Back in August of last year I ran into the issue of having to replace my BlackBerry code signing keys. RIM does not document how to backup your code signing keys and move it between computers but there are ways to do that. On the other hand first time developers sadly usually learn this the hard way. Back in August I posted the instructions on how to email RIM developer support (email@example.com) for new code signing keys but RIM let us know that they have changed it up a bit.
Here is how they describe the new process:
Obtaining replacement BlackBerry code signing keys is today easier, faster and free of charge. RIM has simplified the process of obtaining replacement BlackBerry code signing keys to better serve its developer community. The process is now automated, fast and free of charge. If a developer is in need of replacement signature keys, they can simply make a request through BlackBerry.com/SignedKeys. The turnaround is fast and no administration fee is required.
In other words RIM is simply letting you place a request for a new set of signing keys instead of asking for a replacement. Not groundbreaking but I am hoping for the day when RIM automates it! If Chase can give you a ten thousand dollar credit decision within 30 seconds I am sure RIM can find a way to give you code signing keys in the same amount of time.
I asked that RIM update the code signing page to note the change in how to request code signing replacement keys. Hopefully they will tackle making the code signing process less “scratch your left ear with your right hand” and more a simple process. For example, you need to change the version number of a PlayBook app every time you sign it. Problem is it will only accept a certain format of version numbers which is not documented anywhere… Oh and then you need to pass along a –BuildID in the code signing command which does some other magic I have yet to figure out.
Anybody else want to help me create a list for RIM on how they could make the build process for BlackBerry smartphone and PlayBook apps more streamlined? Sound off in the comments!