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Old 06-11-2003, 08:39 PM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Device: TT
Networking Palm Desktop

I recently had a customer who bought a TW and she wanted to have the Palm Desktop networked so her receptionist could make appts etc and then sync them to the Palm. But lo the desktop is not networkable, everyone agrees it cant be done various gurus, swamis and bagwans.

I am not a man who like to be told I cant do it so a surfing I went and heres what I found.

Networking Palm Desktop (Yes it works and works well)

1) Install PDS to the first machine.
2) Create all users you require in that Palm Desktop. Don't put the info into them yet.
3) Close Palm Desktop
4) Open the palm folder. Find the user folders, and delete then.
5) Make sure the driver (or better yet, just the folder) that palm is installed to is set as shared, with create/modifiy access as well.

6) Go to the second computer.
7) Install Palm Desktop on the 2nd computer. (this is where it's critical that you have removed the user folders from the first palm folder)
Create the user names, ensuring the are 100% the same as what you entered on the first
9) Map a network drive on the 2nd computer, pointing to the palm folder on the 1st computer. Make sure you set this to connect at login
10) In PDS on the 2nd computer, open tools, options. Change the data directory to the mapped drive from step 9

Now hopefully at this point, the folder should be re-created back in the palm folder on the first computer. Two important notes:

I) If you didn't remove (or rename) the user folders before starting the second installation, PDS will create a new folder with a different name, so each copy of PDS will be looking in different spots, and thus not sharing data.
II) If the user names were not 100% identical, PDS will probably create a folder with a different user name, and therefore won't share data.

At this point, if everything seems to be coming on well, test it out -- before going any further.
- Open PDS on the 1st computer.
- Enter some data into one of the apps
- close PDS on computer 1

- Open PDS on the 2nd computer.
- Check to see if the info shows up on the 2nd computer.

Problems and Fixes
I got a message similar to "Can't use this location, another user is already using it."

Try re-naming or removing the users.dat file from the palm folder.

You may have to do this after every install on the other computers, except for the last.

"Unable to use this directory, another user is already using it" or something like that.

Fortunately, I found what seems to me to be an easier way.

First, I installed Palm Desktop on the second computer (the first one already had all users up and running for a while).

Then I strapped on my hard hat and went mining in the Registry on the second computer. There are two entries at:






I changed the settings for PATH and DESKTOP PATH to refer to the networked series of files. It seems to work fine now!

As was indicated in an earlier posting, there doesn't seem to be a problem with multiple users accessing the files, but changes aren't recognized by other Palm Desktops until the files are closed (close Palm Desktop, or switch to another User).

IMPORTANT POINT: Each set of data is available to be opened by multiple users. BUT, if two users open the same set of data, and make changes, and then close, only the changes that were saved last will be recognized. i.e. Any time a data set is closed, it completely overwrites what was there before.

Thanks to many and varied threads at Brighthand
Disclaimers: Do this at your own risk!
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