2 Tutorial Recommendations: Preparing Keystore File and Post-Build Updates

I loved the Tutorial. It went smoothly. With it I successfully uploaded my new app to Google’s Play Store. (Here my perspective only takes in the Android build.)

The Tutorial did not instruct developers how to create the keystore file. It only states it is required for the build process.

I’d recommend including into the Tutorial a “preparation step” – while alluding to Android’s keystore file. This litlle bit of extra information can help whisk a developer through the process. This list could well serve as that newly included paragraph:
The (Android) developer should have at the ready:
1) Pay $25 for a Google Play Console Account
2) App Icon: Size 512 x 512
3) Screen shots of the app (can be cropped from a screen shot)
4) App APK File,
5) App’s name, short description, and long description; and
6) Featured Image: 1024 x 500 (width by height)

This simple bit of information isn’t readily available, but is so helpful to know in advance. That bit of advanced knowledge goes a long way. Total time for keystore file setup, once prepared: 5 to 10 minutes.


Now I have another recommendation, because I’m a newbie, slightly apprehensive or unsure how to proceed to the next anticipated “hurdle”.

It would be nice if a final section in the Tutorial would address the changes needed – to UPDATE that app.

That UPDATE, almost inevitably, follows a successful build or upload. It is a rare developer who doesn’t want to enhance his app over time.

Even if I only want to apply minification of my code, I’d like to know:

How does the earlier Tutorial’s protocol change, to make that update? Of course the app’s code could change. But, besides that obvious change, what other “meta” data needs to be updated; Do we use the same keystore file? Do we need an increment in the version number? Or what else?

Just like the “Preparation Step” I recommended, a last paragraph to deal with updates would be a great help, even if in just a few words, in my humble opinion.

Maybe an Tutorial section or catogory in here would be great, as for hints and tips

  1. Keystore: VoltBuilder will be able to generate keystore files for you soon, so a tutorial won’t be needed.

  2. To make a new build, just send your project to VoltBuilder again. The same keystore file will work. There is a version string in the <widget> statement in config.xml. You may want to update that.

1 Like

After one minor CSS change, a change to the version number in config.xml, and the minification of 3 files (html, css, and js file), which shedded 13,000 bytes, I submitted the newly zipped directory to the Android builder. I used the same zip file structure as before.

I got back a debug.apk file.

But alas, I forgot how I go from this debug version to one that’s not a debug file, which I can then upload as my latest version in Play Store. The Tutorial doesn’t seem helpful at this point. I did as suggestion #2 in the previous response says to do, but I’m still left stranded with a debug version.

Did you see 5. Doing an Android release build here?

It says, “You’ll need a keystore file …”
Does that mean I need a NEW keystore file?
I used the same of an earlier submission, as per above #2 of Aug 25:
“The same keystore file will work.”

Yes, it’s always best to stick with the same keystore file.

You shouldn’t submit a Debug build to the Play Store. (I have no idea what would happen).

I’m no expert on the stores themselves. You may need to post your current question clearly - the answer should be straightforward.

VB’s demo says that the Android builder “returns an apk file ready for upload to Google’s Play Store.

Yet the builder returned to me – a debug.apk file.
Is this supposed to happen?

Like I said, I made minor changes in my code files.
In the tab, in config.xml, I incremented the version number.
Did nothing else.

Zipped it up … and got back a debug.apk file.
Please advise me how to proceed.

I have a simple file structure, as shown here:
Screen Shot 2020-10-23 at 12.37.20 PM

Like I said, some changes were within the www directory,
and 1 change in the config.xml file.

Did you change the voltbuilder.json file to “release”?

  "androidAlias": "key0",
  "androidAliasPassword": "mypassword",
  "androidKeystore": "certificates/android.keystore",
  "androidKeystorePassword": "mypassword",
  "platform": "android",
  "release": "release",

(from Step 5 of the Tutorial)

Yes, I had “release”.

It just dawned on me: Perhaps, because I used a random “minifier” to minfy my files, one host came up with an error. I thought I had perfect code syntax. So I used another minifier, of another host, whose result I used.

Like I had said, much of my code was only minified (except for a css change from 65% to 75%); I did NOT then test it on my Android; I was sure nothing changed.

Could it be that if, in fact, my code did throw an error – that THIS is the reason for getting back from Builder a debug.apk file; Whereas had the code been perfect, it would return a non-debug apk file?

Is that how VoltBuilder works?

P.S. I just checked my jason file and there found “platform”: “ios”, when it should be “android”, the platform I’m now targeting. If this was my problem, I’m not sure. But this is besides my question.

Yes, that is your problem.