February 2007


A Use for Those Old 802.11b WiFi Access Points

If you are like me, you probably have your old (and slow) 802.11b Access Point lying around somewhere.

If you have a Nintendo DS or Sony PSP portable gaming console, you might want to dust off the old 802.11b WAP and put it to use. Neither the DS nor the PSP support WPA encryption. So, you probably can’t use it with the 802.11g WAP you use for your notebook. They do, however, support WEP. So, you can dust off your WAP, put it on a different LAN segment (something like IPcop might do the trick) and use it exclusively for portable gaming net access.

Mobile Devices
Portable Gaming

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More ActiveSync 4.5 Annoyances

ActiveSync 4.5 Connection SettingsMore ranting and grumblings from this blog. Sorry ’bout that.

When you install ActiveSync 4.5, it deletes all your existing Windows Mobile device partnerships. But, wait, that’s not all. If you previously synced wirelessly using Bluetooth (Microsoft removed the option to sync via WiFi way back in AS40), you have to rebuild that set of connection settings too.

This means you need to verify which serial port the Bluetooth adapter on your PC is using (COM4 in my case), set it, set the desktop BT to discoverable, then head back to your Pocket PC to BT pair with the desktop (or notebook). You should probably delete your old BT pairing setting before setting up the Pocket PC.

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Windows Mobile

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Copying Your Outlook Data from One PC to Another

Outlook 2003 Folder locationI upgraded one of my PCs from Windows XP Media Center Edition to Windows Vista Ultimate Edition last month. However, that PC was not my main PC (the one I sync my Windows Mobile devices to). If you go back through this blog, you’ll find that I did sacrifice a WM Smartphone to sync with the Vista box to test Windows Mobile Device Center (WMDC). So, how did I get the data over to the Vista box for testing? I just copied the files over. There are a number of ways to find where your Outlook.pst and other Outlook files are stored. Here’s how I do it (since I can never remember where it is from one time to another).

  • Start Outlook 2003
  • Click on File, then Open, the Outlook Data File.
  • Click on the pull-down menu at the top left
  • Note the path for your Outlook files
  • Exit Outlook
  • Copy the files to a thumb drive or some other sufficiently large storage device. If you use Outlook for email (I don’t), it may be large. If you don’t use it for email, it will probably fit on a small thumb drive. My Outlook.pst is just a bit over 5MB large. And, I turned off archiving.
  • Make sure Outlook 2003 (or 2007) on the Windows Vista PC is activated and ready to go.

I took my Outlook 2003 Outlook.pst file and plopped it in the Outlook 2007 folder on my Windows Vista PC. This migration process seemed to work fine for me. Your mileage may vary.

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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MyCalculator: Free Calculator for Pocket PCs

Each time I look at the calculator Microsoft provides on the Pocket PC or Smartphone, I am amazed at the fact that they have not improved it one bit in over a decade. The Pocket PC is a natural form factor for a great calculator. Fortunately, there are a number of freeware solutions available. Here’s one you might want to take a look at…

MyCalculator

There are versions for Windows Mobile, Windows, and Palm OS.

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Windows Mobile

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ActiveSync 4.5 Ate my Device Partnerships!

Although I have a PC setup running Windows Vista Ultimate Edition and the new Windows Mobile Device Center (ActiveSync replacement), my main PC that syncs with most of my Windows Mobile devices runs Windows XP Media Center. Since…

Microsoft ActiveSync 4.5

…was released for those of us still syncing Pocket PCs and Smartphones with XP, I decided to upgrade from 4.2 to 4.5 today. No problem right? Simple upgrade, right? Wrong…

The upgrade process itself went smoothly. However, when I brought up ActiveSync 4.5 (without any WM device attached to the PC), I noticed it had lost all of its device partnerships! This meant that I had to re-partner every device. The pre-Windows Mobile 5 devices partnered quickly as usual. However, because Windows Mobile 5 devices keep their PIM data in slow non-volatile RAM, the partnership for WM5 boxes took forever. I’m talking what seemed like 5 to 10 minutes per device.

The Windows Mobile platform is over 10 years old now. This sort of problem should have stopped happening during the last century. ActiveSync continues to be a user-hostile application and continues to earn its nickname of ActiveStink. Let’s hope its successor, WMDC, doesn’t earn its own pejorative nickname.

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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Hotmail Push Email for Windows Mobile 6

So, this push-email (made popular by the RIMM Blackberry) is all good and well. But, you are a Windows Mobile device user and do NOT use an Exchange Server for your email. So, big deal. Right?

Well, it turns out that push-email can be had with the free Hotmail service from Microsoft and the upcoming Windows Mobile 6 devices. Here’s a link to an article on the MSDN Blogs that describes how to set up a free push-email service.

Push Email with Windows Live Hotmail and Windows Mobile 6.0

Mobile Devices
Pocket PC/Phone Edition
Smartphone
Windows Mobile

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