Jan 272010

One of the annoy­ing things about mov­ing to the 64-bit Win­dows 7 is that Palm decided not to sup­port USB syn­chron­iz­a­tion. Since my phone/PDA is a Treo 680, that’s a nuis­ance. In the­ory, I can sync via bluetooth. In prac­tice, it’s not as easy as it used to be.

First off, I had to get a bluetooth-USB dongle to use with my desktop PC. I plugged it in, Win­dows found it and installed the driver. That much worked. The page linked to above shows the steps to go through to enable the bluetooth syn­chron­iz­a­tion with the Treo; fol­low­ing those steps worked just fine (although s-l-o-w-l-y) the first time. And then it stopped work­ing, with an error mes­sage “unable to ini­ti­ate hot­sync oper­a­tion because the port is in use by another applic­a­tion”.

I tried unplug­ging the bluetooth device, dis­abling it, noth­ing worked. I then fool­ishly installed the soft­ware that came with the device, which was a bad mis­take, as it made everything bluetooth-related stop work­ing. And even though I tried to unin­stall it after­wards, noth­ing worked.

I used Glary util­it­ies to clean the registry, it found a lot of entries that CCle­aner, my pre­vi­ously favour­ite registry cleaner didn’t. Res­ult: sup­posedly a cleaner registry, but no joy on the bluetooth device set­tings.

Pok­ing around on the web uncovered this, and since web­sites have a habit of dis­ap­pear­ing, tak­ing their use­ful inform­a­tion with them, I’m going to take the liberty of rewrit­ing the sali­ent points here.

Unplug the device. Go to the con­trol panel, then search for “ser­vices”. From the Ser­vices win­dow, browse the list of ser­vices and find the Bluetooth Sup­port Ser­vice, and double-click the entry. Select Auto­matic from the Star­tup type and then click OK. Plug the device back in.

This at least meant that I could access the set­tings on the bluetooth device, which was an advance, even if I still couldn’t hot­sync. In the end, I dis­covered that if I added another couple of COM ports, that the Treo would hot­sync. Slowly, of course. And the next time I wanted to sync, I had to delete all the COM ports that the bluetooth dongle knew about, and add another.

My next phone/PDA will come from a com­pany that does allow USB syn­chron­iz­a­tion. On present form, it looks like it won’t come from Palm.

  2 Responses to “Bluetooth (Time) Sync”

  1. Palm Pre doesn’t sup­port USB synch either. Nor bluetooth for that mat­ter. It’s all “in the Cloud” (back­ground synch w/ Google Calendar/Contact and the likes). You can buy 3rd party USB synch apps. Dis­grace­ful.

  2. […] This post was men­tioned on Twit­ter by Tim Bray, Lauren Wood. Lauren Wood said: New blog entry: Bluetooth (Time) Sync http://www.laurenwood.org/anyway/?p=858 […]

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