Download .PDB

Discussion of the version of HanDBase that runs on the iPhone and iPod touch devices. This includes the synchronization conduits as well.

Download .PDB

Postby Dlevymd1 » Wed Mar 10, 2010 10:25 am

Has anyone figured out a way to download a .PDB file from either a website (other than the DDH website) or as an email attachment to their iPhone using a cellular connection only (not WiFi)? Also, once downloaded, how can you move the .PDB file on the iPhone to where HandBase can use the downloaded .PBD file?
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby dhaupert » Wed Mar 10, 2010 10:54 am

Hi Dan,

You can easily create a link to download a database from any web page to HanDBase on the iPhone. This is done by having what would normally be a link that looks like this:
http://www.website.com/database.pdb

look like this instead:
handbase://www.website.com/database.pdb

By putting HanDBase at the beginning of the link instead of http, Mobile Safari and other web compatible applications (even the mail app) will call HanDBase to handle the file. At that time we download it and install to HanDBase.

As far as the mail program actually having an attachment and giving it to another program like HanDBase, that is not yet possible with the iPhone OS. There is supposedly mechanisms for this coming in the iPad version, but not sure if this will also propogate to the iPhone version of the OS. We'll see over time, but in the interim, any email would have to first consist of a database uploaded to a site and then a link provided to that database via email.

I know from previous posts how your facility handles passing data around via email- I'm not sure you could really pull that off yet on the iPhone. It's a shame, because the program is so capable on the iPhone, but with the email limitations (done by Apple in the name of security), it might not yet be plausible.
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby Dlevymd1 » Wed Mar 10, 2010 11:41 pm

When somebody emails me a .pdb file as an attachment and I receive it on my iPhone via webmail using the Sarfari browser, the "save as" link for that database does not end in ".PDB", therefore changing the http to handbase for that link does launch the Handbase program, but then Handbase doesn't recognize it as a .PDB file (even though it is).
Any suggestions, this is a crucial step for me.
Thanks!!!!!!
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby dhaupert » Thu Mar 11, 2010 11:09 am

Is the file extension HDB? If not, what is it?

I know we're looking for PDB. Is it possible they could rename the file before the process? I could easily make a modification in the next update to look for another format if it's common to see it in a different format.
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby Dlevymd1 » Thu Mar 11, 2010 12:08 pm

The URL for the "Save AS" Link that would open the .PDB file from my Montefiore Groupwise Web mail is:
https://gwwa01.montefiore.org/servlet/w ... .id=1&User.

Another example is the URL from your website (not using an iPhone) to download the Medical Spanish .PDB is:
http://www.ddhsoftware.com/gallery.html ... d=480&UID=

What should I try next to get an emailed .PDB file usable on my iPhone???
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby dhaupert » Thu Mar 11, 2010 2:34 pm

Thanks for the clarification. Indeed, that's part of why we have a special iPhone version of the site for downloading the databases- the link has to be changed and can't be a redirected link like you mentioned or safari or mail won't call our app with it. Unfortunately that means a very low level change on the mail system side for you to be able to do this.
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby Dlevymd1 » Thu Mar 11, 2010 3:53 pm

When I change "http" to "handbase" with the link, it does launch handbase on the iPhone, but then Handbase doesn't recognize it as a .PDB file (eventhough it is). So close yet so far!!!!! Is there any trick or 3rd party app to try at this piont. I simply need to be able to download a .PDB file "on-the-go" (with a cellular connection,not WiFi or tethered). There are many people counting on me to figure this out!!!
Think out of the box.
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby dhaupert » Thu Mar 11, 2010 8:25 pm

Hi Dan,

I looked at the code and there is nothing to check the link for a PDB extension. To verify that this is not the issue, I created this web page:

http://www.ddhsoftware.com/files/temphandbasedl.htm

If you browse there from your desktop and save the HTML source, you'll see that it links to a file called "Sell_On_eBay.htm" That file name is actually a HandBase PDB file. And clicking the link in that sample page on Mobile Safari will indeed launch and install the database to HanDBase.

In your case, I believe the reason that it won't work is that it is not really a true direct link to a file- it's a redirect. That is if you go to that link, the browser then redirects to a different link. This is done to hide the real link of a file often on web sites, and I believe is what you're seeing there as well. Those won't work in this because HanDBase needs the exact link to download, it's not a web browser that follows links within links and web sites and such, just a straight point to point download of the file. So I believe that is why it doesn't work.

As to a 3rd party solution I don't have any I can offer for iPhone- as you know each app is sandboxed from others, so that one app cannot access data from another app, so the chance of 3rd party solutions are very slim and unlikely!

On the server end, there may be a service that will take an attachment and redirect it to a web site so that a direct download could be done. But I believe you're operating within a HIPAA privacy compatible email solution and that is not likely an option. Here's a link discussing one such service, not sure it would even work, but if you can go outside the email system, worth a look:

http://www.sugarsync.com/blog/2010/02/2 ... ive-today/

sorry I don't have any better solutions for you. I'm hopeful that in the future Apple will change their policies and support of dealing with file attachments. If they don't we do plan on implementing a web based sync for working around this, but that may or may not be HIPAA complaint- we'll cross that bridge when we get to it!
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby Dlevymd1 » Fri Mar 12, 2010 11:00 am

Thank you!!!!! This Sugarsync thing looks good, I'm going to give it a try and post my results here. Their website states: "all data is then encrypted with 128-bit AES". I think that meets HIPAA's standards.
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Re: Download .PDB

Postby Dlevymd1 » Sat Mar 13, 2010 12:56 am

I set up my Sugarsync account and forwarded an email with a .pdb attachment and it did extract the attachment and place it in a folder. When I access that folder with my iPhone, then tap on the link for the .pdb, Safari says it "can not download". If I interrupt the download and change "http" to "handbase", Handbase launched and give the error message "Database received was not a HanDBase database."
What next??
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