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It seems the iPhone addin will "autofix" the identity and/or provisioning profile when they cannot be found. This is great but semi-transparent and confusing. E.g.
Load and build an application (e.g. download) that has invalid (for your computer) entries. When you Debug/Deploy it you'll see something like:
Please ensure your device is connected...
Connected to: Neptune
This application has been signed with a provisioning profile which does not include this device
Connected to: Neptune
Installation failed: AMDeviceInstallApplication returned: 0xe8000050
The application was terminated by a signal: SIGHUP
So you go look at the "iPhone Bundle Signing" options only to see them set to "Developer (automatic)" and "automatic" (no visual cue that have been "fixed" or modified).
At this point you can look around a bit (looking for the culprit) until try again to debug/deploy only to realize that the error is gone.
I would be nicer to either:
a) warn that the settings are wrong and modified (when the "iPhone Bundle Signing" options are displayed);
b) fix this earlier (when project is loaded?) so the first build won't fail;
or something similar so the feeling is not "sometime it fails, sometime it works" :-)
It doesn't ever alter the project options automatically. I'm not sure what you're describing.
What "automatic" means is that *at build time* it tries to find the most specific installed provisioning profile that matches the app ID. On your machine that could be one key, son someone else's machine it could be another.
Did you perhaps deploy a binary that had been *built* on someone else's machine?
I "always" use rebuild all when opening a solution but it would make sense I forgot to do so this time.
FWIW I don't think "automatic" is confusing to anyone ;-) and I'm glad there's no under-the-hood changes being made.