Categories SB Addon

Author: BigBoss  //  Category: Apps

Developer Ashikase has written a Springboard add-on for Categories app. What this does is takes categories an moves the folders directly into springboard. The result is that everything loads very quickly, instantly more like. Also, the icons are rounded and badges are supported. Another interesting feature he has added is that if you make a category folder called “Recent” and leave it empty, it will track your last loaded applications. Pretty neat!

This extension to categories was not written by me. Ashikase has written other apps such as backgrounder. He is selling it for 99c in cydia store. If you are interested check it out. If you don’t want to fork out 99 cents, then you can still use categories as it is.

And yes, Categories is still in development and will remain free, but I have been distracted with other stuff recently. But there are plans to integrate some native support for this new extension in the GUI of categories app as well as a long list of things I’ve had planned since 1.1.x time frame…

BigBoss Authors: Mark Bruce & Kory Lee


65 Responses to “Categories SB Addon”

  1. macgirl Says:


  2. Maynemer Says:

    This mod is so F***** great! But I can’t open any app I have several categories, even sub categories but every time I try to open an app it goes to safe mode!!! Thats a shame!!!! I’ve been testing and it looks like a problem with mobile substrate I used SBSettings to disable most of my mobile substrate add ons and the App worked great! So please make and update to this app!!!!

    And it will be so awesome if Categories make support for this App! You two are taking app organization to the next level!

  3. Daremo Says:

    Just bought this and after installing it, my 2G immediately dropped into the endless reboot loop even though I don’t currently have a ton of apps installed. :(

    Disabling the mobilewatchdog service allows springboard to regenerate to completion, and it works great until the phone reboots due to lack of response from watchdog. If I re-enable watchdog and then go straight to Cydia and uninstall Categories SB and then reboot the phone, it boots to completion and springboard comes up just fine.

    I’m guessing that it may not be getting along with another extension. The only other non-free mobilesubstrate extension I’m using is Orbit (MobileExpose), which is working great no matter what. Any ideas?

  4. Mac Says:

    I have a question about this:
    Does the SB Mod also apply the custom icons of my theme to the subfolders or does it use the standard app icons (which I find very ugly)?


  5. ashikase Says:

    Hi Daremo,

    I’ve received a few reports that others are also having issues (though not an endless loop). A copy of your syslog from immediately after the crash could help me track down the problem.

    Sorry for the trouble :(

    - ashikase (gaizin AT gmail)

  6. ashikase Says:

    CategoriesSB uses the same icons as SpringBoard, so any theme applied to SpringBoard will also be applied to the categories.

  7. bhakti Says:

    lol. gotta love competition.

    pogoplank comes out, works beautifully, and categories starts to improve.

  8. edfuhr1 Says:

    once I installed this I noticed that facebook app won’t open, I dont know if there are any other apps that won’t open yet, but FB is hanging up, and I did a hard restart. Please fix, other than that AWESOME EXTENSION

  9. ashikase Says:

    Actually, I made CategoriesSB (an earlier version) half a year (actually.. a year?) ago, but never released it.

    But I agree, the timing of this release does make it look kind of bad :)

  10. Outkast1 Says:

    Nice app, loads lighting fast. Unfortunately I’m having similar problems using it as described above. I can’t open ANY app without crashing to Safe Mode :( Hope you can get a fix out quick!


  11. edfuhr1 Says:

    please fix this fast, you should not be charging money for something that is so buggy, now almost all my apps are crashing and the phone is going into safe mode. please make this a first priority to get an update out, considering your charging for this. this is excatly what categories needed, but not at the expense of all other apps

  12. Josh Says:

    I have the same problem but was able to correct it by shutting off ‘Preference Loader’ with sbsettings.

  13. PNR Says:

    I’ve uninstalled this app now.
    I was really liking it, worked great for a couple of days, and then I had 3 random crashes, each time it restarted in safe mode, and I nearly had to restore once, as all my Cydia packages disapeered!
    Never had any crashes before installing this, so its got to be the problem.

    I’ll redownload once its updated, but it is a bit poor that I’ve paid for something that causes nothing but trouble!

  14. Sudre Says:

    I have a 3G 3.1.2 and just purchased this app. It is not working for
    some apps (even after the recent update release yesterday). For example, when I try to open Minigore or Alive4ever it
    crashes my SB! And this wasn’t happening before!

    When it works, it works great but it should work for all apps as the way
    as it was working before on

  15. Dave Says:

    This is the best thing I’ve added to my phone in a long while. I have a 3GS, running 3.1.2 with hundreds of apps, & everything works perfectly for me. Right now I have to use SBSettings to disable it if I need to make preference changes to a Categories folder, but that’s not much of an inconvenience considering the fantastic speed and appearance advantages.

    It would be fantastic if it were possible to Categorize Web Clippings. I realize, of course that this is difficult because those are not really apps, but how about creating a little utility to convert a Web Clipping to a real app? Then they could be added. Just an idea.

    Thanks to both BigBoss and ashikase!

  16. Sudre Says:

    Quick update. The new update version 1.0.2 works great so far. Thanks!

  17. NeoGeo71 Says:

    Latest version working great here as well on 3GS, eith 3.1.2. Best buck I ever spent. Catagories now feels like part of the phone!

  18. edfuhr1 Says:

    seems to be working great now. thanks for quick response..great addon

  19. ChefR Says:

    Thank you for the update, still though, no labels on icons and some icons missing entirely.

  20. Jackal Says:

    May I request a feature for the next version of Categories?
    While adding apps to folders, it will be nice if I can start with a list of all icons that are not in any folder, then when I tap it, it pops up to let me choose which folder to put into, instead of having to choose which folder to start with as sometimes going back and forth different folders and the list of apps is quite time consuming

  21. Greg Says:

    ashikase: I added this to your issues page for kirikae, but thought I would mention it here as well.

    Categories SB support in kirikae favorites would be great.

    Also, not mentioned in my bugreport is that when using spotlight and choosing a categories icon, the categories submenus come up but the keyboard still remains.

  22. MXFanatic Says:

    I too am loving CategoriesSB! I am on a 3GS and have had no problems and I appreciate the fix for cutting off the app labels. I am wondering when there will be support for custom background images and / or removing the folder title and / or removing the dock icons. this is very good work! Thanks!

  23. MXFanatic Says:

    I did read something about changing the alpha channel on custom backgrounds and getting them to work in categoriessb. If anyone has any more detail on how to do this, it would be appreciated!

  24. Reznor9 Says:

    I just bought this. I love it. Makes using categories even better!! And only $1.00 is a steal!

  25. John Doe Says:

    Great App. Made me rejailbreak my iPhone.

    Badges support for the folders would be great to see in a future update. For example: if you got a messenger folder with 3 unread SMS and 3 aol messages = a “6″ badge in the folder.


  26. Dave Says:

    To get rid of the black background, I just SSH’d into the affected folder’s .app and deleted the background.png file. I could then immediately see my Winterboard background instead.

    I also removed that file from the /Applications/ path, to prevent it from being added to new Folders I create.

  27. Pharmagenie Says:

    I recently used Blackra1n to JB my 3G v3.1.2 iPhone but didn’t see the warning about Icy until afterward. I used the latest Cydia to remove Rock and Icy and reloaded all Cydia apps I had previously used. I also have BossPrefs loaded. I have loaded and reloaded Categories v2.26 a bunch of times – rebooting, etc. The Categories icon is there on the Springboard, but any folders I make in Categories do not show up on the
    Board. Also, any apps I move into the folders are not hidden from the ‘Board. The folder name can be seen in Poof. I have spent three days trying to figure this out – can anyone point me in the right direction? Will I have to completely rebuild my iPhone from restore on? Thank you.

  28. ashikase Says:

    I can’t say for certain as I haven’t experienced the problem myself, but…

    I believe that simply uninstalling Icy is not enough to solve the issue; once Icy has been installed, the damage has been done.

    Your best bet is to rejailbreak, avoiding Icy. I personally stick with Pwnage/Cydia.

  29. Pharmagenie Says:

    Ugh. I figured that was probably going to be the case. Thanks to BigBoss for hosting this forum and for all of the great people in this place, like ashikase who take the time to help others out. We really appreciate it!

  30. Catallin Says:

    Hello, ashikase. I love this extension it really makes me happy. The price is very afordable too. One question though: what do you think about the calendar moved into a folder that won’t show the day/date but only the icon? Is there any possibility to make it work or it’s a problem much deeper?

    Thank you very much and keep up the good work. Congrats!

  31. Peter Says:

    I have a jailbroken 3GS using blackra1n. I did install ICY and Rock. Never downloaded any apps with Icy or Rock. Then decided to uninstall Icy and Rock.

    My phone works great. Stable. I purchased Categories SB and it also works great.

    I do want to change the black background to the background used in the theme I am using. I tried replacing the background.png image with the theme background image. The black screen still shows.

    Any idea on how to change the folder background image?

  32. Peter Says:

    I figured out how to get the folder background I want. A stupid mistake on my part.

  33. edfuhr1 Says:

    I actually like the black background when opening the catagory, its a nice contrast to my theme

  34. MXFanatic Says:

    This worked perfectly and was simple. Thanks for the tip!

  35. Catallin Says:

    Anyone care to help :) ? Or it’s a out of this world question?

  36. ckong Says:

    This tip on removing background.png works great. Thanks for sharing!

  37. ckong Says:

    Awesome combination of Categories and Categories SB. I paid my $0.99 on Cydia based on the reviews here. It works great and hasn’t crashed once yet (knocking on wood). Looking forward to the next version.

  38. vivid0409 Says:

    i install this categories from cydia and put some apps in the folder including categories app itself, before i upgrade to firmwire 3.0, but it was all gone all the cydia and categories. and all the apps i put in the folder couldnt show in SB anymore, they r all invisible. and now i got blackra1n jailbroken my 3G again, but all the apps still invisible. anything i can do to solve this thing plssss? anyone help me plsss…

  39. vivid0409 Says:

    ohoo…i got it!! i download the SBsettings and turned those hiding app off..this annoyed me for really long time…im so happy^^

  40. Jack Says:

    This is somewhat off-topic. I just noticed that when I type a password in my iphone the black dots that appear after typing a character aren’t there. They are now blank spaces. Anybody else notice this?

  41. Nitsson Says:

    Great add-on that really makes Categories feel like it’s a part of the iPhone OS. Love the rounded icons and icon badges.

    The only thing missing is the optional badge that Backgrounder adds when an application is running in the background. I’m surprised that wasn’t there give it’s the same developer; ashikase – are you planning to add this?

  42. Podperson Says:

    Just bought this and i love it alread. It’s so freaking fast. Or at least it makes me thing it is which is the same thing in this case. I like the “Recent” category too — so much that I’ve added it to my Dock. If I were to nitpick though, which I can’t seem to refrain from doing, I would suggest that the “Recent” category include only recently used apps which aren’t already on the dock.. It seems overkill to have Phone in the “Recent” category for example.

  43. Podperson Says:

    One last nit and I’ll stop picking. If you open a Category/folder/whathaveyou it pops up a page with a titlebar and icons. Someone else already mentioned that being able to edit what’s on the page from within the page would be nice. My request is a little simpler. If you touched the wrong icon or just opened the wrong category you need to go hit the Home button to close the page and go back to the springboard. It would be nice to have a close icon in the title bar so I could just hit that with my thumb on the hand I’m holding hte phone with and not need to use two hand or contort the one to punch a button. If not a titlebar icon maybe just double tapping on the page where there isn’t an icon or something.

  44. Jack Says:

    I second Nitsson’s comment on not supporting the SBSettings badges in folders.

  45. Spinoza Says:

    I second Podperson’s request to not have to hit the home button to ‘go back’ but rather — that there (optionally) be a “back” button at top left of the category screen. Or, if Left/Right scroll is ‘off’ then — assign “swipe left” to mean “quit — go back to ‘previous’ screen (i.e. SpringBoard).

  46. Anonymous Says:

    Thanx for the tip ;)

  47. Koelio Says:

    Hi Peter,

    Can you let me know what you did?

  48. 266 Says:

    So we now have the latest version of CategoriesSB (1.5.2) which includes a badge for folders, customised titlebar images and background images….

    Unfortunately the titlebar.png and background.png files do not seem to work when created as a Winterboard theme.

    Initially they worked when I had categories folder on the springboard, I moved the folders to the dock and they do not show.

    I’ve reverted to the app defaults and the background image does not show at all!

    Is anyone else experiencing this?
    Is it a problem with the app that an update fix?

  49. sprotty Says:

    Some way of going back once your in a folder would be a big improvement (other than that it looks good)

  50. cain Says:

    Just updated Categories SB to 1.6. I have all my set to scroll horizontally and now when scrolling the next page starts at the bottom of the previous page, i.e.
    |—–| |—–|
    |xxxxx| | |
    |xxxxx| | |
    |xxxxx| | |
    |xxxxx| | |
    | | |xxxxx|
    |—–| |—–|
    Page1 Page2

    I can not scroll on the second page to see any icons below the last row.

  51. ElPared Says:

    I just installed CategoriesSB 1.6 and then 1.6.1 and encountered an odd bug. When I open a category it removes apps that are running in the background from my dock, even stock apps like phone and safari. This is very annoying. The icons come back after a respring or sometimes just after an odd period of time. Although, all that happened on 1.6, in 1.6.1 it started doing the se thing but I just roved all icons from my dock regardless of whether they were backgrounder or not. The only conflict I can think of is with CategoriesSB and Backgrounder. The problem could also be that all my apps are in a category but I have their icons unhidden with SBSettings. I’ll test some things and see if I can figure it out.

  52. Jamie Says:

    I also installed CategoriesSB 1.6.1 and any app in the ‘Recent’ category disappears from the dock…

  53. Danimator Says:

    Bug with latest version….When you update an app from the appstore, after it downloads and installs, the icon for the update disappears from the category. For example, say you have a category named “games” and in that category, you have a game, let’s say “Plushed”. When you update the app from the appstore, go back into your game category, and you’ll see the “Plushed” icon is gone, you have to delete it, and re-add it in the category.

    Also….If you add “mail” or “safari” into a category, the settings for those disappear from inside your iphone’s “settings” program.

  54. Michael Says:

    Cannot find any of the “options”
    please help

  55. Xaerius Says:

    When placing a program into a folder, categoriessb shows me TWO icons for the same program (but only for some apps). If I add both icons, one is a blank space and the other is the actual program in the folder.

    How can I eliminate the “fake” or “blank” one from my list?

    Also, before updating an app, do I have to remove it from the category and/or delete the actual app before installing the newer version?

    Thanks :)

  56. soLaRiS Says:

    You can change the icons of the folders.

    Short explain:

    When you open Categories you see things like


    now use sftp (I mean ssh connect with a good file transfer) and go to /private/var/stash/Applications.(chars and digits)

    In this folder you will seek the, and so on. No go into the Category from which you want to change the icon. Upload your png in this folder. Delete icon.png and rename yours to icon.png

    Now respring and seek the new icon on your SpringBoard. ;)

    You can also change the background of every Category. You just have to upload your wallpaper into the folder. Delete background.png and rename your wallpaper to background.png

  57. soLaRiS Says:

    What I miss is the possibility to put Safari Bookmarks (icons on the SpringBoard) into a category.

  58. torpie13 Says:

    Help Needed.
    I making a backup of the /Applications/ folders and /var/mobile/Library/Preferences/com.bigboss.Category* files from my iPhone OS 3.1.2.

    after a fresh resore of the system in the same OS version (3.1.2) then Installation of CategoriesSB, I restored by copying back /Applications/ and Preference files.

    The problem is that I got all my folders, but when I lounch any of them I got an empty folder !!!

    Is there something I missed to backup before ?

    Please help.


  59. John Says:


    The “show cumulative badge” doesn’t work right. The folder I created shows notifications only from 1 app inside it instead of the 2 that has notifications. Please advise.


  60. Mike Says:

    I like the speed and ‘clean-ness’ of the icons with CategorieSB. However, it will not allow me to purchase it on my iPad. I can, however, purchase and use Categories. Update/fix??

  61. Collin Says:

    Just downloaded this app and love it. It’s the kind of simple polish that can make an old phone feel new again. Thanks very much to the dev!

  62. cms Says:

    How do you purchase it?

    I try to purchase with cydia, using google account, but I refuse to let the server poll my friends and updates from google, and I get nothing after that?

  63. cms Says:

    Yeah, just tried with my facebook login too. Seems to come down to: do you want to purchase? Then let cydia troll your account (google or FB) for data.

    That sucks. I’m not buying any cydia app until it will allow me to say no and continue.

  64. desmonel Says:

    Nice app but i’ve do make a mistake while configuring and now i can’t have access to the “i” in right back.
    My dock is up.
    I want to know if it’s possible to reach again the configurating page

  65. Megan Says:

    I installed this added aps into the folder but I didnt like it so uninstalled it, but the folder was still there along with the aps that were still inside but I cant remove it

Leave a Reply