Blog Post

PocketMac Syncs Blackberry With Mac

Living as a Mac island in a sea of Windows machines at the office can sometimes be a challenge. Though Apple has made advances through simply enabling Mac OS X clients to attach to Windows networks, and mount shared file servers, third party devices are often the part of the ecosystem that goes forgotten – as Windows-oriented developers will sometimes overlook the Macintosh, assuming Mac users make up too small a part of the population to demand dedicated effort.

For too long, I thought my Blackberry, which I depend on for mobile e-mail, calendar, basic Web surfing, and address book functionality, was one of those devices that would never fully support the Mac. Living in parallel worlds, I had contacts and calendar in Microsoft Outlook on the Dell laptop, and simultaneously, a separate list of contacts in my Macintosh Address Book, and appointments in iCal. Updates on the Blackberry wouldn’t affect the Mac, and vice versa.

pocketmac_sync

This all changed with Blackberry’s adoption and free release of PocketMac. Now that I’ve discovered PocketMac, my two worlds have been united – with the added bonus of synchronizing the data via .Mac to multiple Macs.

Like the Palm Desktop years before it, PocketMac offers the option to synchronize personal data between your Macintosh and the Blackberry, primarily focused on your address book and calendar appointments. But PocketMac is more flexible, offering to synchronize with a variety of desktop apps – including Apple’s Mail and Microsoft Entourage to iCal and the Now suite.

After installation, connect the Blackberry to the Mac via standard USB cable, charging the device, and you can configure it to your .Mac account by entering your user name and password, select which applications you want to synchronize, and simply hit sync. (As seen below)

pocketmac_sync_data

Subsequent synchronizations will note differences between your local data and that of the mobile device, giving you the option to accept or decline the changes. In the below example, the Mac noted that the Blackberry had deleted a completed meeting. I had the option to restore it to the Blackberry, or delete it from the Mac. Having already sat through the meeting, and not wishing to repeat it, the Mac soon also had the appointment erased. (See below)

pocketmac_sync_deletion

This brief interruption didn’t stop the synchronization, by any means. After I had made my selection, PocketMac kept humming along, until all tasks were complete – from e-mail to contacts.

pocketmac_sync_contacts

Now, instead of two separate address books and parallel calendars, I have one universal data set, shared between my Blackberry, my Mac at home, my Mac at work, and the Dell laptop. Best of all, if you already own a Blackberry, PocketMac is a free download.

132 Responses to “PocketMac Syncs Blackberry With Mac”

  1. Hi,

    I was having the same problem as everyone above with numerous error messages. I followed everybody’s attempts and finally got it working. So what did i do?

    as mentioned above I went to entourage preferences and clicked all tabs in ‘sync services’ i then went back into the pocketmac and deselected the entourage tabs for contacts, address book etc and instead selected ical, address book contacts, sticky notes and now everything is working fine.

    if you have issues with it not working – perhaps you could try restarting the computer after you’ve clicked the ‘sync services’ in entourage.

    hope this helps and good luck!!

  2. PocketMac

    MAKING Pocketmacg WORK:

    Mine seems to work following a simple trick – set up everything as you want it then turn off the application. Entirely shut it off.

    Connect your Blackberry and THEN start the application – it worked fine for me this way.

  3. Kevin

    I’ve used this program to sync with my Blackberry Pearl as well as with my new Blackberry Curve 8310. Its worked perfectly FINE with both.

    If you use Microsoft products, use Microsoft Entourage; its like Outlook for Mac. There is a conduit that you have to get, but once you do, everything works great. Currently can only use version 2004 though (they don’t have a conduit for 2008 yet). MS Entourage works best because it can manage all of the pieces, rather than using iCal, Address Book, etc., that come with the Apple.

  4. Michael Hale

    See comment 85. Yes, I paid $39.95 for The Missing Sync for BlackBerry v1.0.3 from Mark/Space, but it works every time, and there are no apparent limits on note size as with PocketSync.

  5. Theresa K.

    I have not been able to get the software to work at all.

    At the end of every sync attempt I receive a PocketMac Sync Manager message box that reads, “There were warnings generated during the sync. Would you like to visit them now?”

    I click yes and the box reads, [12:13:15.781] Unable to connect to BlackBerry (error 1); skipping.

    I have tried uninstalling and reinstalling the software with the latest version from the web, I have tried syncing using my .mac account, and every time, I get the same message.

    Help!!

  6. Michael Hale

    I finally gave up on PocketSync after a whole bunch of emails back and forth to support and bought Missing Sync. It works perfectly, syncs everything to my 8830. I think Blackberry/RIM is marketing a defective product in PocketSync.

  7. MacDaddy

    Well, after the same frustrations I finally just set it to just sync my contacts and it seems to work. It appears that this is more of a driver issue. Why? Once I plug in my 8700 and then start the sync program the Blackberry says that there is not sufficient power. This was an indicator of a bad driver o the PC side. Interesting.

  8. Helikyler

    I found a way to send songs to the BB from Macbook:

    1. Go to the Media application in your Blackberry

    2. Open the Music icon

    3. Click the Blackberry button and choose “Receive Using Bluetooth”

    4. The Blackberry will now wait for you to use “Send File” from the Macbook Bluetooth icon in the top right corner of the screen to send files via Bluetooth. You will probably have to pair the devices first.

    It worked for me on the 8310 and I’m assuming the 8800 series is the same because I had the 8820 for a short while.

    Kyler

  9. I had trouble with Office 2008 for Mac and Pocket Mac synching with Entourage 2008 and my Blackberry 8700g.

    The support site told me that direct synching with Office/Entourage 2008 is not working yet, and they gave me this fix, and it worked:

    You can sync Office 2008 setting PocketMac to sync with iCal and Address Book. Next, go into Entourage Preferences, in the Entourage menu and turn on SyncServices.

    Worked for me! Good luck!

  10. I am tired of trying to get PocketMac Synchmanager to do its job – it’s unreliable, doesn’t synch he stuff it’s supposed to, synchs when it’s in the mood – I can never just assume that anything has been synched. I always have to go and double check to verify something has in fact synched – and no matter how many times I restart my Mac/open or close the applications, it just doesn’t do the job. I’ve even stopped trying to get it to synch my Calendar – the only reliable appointments book I have is my old A4 paper one. So much for smart phones and smart technology.

  11. i have the pocket mac software – and have tried to run it with my osx mac software – usinf a blacberry curve
    it has worked once or twice but i gave up because it keeps shooting bac this message:
    [11:41:19.003] Unable to connect to BlackBerry (error 1); skipping.
    i thin i am at the bottom of a lng list of those that have also tried and failed to make it work?? no.
    anyone have have the answer to skipping? (without a rope)

  12. I have an iMac and the Blackberry 8830. As a Mac user, I got this free software from Blackberry Research In Motion. It is supposed to syn with Microsoft Entourage.

    If you ever need technical support from Blackberry, forget it. It is impossible. After numerous calls to Verizon Wireless, they just forward you to Blackberry.

    On the Mac, “Task” items DO NOT SYNC a Blackberry. I get the message:

    [08:19:06.597] An unexpected error has occurred: Bad default category length.

    No one knows what this is or how to fix it. In fact, Task to not sync with the Apple IPhone either.

    Anyone have any suggestions how to fix this bug?

    I used to used Task categories quite..till now.

    Thanks,
    Barry

  13. MichaelRH

    PocketMac will not sync all memos from Mac Entourage 2008 to BB8830 World Edition. Everything else syncs okay (calendar, address book, tasks.) Why would PM skip a couple memos out of 20? Very frustrating. Previous Treo sync’ed perfectly.

  14. Fix for error below:

    “An unexpected error has occurred: Bad default category length”

    In the Address Book syncing options select the mysterious “No Category” under the Advanced Preferences.

    Good luck!

  15. I have been downloading PocketMac from Blacberry website, but each time I get a message ‘Mounting Failed’, hence I can’t install the software on my macbook. Any ideas why or how do I resolve this?

  16. Mark Mitchell

    Yea, PocketMac is lousy software. I’m seriously considering the iPhone. RIM/Blackberry please take note: you are driving away BBerry enthusiasts because your s/ware is not up to Apple standards. Fix it or lose marketshare. Many other companies have already realigned due to the iPhone.

    I am running:
    Mac OS X version 10.4.10
    PocketMac version 4.0.2.0b
    Blackberry 8300
    USB connection

    It will not sync even a simple Contacts list from Address Book. Constantly gives error: Unable to connect… and then it skips and ‘finishes’ the sync. Which means it does nothing.

    Tried restarts and clean starts and reinstalls and experts at TMobile. Just sloppy s/ware writing and testing and releasing on RIM’s part.
    WASTE MY TIME, LOSE MY BUSINESS. BYE.

  17. KNOWWARE

    Blackberry Curve
    NowContact 5.3.1
    Mac OSX 10.4.11

    I can successfully sync Now-Up-to-Date calendar file, but Now Contact generates

    An unexpected error has occurred: DesktopData::findMapUsing: no result found!

    Have uninstalled Pocket Mac; deleted all plist files; purged all data on Blackberry; reinstalled PocketMac (with or without Lotus notes support); tried launching PM first then connecting Blackberry; sync Contact alone /separate from syncing Contact/NowUpToDate/Email all together, to no avail.

    Have tried all of this on both a PowerBook G4 and now a PowerMac G5 — identical results.

    Spent two hours with Blackberry tech guy who basically walked through all of this with him — only difference was we used Terminal to look for two files that weren’t actually there.

    ** Maddening!!! **

  18. BLACKBERRY PEARL 8120 UNABLE TO SYNC WITH MACBOOK PRO USING POCKET MAC

    “Do everything in this order;

    1) Open PocketMac 4.0
    2) Plug in Pearl
    3) Sync”

    I have tried the following method numerous times now and I am still having problems syncing my Pearl with my Macbook, it looks as though it is syncing and then half way through the process it comes up with an error message stating:

    “There were warnings generated during the sync. Would you like to view them now?”

    Upon clicking “Yes” I am then presented with a further error message stating:

    “PocketMac SyncManager Warning(s)
    [02:25:56.851] Unable to connect to Blackberry
    (error 1); Skipping.”

    Can Anyone shed any light on this problem?

    Many thanks

  19. I have a Blackberry pearl 8100 and i would like to be able to connect to my eMac 10.3.9.
    I would like also to be able to transfer song from my itune to my blackberry.
    Can someone help me thanks.
    I am pretty new of this.

  20. The advice of Antiphonist (#43) worked for me–my sync still generated warnings, but what a relief. I have an eMac G4 running 10.3.9.

    If you are frustrated with PocketMac’s inability to recognize your Pearl, follow Antiphonist’s directions precisely.

  21. electronicpeter

    I agree, eventually I bought “the missing sync”. It worked for 14 days (or 30?) as i trial and I learned loving it. So after the trial date expired I was glad to buy it for 40$.

  22. Apple Annie

    It doesn’t “sync” so much as “copy” and “delete.” It makes multiple copies of appointments if I check sync calendars and if you don’t check a calendar or address group, thinking it will just leave those alone, it deletes them! Glad I didn’t pay for it. Palm got this down cold like what, 10 years ago now?

  23. electronicpeter

    I have a BlackBerry 8310 and the same experience as Leah. In my case most of my 500 Adresses have been duplicated. Most of them with a new empty private telephone number, or , if I have used more than one working number in addressbook, two entries without the second working number appeared in my blackberry. Same strange effect with iCal and birthday events. However, better than nothing to get it startet. However, after one year experience with a mac I will love to go back to good old windows – same problems, but more solutions :) At least, the sync of blackberry and outlook stuff etc will be better, or why do most large companies use blackberries and windows?