Fixing xWeather for PALM OS From Spontaneously Reseting Phone

xWeather is a nice little Palm OS weather app. It doesn’t look too flashy but it does it’s job well. I use it most days so I know how to dress or if I should take an umbrella with me.

Earlier this week it stopped working for me. Whenever I would try to update to the latest weather data xWeather would spontaneously reset my phone. I went to the site of the developer, Moxsi, only to find that they had shut down. They were nice enough to leave links to download the last version of their products but didn’t leave any support/troubleshooting information on their website. A quick Google search showed that I wasn’t the only person with this problem but it appeared that nobody had found a solution. Many people have started to use other apps but I didn’t like any of the others I tried (I tried 2 or 3 of them). I was clearly on my own but I had to see if I could solve this problem.

Considering that the app itself was working fine but the issue was isolated to updating data I could concentrate my efforts in that area. Clearly something had changed at the source of the data that was causing the issue so I looked at the advanced settings for one of the weather profiles I have set up (Menu->Options->Profile Manager, highlight a profile and tap the Advanced Settings button). The first setting in this box is called Weather Source. It is a drop down box that has 2 choices: NOAA or Yahoo. I changed my selection from NOAA to Yahoo and saved the options. Sure enough everything updated properly!

But I was still not satisfied. I preferred to use NOAA as my source. I continued looking for a solution knowing that if I couldn’t find one I could use Yahoo.

Going back into Advanced Settings I changed the Weather Source back to NOAA. I then noticed that the next field in the settings was called NOAA Station ID. A little Google searching pointed me to NCDC Locate Weather Station page. I did some research on this page and found a collection of stations to test with. I swapped in the station ID’s of several different weather stations and managed to narrow down the issue to it’s solution.

It appears that many of the weather station ID’s are 4 characters starting with the letter K. I noticed that every time one of these stations appeared in the list it appeared together with a station ID that omitted the K. For example the listing for Atlantic City, NJ says ACY/KACY. It turns out that when xWeather searches for a station in these areas it always uses the ID with the K in it. Removing the K (hence changing to the 3 character version of the weather station ID) enables xWeather to get weather data updates. Apparently the process xWeather is using to get weather station ID’s pulls a version of these ID’s that no longer works.

Anyway, here are the steps to fixing the issue:

  1. Go to the Profile Manager in xWeather (Menu->Options->Profile Manager).
  2. Tap the profile you want to change to highlight it.
  3. Tap the Advanced Settings button.
  4. In Advanced Settings tap the Modify button next to the Weather Station Id field.
  5. Remove the K at the beginning of the station ID.
  6. Tap the OK button.
  7. Back in the Advanced Options tap the OK button.
  8. Back in the Profile Manager tap the OK button.

The profile will automatically update with no spontaneous reset when exiting the Profile Manager. You are now able to update again.

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I have tried everything you suggested, and while it’s true that now my Treo doesn’t reset, it also doesn’t update the current weather! It updates the forecast, radar, & satellite, but no current conditions!

Andrew –

I didn’t notice this until after I saw your comment. It’s happening to me too. I use xWeather more for the forecast than the current conditions so it’s not a big deal to me. Still, it would be good to find a fix.

– Dave

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