Porting from Palm OS

QArea helps to extend its client's product line by porting Content Management Application from Palm OS to Microsoft Windows Mobile-based Pocket PC.


Our customer is a leading provider of software and content management services. For them we have developed an application that allows user to access HTML files on the server directly from a handheld. It also enables user to upload and edit content files. The user can download source files from multiple URLs, store them in a local database, edit them, and upload them back to the server using either HTTP PUT or FTP method. The content files editor has advanced search capabilities and a clipboard. The program is small, fast and compatible with almost all Palm OS versions and clones.


Initially the Content Manager Application was developed for the Palm OS platform. To work within the memory limitations immanent to Palm we built databases in the relevant Palm PDB format. The Content Manager application gained recognition on the market. Then retail operators began demanding that mobile applications support dual platforms - Palm and the Microsoft?® Windows Mobile?„? - based Pocket PC. Thus, our client faced a quandary: the company needed both - preserve its investment in content for the Palm OS and, at the same time, provide support for the Pocket PC. Due to product superior capabilities and strong support favored by the company, they also needed to get the viewer and content, specifically for Pocket PC, to market the product as quickly as possible.

Our Solution

Once we made a decision on our strategy to map the Palm database format to the WinMobile Pocket PC, it was pretty easy to port. We decided to build a database engine for the WinMobile that would work with the Palm database format. Developers that worked on the software used an API similar to that provided in the Palm OS. Creating the database engine proved to be the most challenging part of the process. Since our user interface was already optimized for a small screen, all we had to do was to convert it from Palm controls to Microsoft Windows Mobile controls.

Technical Highlights

  • database engine was built for the Windows Mobile Pocket PC enabling to work with the Palm database format
  • an improved user interface for the Windows Mobile Pocket PC.

Tools and Technologies

  • C/C++
  • Microsoft eMbedded Visual C++ for database engine on Windows Mobile Pocket PC.
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