[BL] pilot-link with Palm III, USB, and 2.2.26
keesan at sdf.lonestar.org
Sun Jan 15 23:32:43 EST 2006
I have a Franklin Handspring Visor Palm II PDA with USB cradle (that
optionally has a serial cradle. A visitor brought over his similar PDA
and explained that you can use it in linux. So I spent an hour figuring
out how to type in with stylus one address, one todo, and three scheduled
events and decided I need to learn to type it on a real keyboard. He said
there is linux software for this, so I searched on Palm Handspring linux.
I just downloaded about 1MB of pilot-link-0.12.0-pre4.7.bz2 source code.
About 5-10 min of bunzip2, tar -xvf,./configure, make, make install
gave me a lot of files in /usr/local:
./bin - about 2MB, create, transform, move various files to/from PDA
(It supports many features I don't have, such as voice recording and
./lib - 650K of two .so files, and 1.3MB of .a and 2K of .la
./include - 200K of .h files
Can I safely delete the .*a and .h files if I won't be using them to
compile anything else?
./share/pilot-link - 3 little files
./man/man1/ 84K of useful looking documentation
I used the SW81 glibc, gcc and binutils. 'as' was quite busy for a few
Would anyone like a Slackware package of this (requires glibc 2.2.5 and I
have no idea yet if it works)?
jpilot and kpilot appear to be gui frontends for pilot-link.
You can also compile USB support into 'coldsync'.
Handspring offers an optional serial cradle, but I have USB cradle.
For serial connection to Com1:
ln -s /dev/ttyS0 /dev/pilot
I found 'A Trio of Tips for the Handspring Visor' for linux
which refers to a Handspring Visor USB Mini-HOWTO at
I need to compile in usb-serial and Visor support, and use kernel 2.2.18
or later to get usb-serial support. (This is not mass storage but some
USB emulation of serial).
I think David compiled usb-serial for one of his 2.4.31 kernels, probably
Steven provides both modules for 2.2.26, thanks! Do I need the 'big'
kernel to use them?
insmod usbcore, uhci or ohci, usb-serial, visor (anything else?)
mknod /dev/ttyUSB0 c 188 0
mknod /dev/ttyUSB1 c 188 1
ln -s /dev/ttyUSB1 /dev/pilot
(What does ttyUSB0 do?)
Press sync button on cradle before starting pilot software. (Similar to
turning the USB camera on and to PC mode before insmodding usb-storage?).
They also suggest Wordsmith, by Blue Nomad, a Palm wordprocessor, which
produces .pdb files that you can convert with their conversion program to
.rtf files, shareware $30, free for use as memo pad or e-text viewer. It
requires Palm OS III. Might it work as a small wordprocessor without
Palm? 2.3MB, available for Redhat Linux 6.0 and later.
It looks to me like just a conversion program, rtf to pdb, that requires
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