Many people say, iPhone is not just a mobile phone, it’s a mobile computer. Pretty right. You may know iPhone is powered by a stripped-down version of Mac OS X, which is actually riding on Unix as its core. So, instead of docking your iPhone and transfer ringtone to/from your iPhone using iBrickr or iFuntastic, you can use SSH to transfer any files (including ringtone) wirelessly. SSH is a remote access tool that is commonly used in Linux/Unix and you can install it on iPhone. With SSH, you can access your iPhone remotely and run command/transfer any files to it.
Before I go further into the details, I should make a disclaimer that the below procedures is not very user friendly, as that compared to iBrickr or iFuntastic. But you can have a better control of the iPhone and transfer the ringtone wirelessly. Okay, let’s get start.
Install OpenSSH on iPhone
That’s the easiest step. Just launch “Installer” and install “BSD Subsystem”, “Community Sources”, and “OpenSSH”. BSD Subsystem and Community Sources are the dependent packages of OpenSSH. So, you need to install them first. After installation, SSH is automatically started up.
Connect to your wireless network
Before you can remotely access the iPhone, you need to know its IP address. The second step is to connect your iPhone to the wireless network. Once connected, go to “Settings” -> “Wi-Fi”. Select the connected network and find out the IP address.
SSH to your iPhone
On Mac, you can launch “Terminal” in Finder and type “ssh root@<your IP address>”. For first time connect, it may take longer (around 30s) to make the connection. When prompt to accept authentication, answer “yes” and press <ENTER>. Next, you’ll be asked for the root password. Type “alpine” if you’re using iPhone 1.1.4 and “dottie” for iPhone 1.1.1 or lower. Now, you should be in the iPhone and you can type usual Unix command to navigate the iPhone. To quit from the iPhone, type “exit” to terminal the session.
Microsoft Windows does not come with any SSH client. For Windows users, you can download WinSCP, which is a free SSH client.
Transfer Ringtone to iPhone
As you can now access your iPhone using SSH, you can also freely transfer file (e.g. ringtone) to it. Ringtone files on iPhone is defined with an extension “.m4r”. It is actually the same as your AAC file (remember it’s in AAC format, not MP3) but with different extension. Before you transfer the ringtone, remember to rename the file to “.m4r”.
For Mac user, you can use the same terminal and type “scp
I know you may not be comfortable using command line. A more user friendly way is to use Cyberduck. It offers a GUI to drag and drop file to the iPhone.
For Windows user, you can also use SCP to the same thing.
Ok! Go back to your iPhone and you should find your ringtone.