I have written a post before about a shared calendar for our family appointments here. This approach is working properly for the past 3 weeks now.

I stumbled upon my old HP Ipaq 4700 pocket pc which is not as advanced as the modern tablets like the Apple Ipad but it offers a touch screen, internet browsing and much more. It is also much cheaper today ;-). First I wanted to use the build in browser to open calendar.live.com and maintain our calendar online. Suddenly I remembered that Hotmail offers MS Exchange connectivity and that makes it very easy to connect any Windows Mobile device to it. PDA’s using Windows Mobile are build to connect to a MS Exchange server and synchronize the Calendar, Tasks, Email and Contacts. This works very wel.

So, instead of using a browser and calendar.live.com, I setup Activesync which is preinstalled on Windows Mobile to connect to our family Hotmail/Live account. Now the Calendar, email, contacts and tasks of our family account are synchronized (over WiFi) to my 6 years old HP Ipaq 4700 PocketPC. (The Ipaq 4700 has build in WiFi)

Today we don’t have to start our laptop or PC to check our family calendar, but use the PDA which is ‘instant-on’ when we push the power button.

How to connect: (First make sure you have a Live or Hotmail account as described in my previous post. Then find Activesync on your PDA. Setup server synchonization.
The servername is: m.hotmail.com (even when you have a live account)
The username is your Live or hotmail account like user@hotmail.com
The password is your password
The domain remains empty. Enable SSL Secure connection.

Make sure your current region, time and date are set on the PocketPC, otherwise you get certificate errors. You can modify ‘Schedule’ within Activesync to configure how often you want to sync. It seems that my Ipaq synchronizes even when I have it turned off (standby).


(You might want to search on the internet for updated ROM firmware for your device. Newer versions usually offer more functionality and/or security)