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Friday, November 28, 2008

Hidden Mickey: Disneyland: New Orleans Square: Haunted Mansion Holiday: Snow

We have a new Hidden Mickey to report for November, 2008 in the Haunted Mansion area of Disneyland! We located today on our latest visit to Disneyland for the Thanksgiving weekend.

As you may have read in an earlier post, there is a very well known Hidden Mickey in the Haunted Mansion in the dining hall. However, when Jack Skellington and his not-so-frightfull friends show up and deck the halls at the Haunted Mansion Holiday, it goes away. In past years, there had not been any Hidden Mickeys.

And then there was this year. Ashley and I rode the Haunted Manison Holiday ride as one of the first rides of the day as we knocked out Adventureland and Frontierland in the early-day-after-Thanksgiving emptiness at the Disneyland Anaheim Resort Park.

We were enjoying the ride and all of the changes made for this Christmas season when we entered the Dining Hall once again and there it was. I fumbled for my camera and could only manage the shot below...

Hidden Mickey Disneyland at Haunted Mansion Holiday in the Dining Room Snow
If you look close by the arrow, you will notice that there is a Hidden Mickey made in the snow on the floor of the Dining Hall, right next to where the pile of snow and gifts has come in. A great and new Hidden Mickey in the Haunted Mansion!

Did you find this Hidden Mickey? If so, let me know with a comment!

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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

BMW E90 M3 - 1200 Mile Service Update

The first 1,000 miles on my BMW e90 M3 sedan went really fast -- just about three and a half weeks until I reached that milestone. The first thousand miles on any car is the "break-in" period, where you generally want to take it easy, vary the pace, rpms, and the lengths of your drive. This enables all the engine and drive train components to get sealed and seated properly, theoretically preparing your vehicle for a long and productive life.

The BMW M3 e90 / e92 / e93 series is similar, but different than most BMW's. For instance, its "running-in period" is the first 1200 miles. And the 4.0L V8 engine with 414-hp is the only BMW engine that is not broken in at the factory and that's the reasons for having it changed out so early at 1200 miles. BMW wants you to take it easy on the engine so much that in addition to the manual, the following window sticker can be found in the upper left hand corner of the windshield:

The BMW M3 e90 / e92 / e93 series is similar, but different than most BMW's.  For instance, its running-in period is the first 1200 miles.  And the 4.0L V8 engine with 414-hp is the only BMW engine that is not broken in at the factory.  BMW wants you to take it easy on the engine so much that in addition to the manual, the following window sticker can be found in the upper left hand corner of the windshield
What does it say?

Running-in Instruction:
- up to 1200 miles / 2000 km: no full-throttle, max engine speed: 5500rpm, max speed: 106 mph / 170 kmh
- up to 3100 miles / 5000 km: max constant speed 137 mph / 220 kmh, max speed only for short periods
Observe Owner's Handbook!

And while I had been tempted to take the engine above 5500 rpms (ust wants to go sometimes), I was patient for the first 1000+ miles and made my appointment for service at Bob Smith BMW in Calabasas, CA to have the service done. I had done some research on the BMWCCA forums and knew what to expect:

a. Performed 1200 Mile Service
b. Performed Engine Oil Service
c. Performed Service--Standard Scope
d. Performed 6 Speed Manual Transmission Service
e. Performed 0000661 Rear Differential Service

I made my appointment for today and showed up and dropped my car off. I asked specifically about the the 6MT service on the e90 M3 because I had seen it left off for a few others and was told it would be looked into. In addition, they made a special effort to get my car done by noon so we could head out for the Thanksgiving holiday. I picked up my 328i loaner vehicle and was on my way -- and also a little surprised about how different the standard 3-series and the M3 were inside and out.

I received a call a little later mentioning that the transmission fluid did not need to be changed specifically on the manual transmission, and then picked my car up shortly after 1:00pm to head out on the road. Everything appeared to be back in order, except I had to reset my clock for some reason.

I finished that up and I was on my way -- now with my M3 able to go all the way to up the redline of 8400 RPM (although the magazine report it at 8300 RPM) -- not that I planned to take it there anytime soon. At least I could approach 6000 or 6500 RPM without having much worry.

Another nice thing although odd is that the dealership still washed and vacuumed out the car even though it was raining. I thought that was a nice touch even if it was a little unnecssary. I am looking forward to the "driven-in" vehicle and seeing what the next few thousand miles hold!

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Monday, November 24, 2008

Fixed! Blackberry Bluetooth Connectivity to BMW iDrive

A little over a week ago I reported some strange behaviors when attempting to connect my Blackberry 8800 phone via Bluetooth to the BMW iDrive system on my BMW M3. (link here) The symptoms were mainly around the Blackberry 8800 thinking that it was still connected to the the BMW iDrive system, even when the car was off and I was far away from the vehicle (think miles) -- the Blackberry kept flashing the "blue light" indicating that it was still connected to the BMW.

While I did find a work-around, it was still frustrating when it occurred because once it was in this condition, there was only one way to get out of it -- reboot the device with Bluetooth turned off. I could not connect to any other handsfree or Bluetooth devices in the meantime.

So, I searched for a solution. Usually when these types of problems happen -- I look to the manufacturer's website to see if an upgrade is available. I visited the Blackberry RIM website remembering that they had released their RIM Blackberry Device Software v4.5 some time ago. However, it still was not available for the network my phone was on, AT&T.

While it was not authorized specifically for my Blackberry device, I installed a Rogers Wireless version of the v4.5 operating system on the 8800. (here's how link) Fortunately, for me it went flawlessly and now, in addition to a refreshed and more reliable look on the 8800 with the v4.5 OS, it was time to test out the compatibility with the BMW iDrive system.

First off, even after the operating system upgrade -- the Blackberry stilled maintained the device pairing with the BMW iDrive system and connected immediately. I placed a call and it went through. Now it was time for the real test -- I turned off the car -- the Blackberry detected immediately the that connection to the BMW system was terminated. I was in luck.

Not yet ready to call it a victory -- I went throughout the day and was able to connect and disconnect from the BMW iDrive system 4 separate times. That was good enough for me -- I was satisfied that the connectivity problem was fixed!

However, I had one small problem remaining. For some reason the phonebook transfer function was not working properly. The phonebook on the BMW iDrive system was remaining empty. I even tried to manually use the transfer phonebook feature -- but it still failed to send.

Then I noticed that my contacts in the Blackberry were pretty large -- over 250, with some of them from old jobs of 8+ years ago -- something I wanted to keep, but did not need handy on a daily basis. I then cut the phonebook down to 110 or so contacts and reconnected the phone to the iDrive system. The phonebook automatically was transferred and I could use the entire features of the iDrive system! Great news, even though it appears there is some artifical limit to the number of contacts that can be transferred from your Blackberry's phonebook to the BMW iDrive system.

In closing, for anyone that is having issues with connectivity or phonebook transfers between their Blackberry and the BMW iDrive system, I recommend two things:

1. Upgrade to the latest version of the Blackberry device software, regardless if you are on Vodaphone, Orange, AT&T, Verizon, Rogers Wireless, Sprint, or T-Mobile. (If you're on AT&T, here is how you can: link.) This will solve connectivity problems.

2. If you experience problems with your phonebook transfers, try shrinking your contact size down to 110 or so entries. In my case, 250+ were simply too much for the Bluetooth transfer to handle.

Good luck! If this worked for you, please let me know with a comment below!

This may also apply to the following Blackberry devices:
BlackBerry Storm 9530
BlackBerry Bold 9000
BlackBerry Curve 8300 Series
BlackBerry Curve 8330
BlackBerry Curve 8320
BlackBerry Curve 8310
BlackBerry Curve 8300
BlackBerry Pearl 8100 Series
Blackberry 8100
Blackberry 8110
Blackberry 8120
Blackberry 8130
Blackberry 8220
BlackBerry 8800 Series
BlackBerry 8830
BlackBerry 8820
BlackBerry 8800
BlackBerry 8700 Series
BlackBerry 8700c
BlackBerry 8700g
BlackBerry 8700r
BlackBerry 8703e
BlackBerry 8705g
BlackBerry 8707g
BlackBerry 7130 Series
BlackBerry 7130c
BlackBerry 7130e
BlackBerry 7130g
BlackBerry 7100 Series
BlackBerry 7100g
BlackBerry 7100i
BlackBerry 7200 Series
BlackBerry 7250
BlackBerry 7290
BlackBerry 7520
Blackberry 7105t
Blackberry 7100x
Blackberry 7100v
Blackberry 7100t
Blackberry 7100r
Blackberry 7100i
Blackberry 7100g
Blackberry 7100
BlackBerry 6780
BlackBerry 6750
BlackBerry 6720
BlackBerry 6710
BlackBerry 6510
Blackberry 6280
BlackBerry 6230
BlackBerry 6210
BlackBerry 5810
Blackberry 7780
Blackberry 7750
Blackberry 7730
Blackberry 7520
Blackberry 7510
Blackberry 7290
Blackberry 7280
Blackberry 7270
Blackberry 7250
Blackberry 7230
Blackberry 7210
Blackberry 8707v
Blackberry 8707g
Blackberry 8707
Blackberry 8705g
Blackberry 8703e
Blackberry 8700v
Blackberry 8700r
Blackberry 8700g
Blackberry 8700f
Blackberry 8700c
Blackberry 8700
BlackBerry 8330

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Sunday, November 23, 2008

How to Upgrade AT&T Blackberry to v4.5 Device OS (Operating System)

I had been thinking about it for a couple of months. Who couldn't? The new features and upgrades to the version 4.2 of the Blackberry operating system by RIM were extremely attractive. In fact, I had loathed this 4.0 operating system on my Blackberry -- frequent locks, problems with the GPS, no HTML email, the list went on and on. At least it worked relatively well with all the email, contacts, and calendaring needs that I had -- so I lived with it.

Still, I had been really tempted to upgrade to the OS version 4.5 of the Blackberry -- even though it was not "authorized" by AT&T. (You can check the availability of your Blackberry on this liek here: https://www.blackberry.com/hhupgrade/) I had learned that you could use the version of the software available from Rogers Wireless and the upgrade would still work great even on the AT&T / Cingular network. There were some rumors that there might be problems with Blackberry Enterprise Servers (BES) like the one my device ran on, so I held out.

Why was I so jazzed about the Blackberry device software v4.5? Here's a short list:

User Interface
Refreshed Look – Enjoy messages, address book entries and a calendar that make better use of colors and fonts. They’re also laid out to more closely match the programs you use on your computer.
Email
Improved Email Layout (Rich HTML Email) – View tables, images and fonts with formatting that looks better than ever.
Remote SearchFind emails that are stored on a BlackBerry® Enterprise Server.
Attachments and Files
Edit Microsoft® Word and Microsoft PowerPoint Files – Just download the attachments and start typing!
Copy, paste, change font formatting and more.
Download and Save
Grab a file on the Internet, and save it to your smartphone to view or edit later.
Want to edit Microsoft Excel files on your BlackBerry smartphone? Visit the DataViz website to register with DataViz and download an update for Documents To Go that includes Sheet To Go.
Browser
Mobile Streaming
Access videos, music or even sports and news clips from websites with mobile streaming capabilities.
BlackBerry Maps
Local Search - Enter a search term like ‘pizza’ to view a list of places to grab a slice within a 30-km radius.
Voice Notes
Send a Voice Note – Instead of typing an email, record a Voice Note and send it as an email attachment or Multimedia Message (MMS).
Stay on Top of Your Tasks
Record your thoughts and play them back when they’re needed.
Calendar
Free/Busy Lookup – View your colleagues’ calendars on your smartphone
Those features of course were pretty compelling for me. But, not enough so that I wanted to go through all the trouble to download it, hack the Blackberry 8800 and then learn it would not work and have to resinstall everything. Not to mention that rumors were that AT&T Cingular would make the update available in September, October, and November. But, no such luck.

Then, something changed my mind. When my Blackberry could not tell if it was connected or disconnected with my BMW M3's iDrive system, it pushed me over the edge. I decided it was time to take the risk and upgrade the device software on my Blackberry to v4.5.

The following is my exact experience with it (which went well!) -- depending on your provider, how your company may run its Blackberry Enterprise Server (BES), etc. -- you may have slightly different results. In the end, you should have two things before you start, #1 a copy of the current version of your Blackberry device's operating system and #2 make a complete backup of all the programs and data on your device. That way, if you get stuck you at least have something to go back to. This may also work with other Blackberry models, not just the 8800 that I have. I have listed additional devices and sources for the software in the guide for assistance.

This guide assumes that you already have the Blackberry Desktop Software installed on your machine. I performed this with Blackberry Desktop Software v4.7 on my machine as it was the most current at the time of this post.

1. You need to get the current version of the Rodgers Wireless version of the Blackberry Device Software v4.5, here are the details of the one I downloaded:
Package Version: 4.5.0.108
Consisting of:

* Applications: 4.5.0.81
* Software Platform: 2.7.0.78
* File name: 8800M_PBr4.5.0_rel108_PL2.7.0.78_A4.5.0.81_Rogers.exe
* File size: 75.17MB

Download link

Alternatively, if you have another Blackberry model -- you can download that from here:
https://www.blackberry.com/Downloads/entry.do?code=1905AEDAB9BF2477EDC068A355BBA31A


2. Once the download of the file has completed, double click the executable (8800M_PBr4.5.0_rel108_PL2.7.0.78_A4.5.0.81_Rogers.exe) and it will extract itself to your hard drive.

3. Now comes the "hack" per say. Browse to your Program Files --> Common Files --> Research in Motion --> AppLoader folder. Find the file called "vendor.xml" and rename it to "vendor.xml.old", this will make it so the v4.5 of the Blackberry device OS will load on any device (T-Mobile, AT&T, Cingular, Verizon, Sprint, etc.) once it is run. See the image below for details.

It may also be in the following locations depending on your computer's setup: C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Research In Motion\AppLoader, C:\Program Files\Common Files\Research In Motion\AppLoader, C:\Program Files (x86)\Research In Motion\AppLoader, C:\Program Files\Research In Motion\AppLoader, C:\Program Files\Research In Motion\Blackberry\AppLoader

Browse to your Program Files -- Common Files -- Research in Motion -- AppLoader folder.  Find the file called vendor.xml and rename it to vendor.xml.old, this will make it so the v4.5 of the Blackberry device OS will load on any device (T-Mobile, AT&T, Cingular, Verizon, Sprint, etc.) once it is run.  See the image below for details.
3. Exit the Desktop Manager software if it is running, restart and connect your device. You may get the below image, if so -- click Update Now. If you do not get this, you can also click on the "Application Loader" icon on your Desktop Manager software to start the process.

Blackberry ATT device v4.5 OS: Exit the Desktop Manager software if it is running, restart and connect your device.  You may get the below image, if so -- click Update Now.
4. The Blackberry device will connect to your boot ROM, and detect the current running module versions on your Blackberry device's operating system.

Blackberry ATT device v4.5 OS: The Blackberry device will connect to your boot ROM, and detect the current running module versions on your Blackberry device's operating system.
5. Now the Blackberry Desktop Manager will confirm the versions of the modules that will be updated and installed. Click on next to confirm these upgrades.

Blackberry ATT device v4.5 OS: Now the Blackberry Desktop Manager will confirm the versions of the modules that will be updated and installed.  Click on next to start the process that will first backup your device programs and data, then upgrade the device operating system, and then restores your data.  The process may take 15-20 minutes and may require you to interact if you have a password that locks your Blackberry like I do.
6. Now the final step, click on Finish to start the process that will first backup your device programs and data, then upgrade the device operating system, and then restores your data. The process may take 15-20 minutes and may require you to interact if you have a password that locks your Blackberry like I do.

Blackberry ATT device v4.5 OS: Now the final step, click on Finish to start the process that will first backup your device programs and data, then upgrade the device operating system, and then restores your data.  The process may take 15-20 minutes and may require you to interact if you have a password that locks your Blackberry like I do.
7. Now your Blackberry device should be ready to go. In my case, I immediately noticed major changes in both the performance and usability of the device. My Blackberry Enterprise Activation started -- but did not complete. However, I just had it re-activated on the server side and my AT&T Blackberry 8800 was ready to go with the new V4.5 OS. If you followed these steps, then yours should be ready, too!

Good luck, please let me know if it worked for you with a comment below!

This process may also work on the following devices:
BlackBerry Storm 9530
BlackBerry Bold 9000
BlackBerry Curve 8300 Series
BlackBerry Curve 8330
BlackBerry Curve 8320
BlackBerry Curve 8310
BlackBerry Curve 8300
BlackBerry Pearl 8100 Series
Blackberry 8100
Blackberry 8110
Blackberry 8120
Blackberry 8130
Blackberry 8220
BlackBerry 8800 Series
BlackBerry 8830
BlackBerry 8820
BlackBerry 8800
BlackBerry 8700 Series
BlackBerry 8700c
BlackBerry 8700g
BlackBerry 8700r
BlackBerry 8703e
BlackBerry 8705g
BlackBerry 8707g
BlackBerry 7130 Series
BlackBerry 7130c
BlackBerry 7130e
BlackBerry 7130g
BlackBerry 7100 Series
BlackBerry 7100g
BlackBerry 7100i
BlackBerry 7200 Series
BlackBerry 7250
BlackBerry 7290
BlackBerry 7520
Blackberry 7105t
Blackberry 7100x
Blackberry 7100v
Blackberry 7100t
Blackberry 7100r
Blackberry 7100i
Blackberry 7100g
Blackberry 7100
BlackBerry 6780
BlackBerry 6750
BlackBerry 6720
BlackBerry 6710
BlackBerry 6510
Blackberry 6280
BlackBerry 6230
BlackBerry 6210
BlackBerry 5810
Blackberry 7780
Blackberry 7750
Blackberry 7730
Blackberry 7520
Blackberry 7510
Blackberry 7290
Blackberry 7280
Blackberry 7270
Blackberry 7250
Blackberry 7230
Blackberry 7210
Blackberry 8707v
Blackberry 8707g
Blackberry 8707
Blackberry 8705g
Blackberry 8703e
Blackberry 8700v
Blackberry 8700r
Blackberry 8700g
Blackberry 8700f
Blackberry 8700c
Blackberry 8700
BlackBerry 8330

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Work Around: Blackberry Bluetooth BMW iDrive Problems

When I first hooked up my Blackberry 8800 to the my BMW M3's iDrive system, I was really excited about the ease at which the connectivity was established, the download of phonebook and contact information, and the quality of the phone calls on through the car. I had already considering getting rid of my Motorola H800 Bluetooth device.

That's when the problems started. At first though, I did not realize what was happening...

You see, when I stepped out of the M3 and walked inside the house -- I noticed that familiar blue light flashing at the top of the Blackberry telling me that the phone was still connected to the car. My initial thoughts were -- that's odd, the car is off, but actually might be kind of cool. But, the joke was on me.

The next time I started up the car, I noticed that the Bluetooth link on the Blackberry showed Bluetooth connectivity, but the BMW iDrive system did not recognize it. I attempted to scan for already connected phones -- including my Blackberry 8800, but no luck. I tried to disable Bluetooth on the Blackberry and re-enable it, no luck either. I then rebooted it, thinking it was some weirdness with the new car or Blackberry and then I was able to connect the iDrive to the Blackberry again -- good news!

But then, I noticed the problem happened every single time I had a successful Bluetooth connection to the BMW iDrive system. When I turned off the car, even if I was miles away from it -- the Blackberry would show it was still connected, and there was no way I could disconnect it!

Everytime the symptoms were the same:
1. When I would unlock my Blackberry and go to the home screen, I would get the error message -- Uncaught exception: java.lang.NullPointerException -- and the blue light in the upper right hand corner blinking.

When I would unlock my Blackberry and go to the home screen, I would get the error message -- Uncaught exception: java.lang.NullPointerException -- and the blue light in the upper right hand corner blinking.
2. If I went to the Bluetooth options under tools and tried to manually disconnect the Blackberry from the BMW iDrive system, I get the message Waiting for BMW 15590 -- it just sits there for 5-10 minutes and does not disconnect.

If I went to the Bluetooth options under tools and tried to manually disconnect the Blackberry from the BMW iDrive system, I get the message Waiting for BMW 15590 -- it just sits there for 5-10 minutes and does not disconnect.
This basically left me in a stuck position where I had to reboot the Blackberry (ALT+CAP+DEL) to get it to work again. Thinking an upgrade to Blackberry 8800 might help fix the problem, I checked out the Blackberry site. Unfortunately, I am running the latest available version for my device and provider, 4.2.1.79. With 4.5 not supported for AT&T Wireless (formerly Cingular), I did not have many options.

In the meantime, I have found two painful work-arounds:
1. Turn off Bluetooth connectivity on the Blackberry 8800 before I turn of the car and the iDrive system.
2. Turn off Bluetooth connectivity on the Blackberry and reboot the device (Alt+Cap+Del) if I forgot to do so before I turned off the car.

Hopefully the Blackberry upgrade will be available in the near future that will solve this problem!

And lastly, something that is pretty ironic -- Ashley's iPhone works perfectly with the BMW iDrive system, good for her, bad for me. But, my Blackberry 8800 works perfectly with her Lexus GX470 -- but her iPhone constantly has problems connecting to the Lexus hands free system. If only we could reverse the two, we'd both be happy!

This problem may also cause problems for the following Blackberry Models:
BlackBerry Storm 9530
BlackBerry Bold 9000
BlackBerry Curve 8300 Series
BlackBerry Curve 8330
BlackBerry Curve 8320
BlackBerry Curve 8310
BlackBerry Curve 8300
BlackBerry Pearl 8100 Series
Blackberry 8100
Blackberry 8110
Blackberry 8120
Blackberry 8130
Blackberry 8220
BlackBerry 8800 Series
BlackBerry 8830
BlackBerry 8820
BlackBerry 8800
BlackBerry 8700 Series
BlackBerry 8700c
BlackBerry 8700g
BlackBerry 8700r
BlackBerry 8703e
BlackBerry 8705g
BlackBerry 8707g
BlackBerry 7130 Series
BlackBerry 7130c
BlackBerry 7130e
BlackBerry 7130g
BlackBerry 7100 Series
BlackBerry 7100g
BlackBerry 7100i
BlackBerry 7200 Series
BlackBerry 7250
BlackBerry 7290
BlackBerry 7520

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Friday, November 21, 2008

BMW M3:Fuel Economy on Third Tank

Today I put the third tank of gas in the BMW M3 Sedan and had a surprise when I checked the fuel consumption.

Guess what? I was over 19 miles per gallon on this tank -- actually at 19.4 MPG! This was a huge improvement over my first two tanks that I had in the car -- with the first tank being closer to 15 MPG and the second right at 16 MPG. The sticker is rated at 14 MPG city and 20 MPG highway, I was expecting to be in the 16-17 MPG on an ongoing basis.

There were possibly two things happening...

1. The engine is starting to get broken in. The E90 M3 is the only BMW that comes with "break-in" oil as it is not broken in at the factory. That means the first oil change is at 1200 miles for this car. Initially they are notably tight and then loosen up over the first couple of tanks of gas.

2. I made the decision to only drive the car in the M-mode, also known as the M-Drive mode where the EDC (Electronic Damping Control) is set to Sport, Power is set to Sport Plus, and the stability is set to M-Dynamic mode. In this sportier setting, is it perhaps more fuel efficient?

In checking out the M3 Boards at BWMCCA, I noticed a couple drivers of E92 coupes are up in the 21-22 MPG range ongoing. If that eventually occurs, there ends up being very little difference between this an my Audi A4. How can that be?

Here's a little humor for you in terms of the M3's fuel economy. Check out the M3 vs. the Toyota Prius in a track fuel economy test. You may be surprised!

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Saturday, November 15, 2008

Fixed! No Available Message Stores - Blackberry Synchronization Error

Last night we were over at a friends house for dinner and the conversation turned to mobile devices. Several of us had Blackberry devices and our friend was having issues getting it to sync properly with Microsoft Outlook on Windows XP. They had spent hours on the phone with RIM Blackberry and Verizon support -- yet the problem could not be figured out.

First they tried reinstalling the Blackberry Desktop Manager. No luck.

Then they tried reinstalling, then upgrading Microsoft Office Outlook. No luck.

The symptoms were that they could walk the through the "Configure Sync" wizard, but when they Blackberry Desktop Manager went through the synchronization process, an application error message popped up for the Microsoft Outlook Connector, "No available message stores."

Screen shot of Blackberry Desktop Manager Sync, where the error message No Available Message Stores for the Microsoft Outlook Connector Appeared.
I offered to take a look at the problem to see if I could solve it a little more quickly. What was a little different for me this time, is that my friend was using only the Desktop Manager software. I was more used to the Blackberry Enterprise Server (BES) type connections, but figured I might be able to figure it out.

I tried a couple of basic configuration changes, and still kept running into the "No available message stores" error. It was time to turn to Google. Luckily, after piecing a few different sites together, I came across the fix for the issue. Rather than forcing you to sift through those pages -- the problem and updated directions for fixing are below.

The root problem was with a corrupted or incompatible version of MAPI32.dll with the Blackberry Desktop Manager and Microsoft Outlook. Given the problem and the tools that Microsoft provides in Windows XP and Windows Vista, you can accomplish the fix in less than 5 minutes.

Here are the steps...

1. Optional (I did not follow and it worked): Exit out of both the Blackberry Desktop Manager and Microsoft Outlook clients. Make sure that in your task manager that the process Outlook.exe is not running.

2. In the default Windows XP or Windows Vista installation go to the folder C:\Windows\System32. You can also get there by typing in %systemroot%\system32 into the Start --> Run prompt.

3. In the System32 folder, find the file "MAPI32.dll" and rename it to "MAPI32.dll.old" or similar.

4. In the System32 folder, there is another file called "FIXMAPI.EXE" that may just show as FIXMAPI depending on your configuration. Double-click it to execute the file, it will create a new version of MAPI32.dll.

5. Verify the new file in your System32 folder. You may need to hit F5 to or go to View --> Refresh in order to show the newly created file.

Now start up the Blackberry Desktop Manager and re-configure the synchronization feature. The error message Microsoft Outlook Connector Error - No available message stores should not longer be there!

This fixed my friends Blackberry synchronization error and boy were they happy. I just felt bad that they had spent a couple of hours on the phone with Blackberry and Verizon and the fix took me just 5 minutes!

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Sunday, November 09, 2008

Meet Jet Black, a 2008 BMW M3 Sedan

After yesterday's test drive of the 2008 BMW E90 M3, I had a lot to think about last night. I was pretty certain the M3 would be my next car, but I was really struggling over the color. In fact, you might say I was obsessing over it. Jet Black or Sparkling Graphite? That was the real question.

I was serious enough about the Sparkling Graphite color in the M3 that I called around the Los Angeles area trying to locate one with the similar options that the Jet Black M3 I test drove had. After a couple of calls, I located almost the identical car down at Irvine BMW. Now I really needed to make a decision.

What did I do? Of course, I turned to the Internet and Google.

Some visits to some common BMW / M3 boards revealed something that I did not notice in the showroom. The Sparkling Graphite color has a distinct purple tint to it, especially in direct sunlight. I then looked at several pictures and really started noticing the purple. Not that a purple car is a bad thing, just not what I was looking for in my next car.

Since I decided on the car color last night, all I needed to do was make the purchase today -- assuming the Jet Black M3 was still available. Waiting for 10:00am for the dealership to open was a little painful. However, I placed a call before we headed out of church to reserve / put a deposit on the car.

BMW E90 M3 2008 at Delivery time at Bob Smith BMW rear view
After attending church in Malibu, we headed over to make the purchase. I mentioned the situation with the Sparkling Graphite to our sales person -- to which he replied, I almost pulled it out of the showroom to show you it in the sun. Still, Sparkling Graphite looks awesome in the showroom.

We walked over to take a look at "Jet Black" as it was being detailed and confirmed it was cleaning up nicely. It had just about every option I was interested in, including:

  • Preium Package
  • Black Novillo Extended Leather
  • Cold Weather Package
  • Technology Package
  • 19" Wheels with Performance Tires
  • Moonroof
  • iPod and USB Adapter
  • Satellite Radio
  • Enhanced Premium Sound

I asked for a couple of additional details to be buffed out inside and out before delivery, and now it was time for the paperwork...

BMW E90 M3 2008 at Delivery time at Bob Smith BMW front / side view
I always have to laugh about purchasing a car. In most cases, I have known and been happy with the price I paid before I came into the dealership -- and this time was no different. Then it comes time to meet with the finance person and be "up sold" a number of options that you may or may not need. In the case for the E90 M3, here were the options I was presented with:

  • Gap insurance, or the difference between the "fair market value" and what is owed on the vehicle. And generally speaking, there is decent amount of money on the table should the vehicle be stolen or totalled the instance you walk off the lot. Let's just say that this was a significant markup over the $6 or so a month that Allstate charges me for it.
  • Tire / Wheel insurance, should I damage the tires or rims at a cost of $1300 for 5 years. Given that the tires on this vehicle will be lucky to go much more than 15,000 miles, it would only only cover the tires for a year and the wheel for the remaining 4 years -- pretty expensive even if I should damage the 19" wheel.
  • Lo-Jack, at a discounted price for the holidays around $800. And by the way, your new 2008 E90 M3 only comes "wired" for the security system and you cannot put any other system on it besides from the BMW one without voiding your warranty.


Near Stoney Point in the Santa Monica Mountains with the Jet Black 2008 BMW M3 Sedan E90

As has always been the case -- I never agree to any of these add-ons during the sales process. In almost every case, they are significantly marked up from where you can get them elsewhere (for example when I buy my next set of tires, Costco will cover them with their included road-handler warranty) for much less or even free as was the case with the gap insurance. I am still perplexed how BMW chooses not to include two things with their premium vehicles -- an alarm system and floor mats. Actually, I guess I lied -- I did buy the floor mats at a cost of $130, cannot really go with that those. As I finished up the paperwork, I was mainly annoyed about the alarm. Pretty frustrating.

But, as soon as I was done and walked out towards the vehicle, I choose the forget all about that and enjoy the rest of the day with the new vehicle. I took a few minutes with the sales person to review the settings in the car, setting up my Blackberry with the Bluetood and connecting my iPod.
Stoney Point in the background on this rear view of my BMW M3 Sedan, 2008 E90 model

And then I drove off the lot, with my new 2008 BMW E90 M3 -- which means, for readers of this blog there are sure to be many posts in the upcoming months about the new car!

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MPT v5: How to Setup USB connection to your RAZR

With the release of Motorola Phone Tools v5 (MPT 5.0), there are a ton of new features to take advantage of. As part of my on-going coverage of the Motorola RAZR and other phones, I am publishing a number of how-to guides so that you can use the updated features of the new software.

This article is a part of the complete guide to Motorola Phones, Modding, Software, and Troubleshooting guide. For additionl articles on Motorola Phone tools and other tips, please click here.

Before you can start using the Mobile Phone Tools application with your phone, first you need to configure the connectivity. You generally have two options -- connecting via an USB cable or via Bluetooth Wireless connectivity. In this particular guide will show you how you can configure your Motorola RAZR (or similar mobile device) with USB connectivity to your computer utilizing Motorola Phone Tools 5.0. An added bonus, once you establish connectivity with your Motorola phone, it will also charge while connected!

If you do not own a copy of Motorola's Phone Tools -- you can order it for a cheap as $2 (MPT V4 upgrades to V5) through Amazon (link here) -- or buy the full MPT V5 for less than $15 (link here).

Here is the step-by-step guide.

1. Open the Motorola Phone Tools v5 Software -- if this is your first use, then the Phone Setup Wizard should initiate. If not, you can access this wizard by opening the application and clicking on Options --> New Mobile. Then click on the radio button next to the work Cable and select next.

MPT V5 Establish USB Connectivity: Open the Motorola Phone Tools v5 Software -- if this is your first use, then the Phone Setup Wizard should initiate. If not, you can access this wizard by opening the application and clicking on Options -- New Mobile. Then click on the radio button next to the work Cable and select next.
2. Now turn on your phone and then connect it via USB. You should immediately hear the escalating tone and the phone should show as charging. In just about 15 seconds, the USB connectivity is established to Motorola Phone Tools. The wizard will exit and restart the Motorola Phone Tools Application. Congratulations, you are now ready to use MPT!

MPT V5 Establish USB Connectivity: Now turn on your phone and then connect it via USB. You should immediately hear the escalating tone and the phone should show as charging. In just about 15 seconds, the USB connectivity is established to Motorola Phone Tools. The wizard will exit and restart the Motorola Phone Tools Application. Congratulations, you are now ready to use MPT!

This guide and Motorola Phone Tools (MPT) v5 works with the following Motorola Phones:
Motorola A1200
Motorola A1600
Motorola A630
Motorola A732
Motorola A780
Motorola A835
Motorola A845
Motorola A910
Motorola A920
Motorola A925
Motorola C390
Motorola C698
Motorola DC600
Motorola E1000
Motorola E1060
Motorola E1070
Motorola E1120
Motorola E2
Motorola E398
Motorola E550
Motorola E680
Motorola E690
Motorola E770v
Motorola E790
Motorola E8
Motorola E815
Motorola E825
Motorola E895
Motorola Em30
Motorola K1
Motorola K1c
Motorola K3
Motorola L2
Motorola L6
Motorola L7
Motorola L7c
Motorola L7e
Motorola L7r
Motorola L9
Motorola M990
Motorola Maxx
Motorola ROKR_E1
Motorola ROKR_E6
Motorola U6
Motorola U9
Motorola v1100
Motorola V1150
Motorola V176
Motorola V195
Motorola V235
Motorola V280
Motorola V3
Motorola V300
Motorola V323i
Motorola V330
Motorola V360
Motorola V361
Motorola V3c
Motorola V3i
Motorola V3x
Motorola v3xx
Motorola V400p
Motorola V500
Motorola V501
Motorola V505
Motorola V525
Motorola V535
Motorola V540
Motorola v545
Motorola V547
Motorola v550
Motorola V551
Motorola V555
Motorola V557
Motorola V560
Motorola V6
Motorola V600
Motorola V620
Motorola V635
Motorola V710
Motorola V750
Motorola V750g
Motorola V8
Motorola V8 LUX
Motorola V80
Motorola V9
Motorola V950
Motorola V9m
Motorola V9mS
Motorola VA76r
Motorola Ve
Motorola VU30
Motorola W205
Motorola W208
Motorola W209
Motorola W215
Motorola W218
Motorola W220
Motorola W360
Motorola W375
Motorola W380
Motorola W385
Motorola W385m
Motorola W385re
Motorola W395
Motorola W510
Motorola W755
Motorola W760r
Motorola Z3
Motorola Z6
Motorola Z6c
Motorola Z6M
Motorola Z6tv
Motorola Z6v
Motorola Z9
Motorola ZN5
RAZR2 V8 LUX
RAZR2 V9
ROKR E8
RAZR2 V9m
RAZR V3e
RAZR V3a
ROKR Z6m
RAZR2 V8
MOTO Z6c
MOTO Z9
W510
ROKR Z6
W490
V325i
W315
Maxx Ve
RIZR Z3
RAZR V3xx
RIZR Z6tv
L6
V323i
W755
V197
W385
PEBL
SLVR L7c
V266
V235
V262
V265
RAZR V3t
V365
V325
V195
KRZR
V276
V361
E815
ROKR E1
V260
RAZR V3r
V323
V360
SLVR L7
RAZR V3C
RAZR V3
RAZR V3i
RAZR V3m
KRZR K1m

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Saturday, November 08, 2008

Test Driving the E90 BMW M3

Today, I test drove the 2008 BMW E90 M3 Sedan. It was a long ways to get to this point...

With lease on my 2006 Audi A4 ending in a couple of months -- few weeks ago, I started my new car search. Shortly before I started the search, I was certain the the 2008/2009 Audi S4 would be my new vehicle of choice. However, that idea quickly faded when I learned that the S4 would not be available until late in 2008.

Faced with the reality that I would need to choose a different car and possibly a different brand, I started searching. My initial focus turned to BMW, a fellow German engineered company -- of which, one of my best friends has owned many a 3 series. The only problem for me was that I was only considering the Sedan (e90) as the coupe (e92) was really impractical for me. And with the e90 Sedan, I really did not like the look of the tail or rear of the vehicle.

My test drive of the BMW E90 M3 Sedan
Being that my options were limited from my perspective, I decided to still consider the 3-series BMW -- specifically looking at the 335i as a possible choice.

But, then after talking to a few friends -- the current pricing and financing available on the next level up -- both the BMW M3 and the M5 were extremely attractive given the current economic situation. Throw into the mix a corporate contact that could furthre reduce the price, I could not ignore the options in front of me. It was time to take a test drive.

We showed up at Bob Smith BMW in Calabasas, CA. While our contact was not at the office yet, another sales person helped us out with our "deal". Initially our eyes (Ashley was with me) turned to a grayish/charcoal colored 2008 M3 on the showroom floor -- "Sparkling Graphite". The machine looked great on the showroom floor, but was missing a key feature I was interested in -- the moonroof.

Then we went through the available inventory on the site -- as there were a couple of M3 sedans and choose to drive a Jet Black e90 M3. The car was pretty much loaded: Premium package with extended Novillo leather, technology package, cold weather package, some pretty sweet 19" rims, premium sound, and the all important moonroof. The car was fired up and I heard the rumble of the 420hp V8 engine come to life.

My test drive of the BMW E90 M3 Sedan 2
As I sat in the car, in some ways -- while completely different -- it felt eerily similar to my Audi A4. Ashley, sitting in the back seat -- immediately commented about how much more space there was in the back seat of the car vs the A4. Experiencing the seating for a moment, the sport seats and layout felt a lot more like a cockpit. However, that familiar German engineering was still present.

I probably could have ended the test drive there, but we still took it off the lot. The drive and power of the vehicle were impressive. Even just taking the high-revving V8 to 5000 RPM (8000+ is redline), it was quite a bit more power than I was used to. The clutch felt familiar compared to the Audi A4, very light -- like a feather.

The test drive was pretty much what I expected -- a very well powered machine, combined with great handling and comfort. Then, I was introduced to "M Mode" or a setting that adjusts the sensitivity of the gas pedel, turns on MDM (M-Dynamic Mode), and changes the electronic damping control (EDC) to super-sport. The e90 M3 changed from a luxury car into a machine.

After our 15 minute test drive, we returned to the car lot. We sat down to look at the learn the details of all the various promotions, but I was still had a number of thoughts going through my head. Did I want the Jet Black or the Sparkling Graphite color? The Jet Black had the main options I was interested in (Moonroof, EDC, Technology Package), the Sparkling Graphite did not -- but the Sparkling Graphite looked so good in the showroom.

We stuck around thinking about it for about 30 minutes while the numbers were run before getting up and walking away. My #1 rule is that unless I have pre-purchased a vehicle, never buy the car on my first visit to the dealership. There's always more cars, and it is good to step away for 24 hours before making a decision.

As we walked out of the dealership, I knew I had a lot to think about that evening between options, colors, and cars.

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MPT v5: How to Setup Bluetooth for RAZR

With the release of Motorola Phone Tools v5 (MPT 5.0), there are a ton of new features to take advantage of. As part of my on-going coverage of the Motorola RAZR and other phones, I am publishing a number of how-to guides so that you can use the updated features of the new software.

This article is a part of the complete guide to Motorola Phones, Modding, Software, and Troubleshooting guide. For additionl articles on Motorola Phone tools and other tips, please click here.

Before you can start using the Mobile Phone Tools application with your phone, first you need to configure the connectivity. You generally have two options -- connecting via an USB cable or via Bluetooth Wireless connectivity. In this particular guide will show you how you can configure your Motorola RAZR (or similar mobile device) with Bluetooth connectivity to your computer utilizing Motorola Phone Tools 5.0. Using this type of connectivity of requires that both your computer and your mobile device both have Bluetooth connectivty.

If you do not own a copy of Motorola's Phone Tools -- you can order it for a cheap as $2 (MPT V4 upgraded to V5) through Amazon (link here) -- or buy the full MPT V5 for less than $15 (link here).

Here is the step-by-step guide.

1. Open the Motorola Phone Tools v5 Software -- if this is your first use, then the Phone Setup Wizard should initiate. If not, you can access this wizard by opening the application and clicking on Options --> New Mobile. Then click on the Bluetooth radio button and select next.

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: Open the Motorola Phone Tools v5 Software -- if this is your first use, then the Phone Setup Wizard should initiate.  If not, you can access this wizard by opening the application and clicking on Options -- New Mobile.  Then click on the Bluetooth radio button and select next.
2. The wizard will ask you to select your phone model from the long list of possibilities (listed below). Based on your selection, it will walk you through how to connect via Bluetooth. I selected my V3 and clicked on next.

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: The wizard will ask you to select your phone model from the long list of possibilities (listed below).  Based on your selection, it will walk you through how to connect via Bluetooth.  I selected my V3 and clicked on next.
3. The instructions walk you through turning the Bluetooth capability on your mobile phone. For the V3 it is press Menu --> Settings --> Connection --> Bluetooth link --> Setup --> Power --> ON --> OK.

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: The instructions walk you through turning the Bluetooth capability on your mobile phone.  For the V3 it is press Menu -- Settings -- Connection -- Bluetooth link -- Setup -- Power -- ON -- OK.
4. Now you need to make your phone discoverable. By default, the V3 RAZR is discoverable for 60 seconds at a time. To set that, press Menu --> Settings --> Connection --> Bluetooth link --> Setup --> Find Me. Now Bluetooth discovery is enabled for 60 seconds.

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: Now you need to make your phone discoverable.  By default, the V3 RAZR is discoverable for 60 seconds at a time.  To set that, press Menu -- Settings -- Connection -- Bluetooth link -- Setup -- Find Me.  Now Bluetooth discovery is enabled for 60 seconds.
5. Once you make your phone discoverable via Bluetooth, click on next and your pc / laptop will search for your Motorola RAZR V3 phone. It took about 15 seconds for the Motorola Phone icon to show up in my window. Click on next to continue.

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: Once you make your phone discoverable via Bluetooth, click on next and your pc / laptop will search for your Motorola RAZR V3 phone.  It took about 15 seconds for the Motorola Phone icon to show up in my window.  Click on next to continue.
6. Once you click next, you are given instructions to connect your phone. Go to your phone, accept the connection on your mobile phone from the computer. Then enter the 4-digit code (it's random and changes each time). Finally grant access. Once you enter the information, the screen automatically moves you forward.

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: Once you click next, you are given instructions to connect your phone.  Go to your phone, accept the connection on your mobile phone from the computer.  Then enter the 4-digit code (it's random and changes each time).  Finally grant access.  Once you enter the information, the screen automatically moves you forward.
7. Windows / MPT installs the device for Mobile Phone Tools use. This process took approximately 15 seconds for me.

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: Windows / MPT installs the device for Mobile Phone Tools use.  This process took approximately 15 seconds for me.
8. This screen confirms that you have completed the setup of your Bluetooth connectivity from MPT to your mobile phone. Once you click finish, MPT 5.0 will exit. Restart and you are connected via Bluetooth!

MPT V5 Bluetooth Setup Configuration: This screen confirms that you have completed the setup of your Bluetooth connectivity from MPT to your mobile phone.  Once you click finish, MPT 5.0 will exit.  Restart and you are connected via Bluetooth!

This guide and Motorola Phone Tools (MPT) v5 works with the following Motorola Phones:
Motorola A1200
Motorola A1600
Motorola A630
Motorola A732
Motorola A780
Motorola A835
Motorola A845
Motorola A910
Motorola A920
Motorola A925
Motorola C390
Motorola C698
Motorola DC600
Motorola E1000
Motorola E1060
Motorola E1070
Motorola E1120
Motorola E2
Motorola E398
Motorola E550
Motorola E680
Motorola E690
Motorola E770v
Motorola E790
Motorola E8
Motorola E815
Motorola E825
Motorola E895
Motorola Em30
Motorola K1
Motorola K1c
Motorola K3
Motorola L2
Motorola L6
Motorola L7
Motorola L7c
Motorola L7e
Motorola L7r
Motorola L9
Motorola M990
Motorola Maxx
Motorola ROKR_E1
Motorola ROKR_E6
Motorola U6
Motorola U9
Motorola v1100
Motorola V1150
Motorola V176
Motorola V195
Motorola V235
Motorola V280
Motorola V3
Motorola V300
Motorola V323i
Motorola V330
Motorola V360
Motorola V361
Motorola V3c
Motorola V3i
Motorola V3x
Motorola v3xx
Motorola V400p
Motorola V500
Motorola V501
Motorola V505
Motorola V525
Motorola V535
Motorola V540
Motorola v545
Motorola V547
Motorola v550
Motorola V551
Motorola V555
Motorola V557
Motorola V560
Motorola V6
Motorola V600
Motorola V620
Motorola V635
Motorola V710
Motorola V750
Motorola V750g
Motorola V8
Motorola V8 LUX
Motorola V80
Motorola V9
Motorola V950
Motorola V9m
Motorola V9mS
Motorola VA76r
Motorola Ve
Motorola VU30
Motorola W205
Motorola W208
Motorola W209
Motorola W215
Motorola W218
Motorola W220
Motorola W360
Motorola W375
Motorola W380
Motorola W385
Motorola W385m
Motorola W385re
Motorola W395
Motorola W510
Motorola W755
Motorola W760r
Motorola Z3
Motorola Z6
Motorola Z6c
Motorola Z6M
Motorola Z6tv
Motorola Z6v
Motorola Z9
Motorola ZN5
RAZR2 V8 LUX
RAZR2 V9
ROKR E8
RAZR2 V9m
RAZR V3e
RAZR V3a
ROKR Z6m
RAZR2 V8
MOTO Z6c
MOTO Z9
W510
ROKR Z6
W490
V325i
W315
Maxx Ve
RIZR Z3
RAZR V3xx
RIZR Z6tv
L6
V323i
W755
V197
W385
PEBL
SLVR L7c
V266
V235
V262
V265
RAZR V3t
V365
V325
V195
KRZR
V276
V361
E815
ROKR E1
V260
RAZR V3r
V323
V360
SLVR L7
RAZR V3C
RAZR V3
RAZR V3i
RAZR V3m
KRZR K1m

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AT&T Messing Up Blackberries with Marketing Messages

My plane lands at Los Angeles International Airport on a Friday afternoon...

As soon as we clear the runway, I pull out my Blackberry 8800 device from A&T and turn it on to see the emails I received while I was airborne...

The Blackberry starts-up, the familiar GPS --> GPRS --> edge --> EDGE network starts up...

Then my Blackberry looks like it is going crazy. In no more than 5 seconds, 8 new Internet Browser icons show up on my Blackberry device.

It looked something like this (taking a photo afterwards):
AT&T adds a swath of marketing icons to your Blackberry: Community, Shop Applications, Shop Themes, Shop Games, Shop Graphics, Shop Multimedia, Music Apps, Shop Tones
At first, I thought something was wrong with the Blackberry and that my standard "Browser" icon somehow started duplicating itself all over the place. I was not getting any of the emails yet and hitting the Escape key and that would not stop it. So, I just waited.

Once it finished and the messages started coming in, I noticed that the icons were still there. Then as I scrolled over them I noticed they had some interesting names: Community, Shop Applications, Shop Themes, Shop Games, Shop Graphics, Shop Multimedia, Music Apps, Shop Tones.

What the heck was this?

Apparently, someone at AT&T (on my still labeled Cingular device) had a "brilliant" idea that if they pushed a bunch of generic Internet Browser icons down to all of their devices with catchy names like "Shop Games" or "Shop Tones" that somehow many of us would be compelled to use them and make purchases from AT&T, padding their sales and margins.

Fat chance.

Instead, before my flight arrived at the gate -- I successfully hid all of the icons using highlighting each icon, hitting the menu key, and then selecting the "hide application" setting for each. In less than a minute, I restoredmy Backberry's menu screen to what it was before they decided to push all of those icons.
My Blackberry is restored to normal after AT&T pushed application icons:  Community, Shop Applications, Shop Themes, Shop Games, Shop Graphics, Shop Multimedia, Music Apps, Shop Tones
Come on AT&T, if you are going to try to push marketing and icons down to me unrequested and disturb my Blackberry experience -- at least put graphical effort in and push some new icons rather that duplicating a bunch of generic ones.

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Friday, November 07, 2008

MPT v5: How to Transfer Phone Book to a New Phone

With the release of Motorola Phone Tools v5 (MPT 5.0), there are a ton of new features to take advantage of. As part of my on-going coverage of the Motorola RAZR and other phones, I am publishing a number of how-to guides so that you can use the updated features of the new software.

This particular guide will show you how you can transfer the entire phone book on your phone to the phonebook on your new phone utilizing Motorola Phone Tools 5.0. This can be a quick way of keeping all of your contacts whether you have them stored in memory or on a SIM card. Especially if you do not have a contact management program.

If you do not own a copy of Motorola's Phone Tools -- you can order it for a cheap as $2 (MPT V4 upgraded to V5) through Amazon (link here) -- or buy the full MPT V5 for less than $15 (link here).

This guide will take you through the process of restoring the personal data you have on your mobile phone using the MPT program.

Here is the step-by-step guide.

1. Open the Motorola Phone Tools v5 Software and click on the Phonebook Transfer button under the Personal Data Menu bar on the left. This guide assumes that you have already connected your phone via Bluetooth or USB cable.

Motorola RAZR Transfer Phonebook: Open the Motorola Phone Tools v5 Software and click on the Phonebook Transfer button under the Personal Data Menu bar on the left. This guide assumes that you have already connected your phone via Bluetooth or USB cable.
2. Click on the Transfer my phonebook to another phone icon to start the transfer phonebook wizard.

Motorola RAZR Transfer Phonebook: Click on the Transfer my phonebook to another phone icon to start the transfer phonebook wizard.

3. Now the software will automatically backup the phonebook on your mobile to memory at the start of the process. This may take 1-2 minutes depending on the size of your phone book.
Motorola RAZR Transfer Phonebook: Now the software will automatically backup the phonebook on your mobile to memory at the start of the process.  This may take 1-2 minutes depending on the size of your phone book.

4. Once the backup completes, this pop-up window appears. Now disconnect your phone if it is connected through the USB cable. Then click on ok to continue. You may want to disable bluetooth if you have backed up via this option, just to be safe.
Motorola RAZR Transfer Phonebook: Once the backup completes, this pop-up window appears.  Now disconnect your phone if it is connected through the USB cable.  Then click on ok to continue.  You may want to disable bluetooth if you have backed up via this option, just to be safe.

5. Now the phone tools will take you through the new device wizard. When you connect your new phone via cable or bluetooth, the wizard may already detect it for you as it did for me. Otherwise, you may need to walk through the wizard.
Motorola RAZR Transfer Phonebook: Now the phone tools will take you through the new device wizard.  When you connect your new phone via cable or bluetooth, the wizard may already detect it for you as it did for me.  Otherwise, you may need to walk through the wizard.

6. The phonebook completes the transfer to your Motorola RAZR (or similar phone). Now your new phone is all up-to-date!

Motorola RAZR Transfer Phonebook: The phonebook completes the transfer to your Motorola RAZR (or similar phone).  Now your new phone is all up-to-date!

This guide and Motorola Phone Tools (MPT) v5 works with the following Motorola Phones:
Motorola A1200
Motorola A1600
Motorola A630
Motorola A732
Motorola A780
Motorola A835
Motorola A845
Motorola A910
Motorola A920
Motorola A925
Motorola C390
Motorola C698
Motorola DC600
Motorola E1000
Motorola E1060
Motorola E1070
Motorola E1120
Motorola E2
Motorola E398
Motorola E550
Motorola E680
Motorola E690
Motorola E770v
Motorola E790
Motorola E8
Motorola E815
Motorola E825
Motorola E895
Motorola Em30
Motorola K1
Motorola K1c
Motorola K3
Motorola L2
Motorola L6
Motorola L7
Motorola L7c
Motorola L7e
Motorola L7r
Motorola L9
Motorola M990
Motorola Maxx
Motorola ROKR_E1
Motorola ROKR_E6
Motorola U6
Motorola U9
Motorola v1100
Motorola V1150
Motorola V176
Motorola V195
Motorola V235
Motorola V280
Motorola V3
Motorola V300
Motorola V323i
Motorola V330
Motorola V360
Motorola V361
Motorola V3c
Motorola V3i
Motorola V3x
Motorola v3xx
Motorola V400p
Motorola V500
Motorola V501
Motorola V505
Motorola V525
Motorola V535
Motorola V540
Motorola v545
Motorola V547
Motorola v550
Motorola V551
Motorola V555
Motorola V557
Motorola V560
Motorola V6
Motorola V600
Motorola V620
Motorola V635
Motorola V710
Motorola V750
Motorola V750g
Motorola V8
Motorola V8 LUX
Motorola V80
Motorola V9
Motorola V950
Motorola V9m
Motorola V9mS
Motorola VA76r
Motorola Ve
Motorola VU30
Motorola W205
Motorola W208
Motorola W209
Motorola W215
Motorola W218
Motorola W220
Motorola W360
Motorola W375
Motorola W380
Motorola W385
Motorola W385m
Motorola W385re
Motorola W395
Motorola W510
Motorola W755
Motorola W760r
Motorola Z3
Motorola Z6
Motorola Z6c
Motorola Z6M
Motorola Z6tv
Motorola Z6v
Motorola Z9
Motorola ZN5
RAZR2 V8 LUX
RAZR2 V9
ROKR E8
RAZR2 V9m
RAZR V3e
RAZR V3a
ROKR Z6m
RAZR2 V8
MOTO Z6c
MOTO Z9
W510
ROKR Z6
W490
V325i
W315
Maxx Ve
RIZR Z3
RAZR V3xx
RIZR Z6tv
L6
V323i
W755
V197
W385
PEBL
SLVR L7c
V266
V235
V262
V265
RAZR V3t
V365
V325
V195
KRZR
V276
V361
E815
ROKR E1
V260
RAZR V3r
V323
V360
SLVR L7
RAZR V3C
RAZR V3
RAZR V3i
RAZR V3m
KRZR K1m

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Thursday, November 06, 2008

MPT v5: How to Restore Phone Data on your Motorola RAZR

With the release of Motorola Phone Tools v5 (MPT 5.0), there are a ton of new features to take advantage of. As part of my on-going coverage of the Motorola RAZR and other phones, I am publishing a number of how-to guides so that you can use the updated features of the new software.

This particular guide will show you how you can restore the data on your Motorola RAZR or similar phone utilizing Motorola Phone Tools 5.0. It is important to note that this process only restores up PIM (Personal Information Management) data such as your contacts, tasks and calendar. It does not restore multi-media such as pictures, videos, audio, or ring tones or your mobile phone's configuration. If you are looking to restore your entire phone -- I recommend my guide on this process. (link here)

If you do not own a copy of Motorola's Phone Tools -- you can order it for a cheap as $2 (MPT V4 upgraded to V5) through Amazon (link here) -- or buy the full MPT V5 for less than $15 (link here).

This guide will take you through the process of transferring phonebooks between your two mobile phones using the MPT program.

Here is the step-by-step guide.

1. Open the Motorola Phone Tools v5 Software and click on the Backup/Restore button under the Personal Data Menu bar on the left. This guide assumes that you have already connected your phone via Bluetooth or USB cable.
Restore Motorola RAZR Phone Data:
2. Now click on the restore icon on the right to initiate the restore wizard process.
Restore Motorola RAZR Phone Data: Now click on the restore icon on the right to initiate the restore wizard process.
3. Select the appropriate backup from the drop-down list that you want to use to restore data to your phone and click next.
Restore Motorola RAZR Phone Data: Select the appropriate backup from the drop-down list that you want to use to restore data to your phone and click next.
4. Confirm yes that you really want to update your mobile phone data. Warning, if you click yes and continue with the process, your phone data will be deleted and completely replaced by the data in the backup. There is no merge functionality.
Restore Motorola RAZR Phone Data: Confirm yes that you really want to update your mobile phone data.  Warning, if you click yes and continue with the process, your phone data will be deleted and completely replaced by the data in the backup.  There is no merge functionality.
5. Select the data that you want to restore. Contact, Calendar, or both -- then click on next.
Restore Motorola RAZR Phone Data: Select the data that you want to restore.  Contact, Calendar, or both -- then click on next.
6. The restore process starts and runs for about 2 minutes (depending on the amount of data you have). The process is to delete first, then restores data to the appropriate locations -- SIM card, calendar, contacts -- updates the handset contents then updates the data.
Restore Motorola RAZR Phone Data: The restore process starts and runs for about 2 minutes (depending on the amount of data you have). The process is to delete first, then restores data to the appropriate locations -- SIM card, calendar, contacts -- updates the handset contents then updates the data.
7. This is where it could get tricky. In my case, I received the MPT message -- Failed to restore data. In what appears to be a little buggy implementation here, I had to run back through the process individually for both calendar and contacts. In each case I received the same Failed to restore data message, however my phone was updated with the right contacts and calendar items. Hopefully you did not need to go through the same process I did -- but the work around appears to work.
Restore Motorola RAZR Phone Data: This is where it could get tricky.  In my case, I received the MPT message -- Failed to restore data.  In what appears to be a little buggy implementation here, I had to run back through the process individually for both calendar and contacts.  In each case I received the same Failed to restore data message, however my phone was updated with the right contacts and calendar items.  Hopefully you did not need to go through the same process I did -- but the work around appears to work.

This guide and Motorola Phone Tools (MPT) v5 works with the following Motorola Phones:
Motorola A1200
Motorola A1600
Motorola A630
Motorola A732
Motorola A780
Motorola A835
Motorola A845
Motorola A910
Motorola A920
Motorola A925
Motorola C390
Motorola C698
Motorola DC600
Motorola E1000
Motorola E1060
Motorola E1070
Motorola E1120
Motorola E2
Motorola E398
Motorola E550
Motorola E680
Motorola E690
Motorola E770v
Motorola E790
Motorola E8
Motorola E815
Motorola E825
Motorola E895
Motorola Em30
Motorola K1
Motorola K1c
Motorola K3
Motorola L2
Motorola L6
Motorola L7
Motorola L7c
Motorola L7e
Motorola L7r
Motorola L9
Motorola M990
Motorola Maxx
Motorola ROKR_E1
Motorola ROKR_E6
Motorola U6
Motorola U9
Motorola v1100
Motorola V1150
Motorola V176
Motorola V195
Motorola V235
Motorola V280
Motorola V3
Motorola V300
Motorola V323i
Motorola V330
Motorola V360
Motorola V361
Motorola V3c
Motorola V3i
Motorola V3x
Motorola v3xx
Motorola V400p
Motorola V500
Motorola V501
Motorola V505
Motorola V525
Motorola V535
Motorola V540
Motorola v545
Motorola V547
Motorola v550
Motorola V551
Motorola V555
Motorola V557
Motorola V560
Motorola V6
Motorola V600
Motorola V620
Motorola V635
Motorola V710
Motorola V750
Motorola V750g
Motorola V8
Motorola V8 LUX
Motorola V80
Motorola V9
Motorola V950
Motorola V9m
Motorola V9mS
Motorola VA76r
Motorola Ve
Motorola VU30
Motorola W205
Motorola W208
Motorola W209
Motorola W215
Motorola W218
Motorola W220
Motorola W360
Motorola W375
Motorola W380
Motorola W385
Motorola W385m
Motorola W385re
Motorola W395
Motorola W510
Motorola W755
Motorola W760r
Motorola Z3
Motorola Z6
Motorola Z6c
Motorola Z6M
Motorola Z6tv
Motorola Z6v
Motorola Z9
Motorola ZN5
RAZR2 V8 LUX
RAZR2 V9
ROKR E8
RAZR2 V9m
RAZR V3e
RAZR V3a
ROKR Z6m
RAZR2 V8
MOTO Z6c
MOTO Z9
W510
ROKR Z6
W490
V325i
W315
Maxx Ve
RIZR Z3
RAZR V3xx
RIZR Z6tv
L6
V323i
W755
V197
W385
PEBL
SLVR L7c
V266
V235
V262
V265
RAZR V3t
V365
V325
V195
KRZR
V276
V361
E815
ROKR E1
V260
RAZR V3r
V323
V360
SLVR L7
RAZR V3C
RAZR V3
RAZR V3i
RAZR V3m
KRZR K1m

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