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By Chris De Herrera 
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Windows CE and Pocket PC E-Mail FAQ
By Chris De Herrera, Copyright 1998-2001

 Version 1.22  Revised 11/18/2001

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One of the most common problems with using Windows CE and the Pocket PC within a corporate environment is the inability to access E-mail. This article describes a variety of different methods for accessing e-mail. If you find another method for e-mail, please e-mail me at Chris@Pocket PC FAQ.  This article includes information on how to access the following E-mail systems - Exchange, SMTP/POP3 WWW, MS Mail, Lotus Notes, and CC:Mail etc.

Built-in Applications

Outlook w/ ActiveSync

You can share e-mail that is compatible with Outlook via ActiveSync. This includes Exchange, Internet, etc. This method requires you to leave your desktop on and access it via ActiveSync using IrDA, USB, Ethernet, ras or modem. This method automatically converts your attachments.

World Wide Web

You can access e-mail via the web. This includes Exchange 5.0 or later and the Internet. In order to use Exchange, you must be using v5.0 or later and download the Windows CE client and configure Active Server Pages. The Internet provides a variety of free e-mail sqstems. I have a list on my ISP Settings FAQ. The attachments sent or received are not converted.


By using Pocket Inbox you can access e-mail via SMTP/POP3. Exchange 5.0 or later, Lotus Notes, AS/400 and your Internet Service Provider offers this access. I have a list of the parameters required to access ISP smtp/pop3 e-mail. Attachments are not converted to Pocket Word, excel or PowerPoint when received or sent.

Also, there is a program called nPOP which provides SMTP Authorization, POP before SMTP and allows the user to specify the ports for POP3 and SMTP.  It also provides the ability to download all the headers and then selectively download e-mail from your accounts.


The Handheld PC, Professional Edition supports IMAP4.  Exchange 5.5 or later supports this access.  This is the most complete level of access to Exchange - e-mail is stored on the server until you delete it.

Configuring Exchange

Microsoft has written 2 white papers on configuring Exchange for the Internet.  Windows CE PC Companions use Internet protocols to access Exchange.   You can read about this at the Mobile Enterprise E-Mail article on Microsoft's website. Also, Microsoft has the article Connecting Microsoft Exchange to the Internet and Tips for Securely Connecting Your Microsoft Exchange 5.5 Site to the Internet which will help as well. If you use multiple folders or public folders, Microsoft chose not to support multiple folders in the Handheld PC, Palm-size PC or Pocket PC. There is a 3rd party application that works with ActiveSync which makes the folders read only called Pocket Lookout

If you are using Exchange, you may have to use a different format to login to Exchange from your Handheld or Pocket PC. The format for IMAP4 is <Windows_NT_Domain>/<Windows_NT_account>/<Exchange_mailbox_alias> with Exchange 5.5.  See Microsoft KB article Q220905 for details.

3rd Party Applications

All in Sync!

All in Sync! from RiverRun Software allows users to sync to a specific PC running the agent software for Lotus Notes 4.5 or 4.6 and Groupwise 5.2 and 5.5..  You can select what information you want to sync including just copying every appointment from the server.  Also it offers automatic conflict resolution based on the rule you select.  You can sync over any TCP/IP connection including modem, Ethernet or wireless.

ASL Connect

ASL Connect provides the ability to synchronize directly with Lotus Domino Server (E-mail, Calendar, Address Book and To-Dos), 3rd Party Notes apps and your own Notes apps, any ODBC database including Oracle, DB/2. Sybase.  Additional management capabilities are available as well to assist with the deployment of Handheld PCs.

Synchronization with Exchange is now in beta.


Cadenza provides you with the ability to synchronize your E-mail, Calendar and Contacts and browse libraries or databases with Lotus Notes v 4.0 or greater, 4.5 required for Calendar Synchronization.  This program supports RAS as well as serial connections.


CompaionLink offers support to synchronize with Act 4.x/2000, Goldmine 5.0/5.5, Lotus Organizer 4.1/5.0/6.0, Telemagic 4.0+, Outlook 97/98/200/2001, Schedule + 7.x.  Note: You must use the electronic distribution at PocketGear or Handango to get the Windows CE version.

Citrix Winframe

Citrix Winframe allows you to access your e-mail from any system by controlling a virtual desktop PC remotely. You need to install Citrix Winframe on a PC. Then you can connect from your H/PC via any TCP/IP connection available, including modem, ras, Ethernet.   This method does not provide the ability to synchronize or transfer files to your H/PC. There is no P/PC support for this connection.

Harmony 99

Harmony 99 allows you to synchronize e-mail with Microsoft Outlook 97/98/2000, Lotus Notes 4.5/4.6/5.0,  Lotus Organizer 4.1/5.0/6.0, 97/GS, Symantec ACT! 3.05/4.0, NetManage Ecco Pro 4.0, and GoldMine 3.0/4.0(Standard Edition).  It also synchronizes your calendar, contacts and tasks.


With Ruksun's IMAP Force 2.0 Client you can access Exchange server v5.5 and other IMAP4 e-mail systems. This provides additional features like accessing and manipulating e-mail messages on the server, MIME, etc.


Puma's Intellisync version 4.0 offers e-mail synchronization to Microsoft Outlook 97/98/2000, Microsoft Exchange, and Lotus Notes 4.5/4.6. It also supports Personal Information Management (PIM) synchronization from Microsoft Outlook 97/98/2000, Microsoft Schedule+ 7.0/7.0a/7.5, Symantec ACT! 3.0.8/4.0/4.0.1/4.0.2/2000 Lotus Organizer 2.12*/97/GS, Lotus Organizer Premium Ed. 4.1, Lotus Organizer 5.0, Lotus Notes 4.5/4.6, Novell GroupWise 5.2/5.5/5.5.2, GoldMine 3.2/4.0, ON Technology Meeting Maker 5.0.3/5.5.2, SalesLogix 3.0, and ASCII import/export.  E-Mail for Groupwise is not supported on Windows CE.

Intellisync Anywhere

Puma's Intellisync Anywhere offers server based synchronization for multiple Windows CE clients with Exchange 5.0, 5.5 or Lotus Domino 4.5, 4.6, 5.0, 5.5.   It supports e-mail folders, contact folders for a more comprehensive synchronization solution.  It also allows for configuring rules on what to send to the Windows CE PC Companion.

Mail on the Run

River Run Software sells Mail on the Run which allows Windows CE users to access  the following e-mail systems: Novell GroupWise: Version 5.2, 5.5 (including European character set), Microsoft Exchange Server: Versions 4.0 and 5.x, Lotus Notes: Versions 4.0, 4.5x, and 4.6x, Lotus cc:Mail: Versions 2.x, 3.x, 6.x, 7.x, and 8.x, Microsoft Mail: Version 3.x  Requires you to use serial, dial up or wireless access to your network connected PC where the Mail on the Run server software is installed.  This method automatically converts your attachments.


Mailsorter offers the ability to sort e-mail automatically when it comes in into separate folders. It uses rules you created to decide where the e-mail should go.

PC Anywhere CE

You can access your e-mail from any system by controlling your desktop PC remotely. You need to install PC Anywhere 7.5 or later on your desktop or the PC Anywhere CE host. This can be done via any TCP/IP connection available, including modem, ras, Ethernet. You can cut and paste data into your H/PC (no PPC support) or copy the file to your synchronized files folder and receive it next time you use ActiveSync either remotely or locally.  PC Anywhere CE is available from Symantec.


SimpleCheck allows users to check multiple e-mail accounts. It offers the ability to read from APOP accounts as well as SMTP/POP3.  You'll need to use the Inbox to send e-mail though.


SyncData offers SyncExpress which supports the ability to synchronize your contacts and inbox with Outlook Express version 5.0, 5.01, 5.5 and 6.0.  It is compatible with the Handheld PC 2.0, 2.11 and the Palm-size PC 2.01, 2.11 and the Pocket PC.

Virtual Courier

Landware sells Virtual Courier which provides access to MS Mail, CC:Mail and Exchange.  You can use the serial cable or a modem connection to get your e-mail.  You can download address lists with the enhanced version.  This method automatically converts your attachments.

Windows Terminal Server Client

The Windows Terminal Server Client allows you to access your e-mail from any system by controlling a virtual desktop PC remotely. You need to install Windows NT Terminal Server on a PC. Then you can connect from your H/PC via any TCP/IP connection available, including modem, ras, Ethernet.   This method does not provide the ability to synchronize or transfer files to your H/PC.  The H/PC 2000 has the Terminal Server Client in rom.   There is no P/PC support for this connection.


As you can see, there is more than one way to connect to your e-mail. You need to decide which method is best for you given what your company will support.

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