You can always replace a lost or damaged Windows Mobile device, but you may not be able to replace the data on it. Keep your device synchronized with your desktop PC and back it up regularly.

Use Windows Mobile Default Application to synchronize and Backup

ActiveSync is the user-installable desktop PC synchronization program that ships with all Windows Mobile devices. Install it on your Windows desktop PC, connect your Windows Mobile device to your desktop PC via cable or data cradle, and you’re ready to go. ActiveSync senses the connection and automatically synchronizes Calendar appointments, Contacts, Tasks, e-mail, and more, between the mobile and desktop computers. If you loose your device, you still have the synced data on your PC. All users can make use of third-party backup programs, or can back up their data to a storage card, as described below.

All Windows Mobile devices have at least one built-in expansion card slot that will accept a storage card. Most Pocket PCs have an SD card slot but a few have both SD and CF card slots. A few Phone Edition Pocket PCs and most Smartphones have miniSD card slots. At least one Smartphones has a microSD card slot.

Most Pocket PCs come with a utility that lets you back up your data directly to a storage card. These cards come in different sizes, storage capacities, and prices

CompactFlash (CF) cards are about 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) square and about 4 times the thickness of a credit card. CF storage cards are solid-state devices without any moving parts. Files are stored in thin computer chips embedded in the card. Storage capacities of the cards currently available range from 64 MB to 16 GB.

Secure Digital (SD) cards include built-in security features to manage protected content like digital music. Like CF cards, SD storage cards use solid-state memory to store files. Storage capacities of the postage stamp-size SD cards range from 1 GB to 24 GB. (Note: Multi-Media Card (MMC) cards are the same size as SD cards but a little thinner. A device with an SD card slot will accept an MMC card also.

MiniSD cards are physically about 60% smaller than SD cards. They are available with memory capacities ranging from 1GB to 24GB.

MicroSD cards are physically smaller still. They are available in capacities ranging from 1 GB to 16 GB.

Here are the five major types of storage cards used by Windows Mobile devices: the CompactFlash (CF) card; the Secure Digital (SD) card, the MultiMedia Card, the miniSD card, and the microSD card.

Most manufacturers of Windows Mobile devices sell storage cards for their devices. Go to the manufacturer’s Web site or online store and look for a link to the accessories page. Also, you should be able to get storage cards at any computer retailer or any store that carries accessories for digital cameras. In addition, you can purchase storage cards online from SanDisk, MagicRAM, MobilePlanet and other vendors.

Third-party Backup Utilities

As mentioned, most Pocket PCs come with a simple utility that lets you back up your system to a storage card. However, most Smartphones do not come with this utility. Fortunately, there are several excellent third-party backup programs available, including Sprite Backup.

Both of these programs are also available for Pocket PCs and add features not found in the simple utilities that come with the devices. Spb Backup (Pocket PC only) is another excellent backup program.

Finally, ActiveSync doesn’t work with Mac OS, but alternatives are available. Check out Missing Sync and PocketMac Pro.


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