Bluetooth Handling Comparison Between Macintosh & Linux

We are now entering a Bluetooth century, a periods where Bluetooth are exist right up next to large numbers of gadgets. From entry level mobile phones to portable multimedia player equipments & now become a standard kit for notebooks or PCs. It’s presents replacing an old IrDA (infra red) data transfer technology. Still remember when I used an old Micron laptop & Siemens SL45i which both are equipped with IrDA link to did some data exchanges. And both too still I keep just for my own personal collections museum box.

Although that Bluetooth is not a modern technology, but it still become a mystery for some Unix based OS (CMIIW). This “mystery” word referring to OS native (kernel) software incapability to handle communication through Bluetooth between devices. I’m not talking about Windows series on this since it already robust & mature. Windows makes Bluetooth complied with main aspects; 3rd party drivers availability, the GUI & ease of use. Especially for Bluetooth, I agree with “Plug & Play” terms in Windows, but most “Plug & Pray” in Linux. Be ready to feel sad when your OS can’t provide a Bluetooth communication to your gadget.

Anyway, the Bluetooth handling in Macintosh is very easy to setup. I did the test with Nokia mobile phone & made a file transfer from and to between my laptop & the phone, just like a Nokia PC Suite software in Windows. First of all, make sure that you have already activate the Bluetooth link on both devices. Next from right upper panel on your Mac, you can see the Bluetooth icon. Make a click on it & select Browse Device… menu.

A Browse Files window will show up & you have to pick one device you want to pair after automatically search process finished. Continued to click Browse button.

Next, it will show the content of the memory on a new Browsing… window. You can decide whether you want to get or send files from this point. Just for example, you may want to get a file from the memory, select one file & click Get… button.

Then, a small window will appear indicate the progress of the process.

When it finished out, the file will be stored on default Documents directory. Just open your Finder from kicker shortcut.

It seem that you have succeeded to make a handshake between your Mac & gadget via Bluetooth. The whole process are quite easy. Just couple of clicks on an intuitive interfaces & it’s done. This Tiger are able to handling Bluetooth devices without 3rd party device driver.

What about Linux? I got to test out Ubuntu 7.10 Live CD with this & here below is the result.

The GNOME interface within Ubuntu 7.10 are similar to Macintosh. You may see the Bluetooth icon on the right upper to the status panel. Select Browse Device… menu from the icon. Anyway, the device search process are succeeded to identify the mobile phone name.

After clicking the Continue button, it raises an error message box saying something about invalid location through OBEX protocol.

Nothing error message are listed in on /var/log/messages & I still confusing about this error. Curious about this, I tried on a Fedora 7 box & still find out that it even worst than Ubuntu 7.10. This Fedora only show 2 menu (Preferences & About) without Browse Device menu in Bluetooth applet kicker.

Finally, I discovered that there are 3rd party software called KBluetooth listed on for Fedora 7 KDE plug-in but still I failed to compiles the ball packages. Something about KIO (KDE Input Output) failed binding with Qt3 library system. Anyway, the 2 samples above signed that Linux still having a big homework with natively Bluetooth handshaking especially to the OBEX file transfer protocol services. The immature Bluetooth software on Linux restrict common users to gain more advantages playing Bluetooth on their gadgets. This is one of several aspect impacts to the terms that Linux is difficult to learn. Anyone agree with this?

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Eko Wahyudiharto
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  1. Blogger Radhey Singh said,

    Tuesday, July 28, 2015 5:40:00 PM

    nice blogs.
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