IRC Client News: PocketIRC has just been updated to 1.2.2; Glam IRC 1.0 released!

Now that I’m working on a FULL roundup of EVERYTHING Windows Mobile instant messaging-related, I’ve also scrutinized the current state of Internet Relay Chat (IRC) applications. As I’ve already published several articles on Windows Mobile IRC clients, I’ve decided not to wait for the instant messaging article to be finished, but publish the news (as they are, as is the case with

First, PocketIRC.

PocketIRC has always been one of the best IRC applications for the Pocket PC (see these search results for more information on this question). The brand new version just released adds / fixes the following:

  1. The much requested Favourite Channels list and auto join on connect capability (example screenshot here)
  2. More detailed error messages, and improved disconnect detection

Verdict: a must for all existing PocketIRC users and recommended for anyone that wants to access IRC on his or her Pocket PC.

DXmobile releases Glam IRC, a “modern-style IRC appâ€

DXmobile, a newcomer to Windows Mobile development, has recently released a brand new IRC application called Glam IRC. Note that DXmobile doesn’t have a homepage; therefore, you’ll need to download their app (if you bother, that is) from third-party servers like PocketGear and Handango.


Mobile Stream releases new version of Windows / Linux / Mac OS X-compatible USB Modem application

Anyone using a WM5 AKU3 Pocket PC Phone Edition (any WM5 device with a newer, even unofficial, “enthusiast†ROM) device as an external modem for his or her desktop computer or notebook* knows the new AKU3, while it indeed has a lot of goodies, has several connectivity-related restrictions, most importantly the lack of infrared connectivity (infrared-based dial-up has been left out from the newly-introduced Internet Sharing utility, as opposed to its predecessor, Modem Link) and the lack of using the Dial-up Networking Bluetooth profile. The latter can be a real pain in the back especially for other Microsoft Bluetooth stack or Mac OS X users. See THIS and THIS for more info on the latter.) I’ve elaborated in my article on AKU3 Networking on all these issues; you may want to read the article in order to get a more elaborate picture of in what AKU3 is different.

*: if you don’t, you may want to consider switching to using them – few “traditional†phones offer EDGE / UMTS / HSDPA capabilities. I’m constantly using the UMTS HTC Universal with my notebook to access the Internet and am absolutely pleased by the high, about 40 kbytes/sec downlink speed.

Mobile Stream’s new application, USB Modem, could also address these issues by both providing the standard BT DUN profile and infrared dial-up capabilities. (Note that it’s a “simple†dial-up app, pretty much like WModem or the standardized, pre-AKU3 Modem Link, with the exception that it’s not compatible with several models.)

Note that USB Modem may not have been at all designed to fix the problems of AKU3. Its sole purpose, according to the blurb, to allow using crippled (ones that don’t have any kind of external modem capabilities) for example Treo 700w PPC Phone Edition devices as modems and to allow for USB / Bluetooth-based access in Mac OS X and Linux (I haven’t tested the latter).

The utility is accessible HERE. It costs $19.95; the trial version allows for 30 connections and / or 14 days.


Having problems with MSN Messenger and some other applications while using the OnSpeed service? Here's the solution!

(NOTE: only read this article if you don't use Pocket Internet Explorer on your Pocket PC, but an alternative, better and also proxy-enabled browser!)

OnSpeed, the, along with Toonel, only "invisible", really-really recommended Internet traffic reduction service, while being just great at saving for example GPRS traffic costs, has a real annoyance: It always enables the system-wide proxy setting when it is enabled when you reboot the PDA or explicitly restart the service.

The system-wide proxy setting is, unfortunately, a double-edged sword in all (except for the original Pocket PC 2000) Pocket PC / Windows Mobile operating systems.

In theory, it offers an indeed great and standardized way to store HTTP, WAP, Secure WAP and SOCKS proxy settings. If all, for example, proxy-capable Web browsers used this setting, then, you would only need to set the proxy server once, and all the browsers would just get the proxy information from this centralized location.

In practice, however, only NetFront is able to access this global, system-wide setting, the other two proxy-capable (Thuderhawk and Opera Mini can't use any external proxy) Pocket Web browsers, Minimo (as of version 0.012) and Opera (as of version 8.5 beta build 166x) can not use it. That is, due to alternative browser developers' concentrating their forces on other issues/neglecting this possibility, this otherwise nice idea just can't be used to its full potential.

Furthermore, setting a HTTP proxy royally messes up some other, also built-in programs. For example, if you (or OnSpeed) enable the HTTP proxy setting, MSN Messenger won't be able to connect to the Net any more. Furthermore, you will be most likely end up having to redefine the default connection(s) the mailer client, Messaging uses so that you can continue accessing your POP3/IMAP server(s).

If you don't plan to use Pocket Internet Explorer (a.k.a. Internet Explorer Mobile in WM5) but use a much more decent browser instead (Opera under WM5, NetFront under all operating systems, Thunderhawk on QVGA devices etc.) and would definitely want to use the built-in MSN Messenger client, then, it's the best to force the OnSpeed client not to enable the proxy at all in order to avoid having to manually disable the proxy setting (it takes several taps) every time you want to use any of the applications affected by the global proxy setting.

I've scrutinized the OnSpeed client and successfully found out the following: if you change the '1' to '0' at position 0x18950 in onspeedCE.exe, then, the OnSpeed client will never again enable the system-wide proxy setting.


The Webmail UI of Yahoo Mail has problems - again

It seems Yahoo is back to the UI introduced a few days ago, which is useless in a not just read-only mode on a PDA.

Therefore, do consider switching entirely to using the Wap version or POP3 as I've explained in the linked blog entries.

If you, however, still plan to stick with the webmail version, you have the following choices:


How do I reduce my Internet bandwidth usage as easily as possible?

Q: How do I reduce my Internet bandwidth usage as easily as possible? I pay a LOT for my non-unlimited GPRS/Wireless data access and I'd like to reduce this. Is there any way of doing this?

A: Sure there are!


How should I access Yahoo Mail on my PDA?

Q: How can I read my Yahoo mail on my Pocket PC? A: Please read this article.


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