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Messages - V-Man

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6000 - Tosa / Reading Palm eBooks from
« on: October 31, 2004, 09:15:21 pm »
If you  like science fiction, Baen Books sells in un-encrypted and open formats, including rich text, plain text, and others.  You should try their site.  They also give away quite a few books in the free library.  They also have a "webscription" deal that gets you several books a month at a very low cost.  

Other than that, you can get them from news groups, and quite a few other web sites.  I like mainly scifi, so I'm addicted to the Baen site.

5x00 Hardware / Can this battery be made to work with the 5500?
« on: October 29, 2004, 06:30:57 pm »

Several people have reported using the 7805 chip in parrallel to get 2A.  I checked my Z's power consumption under various situations and it never got over 1A.  Of course I was doing this with a fully charged battery.  If you battery is low,  and you are using full backlight, and WiFi, you could exceed 1A draw.  I can't find my list of the current draw, but I think it was around 750mA (0.75A) with WiFi and backlight on full and battery fully charged.  

Someone else did a complete test in many different situations than I did for current draw.  Unfortunately, that is no longer available as it was on the old ZaurusZone forum which has been lost for quite some time.  If someone has a copy, please send it to me!!


5x00 Hardware / Can this battery be made to work with the 5500?
« on: October 28, 2004, 11:17:25 pm »
How to construct a simple cheap external battery box

Items needed
1. 1-6' power cord (radio shack part #273-1740) $3.29
2. 2-4 AA battery box (radio shack part #270-0409) $1.79 each
This is the one with an on/off switch
3. 1-Adaptaplug size "B" (radio shack part #273-1705) $2.19
4. 8-AA NiMH batteries (1600 mAh) $22.94  (Larger capacity batteries are now available, even though they weren't when I wrote this)
Total cost of items: $32.00

Cut the power cord in half and solder into the battery box. This is harder than is sounds for bumble fingered people like me.

You end up with two battery boxes (at $16.00 ea). The boxes are almost exactly half the size of the Z, so are not a problem to cart around. The voltage ranges from 5.34v fully charged to 4.1v fully discharged. This should not strain the Z's input. The only problem I have noticed is that if the box is left connected to the Z (w/ the Z on) until the box is fully discharged, the Z shutdowns very ungracefully and you will have to reset your Z. After I found this out, I used the box until the charge light on the Z goes out. I get four hours out of each box, with light on full and intermittent use of Netgear MA701 WiFi card. I made some AAA boxes and get about two hours from them. These things are tiny, but only 700mAh.

The prices are about three years old (maybe two?), but shouldn't have changed much.  

I have also idea of lead 6V cell with ... ( I dont know english word for this. It's three pin thing, you connect two to your cell and from "-" and third pin you get stable lower voltage).

You are thinking of a "voltage regulator" chip.  You can't use it with a 6V battery as the specs require at least 7V supply.  I think the part number is 7805.  It is only rated to output 1A, and that only if properly heatsinked.  There is another chip that puts out up to 2A, but I don't remember that part number off hand.  I have used both and they seem to work quite well.  I will try to find the exact part numbers and who has a good price (they are only a couple of bucks each) on them.  Radio Shack used to carry the 7805.  My local Rat Shack said they were not going to order anymore after I bought their last three.  Your local Rat Shack may still have some 7805s in stock.  They do not carry the one that is rated at 2A.  Allied Electric Supply does though.  I really reccomend Allied.  They have always been very helpful when I was looking for odd bits and pieces in small quantities.  I use a Maha charger (don't remember the exact part number, but it has been replaced in current production by a different one).  This is the one that replaced mine: MH-C777PLUS-II.  I made a custom cable so I wouldn't have to take the boxes apart to charge the batteries.  Their web site is:  MahaEnergy  (  Let me know if you have any other questions.


6000 - Tosa / Reading Palm eBooks from
« on: October 27, 2004, 10:58:59 pm »
If they are not encrypted, you can use either justreader or opie reader (not sure of the exact package names though).  One of my major uses of the Z is reading books.


5x00 Hardware / Can this battery be made to work with the 5500?
« on: October 27, 2004, 10:57:15 pm »
Re: The 4AA external battery packs;

If you want I can send you detailed instructions and parts lists for making your own.  It also includes the parts list (instructions are the same) for making packs with 4 AAA batteries.  I would post it now, but it's at home.  Let me know if you want it.  There are some people on E-Bay that are selling identical versions to what I made, and a few that are selling even better ones.  

The AA packs last about 4 hours (in addition to the iternal battery) with heavy use and WiFi.  The AAA batteries are almost identical in life to the internal battery.


PS also see shdwdrgn's topic on his adding an additional battery or two to the internal circuitry.

Software / Amateur Radio Software for Zaurus?
« on: October 26, 2004, 10:45:24 pm »
For satellite tracking, there is PetitTrack.  I played around with some source code for APRS, but since I am not an accomplished programmer and lack the serial cable to hook up my TM-D700A or my Garmin GPS III+, nor did I ever get my crosscompiling environment setup just right (my linux box also died), I never finished it.  PetitTrack works very well.  I have used it during field day.  If I can be of any help or you just want to talk, email me at "callsign" at


General Discussion / wifi card with plug-in antenna?
« on: October 26, 2004, 10:40:36 pm »
I'll try to find the links again.  I didn't save them that I remember.  IIRC, most of the modifications were for the Netgear MA701.  If I find them I'll post them here.  


General Discussion / wifi card with plug-in antenna?
« on: October 25, 2004, 10:34:00 pm »
About a year ago I did a rather extensive search for any CF WiFi cards that would accept an external antenna without modification.  I could not find any.  I did find lots of info on adding an external antenna to the cards, but that was not something I wanted to get into at the time.  I also found several PC cards that would accept external antennas.  If you find one, please let me know.  There are several other people on this board that would like the info also.


5x00 Hardware / Custom battery pack
« on: October 25, 2004, 10:30:11 pm »
Good grief! Your are much more ambitious in your experimentation than I am.  Keep up the good work and let us know how your stuff works out.


General Discussion / installing pocket pc os on zaurus
« on: October 23, 2004, 08:48:17 pm »
Hey markedman:

If you so desperately need a Windows device, I will trade you my iPaq 2215 for your 860.  I have a 5500 that is so much more flexible than the iPaq, that the iPaq is relegated to an expensive toy.  I use the Z for all of my work stuff and the 2215 for play.  Seriously, I would be willing to trade the iPaq (and possibly a few bucks) for your 860.  Let me know if you are even slightly interested.  I have been drooling over the 860's since they came out, but just can't afford one yet.


General Discussion / Click here to request SKYPE for the Zaurus
« on: October 23, 2004, 08:40:05 pm »
I haven't messed with VoIP software yet; it sounds interesting (my sister lives overseas).  I do have a few questions though:
1.  What software is available for the Z?
2.  Is the same (interconnectability) software available for Windows computers, both handheld (ie iPaq) and desktop/laptop computers?
3.  I assume that if it is available for the Z, it will also be available for linux desktop/laptop computers, correct me if I'm wrong.
4.  What is the quality of the connection like?
5.  What would anyone with some experience using this reccomend?
6.  What additional hardware (ie speaker/mic) is needed and what do you'all reccomend?

Is there anything else I would need to know.  Bear in mind, that I am a complete (clueless) newbie when it comes to this type of software.  I just now am getting around to getting movies on the Z.  Been using this thing for work so much, that I haven't had time to mess with the entertainment side of it yet.


5x00 Hardware / Custom battery pack
« on: October 20, 2004, 03:03:28 am »
Recharge time is possibly explained by the following: (provided that the Z uses a standard three stage charger)

1.  Bulk charge.  Amperage is high and voltage is high.  Somewhere around 70-80% of charge is delivered this way
2.  Forgot what this stage is called.  Voltage rises, and amperage is low as the battery is fully charged.
3.  Float charge.  Voltage and amperage are stablized at a point that compensates for the battery selfdischarge.

Note:  I know the above for 12V lead/acid and NiCd and NiMh works well.  Not sure about lithuim though.  If the above is true, the bulk charging stage is providing enough current to charge both batteries in approximately the same amount of time.  The second stage (absorbtion?) is where the time difference comes in.  Of course, I could be completely wrong  .


5x00 Hardware / Custom battery pack
« on: October 15, 2004, 09:57:24 pm »
I made a bunch of external battery packs (NiMh), but they all use an external charger and the Z's external power connector.  I never got as ambitious as what you are planning.  Good luck and I look forward to hearing your results.

The major problem I ran into using the external battery packs was:
When the battery packs are powering the Z and become exhausted, the Z shutsdown very ungracefully.  It sometimes requires a soft reset in order to bring it back to life.  

Just something to keep in mind during your expironments (gawd I gotta learn how to spell).


5x00 Hardware / Custom battery pack
« on: October 14, 2004, 09:52:02 pm »
I am definitely interested in the results of you expiroment.  Let me know how it turns out.  I use the Z extensively at work, but it is kept in my briefcase so a minor increase in size is not a problem.

I think you may have to use an external charger because there is supposedly some circuitry in the lithium batteries.  I am also worried about the results when the battery is exhausted.  

Good Luck, and let me know how it turns out.

General Discussion / Netgear MA701 Dead ?
« on: October 09, 2004, 10:47:35 pm »
I had one problem with my Netgear card where I was playing around with an earlier release of Kismet.  The software put the card into promiscuous mode and would not allow a reset of the card.  The only way I found to fix it was to flash back to an earlier Sharp ROM, reset the card, flash back to the current Sharp ROM, and then stop playing with Kismet.  When this happened the green LED would continually flash.  The card was scanning continuously and would not allow any connections to be made.  This doesn't sound like the problem you are experiencing, but it is a possibility.

Let us know if something did kill the card so I can avoid killing mine.

Good Luck

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