I knew my day would eventually come and almost 3 weeks ago it finally did. James Kendrick has blogged numerous times about his hatred of ActiveSync, complaining that when it works, it works great, but when something goes wrong there is no easy recovery from it. Having used Windows Mobile devices for a few years now, and never having experienced any issues with AS, I always kind of scoffed at jk (stupid me). My scoffing days are done my friends. From 8:27a on 10/5 through this morning I was completely unable to perform over the air synchronization to my Exchange server. The specific error I received was this blastedly vague phrase: “ActiveSync encountered a problem on the server Support code: 0x85010014”
All the Googling I could possibly do lead me to various solutions, none of which resolved the problem, and to make things worse one of those potential solutions was to hard reset both the 6700 and the 700wx (both getting the same error seeming to indicate that it was indeed a problem on the server). I have done enough hard resets that I am unafraid of them, or full blown ROm upgrades for that matter, but the frustrating thing is that upon reattempting the OTA sync (and failing) and then performing a soft reset after reloading my key apps, AS by default attempted to connect on startup and wound up freezing the device so quickly that I couldn’t stop the freeze in time to get into the task manager, thus leading to another hard reset.
I could at least do regular desktop syncing with Outlook to get all my contacts, calendar items, email, and tasks loaded, but having been able to do this OTA for a few months has spoiled me forever!
Suffice it to say, the research for a solution was exhausting and fruitless until my IT brethren and I determined that a recent install of an email archiving software had to have caused the issue. I also stumbled upon a 1 year old Powerpoint presentation from a Microsoft webcast for Exchange administrators. This ppt. contains some very valuable information about precisely how the sync process works (between front end and back end servers in particular) which lead me to what was ultimately a correct guess about how the problem occured.

The installation of the archiving software (Mimosa’s Nearpoint)on the back end server which holds my exchange account occured sometime the morning of 10/5 after 8:27a (my last successful OTA sync until this morning). The confounding thing is we have several back end servers and the 2nd installation did not lead to the same issue for Windows Mobile users on that server! In the review of the archiving software I link to above this comment caught my eye:

“Best of all, users can restore messages themselves. There are no special clients to install—management takes place through Outlook or Outlook Web Access (OWA)”

Because I knew this is also how OTA essentially works, I guessed aloud to my Exchange Admin that this had to be where the conflict was occuring. Sure enough what the initial Nearpoint installation did was by default change 2 specific permissions (not sure which ones) on the IIS virtual directory for OWA. It is these permissions that apparently make Nearpoint’s OWA archive management possible, and on the installation to the 2nd back end server, these 2 permissions were treated differently, thus the answer to why the WM users on that server weren’t having any OTA sync issues.

There is no documentation (that we could find anyway) on this issue from either Microsoft or Mimosa (who by the way I think is now owned by Microsoft). Yes it is a rather obscure issue and we did find a solution, but the fact that we had to pull so much hair out before we did is what still bothers me. This seems like a predictable conflict between these 2 pieces of software and I would bet that I’m publishing the first knowledge of this today?!

Though I am thrilled to be able to OTA sync again (which by the way duplicated all my contacts, tasks, and calendar items on 1st sync since the horror…nice), the bad taste from this affair won’t soon dissolve for me. If the boys in Redmond want their direct push solution to truly displace Blackberry Enterprise as the corporate mobile email drug of choice (which to be fair wouldn’t be the successful business model it is without the ubiquity of Exchange anyway), then they better start paying more attention to preventing issues like this from even needing to be documented in the first place!!!!!!!!

There’s no reason from a cost perspective that MS shouldn’t overtake Blackberry, once enough good WM5 devices are available from all cellular providers. The Blackberry Enterprise solution requires a another robust server (or multiples thereof depending on the number of users) in addition to the investment in the Exchange server(s) a company has already plunked over good cash for, and a per user/per month cost of around $40 bucks a user (based on what our organization was quoted at least). With a little more expensive WM device (compared to typical cost of Blackbery devices) and Exchange Service Pack 2 installed, this extra cost is eliminated and you get more syncing functionality to boot! How is this not a slam dunk?!!!!

And yet, somehow I don’t think Microsoft’s dominance in this area will come to pass. Why? Because executives don’t have the patience or the time to deal with suddenly not having mobile access to their email for 3 weeks. They will pay more for a more a more reliable solution, and though I haven’t made the time to scour the web to search for similar Blackberry horror stories, I’d bet good money up front they don’t exist………..

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After charging on the evening of Saturday 10/14 and using the headset somewhat infrequently since (because I just don’t make or receive that many calls in a typical day), Blue D finally ran out of juice at around 8a this morning. Quite impressive battery performance huh?!

I knew my day would eventually come and almost 3 weeks ago it finally did. James Kendrick has blogged numerous times about his hatred of ActiveSync, complaining that when it works, it works great, but when something goes wrong there is no easy recovery from it. Having used Windows Mobile devices for a few years now, and never having experienced any issues with AS, I always kind of scoffed at jk (stupid me). My scoffing days are done my friends. From 8:27a on 10/5 through this morning I was completely unable to perform over the air synchronization to my Exchange server. The specific error I received was this blastedly vague phrase: “ActiveSync encountered a problem on the server Support code: 0x85010014”
All the Googling I could possibly do lead me to various solutions, none of which resolved the problem, and to make things worse one of those potential solutions was to hard reset both the 6700 and the 700wx (both getting the same error seeming to indicate that it was indeed a problem on the server). I have done enough hard resets that I am unafraid of them, or full blown ROm upgrades for that matter, but the frustrating thing is that upon reattempting the OTA sync (and failing) and then performing a soft reset after reloading my key apps, AS by default attempted to connect on startup and wound up freezing the device so quickly that I couldn’t stop the freeze in time to get into the task manager, thus leading to another hard reset.
I could at least do regular desktop syncing with Outlook to get all my contacts, calendar items, email, and tasks loaded, but having been able to do this OTA for a few months has spoiled me forever!
Suffice it to say, the research for a solution was exhausting and fruitless until my IT brethren and I determined that a recent install of an email archiving software had to have caused the issue. I also stumbled upon a 1 year old Powerpoint presentation from a Microsoft webcast for Exchange administrators. This ppt. contains some very valuable information about precisely how the sync process works (between front end and back end servers in particular) which lead me to what was ultimately a correct guess about how the problem occured.

The installation of the archiving software (Mimosa’s Nearpoint)on the back end server which holds my exchange account occured sometime the morning of 10/5 after 8:27a (my last successful OTA sync until this morning). The confounding thing is we have several back end servers and the 2nd installation did not lead to the same issue for Windows Mobile users on that server! In the review of the archiving software I link to above this comment caught my eye:

“Best of all, users can restore messages themselves. There are no special clients to install—management takes place through Outlook or Outlook Web Access (OWA)”

Because I knew this is also how OTA essentially works, I guessed aloud to my Exchange Admin that this had to be where the conflict was occuring. Sure enough what the initial Nearpoint installation did was by default change 2 specific permissions (not sure which ones) on the IIS virtual directory for OWA. It is these permissions that apparently make Nearpoint’s OWA archive management possible, and on the installation to the 2nd back end server, these 2 permissions were treated differently, thus the answer to why the WM users on that server weren’t having any OTA sync issues.

There is no documentation (that we could find anyway) on this issue from either Microsoft or Mimosa (who by the way I think is now owned by Microsoft). Yes it is a rather obscure issue and we did find a solution, but the fact that we had to pull so much hair out before we did is what still bothers me. This seems like a predictable conflict between these 2 pieces of software and I would bet that I’m publishing the first knowledge of this today?!

Though I am thrilled to be able to OTA sync again (which by the way duplicated all my contacts, tasks, and calendar items on 1st sync since the horror…nice), the bad taste from this affair won’t soon dissolve for me. If the boys in Redmond want their direct push solution to truly displace Blackberry Enterprise as the corporate mobile email drug of choice (which to be fair wouldn’t be the successful business model it is without the ubiquity of Exchange anyway), then they better start paying more attention to preventing issues like this from even needing to be documented in the first place!!!!!!!!

There’s no reason from a cost perspective that MS shouldn’t overtake Blackberry, once enough good WM5 devices are available from all cellular providers. The Blackberry Enterprise solution requires a another robust server (or multiples thereof depending on the number of users) in addition to the investment in the Exchange server(s) a company has already plunked over good cash for, and a per user/per month cost of around $40 bucks a user (based on what our organization was quoted at least). With a little more expensive WM device (compared to typical cost of Blackbery devices) and Exchange Service Pack 2 installed, this extra cost is eliminated and you get more syncing functionality to boot! How is this not a slam dunk?!!!!

And yet, somehow I don’t think Microsoft’s dominance in this area will come to pass. Why? Because executives don’t have the patience or the time to deal with suddenly not having mobile access to their email for 3 weeks. They will pay more for a more a more reliable solution, and though I haven’t made the time to scour the web to search for similar Blackberry horror stories, I’d bet good money up front they don’t exist………..

JX10 Battery Update

October 14, 2006

This extremely satisifying bluetooth headset lasted from Sunday night through this afternoon with moderate to heavy use (for me anyway). Because I had to do a couple of hard resets on the treo 700wx during the week (related to ActiveSync issues I will post on next week), I can’t look in the call log to tally exactly what the talk time was but it had to be close to 4 hours and to get through an entire week without recahrge is just outstanding as I see it. As promised here is the picture of the almost pocketable carrying case.
I guess it’s meant more for a gear bag but, it isn’t padded and though I’m sure it would prevent scratching, I’m not sure Blue D’s ear hook couldn’t easily get a little bent (which already happened during a stint in my pocket apparently)

JX10 is a 10

October 10, 2006

Imagine 20th century Bo Derek as a mistress to 10th century Danish King Harald Bluetooth, and then imagine they had a secret offspring. This is at least what I imagine when gazing upon my newset toy: the sleek, sexy Jabra JX10 bluetooth headset.


(sorry, the Treo 700wx camera really sucks in poor lighting)

I have to agree for the most part with the resoundingly positive MobileBurn review of this headset. The sound quality has been very good though not excellent for me and it seems to be an issue related to either my signal quality or the quality of the phone the person I’m talking to has. For instance when talking to a family member who was on their infamously poor cordless landline phone, the volume was too low (and my Sprint signal was at the time great), but literally a moment later when talking to a colleague calling from one of our office land lines, the quality was superb (and I was driving in morning rush hour on an interstate highway). During my call to Sprint CS to resolve the residual Katana Konfusion, my signal was poor (as it typically is at my house) and the audio was tolerable but certainly not terrific. I have received no complaints about my sound quality though, and through 5 days of use now, the overall sound quality, both received and given on the bluetooth version 1.2 JX10 is much better than the bluetooth version 1.1 Bluespoon Ax I had been using.

The big question in my mind starting with usage of the device last Wednesday, was how would it feel/fit compared to the excellent inner ear fit of the Bluespoon Ax? I had my doubts after day one, not having ever used an outer ear loop, but as the days have passed, I’m actually beggining to prefer the way it feels over the Ax, and the looks of the device compared to the Ax or any other bluetooth headset in my opinion are superior. I still look like a dork when I walk around with it in my ear but at least I look like a stylish dork sporting this Jacob Jensen designed headset (clearly no one at Jabra designed this thing relative to the hideous styling of their other headsets however functional they are)

Battery performance you ask? I was extrememly pleased and surprised to find that after the intial charge last Wednesday evening, the device kept it’s charge through at least Sunday evening, and that was with heavy experimental/can’t keep my hands/ears off my new toy kind of use, which included listening to the 45 minute Cellphonejunkie podcast #18 (on the 6700 not the 700wx, dammit). In fact, in anticipation of my call to Sprint CS Sunday night to resolve the Katana Konfusion (are you sick of that stupid attempt to be clever spelling yet?), I charged it before it was depleted, so I’m not sure how low the battery really was? I used it through the entire 30 minute call to Sprint Sunday night coming off a full charge, and haven’t charged it again through the time of this post, having used it somewhat frequently yesterday, but none so far today. I will actually let it compelety deplete this time and post an update as to when the next charge was required.

Speaking of charging, one of the nice touches is the number of options you have for rejuicing this beauty. With the Ax, you only get a USB to reduced size mini-usb cable. So, unless you have a computer with juice you are unable to charge it. Not the most convienent solution at times, especially for non-geeks (although I would propose that use of a bluetooth headset would imply that you are somewhat geeky). With the JX10, you get that kind of USB cable but you also get a a normal wall outlet AC charger and you get a very nice style matching cradle to which you can connect either the USB cable or the AC charger.

(like I said, the Treo 700wx camera really sucks in poor lighting)

There is also included in the box a nice looking though unfortunately not pocketable black carrying case for the headset and I’ll post a picture of in the forthcoming battery life update.

Needless to say, the JX10 is a keeper and the Bluespoon Ax has for now been retired. My wife, deaf in on ear, has no desire to wear a bluetooth headset, so I may hold on to the Ax for nostalgia, or pass it on to a family member (or whomever posts a desire for it in the comments). The Jabra JX10 looks great, feels/fits much better than expected and, performs like you would a imagine a voluptous half naked woman in great shape running on the beach would perform (those of you old enough to know the movie scene I’m referencing, know the movie scene I’m referencing).

Shall her nickname heretofore, therefore be Blue Derek?! Because on a scale of 1-10, she is in fact a 10.

I opened my Sprint bill this afternoon and suffered what many a Sprint customer before me has experienced: completely unexpected sticker shock. After some cursing and righteous indignation, followed by vows to switch to another provider if they didn’t erase the unexpected charges (all posturing for my wife in case I do have justification for a switch and therefore legit phone shopping!), I fortunately had to charge the Treo 700wx (and the new Jabra JX10 – more on that later!) or else it wouldnt have made it through the looming long call to Sprint CS.

Having had some time to calm down I tried to think through what could have happened and in looking at the bill saw that I had $77 in data charges on my line (which alternately through Sept. was attached to the 6700, the 700wx, the 700p, and then back to the 700wx-I’m sick yes), and just $34 in data harges on my wife’s number (attached to just the 700p and the Katana). I purchased the Katana on Sept. 20th and this is the date of the infamous let’s play CDMA musical chairs Katana Konfusion affar. I figured I must have used some SERIOUS data on my phone over the last 10 days of Sept relative to the Katana (which I only mapped to mobile gmail?). Anyway, I had always wondered what I would wind up paying without flate rate data and I had a pretty shocking 10 day blind experimental result, or so I thought.

As it turned out I had no trouble getting the right person on the phone upon calling Sprint Customer Service, and “Brittany” had no issue understanding my dilemma and clarified things quickly for me. The data charges on my line started from Sept 7th, the day I receive and activated the 700wx! Why in the world the rep who helped me then canceled or at least didn’t prevent the canceling of my Sprint data plan is beyond me, but Brittany to her and Sprint’s credit wasted no time in crediting my account the full amount charged on both lines! In fact, instead of paying $111 in data charges for last month, I won’t pay any – not even the $30 I truly owed (111 is literally my lucky number and those who are close to me know the story which I won’t bore you with, but suffice it to day it lived up to it’s numerological legend again)

Finally a good Sprint Customer Service story to tell. (until they screw up my bill again next month and then I really will be phone shopping!)