Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Palm Pre Day 2 - Wifi and Contacts Borked

(This post is part of a series providing an extended impression of using the Palm Pre Plus:
- Initial Impressions on the Palm Pre Plus.
- Palm Pre Day 2 - Wifi and Contacts Borked
- Day 3 with the Palm Pre Plus
- Day 4 with the Palm Pre Plus

A new day brings a new set of challenges.

Wifi at home isn't quite working right.  Current theory is because my router is performing a DNS proxy (where it acts as local DNS server) and it's also getting a DNS server from 3G, there's some confusion there.  Other people seem to think so.  The workaround of going into airplane mode and then enabling wifi proves that there is some 3G interactivity problem in the software.  I may try a workaround of disabling DNS proxying on my home router if the FIOS router permits me to do so.

Not much later in the day, I discovered a Critical issue:  that I was missing some crucial contact info for records that were present in my Google "My Contacts" list but were not fully available on my phone (IM/email, yes - Phone numbers, no).  There are definitely others having a similar problem.  Some rooting around showed that I was only showing about 190 of my 350 contacts from syncing with Google.  I attempted to purge my google contacts, import CSV, and re-sync.  This unfortunately brought the count down to 80 from 190.

I settled on working around the problem by resorting to setting up a secondary address book at Yahoo mail and setting that up to sync as well.  I will tolerate this only as a temporary solution and if the upcoming webos 1.4 upgrade doesn't address the problems with syncing Google contacts, the phone is going back to Big Red and will either exchange for a Motorola Droid or just wait for the Nexus One.

It's a lovely operating system.  Too bad they chose to release code without adequate beta testing.


Wifi Borked Update: Implemented permanent workaround for this issue by using my Linksys WRT 160N as the FIOS gateway in place of the Actiontec MI424 (with broadband MAC address cloned). Now the FIOS DNS servers are provided directly to DHCP clients rather than proxying through the router.

Google Sync Update: There were 3 contacts that began with the # pound symbol which imported from Verizon's backup assistant CSV. Once I removed those from Google, all contacts are now in play. I guess Synergy does the whole download and then parses them... slowly. And its source code needs to implement some exception handling.


Additional Calendar observation.  I had to move an appointment back a week and in order to do so, I had to open the appointment, figure out the first Wednesday in March via Month view, re-open the appointment, then change two fields to make this happen.  Surprised they don't provide you with a calendar-based selector for dates.
(I looked at the calendar app on the v2.0 Droid... same issue exists)