PalmOrb : FAQ

FAQ for LCD software:

FAQ for devices:

FAQ for PalmOrb:

Other questions:

What version of LCDproc do you recommend?

The latest release is 0.4.5. This version has a number of bugs that will affect PalmOrb. You may get some display corruption and a protocol warning from PalmOrb - but it's ok, no harm is done.

If you're feeling brave, and can't wait for 0.4.6 to be released, then I recommend using the nightly tarballs of "stable 0.4.x". This version includes several bug fixes that I've submitted.

How do I configure LCDproc for PalmOrb?

As always, first read the documentation. If your system doesn't have a default LCDd.conf file then you can download one that has most of the below changes - just make sure the device is set to your device.

Edit the default LCDd.conf file:

Then start the server and start some interesting LCDproc clients...

What version of LCDSmartie do you recommend?

I currently recommend an alpha build of 5.3. I found version 5.2 to be unstable; it would hang and exit without warning. [I found 5.1 to be better than 5.2].

How do I configure LCDSmartie for PalmOrb?

As always, first read the documentation. Then, in the setup screen:

Then play around with setting up your own screens...

What version of LCDC do you recommend?

The current version - I've had no problems with this software (other than it's not free).

How do I configure LCDC for PalmOrb?

As always, first read the documentation. You may find it will automatically set up for you - if not... Then, in the Configure/Test -> "Connection and type": Select "Auto detect" - if that fails then do:

Then play around with setting up screens! I found the default screens in the "mx5example" display file to be a good starting place.

How do I configure LCD4Linux for PalmOrb?

As always, first read the documentation. Edit your LCD4Linux.conf file to contain:

Display LK204-25
Port /dev/ttyS1
Speed 19200
Contrast 160

Change the Port entry to point to your device, you will also need to change the other lines to control what is displayed (entries such as Row1, Row2, etc). [Ignore the PalmPilot option.]

How do I configure xxxx software for PalmOrb?

If your software is really cool then it will automatically detect that PalmOrb is a (emulated) Matrix Orbital LK204-25 and just work.

Sadly most software will need a little configuring. Most will want to know that it's a Matrix Orbital display, that it's screen size is 4x20, the serial port (or virtual serial port) that the Palm is connected to, and that the baud rate is 19200 (by default).

How do I get a USB Palm working on Windows?

NB: USB Palm support is experimental - only some makes/models of palms will work. Please report if your USB Palm works (or not) in the forums.

You will need a build of LCD Smartie later than 5.3 pre-alpha 5. Set the COMport to "USB Palm" (it should be listed after the COM ports).

Carry out the following tasks:

NB: USB Palm support in LCD Smartie relies on Palm's undocumented USB driver - this has been known to cause the palm to reset, and even for Windows to crash (Blue Screen). If you experience this, then try upgrading your palm desktop to the latest version from Palm. This Palm support article may also be useful.

How do I get a USB Palm working on Linux?

Joachim Calvert writes: "With hotplug support and the Visor serial USB module (2.6 kernel) you generally don't need to worry about the bus IDs and such. As soon as you plug in the device and start PalmOrb, Linux will pick up that /dev/ttyUSB0 and /dev/ttyUSB1 were connected, and the latter will be useable with LCDproc."

Itai Tavor gives an alternative to using the visor module. [Requires kernel 2.6.x +]

My USB PDA hangs or crashes when used to Linux, why?

It has been reported that the palm can crash/hang if you use /dev/ttyUSB0 or /dev/usb/tts/0 (or any even numbered device); this has also happened with a normal hotsync. You're advised to use /dev/ttyUSB1 or /dev/usb/tts/1 (and odd numbered devices). Just be double sure that the device you're using is the right one! [Thanks to Joachim Calvert for reporting this.]

Latest: we've had a user whose palm did a soft reset with /dev/ttyUSB1, but worked fine with /dev/ttyUSB0 -- it seems it's a lottery to get the correct device on Linux.

If this doesn't help then please see the FAQ entry for Why has PalmOrb crashed my PDA?

BlueTooth: PalmOrb states it can't open the port, why?

If you're using BlueTooth on Windows XP SP2, then the BlueTooth device won't connect until the LCD software is started; this causes PalmOrb to report an error about not being able to open the port. We recommend you try your native (or WIDCOMM generic) drivers for your device rather than using the Windows ones.

Infrared: How do I get IR working on windows?

Windows contains an incomplete version of IRComm. You may need a driver from the sourceforge project IrCOMM2k [SF project page] which has a IRComm driver for Windows 2000 and XP.

How can I test the communication link between PalmOrb and my computer?

One way of testing the communication link on Windows is to use the "HyperTerminal" program; on Windows 2000 this can be found in Start -> Programs -> Accessories -> Communications. Set the port and port speed and you should be able to type and the keys be displayed on PalmOrb. Also pressing keys on PalmOrb should cause the key to appear in HyperTerminal.

How complete is the LK204-25 emulation?

Full details of supported functions are on the emulation page.

I can't get PalmOrb and my LCD software communicating, any ideas?

Why has PalmOrb crashed my PDA?

If you using Linux and USB first check this FAQ item out: My USB PDA hangs or crashes when used to Linux, why?

PalmOrb should never crash your PDA - if it has then there is a serious bug that we need to be told about. We can only fix the bug if you tell us that it exists! Please tell us about this crash, in the PalmOrb forums.

It would be useful if you can provide all or some of the following information:

What are the numbered squares on the screen?

There are "General Purpose Outputs". See FAQ section "What are (General Purpose) Outputs?".

What are (General Purpose) Outputs?

On real LCDs General Purpose Outputs are used to control other hardware; such as LED. On PalmOrb they are shown as squares - the square will be filled/inverted if the output is switched on. As an example, you could have output 1 set when you have new email.

Keyboard not working, or I'm getting double key presses, why?

PalmOrb has the option to send keys twice; check that this option is deselected: It's called either "Send Key Up and Down" or "Send Key Twice" (depending on PalmOrb version) which can be found in "Menu -> Options -> Misc..."

LCD Smartie's keyboard is unresponsive.

Try selecting the option called either "Send Key Up and Down" or "Send Key Twice" (depending on PalmOrb version) which can be found in "Menu -> Options -> Misc..."

My Question isn't asked in this FAQ, now what?

Ask for help in the PalmOrb forums. Logo
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