Zenys

Palm OS Tools?

13 posts in this topic

Found a cheap Palm Vx with an unopened Palm V modem, accessories, etc. on the Bay, waiting for arrival. Likely gonna need a serial adapter.

What are some interesting tools worth finding on the Palm platform that are still worthwhile? YT had a video from 2014 still showing the modems as functional. 

I bought it mainly try out the TBA wardialer. Also acquired "ptelnet", a terminal app. I was strolling through a dead blog, Ninja Palm Syndicate that listed interesting apps but all dead links it seems.

Any tips, stories, info or apps to share from the Palm OS era with a noob?

 

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TBA strikes me as the best use of a Palm handheld I've seen in...ever, especially now when they can be had for peanuts (seriously? Four for eight dollars/best offer? http://www.ebay.com/itm/Palm-V-3Com-US-Robotics-WORKING-with-stylus-/322071579743?hash=item4afcf64c5f:g:RUAAAOSwr7ZW3O96). The only other thing I can really recommend is maybe a terminal emulator so you can interact with whatever modems you happen to find. If you happen to have an audience for it and a long term source of power, I can also see a BBS being a good use of it.

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I tried grabbing some Terminal apps, like Mterm. I'm not sure if which apps work with serial or with modem. 

TBA has worked like a charm and I'm quite impressed, easy and it just plain works, not that I've detected any carriers in my prefix yet but it's the thrill of the hunt I suppose.

Did Palm have BBS software??

Edited by Zenys
Forgot something
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I read about TBA in an issue of 2600 years ago (2005ish), picked up a Palm 3 (I think) with Palm modem, DB-9 serial cable, and a cradle for $2 at the MIT Flea a few years ago, and installed TBA and a serial terminal app. Loaned it to a friend who used TBA as part of a security audit, worked perfectly and easily hidden in the company's wiring closet. I still use it as a serial debug terminal for embedded hardware.

AFAIK, the modem just works through the RS-232 port that's in the docking connector. You should be able to dial out (ATDT commands) from the serial terminal app. I forget what the serial terminal app I picked is called, but I use JPilot to sync textfiles and apps to it from Linux. For old broken links, throw it in archive.org Wayback Machine -- I pick up a lot of broken download links like that.

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With the Palm Vx I can place it in the HotSync cradle, which connects with a DB9 serial, but the Palm V modem attaches to the same set of pins that the cradle uses to charge it. It seems that there isn't a way to have the modem attached to the Palm Vx while also having it attached to the DB9 HotSync, and that really sucks because I had also thought there was a way to use the Palm Vx as an external modem for a PC. The manual lists you can HotSync by connecting the V modem into a PC modem though, but not serial connection. I'll try and browse around and see if there are any Palm terminal apps with a modem capability. 

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It should Just Work out of the box; there should be an option (at least on PalmOS 3.5 . The tradeoff is TBA can be a little cranky under that release) in the hotsync menu to change it from local to modem.

EDIT: Sorry, I don't think I understood your question.

Edited by ThoughtPhreaker
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Okay, now my curiosity is piqued. What's all this then? Something that could make hand-scanning a breeze? Heh.

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1 hour ago, JCSwishMan33 said:

Okay, now my curiosity is piqued. What's all this then? Something that could make hand-scanning a breeze? Heh.

Yeah, http://www.securiteam.com/tools/5RQ0B000CU.html

It's a wardialer that runs on old Palm Pilot PDAs with a modem pack (or external modem, I guess, would also work). Basically the older Palm Pilots (all of them?) are super cheap in used/working condition, and the modems are cheap too, and will run off of a set of batteries for a good while. It's so cheap it's disposable, you could just leave it in a telco closet or a can outside and if someone steals it, who cares. It's also a pretty unassuming bit of hardware, not some piece of clearly homebrew perfboard with wires going everywhere.

As mentioned, I loaned mine to a friend doing a physical security audit for a company. No one noticed it, and he was able to scan all of their PBX extensions, including finding, IIRC, their security system's remote control modem on an extension, completely unprotected.

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So a few questions:

- Any particular Palm / Palm setup that works best? I.e. what would be the best equipment to hunt for to make this work best?

- Does TBA have ability to differentiate non-modem responses? I.e. Can it break out "Voice", "Ringout / No Answer", "SIT" at a minimum?

- Could the proper Palm setup be used as a tethered modem? I.e. Can I hook it to my laptop, and use a more comprehensive wardialer (if needed) on my computer?

I'd really love to get a set-up like this to scan through a few of those 1As before they disappear.

 

 

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- Does TBA have ability to differentiate non-modem responses? I.e. Can it break out "Voice", "Ringout / No Answer", "SIT" at a minimum?

I think only US Robotics Couriers do this. And not particularly well, sadly.

- Any particular Palm / Palm setup that works best? I.e. what would be the best equipment to hunt for to make this work best?

Assuming the batteries are still good, a Palm V would probably be the best choice; the modems seem to be the easiest to find on eBay. I have a Palm handheld lying around with PalmOS 3.5, and while it works, it can be a little klugey. A handheld running 3.3 (like a Palm V) is probably a better bet.

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I can also recommend finding a modem AC adapter, I had to acquire as long scans will eat up a Palm V modem's two AAA's in a few hours. 

It has responses of "BUSY" mostly for either reorder or voice, the speaker is not very loud at all but you can make out general sounds through the distortion. 

I've yet to have it hit on "CARRIER FOUND!", I guess it doesn't respond that way to faster modems, or at least the dial up sounds I have discovered. This is irritating as I want to not have to really sit around and listen to the tinny speaker but oh well, it's part of the job I guess.

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I've yet to have it hit on "CARRIER FOUND!", I guess it doesn't respond that way to faster modems, or at least the dial up sounds I have discovered. This is irritating as I want to not have to really sit around and listen to the tinny speaker but oh well, it's part of the job I guess.

Huh, they should negotiate just fine, even if it has to do it at a slower speed. Try testing with a terminal emulator. If it's just a matter of it hanging up before the handshake is complete, you could ask it to specifically negotiate at a slower speed or something. You can probably get rid of the faxes with a few commands too. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hayes_command_set

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I can adjust the modem speed from 300 baud to 56k, higher speeds seem to make the modem want to act up and not be detected and I have to power cycle to reset things and get the modem detected again

But yes, I've not had it detect these modem sounds as a found carrier for some reason. I have set the call time currently for 35 seconds, which is a little over 4 rings I think but no luck.

I hear the modem sound but no handshake. TBA can try and connect and list connection speed but I may not have things configured correctly, although I don't know what I've forgotten to do. 

Edited by Zenys
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