Synchronising Linux and PocketPC with FinchSync

I’ve had to put Dan’s Guardian to one side as I have made some serious progress with getting my Pocket PC (iPaq 2210/2215) syncing with Linux – specifically Mozilla’s Thunderbird on Ubuntu. This has long been considered the holy grail of synchronisation in Linux…by me at least! 🙂

How does it work?

  1. I installed the Lightning extension into Thunderbird. This brings the power of the Sunbird calendar application directly into Thunderbird, thus making it more like Microsoft’s Outlook sans bloat.
  2. I then installed GCalDaemon which is a Java application that allows for two-way synchronisation with Gmail calendar. I set this up (as per the page) to use file-based synchronisation so that it would bring back an iCal file that Thunderbird Lighting could access. I saved this in
  3. Then I installed FinchSync. This application rocks! Seriously! It runs as a client on the PocketPC and syncs up over WiFi (or other network connection) to the server version running on the server – totally bypassing ActiveSync altogether! Brilliant!
  4. I made both FinchSync and GCalDaemon run on startup by adding them to init.d. Basically, I created a file called gcald and one called finchsync and put them in /etc/init.d. I then ran
    update-rc.d finchsync defaults

    as root and did the same for gcald.

  5. Now we’re off and running!  I then added the calendar to Thunderbird Lightning by adding a new calendar, pointing it at the iCal file and it appeard.  I also ran the finchsync gui with java -jar finchsync.jar and set it up to look at the same source file.

Done and done!  🙂  Now, whenever I add an appointment to GMail, it appears on my Thunderbird calendar and when I sync my iPaq, it appears there too.  Sweeeeeet!  🙂


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