N9 PR 1.2 Bug: Unable to start operation – Refreshing cache. Please Wait.

After the initial excitement of having finally gotten PR 1.2 for my N9, I decided to run Clear Device on my N9 – I wanted a squeaky clean N9 running PR 1.2 to enjoy. Much to my dismay, after the N9 reset, it started complaining when I got into the Ovi Store and tried to install anything.

Unable to start operation
Refreshing cache. Please wait.

So I waited… and waited… and went to sleep… and woke up… and waited… and rebooted… and tried again… and waited… and got pissed off. According to this post on Harmattan Bugs, and this one as well, it’s a bug… and on the bright side, it’s now reported and known of by the people who are supposed to fix these things. There’s still some debate about the actual root cause of this bug, but the majority suffering from it appear to be:

  1. running Harmattan PR 1.2
  2. FileManager

Personally, I’ve never used FileManager in my life – which is why I crossed out FileManager. Either way, there’s a number of “fixes” that have come up on forums. Following are a few of the solutions that have worked for others.

Assuming you had developer mode enabled on your N9 before PR 1.2, or managed to enable developer mode BEFORE you got hit with this bug. I say BEFORE because this bug also conveniently prevents you from enabling developer mode ON TOP OF not allowing you to install anything from Ovi Store.

ls /etc/apt/sources.list.d
rm /etc/apt/sources.list.d/filemanager.list

Assuming you had FileBox (or a similar file explorer type).

Open Filebox
Navigate to /etc/apt/sources.list.d
delete filemanager.list

Now, both of the above assume that the source of the bug is /etc/apt/sources.list.d/filemanager.list – however, as I mentioned earlier, this was not the case for me. Also, assuming that it actually is the source of the bug, then technically, doing a Clear Device on the N9 should solve the issue; which it doesn’t. Apparently, for some people, rebooting the device multiple times could temporarily solve the issue – long enough for you to get into the Ovi Store, install FileBox (or a similar file explorer) OR enable developer mode, and attempt either of the above solutions.

If you’ve somehow managed to attempt both of the solutions above, only to find that /etc/apt/sources.list.d/filemanager.list doesn’t exist, well, you’re in a world of hurt. No, I kid… Assuming you ran Clear Device like me before realizing this bug screwed you up the ass, you would likely find that both solutions won’t help… However, I took the plunge and decided to reflash my N9 via Navifirm as detailed in this post – my N9 is now working perfectly (with only issues not related to this bug).

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