Vista is trouble, Adobe is da bomb; let’s just get that out of the way.

Some of you may remember when I was lamenting that my Palm had gone on the fritz months earlier and how I wanted to get something that would work the same way, but not only could I not find anything else that worked like a Palm (stupid smartphones), but there was a problem with Palm the company falling apart; I think they’ve finally found a buyer, though I have no idea what that means for the company overall.

Anyway, I ended up buying a Palm, the same as I have now, on eBay, had it break 10 days later, sent it back for repairs, got it back, and I feel like my world is fairly complete once again. That “fairly” is because I still had one overriding issue that was messing me up and driving me crazy; keep my first line in your mind because we’ll be back to that.

I’ve always had Adobe Reader for Palm, which is great because I get tons of PDF files and no time to read them, and it’s great being able to put them on the Palm for those times when I have long periods away from the computer, like on an airplane. Well, for whatever reason, it wouldn’t load onto the new Palm. It was freaking me out. For almost a month I kept trying to load it here and there, and it just wasn’t having it. It wouldn’t load when I first had the Palm either, but I thought after it broke that maybe there was a problem with the software.

As I said, I kept trying to get it to load, but it wasn’t having it. I would reset the Palm; nothing. I would load and unload this program called Hotsync, which is how you sync a Palm to a computer; nothing. I would download the program time after time, even though it was the same program, and I thought that one day it would just magically work; nothing. The program was on the computer just fine, with PDFs ready to load and others already on my Palm; what the hey?

Last Thursday, it finally hit me as to what the answer could possibly be, and this is where stupid Vista comes back into play, and actually Windows 7 follows this rule, but I don’t have that so I’m not going to call it stupid; yet anyway. One thing most of us who have ended up with this operating system learned is that Vista put files in a different place than where they resided on XP. I did a quick search for the file I was trying to load onto the program, knowing the extension was “.prc”, and I found it.

What I needed to know was what folder it was in, and I found it buried deep in a User file under my name, under Documents for some reason, then under Palm and finally in a folder called Installations. I looked at the properties for the folder, and I saw that it was set to “read only”.

I clicked that off, figuring that was the entire problem, and tried again; nope. But I knew I was on to something. I went into the properties again, this time to all the “users”. Under Security, they were me, Admin, and System; go figure, but that’s what was there. There were shaded out checkmarks for each name, which meant I couldn’t do anything with them, but thought the checkmarks meant that it was already set for me to use that folder. However, it wasn’t working. So I decided to click on Edit, which opened another menu, and then clicked on Add. The name “Everyone” came up, and I selected that. I gave that name approval to do everything in the folder, saved it, and closed every menu.

I went to sync the Palm, and everything worked perfectly. I’m a happy guy once more, with my PDF files and the like on my Palm, and I’m feeling pretty smart about it all. What made me think about it? I remembered my wife’s computer, which is on Windows 7, and when I was trying to load Mailwasher onto it. For some reason, it wouldn’t let me activate it, and I tried at least once a day for a week. That is, after the two week period that it lets one run the program before it decides it’s not going to play any longer until you update. I couldn’t get it to load, so I went online to see if anyone else had the problem previously, they had, and they talked about doing what I did as a potential fix, and afterwards it worked perfectly.

See, Vista and Windows 7 have put in a lot of protections up front to keep people who don’t know what they’re doing from messing things up. That’s why most people can’t see the extension on their files, which is moronic because that makes people click on some of the stupidest stuff, not knowing it’s not a program file, and that will mess up some computers here and there as well. The area I was in is one that’s not critical to the operation of a computer, and thus it makes no sense for it to have the same kind of security as every other folder. But I guess that would have been too complicated for Microsoft to do for us; sigh.

Anyway, if you find yourself trying to install something, or get something working that doesn’t seem to have any other fault, this is something you can think of trying out.

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