Security of Hacking iPhone
Well, I finally broke down and hacked my iPhone. I am highly pleased with the results. I have ApolloIM, the Finder, iBlackJack, of course Installer, Mines, NES, Terminal, and TextEdit. I have the BSD subsystem, SummerBoard, and Erica's utilities on it. Since I am on a PC I had to use iBrickr, and I followed the instructions on gizmodo's: How To Install Apps On Your iPhone for Total Dummies tutorial.
Initially I was greatly concerned about security on the iPhone. I mean, it does have a tremendous amount of information about its user on it, and a pwn3d iPhone could be a dangerous thing to put on your network. But I used nmap-4.20 to port scan the iPhone, and after I removed OpenSSH, there were no open ports. It was sort of able to figure out the OS, but not really. It thinks it is running BSD 4, but it really couldn't guess which version of OS X it is running.
That is not to say that my iPhone isn't sending out packets all the time, receiving data from who-knows-where owning my device, but my early checking shows no requests coming from the iPhone over wi-fi unless the app is running, with Mail off of course.
I do have to say that Nate True is the man for packaging up iBrickr, and building up all of these applications. Except for one thing, copying the iTunesMobileDevice.dll file into the same folder as iBrickr. If you don't do that, the iBrickr will not be able to find your iPhone.
A hacked iPhone is much better than a regular iPhone, although I suspect that Apple will release a widget SDK pretty soon, with the same Cocoa support as we enjoy on the Mac. That should be a fairly low cost, for Apple, approach for creating applications on the iPhone that still mostly use Safari's engine.
Now if only I could find GCC for BSD and ARM I'd be set. Next stop for me is trying to cross-compile Java 6 to run on the iPhone…
*edit 9/8/2007 11:48*
I want to thank friend JR for tipping me off to Installer.app.