07-12-2007, 04:30 AM
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Oderus , I'm sure we appreciate your advice on the use of Lookups but this isn't really the question. Lookups aren't possible when you are out of signal or in flight mode. It is also invaluable during DR situations.
I've spoken with many firms who liked being able to upload the GAL to the device without having to contaminate their own personal contacts with GAL entries. As you probably know, this was possible with BES 3.6 (with Desktop Manager and a Public Folder), hence firms like mBiztech found a market for products like mContacts when Contacts synchronisations went wireless. RIM's standard response on the matter has always been "what do you want to do that for" but then that's always the standard response if we have ever found missing functionality in their product. I think RIM will need to start listening to 'the market' if it doesn't want to find itself losing market share to Microsoft.
Anyway, back to the original point. If you want the GAL on a handheld and you don't want it in the users contacts folder, then a 3rd party product is your probably your best solution.
I haven't looked at Desktop Manager recently but would hope it's still possible to switch off wireless contacts sync and go back to how it was with BES 3.6 (GAL in a Public Folder).
Just remember the risks with the latter option. If the BlackBerry Synchronisation profile on the user's computer gets corrupted, deleted or they move to another machine, the GAL entries will get orphaned on the device and the next wired synchronisation (or wireless if this is enabled again) will dump everything in the handheld address book, back into the users contacts folder (including the entire GAL).
Just to give you something else to consider. We actually set Contacts synchronisation on the BES to uni-directional (Server to Handheld only). This means that users can perform Lookups and add entries to the handheld address book without them synchronising back to Outlook. It has it's pro's and con's. It means that they always need to use Outlook as their main contacts database, so they can't just add someone's details in their BlackBerry and it will sync back to Outlook. That said, we found that secretaries were often responsible for keeping their bosses contacts up to date, so this actually works for us, as they would just through a business card at the secretary, the secretary would enter it into the bosses outlook contacts and it wirelessly synchronises with the handheld. It also means that the user can perform lookups and add the frequently used GAL contacts to the BlackBerry without them synchronising back to Outlook.