[PythonCE] General questions

Christopher Fairbairn christopher at christec.co.nz
Sat Oct 20 22:27:38 CEST 2007

Hi Frédéric,

On 21/10/2007, at 3:56 AM, Frédéric Mantegazza wrote:
> 1) My first question is: how do you develop? Do you write python  
> scripts on
> your PC, and then download them to the PocketPC? Is it also  
> possible to
> edit the script on the PcoketPC? Is it possible to download the  
> scripts
> from Linux?

I typically develop on my desktop PC and transfer the scripts for  
testing to the PDA. Many of my scripts are usable on both platforms  
so I find it easier to test and debug on my desktop before  
transferring to the PDA.

Sometimes I use the remote-console project available from http:// 
ctypes-stuff.googlecode.com/svn/trunk/wince/remote-console/ to avoid  
the manual download step. Basically this allows you to run a script  
on your desktop (console.py) and it will give you the main PythonCE  
interpreter interface on your desktop PCs terminal window, executing  
the code directly on your PDA etc. It's useful for debugging small  
snippets of code.

A range of tools that allow you to create programs directly on your  
PDA are listed on the PythonCE wiki at http:// 

> 3) Which PocketPC do I need to run PythonCE? It is maybe more a  
> WindowsCE
> version issue, so which version?

The existing versions available for download from the Sourceforge  
downloads page (especially the python-smartphone release) should work  
on any Pocket PC 2003 or above device (i.e. 2003, 2003 Second  
Edition, Windows Mobile 5.0 or Windows Mobile 6 based). It should  
also work on Smartphone devices running a similar range of operating  
systems (in case you didn't know, Microsoft has two slightly  
different variants of it's PDA OS, one for Pocket PC PDAs, and  
another for Smartphone devices which lack a touch-screen).

The existing releases should also run on devices which use the raw  
Windows CE operating system without the Pocket PC extras and  
modifications. It should run on any ARM based Windows CE device  
running Windows CE .NET 4.20 or above.

You may also be able to find versions capable of running on older  
devices, but these will generally be older releases of Python.

A release with support for X86 based Windows CE devices among other  
features is coming soon.

> Is serial port availabe on all Pocket PC,
> or only (like for Palm) on old models?

The availability of a serial port is highly specific on the make/ 
model of Pocket PC device you purchase. There is no standard which  
specifies a serial port must be present, unlike some of the other  
features of Pocket PC devices which are requirements for OEMs to  
implement in order to call their device a Pocket PC.

 From my experience it is becoming harder to find devices with  
physical RS232 serial ports. Bluetooth seems to be much more  
universally available these days if using a bluetooth dongle or  
adapter for your display unit is an option.

Hope this helps,
Christopher Fairbairn

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