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Richard S. Wright Jr.'s Blog

Addendum: As of March 19th, the fix has been posted. Make sure your iOS app version is 1.51 (TheSkyHD) or 1.21 (TheSky Mobile), and you are good to go.


Well, one of the things we just have to deal with when it comes to publishing an app for iOS, is there is a good bit of bureaucracy involved with getting an app on the store, or updated. Fortunately the update process is a bit quicker, but we can't whip them out like "Daily Builds" whenever we say... "screw up". This has of course happened... did I say "we"... no, "I" screwed up. My fault, on me.

It seems all that hoopla about TPoint on iOS is just one little .01 version further away. A last minute bug is preventing anyone from creating the initial TPoint model. This kind of kills the joy right?

Well, I have two bits of good news though. The fix is already rebuilt, validated, uploaded, and "waiting for review". They are set to post as soon as they pass review, and occasionally this only takes a couple of days. There is a weekend coming up though, and clear skies for many, and I did find a temporary work around that doesn't require an app update. It does require though that you monkey with the files in TheSkyHD or TheSkyMobile via iTunes. It's not too complicated, and I've taken some screen shots of the whole process. So... if you're that guy on the forum with an outreach event his weekend, let's try and save the day here.

1. First, connect your iOS device to your computer, and open iTunes. Select your device, go to Apps, and select TheSkyHD in the File Sharing section. A screen shot below shows what this looks like on a Mac, but it's basically the same on Windows. Yes, you caught me, I have other astronomy apps on my device. Nothing to see there, move along...

If your savvy with the iOS version of TheSky, you've already been using this to move over your favorite .SDBs, etc. to the device. You certainly won't have all these files, but you will have a folder called "SkyGeneratedFiles". Now we need to place a file in this folder, and iTunes does not give us a way to navigate down into the folder itself, so we are going to copy the whole folder to your desktop, make an addition, and then copy it back to the device.

2. Click on the SkyGeneratedFiles folder in iTunes and just drag it out to your desktop. Once there, open it in Finder/Explorer, and expand the TPoint folder. Attached to this blog is a file "" that you need to download and extract (it's down at the bottom, look for "Attachment:") Copy the three files from the archive into the /TPoint folder.

3. Now that you've added the files, drag the "SkyGeneratedFiles" folder back into iTunes in the file sharing panel for TheSkyHD. You should get a warning that you are replacing the exiting file.

Now, restart TheSkyHD or TheSky Mobile, and connect to a Paramount. It will ask you if you want to reuse the existing model, and just say NO. Then it will restart a new model.

For those customers (you know who you are) who like to reverse engineer everything in the guise of "support" <wink wink>, I'll go into a little more detail. The problem isn't that these files are missing from the app bundle, it's that you can't start a new model 'the first time'. Putting an old model in tricks it into going down a different code path, and then it does start the new model correctly when you tell it to start over with a new model. You might also if you are paying really close attention realize that I just showed you how to hack your iOS version of TheSky to use a TPoint model from your desktop copy of TheSkyX Professional. This is of course "unsupported"... naturally... but some of you won't let that stop you ;-)

You can also just wait for the update on the iTunes store, which should be available in a few days. If you go the above route, once you get the updated app there is nothing you need to do, and in fact you can skip the update for as long as you can stand to ignore Apples reminders. The bug is only in the very first startup phases, and once the well is primed, everything works as planned.

Sigh... okay. Clear skies everyone!



Posted 03-16-2017 11:06 PM by Richard Wright


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