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Infrared communications between a PC and 3c/3mx/Siena
When I first got my Siena 1mb, there were lots of files and programs I wanted to copy to it. Since I already had PsiWin 1.0 and a 3-Link cable which I used with my 3a, I wasn't looking forward to spending another 80 UK Pounds for PsiWin 1.1 and a new cable! Havinf access to a Dell laptop with a built in infrared port, I wanted to know, "How can I use my existing software and the IR port on the Siena to communicate with the laptop?". Well, Jeffrey Ha and Richard Teel kindly stepped in to help me. Since the solution is so useful, I've made a web page of instructions!
EPOC users (Series 5/5mx/Geofox-One) can also connect via InfraRed to their PCs. Although I won't go into the details here as this is really a 3c/3mx/Siena page, you may like to check out Martin Guthrie's and Tim Richardson's resources on the subject.
Please note: This page and these instructions are Copyright © Phil Spencer 1998-2001. No repuplication or quotation is allowed without my specific permission.
Firstly, if you have PsiWin 1.0, you may be interested to know you can get an upgrade to the PsiWin 1.1 software for free. This also has the added bonus of being Year 2000 compliant. You can download it right now by clicking going to Psion's Web Site
Before you start anything, please make sure you have these items:
The reason we specified a "built in port" is simple - we have not been able to get this process working with an external IR port yet. If you have already used an external IR port to transfer files between your 3c/3mx/Siena and PC, please mail me with the details so I can update this page accordingly. Thanks!
- A Psion 3c/3mx or Siena (this procedure has not and shouldn't need to be tried with a 5, as PsiWin 2.0 and the cable come as standard with it so you can do serial transfers right away).
- A PC/Laptop with a built in infrared port. IR is the whole basis of this procedure - without an IR port, you simply can't do it!
The Step-by-Step Guide
The key to success is a small string of text just 7 characters long...
Basically that's it! By now, you should be well on the way to IR communications between your 3c/3mx/Siena and PC. There is one more useful point to note though:
- Open up and turn on your 3c/3mx/Siena, move to the System screen.
- Press Psion+L or use the menu to get into the "Communications" dialog.
- Set the "Use" option to "Serial cable"
- Set the "Baud rate" to the highest value which is supported by both your Psion and PC IR port. (Tip: If you have a lot of trouble getting the connection to work later on, try 19200 as the speed, and then if that still doesn't help, come down some more)
- Now, move down to the "Extra parameters" option. This is where that clever little 7 character string comes in! Enter the following very carefully:
This tells the Psion to make the IR port behave like a serial port. Any infrared signals the Psion sends will be converted into serial data, thus allowing you to "fool" a PC into thinking your Psion's IR port is really a serial port!
- Press "Enter" to confirm the dialog, and the tiny link sign should appear in the Status Window (If you don't have this window showing all the time, press Psion+Menu which will switch the window on for about 5 seconds and allow you to check).
If this is the first time you're using the IR connection, follow the next 4 steps. If not, just skip them...
- On the PC/Laptop, load up the Psion Manager from PsiWin - do not try to connect to a Psion at this point (just click "Cancel" when the connect box appears).
- Within the Psion Manager, move to the "Setup" menu and select the "Communications..." option.
In the resulting dialog, tell PsiWin to use the physical IR port on your Laptop/PC (eg, COM3 on Dell Laptops) and then set the communications speed to the one suitable for both your PC and Psion.
- Click "OK".
- Now, exit Psion Manager so the changes can take effect (Note: exiting and then re-starting seems to be more reliable than simply making changes and trying to use them without exiting first).
- Load up the Psion Manager from PsiWin and watch the connection box!
- Generally, connection does not occur on the first try, but keep clicking "Retry" and it will connect eventually. Usually, all works fine after only 2 or 3 attempts.
- After you've finished the communications, don't forget to go back into the "Communications" dialog from the System screen on your Psion and set "Use" to "None". If you leave the link running all the time, it will not only take up valuable memory, but it will also run down your batteries pretty quickly!
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