Dumping themes from S60 phones

From Legacy Portable Computing Wiki
Nokia N95 themes copied to the E52

This tutorial shows how to dump themes from S60 3rd Edition phones, and how to install dumped themes on other S60v3 phones.

Themes consist of three files: skn, mbm and mif.

As with other files in Symbian, preloaded (system) themes are in the Z drive and user installed themes are in C. In this guide, we'll dump themes from Z, but the procedure is similar for C.

First, you will need to hack your phone to access "private" folders. You should also have a file manager, such as X-plore.

Dumping themes

This tutorial involves copying the theme files into any preferred distribution/storage format, usually a ZIP file. In X-plore, this is done by pressing Shift or # and the middle d-pad button on each file that you want to zip, and then going into MenuZipCopy to Zip. The exact locations of the theme files differ between S60 versions, and are written below.

3rd Edition

On original S60v3 without feature packs (for example the N73), all of the files are in the same folder, Z:\private\10207114\import. Each theme has its own folder there.

3rd Edition, Feature Pack 1-2

  • The skn file is in Z:\private\10207114\import, each theme has its own folder.
  • The mbm and mif files are in Z:\resource\skins. Some themes may have more files than just the mbm and mif, make sure to copy those too.

Installing dumped themes

Using themes from mismatched S60 versions or screen resolutions may prevent your device from booting, so do this at your own risk. Themes from FP1 should work on FP2, but compatibility between S60v3 (no feature packs) and FP1/FP2 is not guaranteed - a softbrick has been observed on an E70 after copying N95 themes to it, though pre-Feature Pack themes will work in FP1 and FP2 devices (Tested with Nokia N95 by installing Nokia N80 theme).

For these steps, you can use the C drive (phone storage) or the E drive (memory card) interchangeably, but all the files for a single theme should be on the same drive.

  1. Copy the folder containing the dumped skn file to C:\private\10207114\import. If that folder doesn't exist, create it.
  2. Copy the folder with the mbm, mif and possibly other files to C:\private\10207114\import on S60v3, or to C:\resource\skins on FP1 and FP2.