Friday, January 27, 2006

Using Oxios ToDo List for SmartPhone

Just wanted to update you on my earlier post as promised.

I just bought Oxios ToDo List for SmartPhone for my Qtek 8310 as a substitute for the built-in. This one is much better - I can edit my tasks - and very important - works on the same database and thus synchronizes with Outlook/Exchange.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

AKU2 / MSFP and SP2 DirectPush configuration

The requirements are an Exchange Server 2003 with SP2 and a Mobile Device with Windows Mobile 2005 that includes the Messaging Security Feature Pack (MSFP aka Adaption Kit Update 2 (AKU2)) and for sync via USB with your machine you need ActiveSync 4.1 (Although this is not absolutely required). Furthermore for administration of the remote wipe features you will need the ActiveSync Web Administration tool.

The MSFP is actually a new version of the Windows Mobile OS so you need to wipe the device completely - with WM5 it is a pretty straight forward process; I started the phone in bootloader mode, connected it to USB and started the upgrade process. There's a very good TechNet Webcast called "Managing Windows Mobile-based Devices with the Messaging and Security Feature Pack" that includes very detailed info on security in Windows Mobile 5, the new features in MSFP and how upgrades can be done.

On the server side you need to change the IIS and Firewall timeout values. This is due to the fact that "DirectPush" works by keeping an http connection open to the server (Through a concept called heartbeats, where the mobile device periodically pings the server). If the firewall timeouts before the periodic ping, the device will need to ping/reconnect more frequently and errors might turn up in your eventlog. KB Article 905013 on "Enterprise firewall configuration for Exchange ActiveSync Direct Push Technology" explains more on this subject.

If you are using ISA server as a firewall you can change the timeout on the Web listener for your Front End mail server (Find it under properties for the web listener, Preferences, Advanced) and also you need to change the IIS timeouts on your Exchange Servers to a corresponding value (I'm currently using 30 minutes or 1800 seconds, which seems to work fine in a small environment).
It will be interesting to measure the scalability effects of these connections in Exchange 2003, where many users now not only will have an Outlook 2003 connection but also (almost always?) an active connection to their mobile devices - according to Microsoft its part of the reasoning that Exchange 12 will be 64 bit only (Longer story - I'm part of the beta program so I'm preparing to test it on my newly acquired AMD x64 Acer Ferrari 4000 notebook).

In overall the MSFP/DirectPush experience is great (Mail at times arrive on my mobile device before RPC/HTTPS syncs ;-), configuring the security policies and applying them to the devices also works fine, I can’t understand how I ever lived without GAL Lookup and I only have a few negative comments. The most annoying part is that the phone insists on informing me that a new mail has arrived, also when I’m at my desk. If I change my profile to “No sound” on mail arrival it will also turn of sound from SMS messages.
Another annoyance is the fact that the keyboard lock and device lock features doesn’t work together. So when the device is locked by the security policies and the phone is in my pocket – It doesn’t lock the keyboard and after x failed attempts it will wipe the device (Guess the rest of the story yourself ;-)

Friday, January 20, 2006

Monad beta 3 is out

As a follow up to my previous post, I just wanted to tell you that beta 3 is available for download.

Hibernate - and I mean it!

I have a server for running Virtual Server. The server uses a wireless network card to connect to my home LAN. This gives me a problem as the wireless specifications disallow inserting other MAC adresses. To give my guest OSs internet network access, I'm running Routing and RAS on the host.
This all works fine except one thing: I cannot hibernate my server anymore.
RRAS pops up a message telling me, that it will not allow that-

For a while I have stopped the service, hibernated and remembered to restart the service on resume, but I just found another solution.

Simply write -
shutdown /h /f

The /f ignores RRAS and hibernates right away.

Now, I haven't used this much, so use it at your own risk. There could be a reason for RRAS not supporting hibernation - and if you know it, please share the knowledge.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

How to add a loopback device from the command line

This is easy -

devcon install %windir%\INF\netloop.inf *msloop

devcon.exe is found in Support Tools.

Have fun

Friday, January 13, 2006

LCS PIC troubleshooting

The LCSKid has posted a good article on LCS PIC troubleshooting. It contains the kind of questions that you will be asked when calling PSS. It can also be used for checking requirements/troubleshooting before bothering PSS with a call ;-)

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Issues with EASI passport domains, LCS and MSN Messenger

When implementing Live Communications Server (LCS) in your organization with Public IM Connectivity (PIC) support, you need to change your EASI passports (e.g. to either a or address - if the domain name (in this case is used in your LCS implementation.

The background/details are described in this article and the change can be completed directly through this link.

That was the easy part - but according to Will Robinson at Intense Collabage there are intermittent problems where, after the transition, contacts remain offline. The solutions is according to Will/MSN Support -

    • Log in to MSN messenger with new account name.
    • Export your contacts to a file (Option in Menus)
    • Delete all your contacts manually
    • Import the contacts file.
Btw. as I wrote earlier EASI passport domains are supported as contacts in LCS with PIC - but its still not updated in the KB (UPDATE - KB has been changed see EASI passport domains support for Live Messenger for further info).
Furthermore, there are problems with Windows Live Custom Domains and EASI passports (Might be that MS regrets ever offering EASI passport domain support ;-)

Monday, January 02, 2006

Hunting a better task list for my QTek 8310

I've been hunting a better solution for a while. My QTek 8310 does not allow me to edit my tasks etc., so the usefulness is limited...

I gave Oxios ToDo List 5.10 a run - it works on the same tasks as the built-in task applet and thus on my Exchange/Outlook tasks - but it could not open the task database.

Returning to the Oxios page, I found the solution. A 6.0a4 version - alpha - can be downloaded.

It seems to work. I now have 15 days to figure out whether it is worth the 13€. I'll let you know in a later post.

Check also the Today plugin. This enabled you to access tasks directory from the Home Screen and is freeware.

Remote Mobile Registry Editor

Just been referred to this tool from a friend of mine. It is called Mobile Registry Editor and can be found here. It lets you modify the registry of your mobile device from you PC. Much easier than using the limited keyboard on my phone.

BTW: I was talking to him about debugging my Qtek 8310 problem. It would not boot after my - ahem - cleaning up. I was suspecting that I deleted some files for my custom home screen. Luckily, I should just let it stay stay turned on for a looong time - and finally, it came up with an error message and I could switch it to another home screen layout.