Users still wait for OS update from Dell

Frustrated Axim will have to wait a while longer for a CD-Rom update from Dell to fix a patch on their Windows Mobile 2003...

Axim users will have to wait a while longer for a CD-Rom update from Dell to fix a patch on their Windows Mobile 2003 handhelds.

Dell was supposed to make a patch available through its website on 30 July to correct performance problems stemming from faulty firmware shipped with Dell's Axim handhelds sold after the launch of Microsoft's Windows Mobile 2003 operating system on 23 June.

That patch never appeared, but some Axim users were able to find it on Dell's FTP (File Transfer Protocol) site on 30 July and fix their Axims.

Other Axim users who found the Rom update were unable to load the firmware because of a problem with the installer, the spokeswoman said.

Dell needed to fix the installer problem before shipping both the Rom update for Windows Mobile 2003 users and the operating system upgrade for Pocket PC 2002 users who purchased the upgrade.

In July, Dell said those CDs would ship in two to three weeks.

Dell will not make the Rom update available online, the spokeswoman said.

The Rom update was only supposed to fix the problems on the limited number of Axim handhelds shipped with Windows Mobile 2003, but several users were able to find a way to hack the patch to give themselves free upgrades from Pocket PC 2002 to Windows Mobile 2003.

The company pulled the Rom update from its FTP site after it discovered the software was being used to upgrade older Axims, and promised to make a patch available through a targeted download. That targeted download will not happen, and users will have to get either their Rom updates or operating system upgrades via CD, the spokeswoman said.

Windows Mobile 2003 users who successfully downloaded the Rom update will not need to install the CD version, although they will still receive it anyway because they are on Dell's distribution list.

Dell does not intend to go after Pocket PC 2002 users who managed to obtain free upgrades to Windows Mobile 2003 by hacking the Rom update, she said.

Tom Krazit writes for IDG News Service

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