Today, I finally encountered for the first time an iPhone bug. All of a sudden, all of my apps were crashing (apps fail to start). All apps except those built into iPhone are affected. I started to panic. I’ve got lots of data stored in those apps. Then googling while walking in the Vasona Park (raising much resentment from my significant other), I tried a few tricks suggested by others, like deleting apps, rebooting, and etc. Then I tried downloading another free app, voila, the problem went away. What a relief!
When I returned home, I decided to “sync” all my apps on iTunes. Boy, what a mistake! iTunes decided to remove all the apps I downloaded from within iPhone. I then realized how fragile iPhone data are. I was used to having all of data backup on Treo by “Backupman.” There is no such a thing existed on iPhone without jailbreaking iphone. (I will keep looking). I lost all of the password data I stored in mSecure App. Little did I know how critical it is for any of the iPhone App to have its down backup/restore solution without relying on iPhone. Unfortunately, mSecure does not yet have mBackup yet (due 1/31/09) and it’s too late for me. After trying Apple’s restore a couple of times, I gave up. It appears the data (>200 records) were gone forever. The other data sets (like Contacts) seem to be intact because I had them sync’ed to Yahoo’s Address.
The lesson learned:
1) Avoid storing data in iPhone or apps that store data in iPhone unless the app has ways to backup/restore the data to a desktop or a server somewhere else.
2) Only download essential apps to iPhone. Remove them if they’re not needed to reduce resource drained on the fragile, fancy, iPhone OS.