Softick Card Export II vs. Missing Sync Desktop Mount app

Now that I have an SD card for my Palm, I decided to try out a couple of apps that allow me to mount the card on my desktop computer. I’d like to be able to copy files (mp3s, documents, etc) directly to the card from my Linux box(es). Then, I can write a script to copy mp3 playlists to the device, etc.

First up: The desktop mounting app that came with Missing Sync. This works as advertised on the Mac, but unfortunately, when I plug into my Linux box it’s not recognized as a USB mass storage device. It might just be a matter of updating the Linux hotplug subsystem to assign the usb-storage driver to the device. But the fact remains that it didn’t work out of the box. I’m not sure if it’ll work at all actually.. the documentation isn’t really clear on how the app works. I’m assuming that somewhere it’s emulating a USB mass storage device, but I’m not sure if the emulation is being done by the Palm app, or the Missing Sync app on the desktop. Next time I’m in the office, I’ll try this out on my Mac there, where Missing Sync is not installed. If it works, then that tells me the Palm app is doing the emulation, and I should be able to make this work under Linux. Stay tuned.

The next app I tried was Softick Card Export II, which costs $15, but provides a 21 day evaluation. On the Mac, it worked identically to the Missing Sync app. When I tried it on the Linux box, it immediately recognized it as a USB mass storage device, and I was able to mount and browse the card. So if I can’t make the Missing Sync app do what I need, it looks like I can use this.

The “dark horse” option here is to not use the Palm at all, and just get a USB SD card reader. I’m sure this would work great, but it’s one more gadget I’d need to carry around. If I’m already carrying the Palm around anyhow, I might as well use that. Still, if I’m going to consider shelling out $15 for Card Export II, I might as well price the USB readers as well.

Update 12/29/05: I tried the Missing Sync desktop mount app on the Mac in my office (where I have not installed Missing Sync) and it didn’t work. So, it looks like I can rule this out as a general desktop mounting solution. I think for now, I’ll go ahead and buy Card Export II (which did work on the office Mac, BTW). I think it’ll always have some utility for me, even if I do eventually pick up a standalone USB card reader (which, BTW, can be had for less than the $15 that Card Export II costs).

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