What are the different Palm OS compatible file types?

Most Palm OS files that can be downloaded from the internet are divided into 2 types: compressed or uncompressed. Compressed files need to be decompressed by another program (eg. .zip or .tar files are extracted using WINZIP). Uncompressed files are ready to be used.

The downloaded files can either be an application file (with extension .prc) or a data file (with extensions .pdb.txt.cvs, etc.). Only .prc and .pdb files can be installed into the Palm OS device through “hotsync”.

Since .prc files are application files, they will appear as an application icon on the “Applications” screen after it is hotsync’ed. On the other hand, .pdb files will need their respective programs in order to be used (see below).

All other files, like .txt and .cvs will need to be converted into .pdb format before they can be hotsync’ed and used by the Palm OS device (see File Conversion).


Below is a list of commercially available Palm OS applications used by most of the medical resources listed this website. The “File Type” of each record in the database indicates which application that particular file is intended for. In order to use that file, you must have installed the appropriate application, for which a link and brief description is provided below.

AportisDoc (formerly known as Doc) is an application used to display text documents of any size. You can use it to read electronic books or documentation (or anything else).

BrainForest displays information on your handheld device or desktop computer using an intuitive Trees, Branches, and Leaves analogy – similar to the Outline function in Microsoft Word. It groups related ideas, action items, checklists, to-dos, internet URLs, email addresses, etc., together. Items can be rearranged via simple dragging of an item from one location to another. Trees may be copied and pasted. Show or hide any section. Keep track of teams and projects, recurring items, due dates and priorities, so that any project can be kept under control.

cbasPad is a small interpreter for a subset of the BASIC programming language that runs on the USR Pilot and 3Com PalmPilot line of handheld computers/organizers’s. Features include floating point support, including trig and log functions, playing sounds and morse code, simple graphics, and serial port support.

Flash! is a full-featured learning aid for the Pilot, based on the concept of flash cards. Its “learning” mode conforms to the latest learning research by quizzing you on a personal schedule that adapts to the difficulty you have learning each individual fact; in “quiz” mode you can evaluate your progress. Supports full on-pilot editing capabilities and import of databases from MemoPad; BrainForest and ThoughtMill (via memopad); and JTutor. Quiz yourself on the honor system or using multiple choice.

HanDBase allows you to create, view, and modify custom databases on your PalmPilot! Very powerful engine allows for multiple relational databases to be linked in several ways.

Image Viewer is used to view scrollable four-level grayscale images, pictures, maps or diagrams. Grayscale or black and white images up to approximately 640×480 can be viewed using a scrolling virtual screen.

JFile is a tabular-based database program that features up to 30 different databases, up to 20 fields per database, a ‘find’ procedure, forward and reverse sorting of data, sorting on seconday and tertiary sort fields, and filtering of records.

JTutor is a quiz type application. Whether for business, school, or personal learning, JTutor can help you study up on nearly any subject imaginable. Features multiple choice, true/false, and flash card modes for asking questions. Also retains the date and scores of last 5 attempts at each ‘quiz’. By a simple drag and drop operation, any question/answer text file can be converted easily into a .pdb file suitable for usage in JTutor.

List is a simple database. Modeled after the address book, it should be intuitive to use, its supposed to look just like every other pilot application.

MathPad is a tool for solving and storing mathematical equations in standard algebraic syntax. It works just like the standard MemoPad app, except that if you write down an equation and tap the Solve button, it computes the answer and fills it in for you.

MobileDB allows you to create, view, edit, and delete any table data on your PalmPilot Personal, Professional, and Palm III. Features include: store up to 20 databases to view or update Allows for up to 20 fields for each record Up to 200 characters per field Sort, filter, and search the database Record indicator for easy navigation Pop-up entry fields to expand each field into a memo pad-like view Single-handed navigation around the entire database using hard keys Windows MobileDB converter for HTML tables and comma-separated files Macintosh MobileDB converter for Filemaker and comma-separated files.

Pendragon Forms is a versatile form-based database program. It consists of three components. The Forms Manager is an Access database application (Microsoft Access is not required to use this program) that includes a Form Designer and some simple tools for viewing, managing and exporting data. The Forms conduit is a bridge between Forms on your desktop and Forms on your PalmPilot, and it runs during each HotSync. The Forms Palm OS Runtime is a program that runs on your PalmPilot and allows your PalmPilot to run your forms.

RichReader is a document reader with the ability to display richly formatted text from any word processor that can create Rich Text Format (RTF) files. It can also read plain documents (without formatting codes) stored in standard AportisDoc™ format. It features 5 different font styles: Normal, Bold, Italic, Bold Italic, Fixed; 3 different font sizes in proportional and fixed widths; solid underlining and dotted underlining; 3 styles of paragraph justification; “long word” wrapping; paragraph indenting; bookmarks; etc.

SynCalc from Synergy Solutions provides a unique replacement for the built in calculator. Not only does it do general algebraic format math, but it supports plugins and “shortcuts” (miniprograms) that make it an outstanding medical calculator. Version 1.5 is still in beta, but already supports easy export and import of shortcuts so that users can share their favorite calculators.

TealDoc is a full-featured reader for standard PalmPilot docs. It also supports imbedded TealPaint pictures, bookmarks, headers, and hyperlink buttons. Other features include changeable fonts, convenient forward and backward searches with advanced search options, adjustable display options, and multispeed forward and backward autoscroll.

TealInfo is a browser for TealInfo data “Folios” which are made up of interactive lists, tables, images, checkboxes, outlines, and popup windows of information; perfect or catalogs, reference tables or simple applications.