Random Tips and How-Tos

Use Contacts to organize miscellaneous info

You can store almost any simple information in Contacts, including credit card numbers, PIN numbers, instructions, lists, product information, and more. For example, you can store information about automobiles in Contacts. Put the name of the auto in the Name field (e.g., Toyota RAV4) and everything else in the Notes field (VIN, insurance numbers, auto registration number, etc.).

Access the “Quick List”

Non-touch screen smartphones have a built in menu known as the Quick List. As the name suggests, the Quick List provides quick access to a number of different functions, including “Power off,” “Flight mode,” “Device lock,” and the ability to change profiles (Silent, Vibrate, Outdoor, etc.).

Use SmartFilter to display the messages you want

The SmartFilter feature allows a user to display only those messages that relate to the filtering criteria entry. This lets the user display the information he or she is interested in. Note that WM 6 does not support synchronization of Contacts subfolders. However, you can use the SmartFilter feature to filter contacts by category. Note also that SmartFilter is available in other applications.

How to install ActiveSync

Install ActiveSync (on Windows XP PCs) from the Companion CD that came with your device so that you can set up a partnership between your device and your PC. Insert the CD into your desktop PC’s CD-ROM and follow the on-screen instructions to install ActiveSync. When you are prompted to Get Connected, attach the device’s USB cable or cradle to the PC and connect your device to it.

Personalize your Home Page in Internet Explorer Mobile

In WM Standard and Professional, you have the option of changing your Home Page in Internet Explorer to either the default or one that you specify. In Internet Explorer, go Menu >Tools >Options >(WM Standard): Home Page. You can then pick from Default or Custom (WM Professional: Navigate to the page you want to set as your Home Page and then tap on Use Current in the Home Page menu).

Set an e-mail follow-up flag

Messaging now supports the ability to set a follow-up flag to e-mail messages. The mobile user’s e-mail account must be hosted by an Exchange Server 2007.

  1. Open the desired e-mail.
  2. Select Menu >Follow up >Set Flag. (You can also set Complete Flag and Clear Flag.)

The Messaging application on WM 6 devices now allows you to attach follow-up flags to important e-mails.

How to select sounds and create custom ones

Clicks, beeps, and other sounds remind you when an “event” has occurred on your device (incoming messages, Start menu activated, etc.). You can associate different sounds with the events. Go to Start >Settings >Sounds & Notifications (non-touch screen smartphones: Start >Settings >Sounds) to customize your sounds. You can also download and use sounds from the Internet or create custom sounds using Voice Recorder.

How to save Web images on pre-WM 5 Pocket PCs and non-touch screen smartphones

Viewed Web images are automatically saved in one of the sub-folders found in the \Windows\Profiles\Guest\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5 folder. Use File Explorer or File Manager to find them. Then copy them elsewhere and rename them as necessary.

Copy your Internet Explorer Favorites list from your PC to your device

If you want your Windows Mobile device to have the same Favorites list as the one found in Internet Explorer on your PC, all you have to do is copy them from your PC to your device via ActiveSync.
  1. Connect your device to your PC, open the ActiveSync window on the PC, and click on the Explore icon.
  2. In Explore, navigate to the “C:\Documents and Settings\[username]\Favorites” folder on your PC.
  3. Select and copy the sites that you want to appear as Favorites on your device.
  4. In Explore, navigate to the

Updating Daylight Savings Time settings

Starting in 2007, a new schedule for Daylight Savings Time (DST) was introduced. Because of this, the automatic settings set up for DST in Windows computers before this year are no longer correct.

Realign screen to improve tap response

If you find that the display on your touch screen device is slow to respond to taps or isn’t responding accurately, try realigning it. To do this, go to Start >Settings >System tab >Screen and tap on the Align Screen button.
Align Screen asks you to tap on a series of five crosshair icons that appear in the center and four corners of the screen. Be sure to press down on the crosshairs as firmly and accurately as possible to ensure that your screen will be aligned correctly.

Use the Internet Explorer Home Page

Microsoft made a customized Home Page for Internet Explorer on Windows Mobile devices that featured a search bar and a drop-down list for Favorites and History. Some of the newer devices come set up with a default carrier version of the Home Page which may not be as useful as Microsoft’s. If you want to set up your device to use Microsoft’s Home Page, do the following (for touch screen devices):

Owner's name needed to install software

Some software vendors require that you tell them the owners name exactly as you entered it in your Pocket PC or Smartphone. In order to find it, go to Start >Settings >Owner Information. The owner's name is listed under "Name."

“Toggling” in infrared explained

Werner Ruotsalainen explains the “toggling” functionality in infrared controllers, or emitting two different commands. Click here for the explanation.

How to customize the Start menu

Customize the Start menu in Start >Settings >Menus on touch screen devices to quickly access programs or folders you frequently use. On non-touch screen smartphones, you can use File Explorer (or File Manager) to copy programs or folders to the Windows\Start Menu folder.

Stop using paper notes

Whenever someone gives you a phone number or some other important bit of information, resist the urge to write it on a piece of paper that you'll stuff in your pocket or briefcase. Paper notes are hard to organize and are easily lost. Take the extra 45 seconds to enter the information into Calendar, Contacts, or Tasks. If you're really in a hurry, hold down the voice record button and make a brief recording of the information. Then, when you get some time, transcribe the voice recording and enter the information into the appropriate application.

The difference between program and storage memory

Your device has two kinds of main (internal) memory: program memory and storage memory.
Main Memory
Main memory is the internal memory of the device, and it is divided into two types: Program memory and Storage memory.
Program memory
Program memory is temporary memory that programs use when they are running.

Try before you buy

Microsoft periodically upgrades the OS and applications found on Windows Mobile devices. They design the OS to be “backward compatible,” which means that third-party software written for earlier versions of the OS should work on devices running newer versions. Because of differences in screen resolutions and the user interfaces found on newer Windows Mobile devices, there are cases where software written for an earlier version of the OS will not work well on a later version.

Keyboard-related enhancements

Windows Mobile 6 has been improved to make better use of the built-in 30-key QWERTY keyboards or 12-key keypads found on most of these devices. For example, common Messaging functions have been mapped to number keys. To display a list of the keyboard or keypad shortcuts, press “0” in Messaging.

Press “0” in Messaging to display a list of keyboard or keypad shortcuts.

How to use PowerPoint Mobile

PowerPoint Mobile is built into WM 5 and WM 6 touch screen devices and most WM 6 Standard smartphones. It lets you open and view slideshow presentations saved in PowerPoint (.ppt) format. However, you cannot create or edit presentations.