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Chapter 3. Managing Your BlackBerry from... > Connect Your Device to Your PC

9. Connect Your Device to Your PC

Connecting your device to your PC probably doesn't seem like it should require a task all its own, but the first time you do it there are a few hoops you must jump through. The main issue is detecting the proper type of connection and then generating a unique encryption key. These are one-time issues that you won't have to worry about again after you've successfully connected your device the first time. After the initial setup, connecting your device to your desktop PC involves nothing more than plugging the device in to the computer, usually via a USB cable.

Run the BlackBerry Desktop Manager on Your Desktop PC

From your desktop PC, click the Start button on the Windows taskbar to open the main Windows system menu. Then select All Programs, BlackBerry, Desktop Manager. The Desktop Manager application appears. If the Desktop Manager application prompts you for a user ID, domain, and password for a Microsoft Exchange account, enter them and click OK. Depending on your settings, it might also prompt you to select an Outlook user profile; select the user profile you normally use with Outlook and click OK.

9. Connect Your Device to Your PC


Some Windows systems might be configured differently, in which case their menus might not appear exactly as I've described them here. For example, some Windows configurations have the All Programs menu named Programs instead. You should still be able to follow along, even if your Windows configuration is a little different from what I describe.

Plug In Your Device

Connect your device to the PC using the USB cable that came with the device; some devices ship with multiple cables, in which case you can use either one. The smaller end of the cable plugs in to a port on the device, while the larger end can plug in to any available USB port on your desktop PC.


BlackBerry 7100 series devices use the USB connection to a desktop computer as a means of charging the device battery. As long as you have the BlackBerry Desktop Manager installed, your device will automatically begin charging when you plug it in to your desktop PC as long as your computer is on. You can tell it is charging by looking for a small lightning bolt icon near or on top of the battery level indicator on the Home screen.

Turn On Your Device

Press the Power button to turn on your device. The Add/Remove Hardware window might pop up on your desktop PC, but you can ignore it.

Open the Connection Settings Window

For the BlackBerry Desktop Manager to connect to your device for the first time, you must allow it to detect the connection settings. On the BlackBerry Desktop Manager menu, click Options, followed by Connection Settings. The Connection Settings window appears.

Detect the Connection Settings

Click the Detect button on the Connection Settings window. The Connection Settings window should report that a USB device has been found, along with a PIN for the device. Click OK to accept the connection settings.


If you have password protection turned on for your device, you're prompted to enter the password on your desktop PC when you first turn on your device after connecting it to your PC. This is important because your device shouldn't be open to desktop synchronization without providing the password. If you haven't already secured your device with a password, see 6 Password-Protect Your Device.


PIN— Stands for personal identification number, which is a “number” up to eight alphanumeric characters long that uniquely identifies your BlackBerry device. Not only is your device's PIN used for configuration purposes, but it can also be used as a means of communication; you can send text messages directly to another BlackBerry device if you know its PIN. See 36 Send a PIN Message.

You are next prompted to assist in generating a new encryption key for the device. After clicking OK, the Generating New Key window appears.

Generate an Encryption Key

All you have to do to generate an encryption key is wiggle the mouse around for a few seconds—the fuel gauge in the Generating New Key window will increase as you continue to move the mouse. This random mouse motion is used as the basis for generating a unique encryption key. When the encryption key is finished generating, your device is successfully connected to your desktop PC.

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