Synchronize Sony Ericsson K610i with Mozilla Sunbird on Ubuntu

I just wanted to write a quick howto, since it took me a while to dig this information up on the Net. The phone is a Sony Ericsson K610i and it’s being synced with Mozilla Sunbird 0.5 calendar via Bluetooth. The calendar is stored locally as an ics type calendar, but this really ought to work with calendar files stored on webdav as well. Apart from the phone and Sunbird, of course, you also need to install the following packages:

  • multisync
  • multisync-tools
  • bluez-utils
  • opensync-plugin-sunbird
  • opensync-plugin-irmc

Install them by writing:

sudo apt-get install multisync multisync-tools bluez-utils opensync-plugin-sunbird opensync-plugin-irmc

They first task is to make “msynctool” ready. Create a sync group and add two members by executing the following commands:

msynctool --addgroup SyncMe
msynctool --addmember SyncMe sunbird-sync
msynctool --addmember SyncMe irmc-sync

Now you need to discover your phone and then configure the sync. Execute:

hcitool scan

to see your phone’s MAC (remember to enable Bluetooth first….). Next do:

sdptool browse writeyourmachere

and look for the “Service Name: OBEX IrMC Sync Server” section. Note the channel number, on my phone it’s channel 8. Now you need to configure the synchronization itself. First Sunbird… write:

msynctool --configure SyncMe 1

which will open the cofinguration for the sunbird plugin in nano or vi or some other editor. Make it look like this:

<config>
<file path=”/path/to/calendarfile.ics” />
</config>

Change the path to reflect your calendar of course. Next, do the same for the IrMC plugin:

msynctool --configure SyncMe 2

It should look like this:

<config>
<bluetooth_address>yourphonemachere</bluetooth_address>
<bluetooth_channel>yourchannelhere</bluetooth_channel>
<interface>0</interface>
<identifier></identifier>
</config>

That’s really it for the configuration. To do a sync between the phone and calendar write:

msynctool --sync SyncMe --filter-objtype note --filter-objtype contact --filter-objtype todo

Notice the –filter-objtype commands I’m using here. I’m excluding notes, contacts and todos from the synchronization. If I don’t the synchronization will hang at some point. Some people report that the don’t need to do that, while others do. You will just have to try. Several people report that the need to empty their phone calendar before the first sync, but that might not be necessary. That’s really it… and it works for me :-) Some people are using the syncml package (opensync-plugin-syncm) rather that the irmc package. Since this is supported by the SE phones, it should work. In practise it didn’t for me, but it might be worth a try. If your going to try it, simply install the syncml package and instead of adding irmc as the second member of the SyncMe group, add syncml:

msynctool --addmember SyncMe syncml-obex-client

The configuration of the second member should the be something like this:

<weddav username=”user” password=”password” url=”http://server.com/path/to/webdav2.ics”></weddav>

You can find the channel in a similar way as before, just look for “OBEX SyncML Client” instead.

If you want to configure the Sunbird plugin for a webdav calendar, you could try writing as the path:

Thanks to the following sites, and many other I can’t remember any more. Go there and look for resources if you need additional help:

  • http://en.opensuse.org/OpenSync/irmc-sync
  • http://www.opensync.org/browser/plugins/sunbird/README?rev=971
  • http://www.nabble.com/problem-while-syncing-with-a-k750i-t4544072.html

6 thoughts on “Synchronize Sony Ericsson K610i with Mozilla Sunbird on Ubuntu

  1. Great tutorial! exactly on needed details etc, however I get some error here:

    gena@Desktop:~$ msynctool –sync SyncMe –filter-objtype note –filter-objtype contact –filter-objtype todo
    Synchronizing group “SyncMe”
    Member 1 of type sunbird-sync just connected
    Member 2 of type irmc-sync had an error while connecting: Broken Pipe
    Member 1 of type sunbird-sync just disconnected
    All clients have disconnected
    The sync failed: Unable to connect one of the members
    Error synchronizing: Unable to connect one of the members
    Pipe closed! Exiting.

    Any ideas whats causing it? browsing the phone, detecting its mac worked flawlessly just like you said…

  2. Hi Gena. Yeah, I get this a lot my self. Usually it’s a problem with the pairing of the devices. I often happens for me, if I’ve used either of the devices in another pairing. I sometimes use Windows XP under VMware for development, and if I give Windows access to the bluetooth interface, it’s almost certain I will get the same error as you describe, the next time I try to synchronize. The solution so far seems to be to delete the pairing on both the computer and the phone, and the re-pair the devices again.
    Sometimes, if a synchronization has failed, e.g. not terminated correctly, this will also happen. It usually helps to restart the phone, but it’s not enough to just disconnect the bluetooth connection.

    Hope this helps you.

    By the way… if you often get this problem after a synchronization has failed, because on of the members didn’t hang up, try auto resolving your conflicts. Sometimes it’s like the fail happens if the connection is open for to long, while you try to figure out what side of the conflict is the right one to use. In general the conflict messages is worthless anyway, so I’ve just set automatic resolve to use the newest entry.

  3. Hi Gronbaek,
    what Plugin would be needed for synchronizing with the Lightning Plugin for Mozilla Thunderbird? Also the Sunbird-Plugin? Would be nice to know…

    LG

  4. Hi Blahde

    I haven’t actually tried Lightning in a long time, but I’m guessing that you can use the sunbird plugin as well. As long as Lightning uses the same kind of file for storing the calendar as sunbird does. As I remember it, I used both Lightning and Sunbird on the same .ics file stored on a webdav server, so it should be no problem just using the sunbird plugin and configuration for Lightning as well.

    I have dropped sunbird in favor of Evolution, since I no longer have to maintain my calendar in Windows, which was my primary reason for using sunbird in the first place, so I can’t help you with testing the configuration. Let me know if it is wrong, and maybe I’ll try to make it work when I get some time.

  5. Hi there.
    Thank you for your tutorial. It worked well for me with Sunbird and (still) SE K750.
    I had to perform one extra step:
    Since Sunbird uses *.sdb (SQLite) to store the calendar, you need to publish the calendar to an *.ics file on your local machine. I used publish to: file:///var/www/html/calendar.ics and then reported this location to #1 configuration.

    Thank you again!

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