Sunday, January 16, 2005


RAD development of the Pocket PC Password Manager

The Pocket PC version of my password manager is ready. AutoType is the only feature I have not implemented on the Pocket PC yet as I don't need it.

The clipboard integration works but I am unable to paste in password fields. The paste option is grayed out and Ctrl+V doesn't work either. Does anyone know how to work around this 'feature' of the Pocket PC?

I'm pretty happy with the way the code organization worked out. I put both the PC and Pocket PC solution files in the same directory and common source code in a sub directory. Platform specific files are in Platform\PC and Platform\PPC. I believe this setup is better than having two separate top level directories as it avoids one problem: VS.NET copies the file if you 'add existing' file from a directory outside the solution tree. But, if you add a file in the solution tree it includes the file. This behavior is not really a problem if you use version control as you can share the file on a source control level.

The really big time savior was the feature I didn't know about in VS.NET: you can copy  the controls on a form from a PC project to a PPC project. It copies all compatible properties like the name and size and ignores the ones that do not exist in .NET Compact Framework. Neat.

On my previous PPC projects I only developed some test drivers on the PC but did all the application work with a real device. It is faster on the H4150 than it was on a H3870, but developing everything on the PC is a lot faster. Porting only took a couple of hours so my lessons from this project are:

  • Know your platform and which features are not available

  • Design the GUI with the PPC in mind and the porting is easy

  • Develop, test and release the PC version before you port the PPC version

I will do some refactoring of my projects that I only have on .NET CF and post them as well. They may be less interesting from a technical point of view, but they are pretty useful (for me anyway):

  • poShoplist: a simple shopping list program. Implements a component that is missing on in .NET CF: a list box with check boxes

  • poSMS: Allows you to send/receive SMS messages via Bluetooth or a serial cable. Implements serial communication and Bluetooth support.

Download the poSecrets beta (includes PC and PPC version) and let me know what you think via the comments or the contact link.

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