Palm synchronization

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This page describes issues with the Palm handheld and Palm synchronization. If you need help configuring this handheld to sync, please see our Configuring A Palm Handheld page.

How to sync

How do I sync?

  1. Connect your handheld to the computer.
  2. Make sure the red and blue HotSync Manager icon is running in the Windows system tray.
  3. Press the HotSync button on your cradle or cable.

How do I sort the contacts on my handheld by the company name?

Palm handhelds each have two sort methods for the Address Book area. Most Palms have the ability to sort the contacts by company name or by last name. Palm phones have different options; they have the ability to sort the contacts by first name or by last name. This is a Palm feature. To sort your contacts by company name:

  1. Go to the Address Book/Contacts area.
  2. Click on whatever text is in the upper lefthand corner. This will produce a previously hidden drop down menu.
  3. Click on Options.
  4. Click on Preferences.
  5. The sort option is there. You will see either 'Company, Last Name' and 'Last Name, Company', or 'Last Name, First Name', 'First Name Last Name'.
  6. If you have the option for 'Company, Last Name', tap on this.
  7. Tap OK.

How to enter notes on a contact/activity/todo.

To enter a note on a contact, activity or todo in your handheld, double-tap on the record that you wish to add a note to. You should see a Details box. Tap on that. In the box, tap on Note.

If you have a note icon next to a contact, activity or todo, this means that there is already a note for that record. You simply tap on this and this will open the note.

How to find the number of records on the handheld.

Your handheld can tell you how many records are in each program. You can find this feature by:

  1. Turn on your handheld.
  2. Go to the menu of programs.
  3. Tap in the upper lefthand corner.
  4. A previously hidden dropdown menu should open.
  5. Tap on Info.
  6. Tap on Records.
  7. The number of records in each area of the handheld will be displayed.

How to link and complete activities on the handheld.

Please see Linking and Completing Appointments.

How do I restore data that's been deleted from my handheld or Palm Desktop?

Please see Restoring CompanionLink's Back-ups of Palm Desktop.

How to soft-reset and hard-reset your handheld.

Palm handhelds can be reset in three different ways: Soft, Warm, and Hard. Soft-resetting your handheld is frequently necessary, and is similar to rebooting a computer. A soft reset will not delete any data. The hard reset erases all of the data on the handheld and allows you to start fresh. The warm reset is rarely used, and instructions for this are not listed below.

  • To soft-reset your handheld: Put a paperclip into the reset hole on the back of the handheld.
  • To hard-reset your handheld: NOTE: All data will be lost!
  1. Hold down the power button.
  2. While holding the power button down, put a paperclip into the reset hole on the back of the handheld.
  3. You should see a logo on the handheld screen.
  4. Take the paperclip out.
  5. If this was successful, a message will appear on the screen telling you to press the Page Up button to hard-reset your handheld.

Palm Desktop

What versions of Palm Desktop are compatible with our software?

CompanionLink is compatible with Palm Desktop 4.0 and higher.


Datebook categorization.

Most Palm handhelds do not have categories in the Datebook area. You can only categorize your Datebook records if you have a handheld with this capability. In general, handhelds with this capability will not have a Datebook application, but will instead have a Calendar application. CompanionLink only supports this categorization if you are using one of these handhelds, Palm Desktop 4.0 and higher.

Non-supported datebook activities.

Palm handhelds do not support activities that are:

  • Overlapping two days. For example, from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.
  • Before 1970.


Can I sync multiple Palm handhelds on the same computer?

This depends on your version of CompanionLink and how you are synchronizing the handhelds.

  • One Palm Desktop profile:
    • If you are only synching one handheld/profile with CompanionLink, then you may sync as many other Palm handhelds to the computer as you wish, regardless of your version of CompanionLink.
  • Multiple Palm Desktop profiles:
    • If you are using CompanionLink For Palm Desktop, CompanionLink For Outlook, CompanionLink For Google, or CompanionLink For Time & Chaos, then you may sync one handheld/profile with CompanionLink
    • If you are using CompanionLink Professional 3.0/4.0 or CompanionLink FA, then you may sync up to three separate Palm handhelds with CompanionLink on the same computer.

Record limitations.

The Palm Desktop program limits the amount of data that may be transferred to it. These limits are part of the Palm Desktop software and are not based on the amount of memory you have in your handheld.

The Palm Desktop program is limited to 10,000 Address Book records, and to 100 Datebook entries per day. It also limits the number of untimed Datebook entries to about 25 per day. These limitations do not apply to newer Palm handhelds, who have do not have these areas and instead have Calendar and Contacts; however, it is still recommended that you not exceed these.

If you have more than 10,000 contacts in your contact manager, you will need to limit these. For ACT!, you would do this using groups, and the Groups tab in CompanionLink. For GoldMine, you could use a group or a filter, and the Filter/Group tab in CompanionLink.

Where does the CompanionLink data go on the handheld?

Your contact manager data will transfer to the Address Book, Datebook, Todo List and Memo Pad programs on your handheld, or the Contacts, Calendar, Tasks and Memos areas, depending on which applications your Palm has. If you are using a replacement for one of these areas, such as Datebook+, your data will appear in that program.

Is CompanionLink a program on my handheld?

No, CompanionLink is not a program on your handheld. CompanionLink synchronizes data from your contact manager to the Palm Desktop and uses HotSync Manager to move the Palm Desktop data to put your contact manager data into the standard areas on your handheld, such as Address Book, Datebook, Todo List and Memo Pad, or the Contacts, Calendar, Tasks and Memos areas, depending on which applications your Palm has. If you are using a replacement for one of these areas, such as Datebook+, your data will appear in that program.

Maximum length of notes.

The maximum length of a note or memo in Palm is 4K (approximately 800 words). This is a limitation of the Palm software.

Data not transferring

General checklist.

Please note: The following instructions are specific to Palm Desktop 4.1. If you have Palm Desktop version 4.1.2 and higher, then the conduits mentioned below have different names. In Palm Desktop 4.1.2 and higher, the names of the conduits are Contacts, Calendar, Tasks and Memos.

  1. Check your HotSync Manager settings.
    1. Right-click the Hotsync Manager icon in the Windows system tray.
    2. Choose Custom.
    3. There should be four conduits there labeled CompanionLink Date Book, CompanionLink Address Book, CompanionLink To Do List and CompanionLink Memo Pad.
      • If they are not present or have a different name, then this is a problem.
      • The action should be 'synchronize the files'. If it is not, then this may be part of the problem.
    4. Check the action for the System conduit. This MUST be 'handheld overwrites desktop'. If it is not, then this may be part of the problem.
  2. Check Palm Desktop.
    1. Open Palm Desktop.
    2. In the upper righthand corner, there will be a username. Click the dropdown menu. How many usernames are there? If there is more than one, then this is a problem. See [How do I find the right Palm username?]
    3. Is your data is reaching the Palm Desktop? If the data is present in Palm Desktop, this indicates a different problem.
  3. Check your CompanionLink settings.
    1. Open CompanionLink Setup.
    2. Under the Options menu, confirm that all options are UNchecked.
    3. Click on Category Manager. If you see the user profile screen, click the dropdown menu. How many profiles are listed? If there is more than one with the same description, then this is a problem.
    4. In Category Manager, look at the conduits listed (Palm Address Book, Palm Datebook, Palm To Do List and Palm Memo Pad, or Palm Contacts, Palm Calendar, Palm Tasks and Palm Memos). Confirm that the databases listed with each of these conduits have yellow arrows next to them and not yellow boxes. If they have yellow boxes, the data will not transfer.

If you cannot figure out how to fix any problems that you encounter, or if you cannot determine the source of the problem, please contact our [Technical Support department].

Private records / records not displaying.

It is possible to set your handheld and Palm Desktop so that private records are not displayed. If you have done this, then those records would not show in Palm Desktop or on the Palm handheld. To reset this:

  • In Palm Desktop:
    1. Go to the View menu.
    2. Choose Show Private Records.
  • On the handheld:
    1. Open the Address Book.
    2. Tap in the upper lefthand corner.
    3. A menu will appear that says Record, Edit and Options.
    4. Tap on Options.
    5. Tap on Security.
    6. Set this to Show Private Records.
    7. Tap OK.


CompanionLink errors.

HotSync goes too fast and no data transfers, then HotSync Manager crashes when CompanionLink is launched. This problem is typically seen on a first sync or after reinstallation of your Palm or CompanionLink software. The reason this happens is that the HotSync Manager fails to launch CompanionLink on its own.

To prevent this, you should leave the CompanionLink Setup program open on the main window when you do an initial sync, after reinstalling CompanionLink or resetting your Palm HotSync settings, then reconfiguring CompanionLink. This is because HotSync Manager can have problems initially launching the CompanionLink program. If you open the CompanionLink Setup program and then HotSync, this will take care of this, and HotSync Manager will be able to launch CompanionLink on its own for subsequent syncs.

If this problem happens to you, you will need to do the following:

  1. Open CompanionLink Setup if it is not already open.
  2. HotSync Manager will give you an error and close, if it has not already done so.
  3. Rerun HotSync Manager. See [Where do I find HotSync Manager]? if you need help finding this program.
  4. Press the HotSync button on your cradle/cable.

Connection errors.

Connection errors, such as The connection between your handheld and the desktop could not be established are not due to CompanionLink. CompanionLink does not make the software that connects your handheld to your computer. This software is HotSync Manager. If you are having connection problems and cannot resolve these with the basic steps we provide, you would need to do the following:

  1. Open CompanionLink Setup.
  2. Go to the File menu and choose Reset Palm HotSync settings. This turns CompanionLink off.
  3. Exit CompanionLink.
  4. Contact Palm or your handheld manufacturer and tell them that you need help getting your handheld to sync to Palm Desktop.

Handheld errors.

  1. If you have data on the handheld you need to save, see Connection errors above for instructions on how to disable CompanionLink so that you can contact Palm about saving this data.
  2. If your data on the handheld can be erased and rewritten from the contact manager, then you would need to do the following:
  3. Turn off CompanionLink.
    1. Open CompanionLink Setup.
    2. Click on File.
    3. Choose Reset Palm HotSync Settings.
    4. Exit CompanionLink.
  4. Remove the Palm Desktop data for the conduit that has the error.
    1. Open Windows Explorer and find the Palm folder(s). See Where do I find Palm Desktop? if you need help locating this.
    2. Open the Palm folder.
    3. In the Palm folder, there will be a folder with a variation of your Palm username. Open this folder.
    4. Open the folder for the conduit with the error. (For example, address).
    5. In this folder will be a file called [Conduit].dat. (For example, address.dat). If you cannot find this file, please see How to display all files.
    6. Rename [Conduit].dat to [Conduit].old.
    7. Close Windows Explorer.
  5. Clear the data from handheld.
    1. Open Palm Desktop.
    2. Go to the area for the conduit, such as Address Book. This area should be blank. If it is not, stop here and contact our Technical Support department.
    3. Add a test item.
    4. Close Palm Desktop.
    5. Right-click the HotSync Manager icon in the lower right-hand corner of your computer desktop by the time and choose Custom.
    6. Find the conduit (e.g. Address Book) and highlight this line.
    7. Click Change.
    8. Select Desktop Overwrites Handheld.
    9. Click OK.
    10. Click Done.
    11. HotSync your handheld.
    12. The sync should complete with no errors. When the sync is complete, the only item in the handheld conduit (such as the Palm Address Book) should be the test item you entered earlier.
  6. Resync your handheld.
    1. Open CompanionLink Setup.
    2. Click on Settings, then, if you are prompted to modify your profile, click Next.
    3. Click Next and Configure.
    4. Click on the Purge And Reload tab.
    5. Put a checkmark next to the conduit which had the error (such as Address Book) and click Yes.
    6. Click Apply, OK, Next and Finish.
    7. HotSync your handheld.