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be300.org is dead :(

Moderators: C:Amie

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C:Amie Page Icon Posted 2019-05-25 9:20 AM
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That wasn't my question. My question was do we need to re-host them here. Either in the SCL/ H/PC:Update or in the repository.
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CE Geek Page Icon Posted 2019-05-26 8:15 AM
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I don't see any reason why we can't, but all the files will pretty much be exclusively for the BE-300 and BE-500 only, which we don't officially have listed among our Windows CE devices (just like we don't list any Palm-size PCs).
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C:Amie Page Icon Posted 2019-05-26 8:59 AM
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Then I leave it up to Stingraze to say whether or not he'd like his bits mirrored on repository.hpcfactor.com
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stingraze Page Icon Posted 2019-05-26 9:30 AM
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Sure, why not, the mirror will be nice.

The url for the files:
http://www.superai.online/be-300-be-500/
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C:Amie Page Icon Posted 2019-05-26 10:19 AM
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Any chance you have a quick way to zip them up so I don't have to download them all individually?

Thanks
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stingraze Page Icon Posted 2019-05-26 9:19 PM
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I will try to do it sometime today.
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CE Geek Page Icon Posted 2019-05-27 12:01 AM
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I don't suppose we could host the old BAS forum pages here too (in a separate section for the BE-300) to make the downloads relevant. MutantCheese had them all in his package.
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stingraze Page Icon Posted 2019-05-27 1:51 AM
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Sent the files zipped to C:Amie (.zip on my server).
I might still have the SQL dump file. Will look at my computer later.

Edited by stingraze 2019-05-27 1:52 AM
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C:Amie Page Icon Posted 2019-05-27 8:48 AM
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Thanks to Stingraze, the binary material is now mirrored on http://repository.hpcfactor.com/

If there are other things that need to be included, please let us know.
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stefcuch Page Icon Posted 2019-05-28 3:27 AM
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Hi All,

I just checked the repository and seeing those binaries brings back memories!

Great that HPC:FACTOR is hosting all these for new and old BE-300'ers alike.

Many Thanks,

Stefcuch

PS. Avatar image was when I managed to get Bluetooth running on my BE-300. Bit of a mission!

Edited by stefcuch 2019-05-28 3:28 AM
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CE Geek Page Icon Posted 2019-05-29 10:06 PM
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Funny it took me this long to figure out why some of the .bin files were about 16 MB instead of 11-12 MB. Those larger files can only be installed using the Casio OS update app in conjunction with PC Connect. The file to change a BE-300 to a BE-500 is one of those. I was able to change one BE-300 to a BE-500 (Japanese interface and all) using that file. But how does one do the reverse? Now that it's a BE-500, the Casio OS update app says "This update tool does not support this system." I was of the impression that there was a way to change a BE-300 to a BE-500 and back. How does one do the "and back" part?
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CE Geek Page Icon Posted 2019-07-06 10:39 PM
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Browsing through the be300.org backup provided by MutantCheese (which opens as a spreadsheet on my XP PC), I found the answer. The BE-300-BE-500 upload in the repository has two of the files needed: NANDWRITER.bin and All_nand.bin, but a third file is needed: KLOADER.bin, which is basically the bootloader file from the inaccessible 4 MB part of the 16 MB ROM. (The accessible 12 MB part is \Nand Disk.) Here's how it's done:

1) On your PC use a card reader/writer to format (not Quick Format) a CF Card at least 24 MB in size to FAT (not FAT32).

2) Copy the following files onto the CF card (in root), one at a time, in order: a) NANDWRITER.bin, b) KLOADER.bin, and c) All_nand.bin.

3) Insert the CF card into your BE-500 and hard reset (press power plus reset). You'll see "NandWriter" on the screen along with a progress bar. It takes a few minutes to complete, and then the BE-500 will restart automatically. After you complete the screen calibration, you'll be presented with the English version of Top Menu. You now have a BE-300 instead of the former BE-500. You can now reflash any of the BE-300 OEs (Bee, BeShell, eXpod, EpodXP, GTshell) as with any other BE-300. Using this method, I was able to convert my first silver BE-500 to a BE-300 and flash whatever OE I choose.

According to the forum posts in the backup, some folks even resurrected "dead" BE-300s (ones that won't even power on) as well with this method, so maybe there's hope for TFGBD's "dead" BE-300. . (The same three files work on both BE-300s and BE-500s.)

KLOADER.bin is below:



Attachments
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Attachments KLOADER.bin (48KB - 1 downloads)
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CE Geek Page Icon Posted 2019-10-18 12:31 PM
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I should clarify that the above method can only be done with the larger (15-16 MB) BIN files, which include the 4 MB bootloader section. And that file has to be renamed All_nand.bin for it to work. You can use this method to flash from BE-300 to BE-500 and back, and even to CE .net (though it's still the trial version, so don't leave it there if you don't have the registration code).

As I mentioned earlier, you can use WinImage to extract the file structure from the BIN or DAT files of any BE-300 operating environment (EpodXP, BeShell, eXpod, Bee, etc) and build the same OE on a BE-500. The steps are here (the site is in Japanese, but Chrome has an automatic translation plugin):

https://lagenda.exblog.jp/1270674/

I also found a cool little utility called DispChg that can rotate the BE-500's display into landscape mode. I found it works quite well with the BE-500 version of eXpod, as well as with the versions of BeShell 0.9b8 (including BAS_BeShell) that I built onto BE-500s using the method on the above-linked page. (Screenshots are below.) So far it's not working with any other OE adapted to the BE-500, though. The closest I came was to get Bee 2.0 to boot in landscape, but it won't calibrate the stylus to the rotated display. (It seems to respond to stylus taps in roughly a horizontal mirror image configuration.) The other OEs won't boot at all once rotation is activated (which automatically soft resets the device). It won't work at all on any BE-300 OE, and may cause the display not to work, requiring restoring a backup to recover the device. I tried combining files from multiple OEs on a BE-500 to see if I could adapt the other OEs to work in landscape, but even if the shell booted in these attempts, it would not render desktop wallpaper and icons - similar to what we found some time back with the Pocket PostPet. (The same result, BTW, occurs in portrait mode on the BE-500 if you try the original method of just copying the ePods files over and editing the registry to make it boot to explorer.exe.)



(eXpod.JPG)



(BeShell098.JPG)



Attachments
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Attachments eXpod.JPG (19KB - 0 downloads)
Attachments BeShell098.JPG (26KB - 0 downloads)
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CE Geek Page Icon Posted 2020-04-25 7:54 AM
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One of the big complaints about the BE has been that it wipes everything in RAM like a hard reset every time one soft resets the device, and thus requires putting files in a patch folder in ROM that loads those files back into RAM during each reset. While this feature does protect against data loss due to power loss to the device, it proved too complicated for most CE software developers, who never bothered to write special installers for the BE.

It appears that the wiping of RAM contents (in \Windows, \Program Disk, etc) is done by boot.exe, which is the last step in the startup queue (Launch59) in HKLM/init. Also wiped are any unflushed registry changes as well as any user-created databases. In Bee 2.0 there is a file called PSBoot.exe that can be substituted for boot.exe in that registry value, and when this file is executed in place of boot.exe during a soft reset, all RAM contents, unflushed registry changes, and databases remain in place. I found some discussion about this in the old ABF forums among the very limited pages archived in the Wayback Machine. I've confirmed these results through testing on more than one of my BEs. It even bypasses the 1899 problem, so there is no need to go through the workaround mentioned earlier before resetting the date and time - once those are adjusted they remain current after soft reset rather than reverting back to high noon on New Year's Day 1899 after each soft reset.

Not surprisingly, soft resets complete faster this way. A hard reset (power button plus reset, or power loss) still dumps RAM contents, unflushed registry changes, and databases through system re-initialization, so it's still wise to create a backup on the CF card and/or save the files placed in \Nand Disk\Program Files\Patch (though with the exception of PSBoot.exe, which you'll need to boot again, they can be moved off to the \Storage Card in the meantime if desired to maximize space in ROM) to restore them in the event of a power loss.

This provides some hope that Pocket Outlook PIM databases could be installed on a BE-300/500 and possibly even be synchronizable through ActiveSync. However, a few hurdles remain. First, the POOM SDK is missing the file required for synchronization with desktop Outlook: pegobj.dll. I've found no trace of a MIPS version of this file thus far anywhere on the Web. Second, one would have to copy the POOM databases from another device using a database backup application to get any of the databases there in the first place, since no one appears to have written a MIPS version of CeCreateDatabase_POOM.exe. (And are the database files themselves processor-independent?
) Also, most of the "super PIMs" compatible with MIPS CE 3 or earlier (Agenda Fusion, Pocket Informant 2.5 or earlier, etc) require InkX.dll to run, and again there doesn't seem to be a MIPS version of this anywhere on the Web.

I may be the only one who still cares, but there's still life to squeeze out of these old devices.
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CE Geek Page Icon Posted 2020-04-26 4:07 PM
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Well, a friend who shall remain nameless supplied me with three MIPS versions (R3000, R4100, and R4300) of pegobj.dll. I did the logical thing and tried the R4100 one, but the BE I tried it on froze up when I tried to sync. Through process of elimination I was able to trace the problem to that version of pegobj.dll. So next I tried the R3000 one (since I've learned from others here that MIPS 3000 files have better cross-compatibility with other MIPS versions than do MIPS 4000 files), and - drum roll, please . . .

Calendar, Contacts, and Tasks synched successfully in ActiveSync with the BE-300!

Again, as I mentioned above, in order to make this possible one has to harvest these databases from another CE device using a database backup/restore utility, since there's no way to create the databases on the device. Synching then updates the data. Also, the MIPS POOM SDK DLLs plus pegobj.dll must be placed in \Windows or PIM programs can't read the data. (Only one PIM program works correctly with those files in its own folder instead of in \Windows, and that's the Today app in Microsoft's Power Toys for CE 2.0.) As I mentioned above, some PIM programs require InkX.dll (Agenda Fusion also requires RichInk.dll) to open, and I still haven't found a MIPS version of this file; however, those programs did open when I created a dummy InkX.dll file by renaming another small DLL file (except Agenda Fusion, which just changes its error message to "not a valid Windows CE application" ). Pocket Informant 2.5, however, still doesn't finish opening, though: right after the app opens I keep getting a dialog about the program being opened for the first time, and once I tap OK the whole app closes. I'm going to try version 3.0 and see if I have better luck.
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