Random Tips and How-Tos

Protect yourself from text spammers

To avoid receiving text message spam, call 888-382-1222 to register with the National Do Not Call List, which will block your number for five years. You must call from the number you wish to block. Or, you can register at donotcall.gov.

External keyboard makes text entry easier

Many of the older touch screen Pocket PCs are pen-entry devices without physical keyboards. However, the majority of Windows Mobile touch screen devices released today have integrated phones and QWERTY thumb keyboards for text entry. Unfortunately, these keyboards are small and not well suited for extended text entry. The easiest way to enter Contacts, Calendar appointments, text, etc., is to do it on your PC and sync it with your Windows Mobile device.

Can't sync with more than two PCs using ActiveSync

Because most people have a computer at the office and at home, ActiveSync lets you sync with two PCs. ActiveSync must be installed on both PCs. Simply connect to one of the PCs, establish a partnership, and sync your Outlook data. Then do the same with the second PC.

How to free up memory

Free up storage memory by deleting unnecessary files, moving files to a storage card, deleting temporary Internet files, removing third-party programs you don’t use, and configuring your Inbox to save e-mail attachments to a storage card. You can also stop any currently running programs in the Start >Settings >System >Memory >Running Programs tab (smartphones: Start >Task Manager).

Display the clock in all programs

One of the most important and convenient features on Windows Mobile touch screen devices is the clock in the upper right corner of the screen. If you notice that the clock disappears from the top taskbar whenever you go from the Today screen to another application, this means that the “Display… in all programs” setting in the Clock & Alarms menu is not selected.
Go to Start >Settings >System tab >Clocks & Alarms.

11 great free applications for touch screen devices

Here is a list of 11 great free applications for touch screen devices, including an excellent tetris game called Kevtris.

Perform a hard reset to restore your device to its original state

A hard reset restores your Windows Mobile device to the condition it was in when you removed it from the box. Any data you’ve saved on the device and any programs you’ve installed are gone. You’ll want to perform a hard reset if you sell your device or give it to someone else to make sure you’ve delete sensitive information. It might also be necessary if your device locks up and stops running. In this case, you should try a soft reset first.

How to create and use templates in Word

If you find yourself entering the same information in Word again and again, you might save time by creating a template. • To create a new Word template on a touch screen device, open a new document and enter the text and formatting you want to appear in the template. Then select Menu >File >Save Document As. Finally, give the template a name and select “Document Template” from the drop down list associated with “Type.” • To open a template (including one of the 5 built-in templates), open Word in list view, tap on the folder icon at the top of the list, and select the Templates folder from the drop-down menu.

Displaying a Pocket PC on a projector

Werner Ruotsalainen discusses the different methods of displaying the screen of a Pocket PC through a projector, including the use of an external CF/SD VGA output card. Click here for the article.

Finding a downloaded file

If you downloaded a file to your device and are unable to find it, then you should try looking for it in File Explorer (or File Manager) in Windows\Temporary Internet Files. Internet Explorer downloads all content to the subdirectories of the above mentioned directory. If a downloaded file does not have an association with any of the installed programs on your device, then it will be downloaded in that folder as well. You can copy the file from that folder to any other folder using File Explorer. To find a file more easily, you can sort the files by date.

Where to get third-party software

In most cases, you can download and purchase third-party software directly from the developer’s Web site. However, many developers market their software through independent online stores. When a program we mention is available directly from the developer, we will list that site. If it is only available from an independent online store, we will list that site.

How to back up and restore your Windows Mobile device

Pre-WM 5 devices: In the ActiveSync window on your desktop PC, click Tools >Backup/Restore. WM 5 and 6 devices: Use the built-in backup program or get a third-party backup/restore program.

MAC address of your Wi-Fi unit/card

Werner Ruotsalainen explains how to obtain the MAC address of your Wi-Fi unit/card using both built-in and third-party applications. Click here for the article.

Use an ergonomic stylus

It's no secret that we lose a lot of ergonomic benefits by using a handheld device. The tiny device designs and smaller keyboards don't promote good ergonomic techniques. However, there is one way that you can promote better use: with a third-party stylus. Best of all, you can carry a better stylus around with you without any extra effort!
A third-party stylus promotes better ergonomics by eliminating the need to try to write with a tight, pinched grip.

Sound recorder compatibility with Windows Mobile 5 devices

Read Werner Ruotsalainen’s roundup of sound recorder applications here.

How to create a podcast

You can create and post podcasts from your Pocket PC using Resco Audio Recorder.

Transferring PIM information (Contacts, etc.) and messages to other Windows Mobile devices without Outlook/Exchange

Werner Ruotsalainen explains how to transfer PIM files like Contacts and Calendar appointments from one Windows Mobile device to another (without using Outlook and ActiveSync) by using third-party programs such as SK Tools and PIM Backup. Click here for the article.

Finding the hardware accessories you need

The first place to look for hardware accessories is the Web site of the manufacturer of your Windows Mobile device or the wireless carrier that sold you the device.

Password protect your Excel files

To password protect an Excel file in a Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition device, open that file, go to Tools >Password and enter the password that you want to set up. After you save and close the file, you will be required to enter the password again before you can open the file. If you synchronize the file to your desktop PC, the password will be lost.

Watch out when using soft-sided luggage

If you're packing a Pocket PC or Smartphone in a knapsack or fabric luggage, keep the device away from the thin fabric sides of the bag and put it in a carrying case or surround it with bubble wrap or something else that will absorb shock and impacts.