Answers to common questions about QuickBits
QuickBits is compatible with Palm III, IIIc, IIIx, IIIe, IIIxe, V, Vx, VII, VIIx, m100, m125, m500, m505, IBM WorkPad, Handspring Visor, Visor Deluxe, Visor Prism, Visor Platinum, Visor Edge, Sony CLIÉ S320 and other PalmOS 3.0 or greater compatible handhelds.
QuickBits is NOT compatible with Sony CLIÉ N series (700, 710, 760, 770, 600, 610), T series (415) or HandEra 330 handhelds.
As with any benchmarking program, the numbers returned by QuickBits can be misleading if you don't understand what is being measured and how to interpret the results. The first thing to understand is that QuickBits does not speed up every operation of your handheld equally. For example, text drawing on some devices is over 6 times faster. On the other hand, database operations may be only 1.1 times faster. The amount of performance improvement bestowed on a given application is completely dependent on the mix of operations performed by that application. On top of this is the issue of one's perception of performance. Different people have different sensitivities to application speed. One person will say a given application is unresponsive while another says it is just fine. Some people can perceive a speed improvement of 10% while others won't notice the difference until it reaches 50% or more.
So, what does QuickBits measure? QuickBits quantitatively measures each speedup it implements as well as an important case the various speedups contribute to (Form Draw), then rolls up the results of tests which are common across devices into a single number called the QuickBits Index. Curious people can use these numbers to see how much these areas of their device's performance are improved by QuickBits, how these operations on their device compare to the same operations on other devices, and how other applications (e.g., Chrome, overclockers) impact the performance of the measured aspects of their device.
The qualitative measurement, how much performance improvement you perceive in the Palm applications you use, can't be measured by QuickBits. Some applications will be hugely improved by QuickBits (e.g., those that spend a lot of their time drawing text) but for others the improvement will be negligible. Some you will consider "plenty fast" already. This is why we provide a trial version. The bottom line is: after installing QuickBits, if you can feel improved performance in the day-to-day use of your Palm then buy it! Otherwise, save your money!
Due to the nature of the timers being used there will be slight variations from run to run and from device to device. However, large variations indicate something is impacting the performance of your device. Overclocking will cause large variations and some Hacks or applications which patch the OS can also impact baseline (and accelerated) performance.
There are two reasons for this. First, there isn't room to list every PalmOS compatible device. Second, we don't have access to all devices to acquire baseline measurements. So we decided to list the most popular (best selling) devices for comparison purposes. If you're curious about other devices, please come to our web site where we maintain a more comprehensive, up-to-date chart.
If you are running a utility like Chrome which alters the default foreground and background colors of text it slows your device down. This is because the PalmOS is slower at drawing colored text than black and white text. With QuickBits enabled, this penalty for colored text goes away. QuickBits draws colored text just as fast as it draws black and white, 5.8 times faster than PalmOS on a Palm IIIc.
Our online speed chart includes accelerated timing of various PalmOS compatible devices. Check it out.
Actually, QuickBits will cause your Palm to consume less power although it is difficult to measure exactly how much less. Unlike overclocking, which speeds up your CPU therefore causing it to consume more power, QuickBits makes PalmOS operations run more efficiently and take less time to complete without changing your CPU speed. The sooner they complete the sooner your Palm goes into its power saving mode, thus increasing battery life.
Short answer: Because it isn't measuring the things QuickBits speeds up.
Longer answer: Most benchmark programs are designed to measure raw execution speed. While QuickBits has some impact on raw speed by reducing memory wait states, its biggest performance gains come from the optimization of individual PalmOS operations. If your benchmark program doesn't measure these operations, it can't show you the benefits. QuickBits' built-in benchmarking facility specifically measures the operations it optimizes.
This is difficult to answer exhaustively. We are probably not even aware of all the programs out there for tweaking PalmOS compatible devices! Below are some popular ones we know of and how they relate to QuickBits.
We have made a few incremental fixes to QuickBits that take care of problems users have reported to us. Here's a summary of what fixes when into which version. Please try the latest version of QuickBits before reporting a problem.
5/19/01 - Version 1.1
10/25/00 - Version 1.0c
10/21/00 - Version 1.0b
Yes, there are a few. Here is a list of known problems and what to do about them:
BackdropEZ: If QuickBits (any version) and BackdropEZ are installed and both enabled then no text is displayed! This can be disconcerting and make it very difficult to do anything useful with your handheld. Workaround: We are investigating whether we can make these programs work together. In the meantime, either uninstall/disable BackdropEZ or disable QuickBits' BltDrawChars optimization.
Single user, multiple handhelds: If a person installs QuickBits on Palm-compatible device 'A', then syncs Palm-compatible device 'B' to the same computer and user account and attempts to install QuickBits on device 'B', device 'B' will crash after hotsyncing and must be reset (NOTE: to avoid data loss, press the reset button on back while holding down the page-up button). Any attempts to launch QuickBits on the second device will also cause the crash. Workaround: We will be releasing an update to QuickBits with a fix to this problem. In the meantime, we have developed a utility which you can run on device 'B' to clear out bogus QuickBits data that erroneously migrated from device 'A' via the shared user account. Please contact us for a copy of the utility if you are encountering this problem.
Sony Clie N710C: QuickBits is not compatible with the Clie N710C or its cousin the N700C. We are working on a fix and hope to make it available soon.
Chinese OS for Palm: QuickBits' Scr/Blt/DrawChars speedup hooks the same PalmOS API as Chinese OS for Palm. Depending on which utility hooks it last you'll either see fast text or proper Chinese text, but not both. The workaround is to disable the "Scr/Blt/DrawChars" speedup (its name varies depending on what PalmOS version your device is using). Unfortunately, this disables one of QuickBits most important speedups.
JOS-4: Same as for Chinese OS for Palm.
HandEra 330: When enabled, QuickBits' WinSaveBits speedup causes some trash to be displayed when menus and pop-up forms are used. We are looking into fixing this problem but in the meantime the workaround is to disable the WinSaveBits speedup.
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