Hack or Tweak I Can't Live Without (Mar 2008)

March Expert Round-Up: The one WM hack or tweak that I can't live without!

This month, we talked about our favorite WM hacks/tweaks in the monthly round-up. Here's the summary (and links) for these excellent nuggets of Windows Mobile tweakifications...what? That's a real word, or is now!

Tariq Bamadhaj: Introduced a great tweaker that puts the pre-WM5 "New" menu (and more) back on your WM5/6 device.


My Favorite Windows Mobile Tweak

Choosing a Windows Mobile hack or tweak for me is not easy because I use so many of them on my Glofiish X500 that I actually have a list of tweaks I should apply after every soft reset. Like Dale Daniels’s tweak, mine also goes back to basics. Actually, it’s something that was available in Windows Mobile 2003/SE editions but later removed from Windows Mobile 5 (and 6). Can you guess what it is?


Most important "tweak" - Time

Nate Adcock has taken over our monthly blog topic. The idea is the first of each month one or more of us post on a particular topic that Nate suggests or coordinates. By midyear, when we get our new site up, we will highlight this feature and make it more obvious. If you look back over the past year at first of month (we skipped a few months starting Fall), there was some great stuff posted. This month's topic is on most important "tweak". "Tweak" can mean futzing with the system registry or simply making a settings change. I like the topic, since the "tweaks" can be simple but have a good effect.

Here is my example of a simple but important settings change that makes my phone more usable, followed by another tweak that used to work, but no more -- and I am looking for an alternative. Both concern time. I've been using a Mobile Planet-provided HTC TyTN II (AKA AT&T Tilt) for the past 4 months. My most often used application over the years is to check the time! In that regard, I really like the TyTN II's large digital clock on the home screen -- apparently many other people also don't wear watches. However, on the TyTN II, I missed seeing the time on the top title bar that was on other Pocket PC's I've used. I often would have to Start Menu ! Today just to see the time. The other day I was fooling around with settings between flights on the way home. Under Settings | System | Clock & Alarms there is a "More" tab, that somehow I never noticed. With a simple check in the box, the time is now on all screens with title bar.

Speaking of time, there is another fundamental "tweak" that no longer works with the smartphone. Maybe someone can help.


The One Windows Mobile 'Tweak" I Can't Live Without

Well, I have to say that when it comes to the Windows Mobile "Tweak" that has best served me, simple has been the best. What do I mean? Simply stated, my one most needed tweak was one of the simplest to be had. Clear-Type in lnadscape mode. Hardly earth shattering, but the simple ability to have Clear-Type capability in landscape mode on my AT&T 8525 has made a big difference in the way I am able to use my device.

In the upcoming issue of Smartphone and Pocket PC magazine, one of my articles explores the possibility of replacing a laptop with a Pocket PC. Although we may not quite be there at this point, I was surprised at the result.


The one Windows Mobile tweak that I can't live without!

I could never understand why it would take forever for my Comcast email to connect and logon so I could download email to my device and yet on a different account it seemed to be almost instantaneous. For a long time I figured that it was just the way Comcast was so I just sort of lived with it ... but I was not happy about it.

But then by a stroke of luck I ran across a discussion about this very issue and someone posted a "Tweak" that would forever change how I would receive my Comcast email. It was a simple fix and if you have a registry editor, you can change how you receive your Comcast email in just a few seconds.

Comcast Registry Fix

There's a registry fix that speeds up that long Comcast logon process. Using the registry editor of your choice (mine is Resco), go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFTWARE/Microsoft/Inbox. Create a new DWORD named ForceOffSSL. Assign to it a value of 1. Save, and do a soft reset. You will immediately see the difference in the connect/logon speed.

The sad thing is that I can't give credit where credit is due on this one. It was a tweak I got years ago and saved it in my "Tips and Tweaks" file. But to whom ever it was that figured this one out, I am forever grateful! Note: You can see FULL screen shots of the three pictures above after the break


What is My One Must-Have Windows Mobile Tweak/Hack?

It's not so much which single Windows Mobile tweak/hack I can't live without, but more like which tweak/hack utility I've found to be the most helpful over the years. That would be Tweaks2k2 which is currently at v3.30.0. The software has been repeatedly honoured over the years in the Best Software Awards, from getting nomiated to making it to the finals to winning three years in a row.



The one Windows Mobile tweak that I can't live without

After prodding my iPAQ and HTC Advantage for a while, looking for one of the many tweaks I use every time I power on the screen, the answer stared me straight in the face. SBSH's iLauncher is one tweak/utility I simply can't live without. I've become so used to its flexible features that any other Windows Mobile device lacking this exquisite application simply feels naked and clunky, like sewing with chopsticks.


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