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My cellphone is M300 by Samsung. I was wondering how to export contact information and/or photos from my cellphone to my laptop (Lenovo T400 Ubuntu 10.10) or a flash drive, on both hardware and software sides? Thanks and regards!

I found this Samsung 20-Pin Charging Data Cable,which seems to be specific for my cellphone. Is it the one that can transfer data to my computer from the cell phone? Must I use the particular cable for my cell phone? Is it possible to use the cable of a different cell phone?

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I first asked in electronics.SE and it got closed. Someone there suggested me to ask here instead, but now it got closed again. Where can I ask my question? Isn't that a cellphone is actually a computer, with some operating system and managing its hardware? – Tim Apr 12 '11 at 3:14
If you update your question to include how to interface it with your computer (ie, software to sync and download data), it will be considered on topic (include the operating system of your computer). You can then flag for a moderator to reopen the question. As of now the question is vague. – MaQleod Apr 12 '11 at 4:04
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Try using BitPim, which makes it easy to backup and restore contacts, pictures, ringtones, text messages, and more to CDMA phones. According to their compatibility matrix, it should work fine with your phone.

BitPim is included in the Ubuntu repositories. Just look for it in Synaptic or the Ubuntu Software Center, or run the following command on a terminal:

sudo apt-get install bitpim

To connect your phone to your computer, you can either use Bluetooth or a data cable. Unfortunately, your model of phone requires a specific data cable that connects its charger port to a USB connection. You can buy one from Samsung or Sprint, or places like eBay and other third-party online sellers. If you want to go the Bluetooth route, you can your laptop's internal Bluetooth card if it has one, or any USB Bluetooth dongle that Ubuntu supports.

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Thanks! How can I get the data out of my cellphone, hardware wise? My cellphone plan doesn't have internet access, so I am guessing a data cable from cellphone to computer, but there seems no port on the cellphone. – Tim Apr 12 '11 at 4:53
@Tim: Sorry, I should have addressed that. I'll add that information to my answer. – Patches Apr 12 '11 at 5:09
Thanks! I was wondering (1) what kind of data cable is that? What is it called? (2) Any more information (for example, links) about how to use laptop's internal Bluetooth card or USB Bluetooth dongle to trasmit data from cellphone to laptop? – Tim Apr 12 '11 at 5:17
@Tim do you have a USB charging cable? If so, that same cable should work fine connected to your computer to transfer data. I have a Samsung phone and this worked well. – nhinkle Apr 12 '11 at 5:21
@nhinkle: Thanks! I have a charging cable. At one end, it has an interface to plug into a power strip, which I guess is not able to plug into a USB port of my computer. – Tim Apr 12 '11 at 11:10

I will relay some of my experience as a cellular retail service technician here.

Futuredial makes a product called Cellebrite (the UME-36 if I recall correctly), which is used by cellular retailers to transfer contacts between phones. The unit can use Futuredial-provided USB or serial cables to allow phones to be connected to the unit.

The software on the Cellebrite will read and write contacts to just about any relatively recent phone in existence (we had cables to connect to phones as old as the Motorola StarTAC). Contacts are read by the Cellebrite software, held in its RAM, and then written to the destination phone. Alternatively the contacts can be exported to an SD card or to PC software over a separate USB connection.

Many of these Futuredial cables will work on the PC if you can find the proper drivers. There also was PC software available that used the same or similar cables and performed most of the same functions as the Cellebrite, namely ICSS and SN-RMS. Frequently we would use Futuredial cables on the ICSS and SN-RMS software without issues, these softwares were bundled with a myriad of cable drivers (and many were just USB-to-serial interfaces, we had COM ports up to the 130's). The Cellebrite was much faster and simpler in most instances so we preferred to use that. Only ICSS and SN-RMS would do firmware upgrades, so that is why we needed it.

It's entirely possible the cable you've posted is just a charging cable and doesn't have the hardware within the cable to enable contact transfer.

However, in most instances on older feature phones, including the M300 if I'm not mistaken, when you connect it to the PC, you aren't given access to anything like a mass-storage mode, or anything that would make sense to snag contacts, but either a USB-to-serial interface where you are expected to send AT commands (like an external modem) or a proprietary diagnostic mode meant for firmware upgrades. The protocols for contact transfer on these older phones are completely proprietary and likely unique to each manufacturer and that's where reverse engineering projects like BitPim are needed.

I can't remember if BitPim supports the M300 but if you can get the Futuredial cable for it, you can use it with BitPim.

If it's a Sprint phone, try calling a Sprint service center to see if they can copy the data for you on an SD card. If they have the Cellebrite machine, which all repair centers do, it's a trivial matter to perform.

Otherwise, if I'm not mistaken, the phone does Bluetooth contact and photo transfer so you might just get a Bluetooth dongle for your PC and see if you can do it that way.

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