Vitaliy Zasadnyy

Cyrillic app name incorrectly encoded during porting Android app to Blackberry

Today I’ll describe bug in the latest version of apk2bar (version 1.5.0) tool provided by Blackberry for converting Android apk apps to bar.

“If debugging is the process of removing software bugs, then programming must be the process of putting them in.” Edsger Dijkstra

I had a small problem with displaying Cyrillic app name on PlayBook and BB10 simulator. App name was incorrectly encoded from Russian after converting using apk2bar tool. Problem appeared after updating bb eclipse plugin from version 1.3 to 1.5, with plugin v.1.3 it worked just ok (the same issue was with command line tools).


When I got problems with encoding with bb eclipse plugin, I decided to do the same thing with command line tools.

After tools setup (sing keys, debug tokens, etc), I’ve tried to repackage my apk file with this command (source apk file was in apk/ folder and destination for bar file was bar/ folder)

./apk2bar apk/ -d -t bar/ -a "zasadnyy" -cg

When I’ve got .bar file, I’ve installed it with command:

/batchbar-deploy bar/ mysecretpass

Unfortunately result was unsuccessful, app name was incorrectly encoded again. After first fail, I’ve read documentation a bit more and tried to use approach described on

When I unzipped bar file and opened MANIFEST.MS- I’ve found this line:

Application-Name: –ì–µ—Ä–æ–∏

According to documentation solution should be quite strait-forward:

  1. Rename MANIFEST.MS to <you apk name>.mf
  2. Update incorrect properties, in my case I’ve changed line from above to "Application-Name: Герои"
  3. Put edited manifest file in the same folder as <your apk name>.apk and rerun apk2bar tool with -m parameter, e.g.:
./apk2bar apk/ -d -t bar/ -a "zasadnyy" -m -cg

Repackage, deploy, run and ….. and again FAIL. Application name was “–ì–µ—Ä–æ–∏”.

After second fail, I decided to make dirty hack. I’ve edited MANIFEST.MF directly in repackaged bar file (Unzip → edit manifest → zip → change file extension to .bar).

Deploy updated .bar file to playbook and …. YEAH, we’ve got Cyrillic app name!

Conclusion and FIX:
  • Looks like in 1.5 release if apk2bar tool manifest encoding is misconfigured (in ver. 1.3 it worked just ok)
  • In order to FIX issue: unzip unsigned bar file → edit manifest → zip → change file extension back to .bar

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