This is a read-only archive. Find the latest Linux articles, documentation, and answers at the new!


Linux and smart phones

By Luigi Paiella on March 02, 2006 (8:00:00 AM)

Share    Print    Comments   

So you want a cell phone that's also a PDA? Smart phones can make calls, synchronize your calendar with your PC, act as data storage devices, and connect your PC to the Internet. You can use your Linux PC to connect with and even program some mobile phones using some of the following tools.

In testing these open source applications I used a Nokia phone running Symbian OS v8.0 and the Series 60 Platform second edition user interface, with USB, Bluetooth, and Internet connectivity. My computer is a laptop with Kanotix, a Debian-based distribution.

PIM synchronization

The first connectivity tool I tried was Gnokii, a command-line application licensed under the GPL. Gnokii lets you connect many different types of mobile devices not only with Linux, but also with Windows and Unix systems. Depending on your phone model, you can make data calls, synchronize your address book and calendar, send and receive SMS messages, and more. Symbian-based phones in particular use a new protocol that forced gnokii developers to adopt a client-server architecture: The client, running on the PC, talks with the server running on the phone. Gnokii can communicate with mobile devices through serial, infrared, USB, and Bluetooth connections.

I find PIM synchronization is more user-friendly when it's done wirelessly. Bluetooth lets you keep the phone in your pocket while exchanging data. Once you've configured your Bluetooth device under Linux and installed the latest applet on the phone (gnapplet.sis) and the corresponding gnokii package on the PC (make sure that gnapplet and gnokii are the same version) you can run gnapplet from the Symbian phone's menu and gnokii from the Linux shell. To see the first five contacts on your phone, issue the command gnokii --getphonebook ME 1 5, where ME represents the internal memory of the equipment; 1 is the first position in the address book and 5 is the last. With the options --getcalendarnote and --gettodo I was able to retrieve calendar items and a to-do list, but I couldn't do much more.

Unfortunately, many of gnokii's options didn't work with my phone, and manually activating the applet didn't create an automatically scheduled synchronization task.

Data transfer

Transmitting data between my phone and Linux with both USB and Bluetooth was fairly easy. You can make the Bluetooth connection through P3nfs, another GPL-licensed application. P3nfs lets you mount the file system of the phone on your *nix machine. For Series 60 phones, P3nfs can work through TCP/IP and infrared in addition to Bluetooth.

Like gnokii, P3nfs uses an applet on the phone (which you can install through its .sis package) and an application on the PC. Start the applet on the phone by picking the NFS icon, and invoke the PC program on the server side with a command like p3nfsd -series60 -tty /dev/rfcomm0. You will see all the phone's drives mounted on your Linux machine in the directory /mnt/psion.

To make a USB connection, I tried ObexFTP, which moves data to and from the phone more or less like a command-line FTP client without installing any software on the phone. It isn't too user-friendly, but you can work around that by employing developer Andrzej Szombierski's GPL-licensed mcOBEX application, an OBEX virtual file system that lets Midnight Commander act as an interface for ObexFTP. Once you adjust the mcOBEX script according to the instructions, it lets MC browse the drives of the mobile when you issue the command cd #mcOBEX on your PC. Its speed, ease of use, and stability are excellent.


Nokia developed a complete Python environment for Series 60 that lets you create programs and scripts for smart phones. An interesting added feature is the Bluetooth console application: Python commands written on the PC are sent to the mobile device's interpreter, and results are displayed back to the PC, promoting a fast learning curve and easy application development.

With the console properly configured, you can program your phone from almost any operating system. To use the Bluetooth console you need a listening Bluetooth RFCOMM serial port on the PC and VT100-compatible serial terminal software, such as cu. First, start your PC start listening on the Bluetooth port with a command like :rfcomm listen /dev/rfcomm0 10 &. Start the Bluetooth console on the phone, and issue a cu command (e.g. : cu -l /dev/rfcomm0). Now you can start sending commands directly to the phone's Python interpreter.

Internet connection

Smart phones can connect a computer to the Internet through the GPRS, UMTS, or EDGE protocols, depending on the phone's capabilities and network. I tested GPRS Easy Connect version 2.5 (GPL license). It's easy to use, intuitive, and works with both Bluetooth and USB. It also lets you monitor data volume limits, if your Internet provider contract imposes any, and, despite the name, it seems to allow UMTS and EDGE connections too. The only negative point was that sometimes my system became unstable when I was running the application, forcing me to reboot.

There are a lot of things you can do using smart phones in conjunction with Linux, though some of them remain tricky, and sometimes applications can become unstable due to changes in carrier protocols. I hope that mobile device producers' increasing interest in open source will lead to their offering greater support for open source software developers.

Share    Print    Comments   


on Linux and smart phones

Note: Comments are owned by the poster. We are not responsible for their content.

What we REALLY want

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 05, 2006 12:04 AM
So you want a cell phone that's also a PDA?...You can use your Linux PC to connect with and even program some mobile phones

This is old.

What I really want is a cell phone that's also a PDA and runs Linux.


I want!

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 03, 2006 01:35 AM
I want voice authentication, I want GPG and public keys. I want encrypted SMS. I want encrypted voice talking. I want a open source firmware that I know is not backdoored, and dont contain eavesdropping and remote enabled microphone.
I want adhoc/bonjour(?) networking with P2P file sharing.
And I want to load to be able to connect my cellphone to a computer with a USB or cat5 TP cable and then let the computer boot Knoppix from the cellphone.


relief joint

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on May 30, 2006 01:09 AM
[URL=<nobr>.<wbr></nobr> htm] Nerve pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=<nobr>k<wbr></nobr> pain.htm] Low back pain [/URL]

  [URL=<nobr>b<wbr></nobr> ackpainrelief.htm] Back pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=<nobr>l<wbr></nobr> es/kneepainrelief.htm] Knee pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=<nobr>e<wbr></nobr> lief.html] Pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=<nobr>i<wbr></nobr> nrelief/painreliefpreved.htm] Pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=<nobr>t<wbr></nobr> ion-Pain-Relief.html] Medication pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=<nobr>l<wbr></nobr> -Pain-Relief.html] Natural pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=] Pain relief [/URL]

  [URL=] Back Pain [/URL]

  [URL=] Pain relief [/URL]
[URL=] Pain relief [/URL]


series 90

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 03, 2006 05:42 AM
First of all,what a nice article!! This is what I've been waiting for......

I have this nokia 7710, series 90 platform, and I can't get it working on a ubuntu system. I tried a lot of things but then left it for wat it was because I figured that this was some of the things where I would have to buy a windows OS for....

Yes, BUY a windows os. Fortunately it looks like there are solutions.

Do you think these teqniques would work with my nokia 7710, series 90, phone too?


Nokia N90 $190

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on October 27, 2006 12:15 AM
El Wahab HandPhones Ltd.
We have cell phones and ipods in store for sale,our items are brand new,the phones are all unlocked and can work with any network of your choice,our items are all with either 1or2Years warranty.
We Ship through FedEx Express 2-3Days delivery to your doorstep.
Below our some of the phones we have in store.
Nokia 8800 $170
Nokia N80 $225
Nokia N70 $160
Nokia N71 $175
Nokia N72 $180
Nokia N73 $220
Nokia N90 $185
Nokia N91 $210
Nokia N92 $230
Nokia N93 $320
Nokia E70 $255
Nokia E60 $245
Nokia E61 $250
Nextel I930 $120
Nextel I870 $110
Palm Treo 600 $120
Palm Treo 650 $140
Palm Treo 700W$170
Motorola Razor v3x $145
Motorola V3i $140
Motorola A1010 $110
Motorola A1000 $100
Motorola Rock1 $120
Motorola W220 $160
Motorola Q for Verizon.$200
Samsung P900 $290
Samsung D870 $280
Samsung D820 $270
Sony Ericsson K800 $200
Sony Ericsson p910i$160
Sony Ericsson W810 $180
Sony Ericsson W850 $225
Sony Ericsson W900i$250
Sony Ericsson W950 $260
Qtek 8100 $125
QTEK 8300 $145
Qtek 8310 $155
Qtek 8500 $165
Qtek 8600 $225
Qtek 9100 $250
Qtek 9600 $270
SideKick I $120
SideKick II $140
SideKick III $160
I-Mate JAM 128MB $210
I-Mate JAM $190
I-Mate JAMin $220
I-Mate JASJAR Quadband $340
I-Mate K-Jam QuadBand $230
I-Mate Smartflip QB. $240
I-Mate SP5 $130
TomTom Mobile 5 $290
TomTom GO GPS Car Navigation System $270
TomTom Navigator 5 Bluetooth GPS $260
TomTom Mobile GPS for Smartphones $250
Apple Ipod 60Gb $130
Apple Ipod 30Gb $110
Apple Ipod nano 4Gb $100


for sale cheap:Brand new Apple 60 GB iPod photo...

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on December 28, 2006 11:16 AM
The Management of MTN PHONE PRODUCTION are launching out there product out to general public, We are given Buy 2 Get 1 Apple Ipod 20gb. We sell Brand new Mobile phones, Laptops, Ipods, PSP, Video Games, GPS Navitor and many more in store, Below are the List and prices of avaiable produt in store, if you are interested, forward your questions and enquires to us via email with your order
and shipping details. we give 1 year warranty for every product sold out to our costumers, our product are company class 1 tested and approved by global standard organization of wireless industries, Brand new merchandise with complete accessories, extra charger and battery.serious buyers should.
Contact us on:

                      moreen williams.
Brand new Nokia n93 $200usd
brand new nokia n95 $300usd
Brand new Nokia n92 $180usd
Brand new Nokia n91 $170usd
Brand new Nokia n90 $150usd
Brand new Nokia n72 $150usd
Brand new Nokia n73 $160usd
Brand new Nokia n80 $165usd
Brand new Nokia e73 $165usd
Brand new Nokia n70 $160usd
Brand new Nokia 7200 $195usd
Brand new Nokia 9300 $190usd
Brand new Nokia 7250i $175usd
Brand new Nokia 8800 $220usd
Brand new Nokia 9210i communicator $160usd
Brand new Nokia 9500 communicator $170usd
Brand new Nokia 9300 communicator..$200usd
Brand new Samsung Q1 $200
Brand new Samsung SGH-e910 $180usd
Brand new Samsung p850 $200usd
Brand new Samsung d500 $140usd
Brand new Samsung e600 $180usd
Brand new Samsung e800 $160usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-d410 $270usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-e700 $150usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-e715 $170usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-p100 $130usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-p400 $100usd
Brand new Samsung SGH-Z510 $150usd
Brand new Samsung SGH-p300 $180usd
Brand new Samsung SGH-i300 $185usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-p408 $240usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-p730 $150usd
Brand new Samsung sgh-s300m $100usd
Brand new Samsung x450 $100usd
Brand new Samsung SCH-i730 $130usd
Brand new Motorola Q1 $200
Brand new Motorola pebl u6 $150usd
Brand new Motorola a1200 $200usd
Brand new Motorola a1010 $180usd
Brand new Motorola a1000 $170usd
Brand new Motorola a388c $170usd
Brand new Motorola a760 $166usd
Brand new Motorola a768 $170usd
Brand new Motorola a768i $160usd
Brand new Motorola a780 $170usd
Brand new Motorola i860 $135usd
Brand new Motorola Mpx 300 $150usd
Brand new Motorola Mpx 220 $140usd
Brand new Motorola V6 $150usd
Brand new Motorola L7 $165usd
Brand new Motorola e680 $200usd
Brand new Motorola razor v3 $90usd
Brand new Motorola v220 $170usd
Brand new Motorola v80 with Bluetooth $260usd
Brand new Motorola v872 $200usd
Sony ericsson
Brand new Sony Ericsson k790A $200usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson p990 $180usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson w900 $170usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson Z525a $180usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson W710i $160usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson Z710i $200usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson W300i $180usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson K310 $180usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson M600 $200usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson j100 $240usd
Brand new Sony ericsson k500i $130usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson p800 $140usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson p900 $150usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson p910 $180usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson z1010 $160usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson z600 $130usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson s700i $150usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson s750i $180usd
Brand new Sony Ericsson W800i $180usd
Brand new Sidekick 3 $130usd
Brand new Sidekick 2 $110usd
Brand new Pink couture sidekick 2 $135usd
Brand new Mr. Cartoon sidekick $130usd
Brand new ETEN G500......$180usd
Brand new Eten M500......$150usd
Brand new ETEN M600......$180usd
Brand new NEXTEL I930<nobr> <wbr></nobr>...$130USD
Brand new NEXTEL I870....$120USD
Brand new NEXTEL I860....$100USD
Brand new The Treo 700w...$190
Brand new The Treo 650....$140
Brand new The Treo 700p...$190
Brand new I-mate JAM 850...$140
Brand new I-MATE K-JAM<nobr> <wbr></nobr>...$270
Brand new i-MATE JASJAR.....$200
Brand new BlackBerry 8700r....$200
Brand new Blackberry 8700c....$200
Brand new Blackberry 8700g....$210
Apple Ipod
Brand new Apple iPod nano 4GB....$50.00us
Brand new Apple iPod nano 2GB....$55.00us
Brand new Apple 30 GB Video iPod....$60.00us
Brand new Apple 60 GB Video iPod....$70.00us
Brand new Apple 20 GB iPod : $50.00USD
Brand new Apple 4 GB iPod Mini....$50.00USD
Brand new Apple 6 GB iPod Mini...$49.00USD
Brand new Apple 40 GB iPod photo....$55.00USD
Brand new Apple 60 GB iPod photo....$70.00USD
Brand new Apple 30 GB iPod Photo....$55.00
Brand new Video Game
Brand new Xbox 360<nobr> <wbr></nobr>...$200
Brand new Psp (play station)..$145
Brand new Ps2...$145
Brand new Ps3...$205
Brand new HP IPaq Pocket PC H4150 ========= $190
Brand new Asus MyPal A716 ================= $175
Brand new HP IPaq Pocket PC H4350 ========= $185
Brand new Toshiba Pocket PC E405 ========== $120
Brand new Sony Clie PEG-TH55 ============== $155
Brand new Toshiba Pocket PC E800 ========== $220
Brand new PalmOne Zire 72================== $120
Brand new PalmOne Tungsten E ============== $90
Brand new PalmOne Tungsten C ============== $140
Brand new PalmOne Zire 31 ================= $65
Brand new palm Treo 650=====================$240
Brand new SONY VAIO A217S 100GB512MB RAM XP HOME.........$500
Brand new SONY VAIO B1VP 40GB HD 512MB RAM XP PRO..........$430
Brand new SONY VAIO T370P/L 60GB HD 512MB RAM XP........$400
Brand new SONY VAIO A417M 80GB HD 512MB RAM XP..........$650
Brand new Dell Laptop 1100BX7ZT21...$450
Brand new Dell Latitude C640 2.0GHz, 512MB, 40GB...$500
Brand new Dell Inspiron Model 8500 Laptop..$400
Brand new Dell Latitude D810...$900
Brand new Dell Inspiron 6000 Notebook Computer..$600
Brand new Dell Laptop,Wireless,Intel M,60GB HD,CD/DVD, XP,Pro...$560
Brand new Toshiba Laptop P4M 1.8GHz 512MB 60GB CDRW/DVD GF4 WiFi<nobr> <wbr></nobr>... $400
Brand new Toshiba M45-S359 Laptop Computer (Refurbished)..$450
Brand new Toshiba Satellite M45S359...$400
Brand new Toshiba Satellite M105-S3001...$400
Brand new Toshiba G25-AV513 Qosmio Laptop Computer (Refurbished)...$600
We sell in Bulk order, and in GOOD Discount prices
We make shipment through fedEx courier services and UPS, and they deliver within
2-3days home delivery,
The Management.

                        xmas bonanza


Nokia N95 Unlocked $400,Nokia N93i Unlocked $300

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on April 06, 2007 12:07 AM
Our Mobile phones are brand new with full accessories and all unlocked for any network,they can be used worldwide.
We ship worldwide via Federal Express.We are situated in USA.
If you order two phones you will get 1 free!.

Nokia 3220 Unlocked $120
Nokia 3250 Unlocked $150
Nokia 5100 Unlocked $130
Nokia 5140 Unlocked $135
Nokia 6600 Unlocked $140
Nokia 7610 Unlocked $145
Nokia 7710 Unlocked $148
Nokia 8800 Unlocked $200
Nokia 8800 Sirocco $250
Nokia 8260 Unlocked $150
Nokia 9000i Communicator Unlocked $155
Nokia 9300 Unlocked $153
Nokia E62 Unlocked $190
Nokia E70 Unlocked $220
Nokia E90 Unlocked $370
Nokia Ngage Unlocked $130
Nokia N70 Unlocked $210
Nokia N73 Unlocked $240
Nokia N75 Unlocked $350
Nokia N76 Unlocked $360
Nokia N80 Unlocked $280
Nokia N90 Unlocked $200
Nokia N93i Unlocked $300
Nokia N95 Unlocked $400
Nokia N97 Unlocked $650

Motorola RAZR V3 $180
Motorola KRZR K1M $185
Motorola MING $188
Motorola Razr V3i $150
Motorola MotoSlim L6 $160
Motorola Q Smartphone $240
Motorola RAZR V3M $155
Motorola SLVR L7C $190
Motorola Red MOTORAZR V3M $140
Motorola Rizr Z3 $175
Motorola PEBL $150
Motorola i760 $165
Motorola MOTOKRZR K1 $150
Motorola MOTORAZR V3xx $140
Motorola V3x Razor $145
Motorola L2 $130
Motorola W375 $120
Motorola ROKR E6 $135
Motorola i920 $200
Motorola I850 $240
Motorola i930 $260

Samsung A900 $160
Samsung I600 $190
Samsung SCH-i730 $210
Samsung D500 $150
Samsung Black Jack $330
Samsung M500 $270
Samsung M610 $280

Sony Ericsson K750i
Sony Ericsson P800
Sony Ericsson P900
Sony Ericsson P910i
Sony Ericsson W300i
Sony Ericsson W600i
Sony Ericsson W800,
Sony Ericsson W810i

Blackberry 8800 $240
Blackberry 8700c $210
Blackberry Pearl $235
Blackberry 5810 $160
Blackberry 7280 $165
Blackberry 7290 $170
Blackberry 7510 $175
BlackBerry 7520 $178
Blackberry 7730 $180
Blackberry 7750 $185
Blackberry 7780 $190
Blackberry 850 $140
Blackberry 857 $135
Blackberry 950 $150
Blackberry 957 $155

PalmOne Treo 750 $180
PalmOne Treo 700 $170
PalmOne Treo 680 $160
PalmOne Treo 650 $150
PalmOne Treo 610 $140
PalmOne Treo 600 $130
PalmOne Treo 300 $120
Sidekick 3 $180
Sidekick 2 $150
Sidekick 1 $120
Nextel i760 $80
Nextel i836 $90
Nextel i850 $100
Nextel i880 $110
Nextel i930 $120

Sony Grand WEGA KDF-E60A20 60 in Rear-Projection LCD TV
Sony Grand WEGA KDF-E55A20 55 in LCD Rear-Projection TV
Sony Grand WEGA KDF-E55A20 55 in LCD Rear-Projection TV
Sharp Aquos LC-45GX6U 45 in Flat Panel LCD TV $400
Sharp Aquos LC-37D7U 37 in Flat Panel LCD TV $390
Sharp Aquos LC-45GD7U 45 in Flat Panel LCD TV $450
Samsung LN-R408D 40 in Flat Panel LCD TV $400
Sony BRAVIA XBR KDL-V32XBR1 32 in Flat Panel LCD TV $350
Sony Wega KLV-S32A10 32 in Flat Panel LCD TV $300
Sony BRAVIA KLV-S26A10 26 in Flat Panel LCD TV $280
Sharp Aquos LC-26DA5U 26 in' LCD TV $290
Magnavox 15MF605T 15 in Flat Panel LCD TV $250
Samsung LN-R268W 26 in Flat Panel LCD TV $270
Sharp Aquos LC-20S4U 20 in Flat Panel LCD TV $260



Re:It's incredible

Posted by: Anonymous Coward on March 05, 2006 05:24 PM
this is so the world of yesterday, Everybody has been doing their own propriatary closed solution.


Linux Compatibility Survey for Mobile Phones

Posted by: Administrator on March 07, 2006 09:21 PM
TuxMobil offers a <a href="" title="">Linux compatibility survey for mobile (cellular) phones</a>. The survey has just exceeded 300 entries.


It's incredible

Posted by: Administrator on March 03, 2006 06:22 PM
How come that 15 years after the first Psions made it to market, there is still no standard to exchange contacts, calendar entries and todo items ?


suse linux

Posted by: Administrator on March 03, 2006 01:23 AM
as far as prosessing capabilities and processing areas of suse 9.0<nobr> <wbr></nobr>,5 cd version is considered. how much the live DVD of suse linux 10 is useful?
is the live DVD pays more than setup of 5 cd pack of suse and how?


This story has been archived. Comments can no longer be posted.

Tableless layout Validate XHTML 1.0 Strict Validate CSS Powered by Xaraya