Sync Hell


I am finally defeated. I have tried to make a PC at University, a
Windows Mobile 5 phone-pda, a home office desktop PC, and my MacBook Pro
keep a synchronised calendar, for all the appointments and plans in the
many walks of my life, each being a place where changes might be made.
The synchonisation problems across these platforms seem insurmountable.

Missing Sync for Windows Mobile on the Mac plays at being Active Sync
quite well, but changes events by one hour (yes I have installed the
released patch but it made it worse!) Events are routinely duplicated
during synchronisation, as if Entourage simply cannot see the exact same
event on the PDA, although the PDA happily writes the details into
Entourage. Delete the duplicate and it will be removed by Windows XP
when the PDA synchronises with the Desktop. [And yes I’ve exported the
lot out of Outlook as a CSV, reimported it into Outlook, and then
synchronised that across to empty WinMobile PDA and from there into
empty Entourage. It still fucks up.]

I am so fed up with spending up to an hour a day pissing about trying to
keep my calendar in order, when the synchronisation is supposed to make
my life easier, not more complex. Keeping one calendar, say on my PDA,
is not good enough because the PDA is a poorer interface than a full
screen where I can plan more effectively.

Unfortunately, the present solution is to stop using Entourage, and
launch Parallels on my Mac with Outlook installed on a Virtual WinXP,
and use that to synchronise with my PDA. But do I then have to use
Outlook on virtual PC on my Mac to hold all my contacts, email, etc etc.
This is sad. It could be worse to being running both! The only other
thing to do is to get an iPhone and begin to use iTunes on the PC. Try
synchronising from that to Outlook! Maybe it will be better – on WinXP.
Not sure to be honest.

When Orange offered me a £6.50 monthly deal worth £35 a month, with a
free LG Viewty, it had to be better than £35 a month plus £270 outlay to
have an iPhone on 02.

So for the next 18months I am still with Orange. So do I try an
unlocked iPhone, with all the extra expenses that it may entail in
decent patching software etc etc…. Doesn’t seem like a reliable
alternative to me.

Oh and as for getting the LG Viewty to talk to ANYTHING at all…. well forget it.

And yes of course I have tried to put the whole lot on Plaxo, and
synchronise everything to that. THe LG Viewty couldn’t talk to it at
all. Entourage and Outlook and the PDA all managed to talk and
sychronize with it and deleted more than half of all my calendar events
in the process!!!! So I dumped out of Plaxo pronto, restored my
calendars from backup (all important appointments with times and
locations as well as dates) and thanked God for archiving.

Yep = go with one operating system and software company. that’s the
message. and because of that I really would rather go mac. but keeping
the WM-PDA instead of going for the iPhone means, unfortunately, that
MS have won. Outlook on parallels-virtual-winxp here I should go! But I
tried it and it sucks.

Perhaps I just have to keep everything online – access it from the PDA
over GPRS – and not use either Outlook OR Entourage. Perhaps this is
the real change. Yep. This, though needing some research, is most
likely the way forward.

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