Crackberry Blues
February 16, 2008 11:28 AM   Subscribe

I am a brand new Blackberry Curve owner with a very frustrating problem. I don't have MS Outlook (or MS Office) so I can't sync my address book. I would really like to be able to edit and back up my address book on my PC but I have found NOTHING to help me with this quest. I am not able to spend a ton of money for software I will only use for this purpose (the phone cost enough, TYVM), so it should be "cheap-as-free" whatever it is.

FWIW, I have Vista installed on my PC, and use Firefox and Google for most things.
Also, if anyone has any other information, recommendations, cool sites or downloads they recommend for novice Crackberry addicts like myself please feel free to post them!
posted by evilcupcakes to Technology (10 answers total)
a quick google search for "manage blackberry contacts without outlook" returns alot.
posted by fumbducker at 11:46 AM on February 16, 2008

Response by poster: Hm, well most of what I see when I run that search (and similar searches I ran before asking this question) refers to some Italian software you can buy (site not in English?) and how to export your contacts to a CSV file, which sadly won't work for me since I don't have Excel :(
posted by evilcupcakes at 12:29 PM on February 16, 2008

If you go into your blackberry desktop manager, click on the "Synchronize" button. Choose the "configuration" tab. Then click the "configure sync" button. Choose which apps you want to sync, and select the "Choose..." button on the right hand side.

You should be given an option to use an ASCII Importer/Exporter, which would allow you to import/export from a text file -- any spreadsheet program will export and import CSV files. It's not an excel thing, so you can use google spreadsheet or something like that.

It also gives me the option to use Yahoo!, but I have no idea how that might work, since I don't use Yahoo.
posted by toomuchpete at 12:55 PM on February 16, 2008

which sadly won't work for me since I don't have Excel :(

What's that got to do with the price of bread? csv is plain text, nothing to do with excel - any text editor or spreadsheet package can open CSVs. Try Open Office or an excel reader if you want it in 'spreadsheet' format.
posted by missmagenta at 12:59 PM on February 16, 2008

CSV stands for "comma separated values" and it's a very old (certainly much older than Excel) standard for representing arbitrary columnar data in text format.

You can open a CSV file with any text editor (Notepad and Wordpad work fine) and basically make sense of what you see. In Windows, right-click the file and select Open With...

In any case, you probably wouldn't even be opening the CSV file - just using it as an intermediate container for address book info on its way out of the Blackberry and into something else.
posted by flabdablet at 3:41 PM on February 16, 2008

fumbducker, my Google search for "manage blackberry contacts without outlook" returned only this AskMe question :-)

However, a bit of poking around through the results of this search turned up this procedure, which might be useful.
posted by flabdablet at 3:50 PM on February 16, 2008

And it seems that Male Answer Syndrome has made me miss the fact that toomuchpete already gave you that same solution, with less fluff. Sorry 'bout that.
posted by flabdablet at 3:52 PM on February 16, 2008

Best answer: Also, you can use Outlook Express rather than Outlook which most likely *is* on your 'puter.
posted by NailsTheCat at 8:47 PM on February 16, 2008 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Also, you can use Outlook Express rather than Outlook which most likely *is* on your 'puter.

Ah HA! Sure enough, even though I had been looking for it and couldn't find it I do INDEED have Outlook Express and it synced up nicely! Thank you so much, I didn't relish going through a CSV by hand, my address book is rather sizable.

posted by evilcupcakes at 3:59 PM on February 17, 2008

If you already use google calender, you can set it up to automatically sync with that using google's application called Sync - instructions here:

I am on an Enterprise Server and gSync still works so that my BB has the same as my Outlook has the same as my google
posted by ijoyner at 10:40 AM on February 18, 2008

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