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Distribute Enterprise applications Over The Air (OTA)

iOS supports over-the-air installation of enterprise apps, letting you distribute in-house software to your users without using iTunes or iPhone Configuration Utility.

Here are the steps by which you can create OTA distribution for your Enterprise apps.

Step 1: Archive your project as usual and open Organizer.

Step 2: Select the file you want to distribute and press the Share button.

Step 3: Select “iOS App Store Package (.ipa) and press next.

Step 4: A new window will which will ask you to enter the name of the ipa file. There is a check box at the bottom of the screen “Save for Enterprise Distribution”, select this check box.

Step 5: The window will expand to look something like this.

It will ask you few information on where you want to host the file, its icons and title.

Make sure you enter the application URL to the complete url of the file you would host on your server. Then enter title, subtitle, large icon url (512×512) and small icon url (57×57). Once you select the “ok” a .ipa file and .plist file will save in your select folder.

Step 6: Now we need to create a html file which will have the link of the plist file. Here is the sample file -

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd">
<html>
<head>
  <title>Sushi App</title>
</head>
<body>
  <ul>
    <li><a href="itms-services://?action=download-manifest&url=http://122.160.153.125/sushi_ota_16_05_2012.plist"> Tap Here to Install the Application</a>
  </li>
  </ul>
</body> </html>

Notice the url in form – itms-services://?action=download-manifest&url=http://122.160.153.125/sushi_ota_16_05_2012.ipa
The above is just a sample html which have only the link, you can create more good looking files but just be careful with the link.

Step 7: Now upload .ipa file, .plist file and .html file on the webserver (which you mentioned while saving the ipa file).

Step 8: Open the html file in safari and tap the link to install the app on your device.

Category: iPhone

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3 Responses

  1. Harish says:

    what are the contents and madatory tags that we need to write in .plist file.

    I have tried this perfectly but instead of download option it is showing “Cannot connect to IP ADD” error is coming .
    Both the system and the user are in same domain and apache server is running properly only can any one help me out how to solve this one.

    • Saurabh says:

      Seems you are checking this in iOS 7.1. Apple did a change in iOS 7.1 (as usual no where documented) it allow downloading apps only from HTTPS:// urls. So you might need to change all http urls to https. You can also trying changing the plist url in the html file.
      change “http://122.160.153.125/sushi_ota_16_05_2012.plist” to “https://122.160.153.125/sushi_ota_16_05_2012.plist”.

      It should work.

  2. Mark says:

    Hello! ,

    I was wondering if this method requires an enterprise account. if not then can it work for devices not on a provisioning profile – in other words – would this work for anyone who has access to the html file enclosing the itms service? Appreciate of you could please share your thoughts.

    Thanks,
    Mark

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