Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Local Computer Connection Failure When Using ActiveSync

Not so long ago I have encountered strange problem with Windows Mobile device connectivity when using ActiveSync.

Here is long story cut short and the solution I came up with.

Server software was located on the Host1. Windows Mobile device was supposed to connect to that server software.

When device was cradled and connected to Host1's ActiveSync it was unable to open connection to server software. However, it could connect perfectly well to the same server software located on Host2. Strange?

It turned out that for local connections (connections to the host where ActiveSync is located) ActiveSync substitutes remote address device wants to connect to with It is loopback address.
Server software was listening on particular IP address (at that time this was by design).
I discovered this by using netstat command and connecting with Windows Mobile browser to local IIS web server.
The command I have used was: netstat -anbp tcp

Obvious fix: listen on (in .NET it is IpAddress.Any).
Any time when connection to local computer from cradled device fails - check if software you are connecting to listens on all IP addresses or is configured to listen on loopback ( too.


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