i just got back the prs-500 from having its firmware upgraded by sony. i only expected to get epub compatibility. but i also got usb storage function (i can move files to/from the reader just using the windows explorer like any usb drive). no more special driver needed. wow. what a way to breath new life into an old device. next up is the battery swap i'll be doing this weekend. the original battery currently in the reader lasts only a few hours at best.
i knew of the firmware upgrade program, but didn't contact sony because it's been so long since they offered it. i guess you should always ask. lesson learned.
UPDATE: done swapping the battery in about an hour thanks to this post from a mr member with the handle lint - http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...ht=500+battery