App download from iPhone to iTunes

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Re: App download from iPhone to iTunes

Neil Laubenthal
Apple Configurator doesn’t use it’s own cache…at least for me. When I launch it it shows me my purchase history from the App Store and also offers to let me choose an .ipa file from My Mac…trying to add an app I know is already in Mobile Apps it goes out and starts downloading a fresh copy…I stopped it so no idea where it actually stores the downloaded file…but given that it knows it’s going to put it on the attached device I imagine it only downloads the thin version for that model. If there’s no device plugged in access to Apps is not available. It does let you modify the home screens of an attached device including folders.

iMazing uses it’s own app cache…and you can import .ipa files from Mobile Apps…which doubles the SSD space needed. I suppose that since iTunes doesn’t manage apps any longer that the copies in Mobile Apps could be deleted after import into iMazing.

For an app that has not been imported into the iMazing library my only choice is download…but again I have no idea whether app thinning would hinder things as the app doesn’t do anything without a device attached either. It doesn’t allow management of home screens at all…and while I’ve asked the vendor about it I got a reply that said they would put it on the “maybe” list but their initial thoughts were that it was maybe too hard to do.

It looks to me that Apple doesn’t want iOS devices to be app managed other than directly on the device. Hard to understand why they would remove a perfectly viable capability but as suggested earlier I have emailed Tim Cook…we’ll see if I get any answer.

On Feb 11, 2018, at 4:45 PM, @lbutlr <[hidden email]> wrote:

Not sure what you mean by that. Apple Configurator is less than a hundred MB in size.


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Re: App download from iPhone to iTunes

@lbutlr
In reply to this post by Fearghas McKay
On 2018-02-12 (08:54 MST), Fearghas Mckay <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> Neil
>
>> On 12 Feb 2018, at 10:25, Neil Laubenthal <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> Nope…no way to specify the location of the cache…and I agree…app thinning would keep the saved content from being useful anyway.
>
> Click on Options in the Content Caching preference Paine, the top item is Cache Location and an edit button.
>
> https://www.dropbox.com/s/873b4w3e0iv3b5h/Screenshot%202018-02-12%2010.53.52.png?dl=0

Ah, obviously that only shows up if you've enabled the feature as it's not present on my machines.

On 2018-02-12 (09:04 MST), Neil Laubenthal <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Doesn’t really help though as with app thinning an app downloaded on one device and cached to the laptop doesn’t provide the right app parts for a different device so the whole thing would get downloaded again…I doubt that caching is smart enough to get only the parts that it doesn’t already have from Apple and deliver the rest from cache…and it also uses more disk space in addition to what’s in Mobile Apps…although all of those .ipa files may be just so much bit dust at this point as nothing uses them AFAIK.

Caching downloads the full app, so it is exactly that same as downloading the apps into iTunes as the OP was already doing. Then the local iOS apps will get a thinned version from the cache.

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Re: App download from iPhone to iTunes

Neil Laubenthal
OK…so if I setup my Mac Mini as a parent caching server and our two laptops as child/peers (with a correspondingly smaller cache size to save space on the laptops)…then if one laptop downloads an iOS app it downloads the full non-thinned version and sticks it in it’s cache…so that any iOS device will get the right app parts…and simultaneously the Mac Mini will notice the download and also grab it for it’s much larger cache. The Mini never sleeps and the laptops sleep when they’re not being used. Then if the second laptop needs an app it will look first on it’s peers including the other sleeping laptop and then on the parent for the app before it goes out to the App Store and downloads it? I’ve got wake for wifi network access enabled on both laptops but it wasn’t clear that they would wake for caching access from the couple of support articles I read.

I’m fine with using Apple Configurator 2 to manage apps…but it would be nice to not have to download multiple times…and it still seems like more work than it was when iTunes did the app management.

Two other detail questions though…when an iOS device downloads an app…does it download the full non-thinned version and only use what it needs or does the App Store recognize that it’s a particular model and do the thinning on the store side before sending the download? Seems like it has to be the former as otherwise the caching server wouldn’t be able to grab the non-thinned version. Second…does the parent Mini caching server in the case need to be signed in to any particular ID or does it just watch the network and grab all downloads…and if the latter…I assume that each particular iOS device that loads an app goes through the App Store checking process to make sure it’s an allowable download for the Apple ID logged in to that device?



On Feb 12, 2018, at 4:38 PM, @lbutlr <[hidden email]> wrote:

Caching downloads the full app, so it is exactly that same as downloading the apps into iTunes as the OP was already doing. Then the local iOS apps will get a thinned version from the cache.


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There are only three kinds of stress; your basic nuclear stress, cooking stress, and A$$hole stress. The key to their relationship is Jello.

neil






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Re: App download from iPhone to iTunes

Neil Laubenthal
When iTunes 12.7.x does a backup (we use local rather than iCloud backups)…is it still backing up application data even though it doesn’t support app management…or does only a backup through Apple Configurator 2 backup app data?


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There are only three kinds of stress; your basic nuclear stress, cooking stress, and A$$hole stress. The key to their relationship is Jello.

neil






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Re: App download from iPhone to iTunes

@lbutlr
In reply to this post by Neil Laubenthal
On 13 Feb 2018, at 09:04, Neil Laubenthal <[hidden email]> wrote:
> OK…so if I setup my Mac Mini as a parent caching server and our two laptops as child/peers (with a correspondingly smaller cache size to save space on the laptops)…then if one laptop downloads an iOS app it downloads the full non-thinned version and sticks it in it’s cache…so that any iOS device will get the right app parts

Yes.

> …and simultaneously the Mac Mini will notice the download and also grab it for it’s much larger cache.

I don’t know. They share cache information, so the mini might not since it know it can get it from the other machine?

>  The Mini never sleeps and the laptops sleep when they’re not being used. Then if the second laptop needs an app it will look first on it’s peers including the other sleeping laptop and then on the parent for the app before it goes out to the App Store and downloads it?

Not sure if it will wake a sleeping laptop, and that might depend on the model of laptop and the nap settings?

> I’ve got wake for wifi network access enabled on both laptops but it wasn’t clear that they would wake for caching access from the couple of support articles I read.

WOL is a different thing than Apple “nap” feature. That would fully wake the laptop up.

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Re: App download from iPhone to iTunes

Neil Laubenthal
OK…more on this after some more testing of both content caching and Apple Configurator 2.

We live full time in our RV and have an always on Mac mini connected via cable, 2 always on but mostly asleep laptops connected via wifi and 4 iOS devices.

I originally tried setting up the mini as a parent caching server and the laptops as peers…but this resulted in a whole lot of intra-RV traffic as the caches talked to each other…so I disabled caching on the laptops and reset it on the Mini to delete all the old data. I’ve got the mini setup for all local networks sharing a single public IP as our router (a WifiRanger) provides cable and wifi LAN in the RV and connects to the internet via campground wifi or directly connected MiFi device depending.

Once I did that and rebooted the iOS devices…caching appears to work correctly…the first iOS device that downloads apps via wifi goes slowly and I can see the cache folder on the mini getting updated. Subsequent iOS device download apps quite quickly with no internet access as checked on the router throughput page.

So my suggestion is to just have a single content caching server unless you’ve got a lot of devices…I thought that enabling it on the laptops as well would help but apparently not.

Apple Configurator 2…on the other hand…just isn’t working as one would expect. While the home screen management part works fine…the application update management doesn’t.

On my iPhone 6s+ up to date…the phone shows 6 apps needing updating. Plugging it into the laptop with AC2 running the home screen shows up on the laptop as expected and shows a 6 on the folder containing App Store…but the upper right hand number on the laptop app only shows 3…but at least they’re 3 of the 6 the phone thinks it needs. Clicking update (the first time) resulted in a slow internet download but then at the end instead of loading the apps to the phone I got a “downloading placeholder” message for each of the 3 apps AC2 thought needed updating. The phone afterwards still showed 6. Clicking update again resulted in another “downloading apps” thermometer…but the “download” went a lot faster the second time, obviously loading from the single content caching server…with again the “downloading placeholders” messages. At that point…I just clicked Update All on the phone and all 6 quickly downloaded from the content caching server as expected. Plugging the phone back into AC2 the home screen on the laptop shows a 1 on the folder with App Store in it despite not showing it on the phone…and AC2 properly says there are no updates.

Plugging my 10.5 iPad Pro into AC3 it tells me that a single app named Search needs to be updated…no such app exists…while the iPad Pro itself says that GasBuddy needs to be updated. Clicking Update in AC2 proceeds to download and update “Search” on the iPad but then it insists Search still needs updating. Updating the iPad manually works as expected but then when plugging back into the laptop AC2 still insists that Search needs to be updated.

So…TL;DR…content caching appears to lower the bandwidth needed for updating multiple devices but AC2 just doesn’t work to do it…you need to update your devices via wifi.

I also took another look at iMazing 2 with their latest “app management” update…it still doesn’t appear to properly updated apps unless you’ve gone through the import into iMazing library process…which uses up a lot of SSD space I would rather not waste. I know that I could import and then delete the .ipa files from /Mobile Apps…which would then use up the same amount of SSD space as Mobile Apps used to…but I am hoping that eventually AC2 will get fixed or that iMazing will get updated to use the existing copies and properly manage updates.



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There are only three kinds of stress; your basic nuclear stress, cooking stress, and A$$hole stress. The key to their relationship is Jello.

neil






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