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Syncing with the K750i

One of the first things I did when I got my phone was to try and get all my contacts synced up. I noticed the Nokia PC Suite had sent all my contacts over to the phone instead of the SIM by default, which was fine. The Sony Ericcson software has always been pretty good about supporting Notes..

...until now it seems. No Notes support. Ugh. Well no matter, I fire up the Sync software and I see it supports various flavours of Outlook, and the Windows Address Book. I've seriously tried to use Outlook a few times, but it never sticks - so I thought I'd give it another shot (why do I do these things to myself?).

After I installed it, and remembered how lousy the support for multiple mailboxes seems, and how much I hate IMAP over a Notes mailbox, I got to the contacts. Notes lets you export all or some of your contacts as a VCF file, and it gives you the option of 2.1 or 3.0, so I figured that'd be a good way to go. Seems not - Outlook will only import the first contact in the VCF file, it doesn't know how to handle multiple contacts. About this time, I regained my senses and uninstalled Outlook. The thought of writing a quite export agent to output my contacts 1:1 to VCF files crossed my mind, but it seemed rather painful and inelegant.

At this point I had to go out - so I figured I'd try to use the Nokia and move my contacts over from the Phone to the SIM. That's a fairly reasonable request I thought. Well, the Nokia disagreed with me. It completely screwed over all the contacts with multi numbers, splitting them out into multiple entries which needed to be manually edited or removed. Nice. But at least I had some numbers on the SIM, so I swapped the card back into the K750i and headed out. When I got back home later, I tried to clear out the Nokias phone memory first off - but it seems that's a password protected function, and I don't know what the passcode is. I tried all the default options, and googled a bit, with no joy. So, I deleted them all - one.. by.. one.. that did wonders for my RSI.

Next, I figured I'd try syncing via the Windows Address Book - hey why not, I've never used the thing before, but someone must right? Turns out Windows Address Book reads VCF files containing multiple contacts just fine. There is a downside, you need to press "Enter" or click "OK" once for each contact. It seems a bit unneccesary, but it didn't take long.

Having done that, I synced my contacts, checked them over, and promptly uninstalled the Sony Ericcson sync software. Piece of crap. I never synced my contacts too much with my previous Nokia, but this time around I thought I'd give syncing parts of my Calendar a go.. but I guess not.

Next up was the search for 3rd party products. I came across MyPhoneExplorer which seems like quite a nice program for editing of contacts, text messages, calendar, or file management. No syncing capabilities, but it's cool and it's free. The file management was quite nice - by default (with no software, just the SE drivers) the Memory Stick shows up in My Computer as another drive, but there's no easy way to get at the files on the phone memory. MyPhoneExplorer lets you browse in a way which clearly seperates the two, and also supports drag and drop file xfer.

In my search I came across a lot of people mentioning using FMA with their K750i. It sounds like some people have more luck with this than others. FMA offers similar functionality, apart from some of the PC Control functionality (using your phone as a remote for tasks such as loading Winamp on your computer etc), which doesn't really appeal to me too much.

All in all, a very frustrating experience.

In summary:

  • All the SE Sync software I'd seen previously was pretty damn good - what happened?
  • Why the hell does Outlook 2003 not support a simple VCF import feature which Windows Address Book handles quite happily?
  • Are there any other 3rd party Syncing (Calendar/Email/Todo/Contacts) tools out there that people can recommend?
  • Finally, MyPhoneExplorer allows you to import vCalendar files, or Sunbird calendarfiles (as well as it's own backup files) - what else uses these formats? And more importantly, are there any Notes -> vCalendar/Sunbird converters or exporters out there?

    Links:
    MyPhoneExplorer - FJ Software Development Home
    MyPhoneExplorer - Direct download link
    Club Sony Ericcson (unofficial) - PC/Mac/Linux software forum
    FMA (floAt's Mobile Agent)

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      Print | posted on Monday, January 30, 2006 10:34 AM






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    Merauderweb is the personal website of a New Zealand based web developer and technologist, covering whatever interests or amuses him. Subjects include online gaming, music, gadgets/technology, ASP.NET, Web Development, JavaScript, jQuery, IBM Lotus Notes/Domino and are presented in a linkblog/tumble style.

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