us know what you think!

With the recent release of a wide variety of BlackBerry devices comes an increase in system power, larger system storage, and enhanced support for enormous media cards. All of these factors combined make it easier than ever to load up your BlackBerry with Themes & Games, and ever increasing numbers of BlackBerry applications. The problem with having so much on your device is it is quite difficult to recover everything in the event of a complete OS failure. If you do not have your favorite BlackBerry apps backed up somewhere safe then it is a pain staking process to find them all again and download / register etc. There is hope on the horizon though folks. I would like to introduce you to the BlackBerry Master Control Program. With the help of the BlackBerry Master Control Program you can easily backup all of your default and 3rd party apps quickly and easily. Here is how you do it!

Steps required to install the BlackBerry Master Control Program

device-pin The first step to being able to backup your BlackBerry applications is to install the BlackBerry Master Control Program on your PC (no support for Mac at this time). To download the software simply head over to the BBMCP download page and select the version of the software you want to use. In most cases the first option will be the best choice. once you have the software downloaded just double click on the exe file (looks like a large blue gear) and follow the on screen prompts. You will be given the option to run the software after it has been successfully installed. In the lower left corner of the user interface you will see a text field labeled "Device PIN". If the BBMCP program has correctly identified your BlackBerry you will see your device PIN listed here. Immediately below that there is a field labeled ""Device Password". If necessary, enter your device password in this field.

Backing up your BlackBerry Applications using BlackBerry Master Control Program

Now that you have the software installed, let’s take a look at how it can be used to backup all of your existing applications for easy recovery down the road. It is important to note that the BlackBerry Master Control Program is capable of doing much more than just backing up your BlackBerry application and it would be worth your while to poke around and see what else you can do with it. For the purpose of this article however, I will be focusing only on backing up BlackBerry applications.

Where do I start?

backup-icon When looking at the BlackBerry Master Control Program interface the icon you will want to focus on initially looks like a folder with a clock and a green arrow. This icon is located on in the right side column in the third row. If you hover your mouse over this icon you will see it’s functions listed as follows:

  1. Save Modules
  2. Backup & Restore
  3. ALX/JAD builder

bbmcp-interface Once you click that icon you will see a number of important pieces of information. The most important of which is the field labeled "Modules Folder". This is where your applications backup is going to be stored on your PC. By default the storage location is the BBMCP folder on your C drive. If you want to change this simply click the browse folders icon and choose a new destination (like "Desktop"). Whatever you choose, be sure to remember it since you will need the backup file in order to restore the apps to your BlackBerry at a future date. The second area you want to focus on is the button located towards the top of the interface labeled "Retrieve" under the "List management" heading. Clicking this will pop up a box that indicates the program is building a list of all your installed applications. Once the program has completed its activity you will see a full list of your installed apps. Depending on how much of a power user you are this list can be quite long. The next step in the process requires you to check off any applications that you want to backup. Do this by clicking the blank box to the left of each applications name. If you are like me and have a huge list of installed BlackBerry apps, there are a couple buttons to help you make the selection process easier.

  1. All Button: Clicking this will select every installed BlackBerry app in the list
  2. Clear Button: Clicking this will erase (not from your device) the installed BlackBerry app list
  3. INV Button: Clicking this will select every installed BlackBerry app in the list other than what you have already selected
  4. None Button: Clicking this will deselect every installed BlackBerry app in the list

export-info Once you have made your selections it is time to create a series of backup files on your PC. Under the "Operations" heading just below the "List Management" heading you will see a large "Save" button. Ensure that "Create ALX/JAD" is checked off. NOTE: I am not exactly sure what "Group" refers to and the instructions are pretty vague so best bet is to probably stay away from checking that one off. Once you click the "Save" button you will see a pop up that asks you to enter a bit of information. Basically it is asking you to create a folder (by naming it), add a description and version /vendor information.

  • Name:Cooper BlackBerry
  • Description:Backup of Coopers BlackBerry February 2010
  • Version:OS
  • Vendor:AT&T

What this does is backup the RIM modules from your phone (not 3rd party apps). The next step is to backup your 3rd party applications using the "Backup" button located under the "Backup & Restore" heading. Again, make sure you have all the modules you want backed up checked off in the list and click the "Backup" button. You will see the progress bar fill up green and that means your backup is complete. The backup of 3rd Party applications will be located in the BlackBerry Master Control Program folder inside a folder called "backup".

That wasn’t so hard was it?

There you go folks. A quick and easy way to backup all of your core RIM modules and your 3rd part BlackBerry applications in one convenient location. Never again will you have to deal with a lost app due to OS failure or a corrupted module. Restoring your applications can be accomplished using the BlackBerry Master Control Program or through a standard load via BlackBerry Desktop manager.

This how to guide was written by Cory from, a website dedicated to providing news, reviews, and information to BlackBerry users.

10 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. It is nice to see more “how to” articles. Thanks.

  2. What about 3rd-party app data? I have a mobile checkbook app, and I did a full backup in Desktop Manager and BBSAK, then wiped my handheld, and neither restore gives me the data I had in this app. Granted, I didn’t spend a lot of time trying to figure it out, but backing up data for your non RIM apps would also be pretty handy.

  3. i wanted to say thank you for writing this faq/howto.

    i need to update my site so the help is written more in “howto” fashion so it is easier to get to specific tasks.

    a few things i would like to point out in addition to everything here:

    you can tap F6 to jump directly to the save modules page instead of learning the navigation icons. F1 through F12 take you to different areas, almost all of the icons normal navigation areas.

    for a full backup i normally run DM’s normal database backup, then i run DM’s device switch wizard as if i am actually going to switch devices — but obviously i stop when it is done with the first part — this will make a backup of all add-on and ota cod files and will actually retain some settings if restored correctly. then i use MCP to backup all third party cod’s as shown here: – much of the information concerning these abilities is here: – i will get the documentation side of things a little more organized as soon as i can.

    after an os installation i restore everything in the exact opposite order with the rim databases going in absolutely last.

    detailed step by step os installation instructions are here:

    thanks again for the faq, hopefully this additional information will help!


  4. tried this various times.. comes up with my PIN sometimes but then i click ‘retrieve’ and it disappears.. so basically it doesnt work for me!

    ive updated everything to the latest versions… still not working

    • hmm. windows vista or 7? if so, try again after disabling user account control (uac) in control panel. what version of blackberry desktop manager is installed? 5.0 or higher is strongly recommended.

  5. I cannot connect to BBMCP with my BB Curve 8310. It does work with BB Desktop Manager. Any ideas?

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