Steps to Fix SpringBoard Layout: IconState.plist Open, Edit, Replace, Insert from Backups & Respring

Follow on to: Organize iOS App Icons, Sort, Rearrange

I've got an older iPhone 5 iOS 9.3.3 - 32 bit HomeDepot Jailbreak,
slowly transferring to iPhone 6 iOS 10.2 - Yalu Jailbreak.


  • 2015, around transition from iOS 7.1.1 to 9.0.2,the iTunes sync messed up and the JB window was gone, got left with 100s of disorganized apps & messsed up Springboard layout.

  • Luckily I'd backed up SpringBoard Layout; old backups of i5's IconSupportState.plist that was to be converted to and replace IconState.plist as per instruction from the tweak Developer since folder support had improved from iOS 7 to 9.

Jailbreak Functionality & Access Limitations and actions :

  • On i5 (not i6), despite HD JB & several tweak reinstalls, have been unable to root File System access via afc2add or Apple File Conduit 2 (App FC2) working on iFunbox or iMazing.

  • Even OpenSSH runs for a while, but then I have to reinstall it in Cydia.

  • Using WinSCP I've been able to access & backup /var/mobile/Library/SpringBoard and use Notepad++ which has a plugin to open & edit IconSupportState.plist & IconState.plist & DesiredIconState.plist.

  • Due to Notepad++ & XML background I understand the structure & once fixed to how I want, I'd like to replace it on my i5.

  • I assumed that once copied from PC to i5, to get it "active" I need to re-spring.
    For some reason, I've been unable to get that to "take". I'm wondering if I need the correct way to Respring under this iOS+JB combination.

Questions on the steps to get this fix in place:

  • Am I choosing, editing and replacing the correct .plist or making some mistake?
  • Is there a better path/location to where I can upload the .plist?
  • Is there another way for me to replace the SpringBoard .plist(s)?
  • What's the best steps &/ right tweak to Respring/ Reboot (on i5 iOS 9.3.3 32bit HomeDepot JB & i6 iOS 10.2.x Yalu JB) for this - after .plist is replaced/ inserted?

Add-on to help fix & maintain SpringBoard Layout:

  • What are the newer SB layout backup tweaks?
  • Any thoughts on how I can get Full Raw File System via USB & OpenSSH via WiFi working properly on i5 iOS 9.3.3 HomeDepot JB?

1 Answer 1



The rough answer from this link is what has helped me. I will post more detailed to the answer as I progress through it. Hopefully, this helps someone in the meantime.

You need to be jailbroken for this to work.

Transfer all your apps to iTunes so you can get them back.

Backup the following file using iFile in the following directory: private/var/mobile/Library/SpringBoard

Backup this file to dropbox using iFile.

Restore iPhone as new. Sync apps back using iTunes. Re-jailbreak phone. Install iFile.

To restore springboard organization, rename the backed up file IconState.plist to DesiredIconState.plist and then copy to private/var/mobile/Library/SpringBoard.

Overwrite the existing file if necessary. Respring and springboard layout should be restored.

Additional Reverse Engineering Reference used for the answer but forgot to link:

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