App Store Pushing Out Corrupted App Downloads

Instapaper developer Marco Arment notes that Apple's App Store is apparently pushing out corrupted app binaries of a number of different applications to users. The issue, which renders the apps unusable, has apparently been triggered on app updates approved over the past few days.

Characterizations of this issue:

- The app crashes immediately on launch, every time, even after a delete and reinstall as long as the corrupt file is being served by the App Store.
- It doesn’t even show the Default.png before crashing. Just a split-second of a partial fade to black, then back to Springboard.
- It may only affect customers in some regions.
- If updating from iTunes, some customers might get a dialog citing error 8324 or 8326.
- Mac apps might show this dialog: “[App] is damaged and can’t be opened. Delete [App] and download it again from the App Store.”
- The console might show: AppleFairplayTextCrypterSession::fairplayOpen() failed, error -42110

Arment has collected a list of nearly two dozen apps that have been affected by the issue, and while Apple begin distributing a corrected version of Instapaper within a few hours yesterday, it remains unclear whether all affected apps have been fixed. For those who already downloaded corrupted versions of affected apps, the apps must be deleted and reinstalled.

GoodReader has more on the issue, including a description of how to back up settings and restore them upon reinstallation. GoodReader notes that the issue has appeared on both of its last two updates, speculating that something is going wrong with Apple's encryption process temporarily, and after a few hours the issue resolves itself.

While in theory Apple's servers must be ready to distribute the new app binary by the time they start sending update notifications to users' devices, something goes wrong inside Apple's distribution servers, and customers receive a damaged binary instead of the good one that we've sent to Apple. The exact reason is up to Apple to determine, but it looks like some binary encryption that happens internally in the App Store is only halfway-done at this point, and customers receive incorrectly (or partially?) encrypted binaries to their iPads. Those binaries do not get recognized by iOS as valid App Store executable binaries, and iOS simply refuses to launch them.

A few hours pass by, things settle down on Apple's servers, the update finally gets to places inside Apple's servers to which it was supposed to get, and everyone who downloads the update from that moment on, receives a correctly encrypted fully functional app binary.

Apple has yet to issue an official statement on the issue, and thus details remain unconfirmed for the time being, but developers are suggesting that users wait a few hours after receiving notifications about updated apps before updating their devices.

Update: Arment's list of apps confirmed to be affected by the issue has now grown to 70.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
109 months ago

Interesting issue
Hope it gets resolved soon
Until we hear more, I might just hold off updating
I usually check for updates every day


Is this a poem?
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

I hold off updating my apps for some reason. Only when I see a feature in an app will I take the plunge.

It drives my wife up a wall, because she hates seeing the that there are updates available.


i am with your wife on this one. I HAVE to update if I see one is available, if i dont, it drives me crazy :D
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

Would this affect OS updates too if the OS was purchased through the App Store?:confused:

Oh dear... that would be bad. VERY VERY BAD. :(

I'm sure apple will resolve this issue pretty quickly. Most likely they have a small team on it already - The App store is VERY central to their user experience, so I'm sure they are taking all the necessary actions to fix this.

----------

Is this a poem?

It looks like poetry to me,
but I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
It's possible that splendid poet will respond,
but until then, all our conjectures will be unsound.

:cool:
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

During a US holiday when traffic on the servers goes up, and Apples system was giving warnings that some downloads might have issues.

I've had about 15 apps update in the last day or so, four from Marcos list. One had a warning and 20 minutes later I tried agin with no issues.

Frankly Marco is coming off like an attention seeker more than anything else with his repeated hyperbole over things in the store. Guy needs a tin hat if he really thinks that Apple is trying to ruin apps by breaking the binaries so the poor developers have to deal with the fallout


He is not implying that Apple is breaking things on purpose. He is just pointing out an issue with Apple's automated system so that Apple can take notice and fix it.

This is a big deal for developers as Apple has changed their search ranking algorithm to focus more on star ratings, which means 1 star reviews because of an App Store issue can cost people their primary income.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

Frankly Marco is coming off like an attention seeker more than anything else with his repeated hyperbole over things in the store. Guy needs a tin hat if he really thinks that Apple is trying to ruin apps by breaking the binaries so the poor developers have to deal with the fallout

I don't read this as attention seeking. Something is corrupting all these apps to the point that they become unusable, and it's affecting a lot of them. I'm glad someone is letting me know so I can avoid updates in the interim.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago
This thread must also be corrupted with all the negative votes, seriously, some sound comments are getting voted down all for what :rolleyes:

Problems happen and it's always a good idea to know about issues just incase something happens with your product from software, geez…
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Early iPhone 12 Tests Show Ceramic Shield is Stronger and More Scratch Resistant Than iPhone 11 Glass

Friday October 23, 2020 1:21 pm PDT by
Apple's new iPhone 12 models are protected by a Ceramic Shield cover glass that has nano-ceramic crystals infused right into the glass to improve durability. According to Apple, Ceramic Shield offers four times better drop protection than the glass used for the iPhone 11 models. YouTube channel MobileReviewsEh conducted some tests on the iPhone 12 using a force meter to compare its performance ...

iPhone 12 Pro Allows You to Measure Someone's Height Instantly Using LiDAR Scanner

Saturday October 24, 2020 11:12 am PDT by
iPhone 12 Pro models feature a new LiDAR Scanner for enhanced augmented reality experiences, but the sensor also enables another unique feature: the ability to measure a person's height instantly using the Measure app. You can even measure the seated height of a person in a chair, according to Apple. When the Measure app detects a person in the viewfinder, it automatically measures their...

Google Reportedly Pays Apple $8-12 Billion Per Year to be Default iOS Search Engine

Sunday October 25, 2020 2:59 pm PDT by
The United States Justice Department is targeting a lucrative deal between Apple and Google as part of one of the U.S. government's largest antitrust cases, reports The New York Times. On Tuesday, the Justice Department filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google, claiming the Mountain View-based company used anticompetitive and exclusionary practices in the search and advertising markets to ...

Apple References Unreleased 2020 16-Inch MacBook Pro in Boot Camp Update

Monday October 26, 2020 8:42 am PDT by
Last week, Apple released an update for Boot Camp, its utility for running Windows on a Mac. While this update would typically be unremarkable, several of our readers noticed that the release notes reference an unreleased 2020 model of the 16-inch MacBook Pro. While this could easily be a mistake, the 16-inch MacBook Pro is nearly a year old, so it is certainly a worthy candidate for a...

Apple Warns MagSafe Charger Can Leave Circular Imprints on Leather Cases

Friday October 23, 2020 3:23 pm PDT by
If you keep your iPhone in a leather case while charging with Apple's new MagSafe Charger, the case might show circular imprints from contact with the accessory, according to a new Apple support document published today. Apple's leather cases for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro are not available until November 6, but a MacRumors reader has already shared a photo of a circular imprint on...

iPhone 11 Pro Outlasts iPhone 12 and 12 Pro in Extensive Battery Life Test

Friday October 23, 2020 8:36 am PDT by
Arun Maini today shared a new side-by-side iPhone battery life video test on his YouTube channel Mrwhosetheboss, timing how long the new iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro models last on a single charge compared to older models, with equal brightness, settings, battery health, and usage. All of the devices are running iOS 14 without a SIM card inserted. In the test, the iPhone 11 Pro outlasted both ...

PSA: Non-iPhone 12 Models Charge Super Slowly With MagSafe Charger

Friday October 23, 2020 4:11 pm PDT by
Alongside the iPhone 12 models, Apple introduced a new $39 MagSafe Charger that's meant to work with the magnets in the iPhone 12 Pro models to charge them up at a maximum of 15W. The MagSafe Charger is technically able to be used with older iPhones, but it's not a good idea because the charging with non-iPhone 12 devices is so slow. We did two tests with the iPhone XS Max, draining the...

MagSafe Charger Teardown Reveals Simple Design With Magnets and Charging Coil Encircling a Small Circuit Board

Friday October 23, 2020 7:50 am PDT by
iFixit has today shared a teardown of Apple's new MagSafe charger for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro. An X-ray of the MagSafe charger courtesy of Creative Electron reveals the internal charging coil surrounded by a circular arrangement of magnets within the puck. The only seam that iFixit was able to leverage to open the device was where the white rubber circle meets the metal rim,...

Apple VP Kaiann Drance Interview Addresses Battery Life, MagSafe, and Power Adapter Concerns

Friday October 23, 2020 3:37 am PDT by
Apple's Vice President of iPhone Marketing, Kaiann Drance, has provided a new interview to Rich DeMuro on the Rich on Tech Podcast, to discuss the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro. Although much of the interview repeated points from Apple's "Hi, Speed" event, there were a number of interesting tidbits regarding the affect of 5G on battery life, MagSafe concerns, and the lack of a power adapter in...

iFixit Shares Full iPhone 12 and 12 Pro Teardown Revealing Interchangeable Displays and Batteries

Saturday October 24, 2020 1:48 pm PDT by
After live streaming a teardown of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro earlier this week, iFixit today provided a more in-depth teardown that goes through all of the components in the new devices, revealing several similarities between the two. Early testing conducted by iFixit shows that the iPhone 12 and 12 Pro displays are interchangeable and can be swapped without issue, though the max...