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Add A Fresh Finder-Like File System Interface To iOS Using iFile [Cydia]

By Simon Slangen2013-02-18

file system interfacePeople jailbreak their iOS device for a variety of reasons. Some do it to enable piracy. Other people do it for the sake of messing around. But I believe most users jailbreak their device to extend its capabilities.

By default iOS apps are entirely sandboxed. They see only a subset of the iOS file system, and can affect only a limited part of the user experience. This is great from a security perspective—apps can wreak limited havoc. But for the experienced user, this mostly stifles the capabilities of a great device.

And so we jailbreak our iPhones and iPads. We tweak our system to enable infinite icons on the dock, and add better messaging capabilities. We could go on—great Cydia tweaks are legion—but there’s one specific tweak I’d like to highlight here today. iFile, which allows you to access and play with the iOS file system, is the main reason I’ve taken to jailbreaking my iPad.

iFile – Imagine Finder

Imagine Finder, but for your iOS device. Or for the crossover people, Windows Explorer. That’s a very simple way to look at iFile; the imaginary offspring of Finder and iOS. Of course, iFile is not developed by Apple, but it might as well have been. It looks and feels native, as if it was supposed to be shipped with iOS, but someone forgot to add it to the package.

file system interface

The interface, too, is reminiscent of Finder, yet stays true to the familiar iOS layout. In landscape mode, a simple sidebar graces the left side of the screen with shortcuts the user’s home folder and applications. Other folders can be added to the sidebar, or bookmarked for more fleeting access. In portrait mode this sidebar is initially hidden, but can be called back on stage by tapping the sidebar button.

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