StarOffice for OS/2 and your Palm device

There are a number of "emulated" ways of integrating your Palm device's datebook and address book with OS/2 -- in particular, the Java-Pilot-Desktop -- but in our opinion, the best is StarOffice for OS/2.

The how-to:

  1. Be sure you've got the latest StarOffice for OS/2, which is version 5.1a. The default installation doesn't include PalmPilot support, so you may have to restart the install routine.
  2. Your Palm needs the prc file starsync.prc, located in your StarOffice installation directory:


    Download this to your Palm. If you aren't sure how to do so, install Pilot-Link for OS/2.

  3. Okay, next, have a look at Sun's OS/2 StarOffice faq and search for "Palm." (If you can't find it, try here.) Carefully follow the instructions for downloading and applying
  4. Be sure to carefully study the entire section of the Sun faq -- note, for instance, that after a new installation, you should open the Task view first, before the Event view.
Other Notes

In our experience, one or two of Sun's recommendations are unnecessary:

  1. Running StarSynch at 38400 baud has worked fine.
  2. Deactivation of the playing of sounds at event reminders in StarOffice schedule isn't necessary -- that is, so long as one is syncing only one way.
But you should be aware that Palm syncing with StarOffice isn't without problems:
  1. Don't expect to be able to do anything else with your desktop while SO is doing its business with the Palm -- the process consumes nearly all of OS/2's attention.
  2. There seems to be no reliable way to "sync" back and forth between your Palm and StarOffice -- attempts to coordinate back and forth corrupt the database. In other words, you can download your datebook and Events files to the Palm, but if you add an event to the Palm and then try to sync back to StarOffice so that your desktop reflects the added information, chaos tends to result.
  3. Palm Categories (for address book entries) don't seem to work. This, despite what seems like StarOffice's attempt to allow the user to "match" StarOffice categories with those of the Palm address book. If you or someone you love (even someone you hate) has managed to make this work, please let us know. If you're interested in experimenting, we suggest that you make sure you have backups of all the critical files, at either end.
  4. Careful with the StarOffice settings, particularly the PalmPilot Hotsync Configuration pulldown (under Tools). In particular, always leave unselected the "Wait for PalmPilots connect confirmation for the specified port" option unless you are actually about to perform a sync.

Please consider writing Sun to request they fix Palm-OS/2 support -- that is, to allow true bidirectional syncing, and to enable a true connection of Palm's database categories with StarOffice's. And be sure to contact Alexander Wagner or Ray Tennenbaum with any corrections or notes.