Cingular 3125 Customization Tips

Cingular 3125

My wife got a Cingular 3125 ( review) Friday after Thanksgiving. It’s a cool phone and very practical for people who “just want a phone” with long battery operation that can sync with their desktop Outlook contacts and calendar, especially if they don’t have (or have gotten over) Blackberry-envy.The 3125 is the first flip phone running Windows Mobile 5.0. It’s made by HTC in Taiwan, which has a number of phones with Linux projects on, but not yet this one, known as the “StarTrek”.

The following are customization tips. A lot of it is general Windows Mobile 5 topics rather than 3125-specific. None of it is a big deal. It’s just a new customer sitting down with the phone and saying “Could you find a way to…,” again and again at each turn for an hour, to someone who says “Maybe, let’s see…,” until a dog has been turned into a kitten.

Two useful forums for howto information are:



  • How to use Activesync to put files onto the phone or to manipulate files on the phone:
    Start Activesync (comes on a CD with the phone; installs to a Windows PC) by connecting the phone, wait until it finishes synchronizing, click on “Explore Device” -> navigate around in the Windows Explorer that opens up and drag from the PC desktop to the phone directory as needed.
  • Clutter reduction: Using Activesync, create an “other” folder in \device\Windows\Start Up and then drag into it all the other programs besides Calendar, Contacts, Settings, Win Media Player, Communications, a few others, reducing 3+ screens of icons to 1 screen.
  • How to get rid of the promotion of Xpress Mail on the home screen: Settings -> home screen background: pick “Windows Default” or “Windows Simple.” All the screens that start with “Cingular…” have the promotion.
  • How to customize the home screen wallpaper: In GIMP on Linux or Photoshop on Windows, make a 320×240 pixel JPG file, use Activesync to put it onto the root of the file system, then in Settings -> home screen background, select the file name.
  • “What happened? I can’t make a call/receive a call”: If the home screen says “Phone is off,” go to Communications and click on the phone icon, which will have an “x” on it, to remove the “x”
  • “Registry editor” needed for some configuration hacks below: PHM Registry Editor: Google it, download it (as a .CAB file, I think), use Activesync to put it on the phone, use the phone “file manager” to select and run the .CAB to install it.
  • How to turn off start up and shutdown sounds: use PHM Registry Editor: HKLM -> software -> HTC -> startup -> WAV –> set to none; and HKLM -> software -> HTC -> shutdown -> WAV –> set to none
  • How to change the name of the phone that shows up in Activesync: use PHM Registry Editor on HKLM -> Ident -> “Values” -> “Name” -> change
  • How to get sounds: for custom rings, etc. .MP3 files that are placed into the “sounds” folder are supposed to be available for ringtones, but I found that “ringtones” in Settings also has access to sound files in the root directory. I also found there was no need to convert to .flac or .mp3 if you’re in a hurry and don’t care about the space savings; a .wav music file worked just great.
  • Browser short cuts: I put all the predefined links she wasn’t figuring on using into an “Other” folder and added instead:
    • // cell phone-oriented weather
    • google
    • PDX arrivals // Portland airport arrival schedule
  • How to delete one large set of contacts and put on another:
    • On the PC, copy Outlook.pst (the Outlook data file) to a save backup location in case of error. Outlook.pst is in Documents and Settings\\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook
    • Then, in Outlook, delete all contacts.
    • Now sync with the 3125, thereby deleting everything on the 3125.
    • Now move the new Outlook.pst file to the …\Microsoft\Outlook directory, overwriting the old file.
    • Now sync with the 3125, which will put all the new Outlook contacts onto the blank 3125.

    The same approach can be used with Schedule and Tasks. Seems like it should be possible to select all and delete in Contacts, but online searches just turned up people looking for ways to do it. Seems like it would be possible in Contacts -> menu -> 6 SIM manager, which allows you to select all and to delete, but all I could get it to do was to scroll rapidly through the entire contact list.

  • Quickest way to do sound file conversion: on Linux, use flac -s $in -o $out // $in and $out would be, for example, the wav to flac filenames
  • How to clear storage including contacts, schedule, email, music, photos, settings [think about it for a while before doing it, because that’s pretty much everything]: Start -> Accessories -> clear
  • How to do a soft reset: Hold down both soft keys + power
  • What are alternative browsers: Minimo (phone version of Firefox) might work. Opera Mini is great on the Motorola A780. A forum note suggested installing the version for the LG 225. [On 2006-11-28 Opera introduced Opera Mini 3.0; need to check it out and see if it’ll run on the 3125 WM5 environment.]

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