CS Online - Frequently Asked Questions

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Frequently Asked Questions
What versions of Palm OS are supported?
CS Online works on any Palm OS device from any manufacturer running Palm OS 3.5 or later. Units as early as OS 2.0 may work, but are not officially supported.
Where is the Option/Menu button on my Treo or Palm device?
The Menu pulldown is a key on keyboard units (Treos, Tungsten C, etc) and at the bottom of the screen on Graffiti based units. On the Treo 650, the key up and to the right of the 5-way navigation button is the Menu key. On Tungsten C's, press the blue shift key + the key right of the space bar.

On handwriting units, it's usually in the lower left and has an icon that looks like a menu being pulled down, though it's hard to recognize. On units with a dynamic/collapsible input area (T3, T5, T|X), it's one of the mini-icons at the very bottom of the screen, typically the 3rd one from the left.

(For further details on using menus and PalmOS in general, please consult the user guide that accompanied your PalmOS device.)

Can I connect to an external modem?
Can I connect to the serial port of a router?
Can I connect via Bluetooth?
To use your handheld with a serial device, you will need an approriate serial cable. There are a number of different sources for cables on the Internet, including: Older Palm-powered model cradles also plugged into a serial port. You can use these as well, but you will also need a null-modem adapter.

On handhelds that have Bluetooth support, another option is a Bluetooth-to-serial adapter. They're extremely convenient for many applications, but often have to be programmed for specific settings and so can be les flexible than a cable. Check out Socket or Aircable for a particularly Palm-friendly adapter.

I connected to my router with a HotSync cable and gender changer, but it doesn't work. Why?
For most routers you need to use the "modem cable". (See above). You can also use a "null modem adaptor" with the HotSync cable, effectively turning it into a "modem cable".

This is important because the HotSync and Modem cables are each wired differently and are not interchangeable.

What sort of cables can I use?
For most applications, you need a modem cable or a null modem adaptor combined with a cradle or HotSync cable.

There are some excellent graphics that show the pinouts for HotSync and modem cables at the Palm DevZone. It contains pinouts and various info on serial cables. Includes modem, null-modem, pilot-modem cable pinouts, signals and pinouts table. (TealInfo required)

I have a Palm V - what kind of serial/null modem cable do I need
You can either purchase a serial cable, or you can always use the cable from the travel kit, or the cradle itself, in combination with a null modem adaptor. This gets you the same thing as a modem cable.
Is the Palm clip-on modem supported?
Of course! As well as all clip-on modems that have a serial interface (such as the "snap-on" GSM modem from Option International).
I have a Handspring Visor - what kind of cable do I need?
The Visor HotSync port is not a full serial port - it does not support hardware handshake, nor does it provide the proper signal levels for many RS232 devices and is not buffered, so you should not attempt to make your own serial cable unless you understand the issues involved - some older devices with higher signal levels could potentially damage the Visor if directly connected. (for the technical: the voltage levels are TTL, not RS232).

However, the Visor serial cradle (about $20 from Handspring) contains the circuitry needed to present a proper RS232 connection and can be used alone or in conjunction with a null modem cable to connect to some RS232 devices.

Can I use the wireless modem of the Handspring Treo?
Yes, pick "wireless modem" as the port, and use "19200" or "57600" as the baud rate and "8N1" for the data settings. You will need to send the command "at+cbst=0,0,1;" before sending the command to dial the remote system (ie, "atdt5551212"). Failure to send the init string will result in an error message of "NO CARRIER".

Note that because of this you will be unable to connect via the wireless modem to systems that require a very low speeds (such as 300) or data settings (such as 7E1).

Can I use the wireless modem of the Samsung i330

It appears from our communications with Samsung that third parties cannot use the built in modem. Until Samsung changes this, CS Online cannot communicate with the built in modem. However, you can still use the telnet mode of CS Online with this device.

Can I use the wireless modem of the Kyocera 6035, Samsung I300 or Sprint Digital Link?
Yes, pick "wireless" as the port (6035), "Data On Air" (Samsung), and use "19200" as the baud rate and "8N1" for the data settings. These wireless CDMA modems will fail to respond at other rates or data settings.
Can I use the wireless modem of the Kyocera 7135?
While we have not tested it, you should be able to as long as you use "115200" as the baud rate and "8N1" for the data settings. This wireless CDMA modem will fail to respond at other rates or data settings.

Note that because of this you will be unable to connect via the wireless modem to systems that require a different speed (such as 300) or data settings (such as 7E1).

Can I use the serial cradle/port of the Kyocera 6035?
Yes, select the port named "" (this is not a typo - the port has no name) to select the HotSync serial cradle/cable port.
Do you know of a device I can connect to serial devices that will let me talk to them via IR? For example, plug an IR adapter into the console port of a router and then configure the router with CS Online over IR.
Yes, while we have not personally used it, customers have reported success with the Actisys' IR 220L/220L+: IrDA Com-Port Serial Adapter.

Another adapter we haven't tried is available from J.D.Research

The IRDA (infrared) connection method doesn't seem to work for me. Why?
IRComm should work (pick "Serial" for method and "IRComm" or "Infrared" as the port), but the new "IRDA" mode (serial IR, aka RAW IR, or plain IRDA) does not work on devices with OS 3.3 thru 4.0 due to a bug in the OS related to the new serial manager introduced with Palm OS 3.3. Palm is aware of this bug, and has fixed it (supposedly) but it won't appear until whatever the next release of Palm OS after 4.0. If you want to use IRDA mode in CS Online, you'll need a Palm OS device with OS 3.1 or earlier (such as Visor Deluxe, Palm V with OS 3.1, etc).
I am using the Handpring Serial Cradle and get error 774, Timeouts, etc. Why?
Most likely the device you are connecting to does not provide power via the DTR line. The Handspring serial cradle will not work unless it can draw power from the DTR line. This problem is most common with mobile devices (GPS, mobile phones) as well as devices that only provide a '3 wire' interface (transmit, receive, ground) and omit the DTR line.

When you order a cable, specifically select one that is designed to provide power.

How can I use an IR modem or phone and my Handspring Visor?
If using a newer Visor with OS 3.5 or later, just select "IRComm" from the port menu.

Older Visors run OS 3.1, which does not (directly) support IRComm. However you CAN use IRlink 1.5 software from IS/Complete. This software adds what is needed to your Visor (or other pre OS 3.3 PalmOS devices) so that it can work with IR enhanced modems such as the Ericsson Di27 and phones such as the Ericsson 888.

Is it possible to prevent the PalmOS device from going to sleep?
CS Online resets the "auto-off" timer every time a character is sent or received. This should only be a problem if you want the connection to stay open, yet no data is exchanged for several minutes. If this is a problem, increase the auto-off time in the system preferences. If an extremely long time is needed, there is a utility available on PalmGear that can set your auto-off time to any value up to 999 minutes!

You may also want to consider a Palm OS device that has the ability to "stay awake in cradle" while it is charging. Examples of such devices are the Palm V series, Palm m50x series, Visor Prism, Sony CLIE, etc.

Can I use a Palm VII to connect using the radio modem of the Palm VII?
The Palm.net service has been shut down and is no longer available.
What characters can I send?
You can send any character that you can generate via graffiti, graffiti shortcut, or pop-up keyboard. Additionally, you can create macros that do the same, as well as contain shortcuts for sending control characters, escape, tab, etc. You can also send any desired hex value via as a special sequence entered via the input buffer, a macro or a memo pad record.
Can I send VT320/VT420/PF or other special keys?
Yes. We have the VT100 special keys in the keys menu, however you can define a macro or button to send any sequence of characters in the full ASCII range (0-255). For example, the VT420 code for F9 is escape, and then '[20~'. As a macro, that would look like '\e[20~'.

An excellent source of codes for the entire VT series can be found at vt100.net.

Can I send a 'break' signal?
Yes. Just select Break from the Keys menu.

Important: Note that not all modems support sending 'break'. In particular, we know of no mobile phone that can send a 'break' signal. For best results, make a direct serial connection, or use a clip-on or external modem connected to a land line.

My system recognizes a break when sent via a direct connection or via an external modem, but not via my Palm V modem. Why?
The Palm V modem seems to send a 'pulsed break'. That is, rather than sending a continous break signal for the whole 500ms, it sends 2 shorter signals. This may or may not work with all systems. Try adjusting the remote system if possible, or use a different (external) modem.
Can I use online with an external keyboard?
That depends. All keyboards have to communicate with the handheld via some channel, be it the serial port, IR or Bluetooth, so that port will potentially be unavailable for communications. In the case of an IR keyboard, for example, you wont be able to use an IR keyboard and communicate with an IR-based device at the same time.
I am having a hard time connecting to a system that I can connect to from my laptop. Any ideas?
We often find that the problem here is using the "dial" command of CS Online. "Dial" uses the PalmOS to initialize and send commands to dial to the modem, and sometimes the desired results are not acheived. Instead just talk directly to the modem with AT commands. ie, instead of picking "dial" and then entering "555-1212", try tapping the "On" button to open a connection to the modem, and then enter "ATDT 5551212" followed by a return to dial the modem yourself. This often works in cases where the "dial" menu option does not.
When I send a return via grafitti, my Unix system interprets that as a control-C. What could be going wrong?
Assuming that your 'return' setting is correct (see 'Communications' under the 'Options' menu), a common mistake is to be sending the grafitti stroke for 'delete' (which unix interprets as an 'interrupt' character by default), when you meant to send 'return'. Return is a stroke from the top-right to the bottom-left. Delete is a stroke from left to right. It can be easy to confuse them.
Does CS Online support file transfer?
CS Online can send files to and from VFS storage (the memory card) via Xmodem, Xmodem-1K and Ymodem.
How much data can I save using the 'Log to Memo Pad' feature?
Memo Pad records are limited to 4K, however CS Online will automatically create new records as needed, so you save a great deal of information via multiple Memo Pad records. Registered versions can also save to Doc format, and write a file to a storage card (such as Compact Flash or SD.) Large logs spanning many Memo Pad entries can be cumbersome, however, so we recommend using Doc or VFS file mode in those situations.
How can I increase the rate at which CS Online handles incoming data?
Data handling has been increased significantly in version 1.1, and again in 1.4. Regardless of what version you are using, the two largest factors in speed are: 1) Is logging on and 2) Is emulation on. For the fastest display, turn both of these features off. If you wish to log data and know that you won't be receiving VT100 commands, go ahead and set emulation to TTY and 'display follows cursor' to off. This can help quite a bit.
The device I am sending to can't keep up. How can I slow down the rate at which CS Online sends data?
Try either using a lower baud rate, or select a delay value (the number of system ticks to pause between sending each character) in the Terminal Options dialog. You can try checking the '32K communications buffer' option for very high speed applications.
I can't seem to connect to any systems (such as Compuserve) at 7E1 using the Card Access Thincom Springboard modem. Why?
You need to update the firmware on your modem. Click here to visit the Card Access web site and download the latest software.
I can't seem to connect at 300 baud using my IIIc/Vx, etc. Why?
There appears to be a bug in PalmOS related to using 300 baud on devices with a 20Mhz processor. The bug has been discussed in developer mailing lists and reported to Palm. In the meantime, end users have reported being able to work around this problem by using a utility such as "AfterBurner" to reduce CPU speed to 16MHz.
Can I use CS Online with a modem in TTY mode to communicate with a deaf person using a TDD?
In short, no. "TTY", short for "Teletype" is not the same as "TDD" (telecom device for the deaf).

Neither PalmOS nor CS Online have any *special* support for talking to a TDD using TDD standards. A TDD does not use the same standards as RS232 communications. It is at a different rate, different settings (5 data bits!) and uses BAUDOT instead of ASCII for the text encoding. That being said, some TDD devices can talk to a standard modem using ASCII at 300 baud, and we have been told (though never seen one!) that there exist modems that can do the conversion the other way (so that you talk to the modem in ASCII, and it talks to the TDD in BAUDOT).

Can I use CS Online with my Samsung i330?
You can use CS Online with the Samsung i330 only for telnet connections and connections over the serial port, but cannot use it to the Data On The Air port.

It appears from our communications with Samsung that third parties cannot use the built in modem. Until Samsung changes this, CS Online cannot communicate with the built in modem.