Recently I have been hearing this problem happening over and over again. It seems to target users who have some sort of contact sync setup whether it be BES, Gmail contact sync over BIS, or some other contact sync app like Google Sync. When it happened to me I found that the simple contact book reset and reload over BES worked fine. Another friend of mine had the issue with the new BIS contact sync with Gmail and this solution worked for them.
It turns out that there is a third category of users who just have totally screwed up contact lists on their BlackBerry. They will have a second contact list show up in Address Book->Options usually called UNKNOWN or a duplicate Desktop. If you look at that same device from Desktop Manager in the advanced backup view you will see two contact databases: Address Book & Address Book – All. If you try to sync with outlook or get the contacts off the device any other way you will find that it will not sync your actual address book since your BlackBerry stupidly puts all the contacts in Address Book – All.
With a little research I found that this is actually a KNOWN issue with RIM and they have a couple of workarounds in these two Knowledge base articles:
- How to merge Desktop or Unknown contact list databases on the BlackBerry smartphone using the BlackBerry Desktop Manager
- Duplicate desktop or unknown services are found in calendar or contact list options
The problem I ran into is that all of the proposed workarounds listed below did not work…
- Resending service books or deleting duplicate service books - Failed
- Reset the calendar and contact list and have it reload from the BES – Not an option for those who do not have a BES
- Backup the device, Wipe it, and reactivate it on the BES – Did not work right and reloaded the Address Book – All
- Use a test BlackBerry to delete all data and reload using a nifty method mixed with exporting the contacts to a file and reloading them. It failed miserably and requires a second device.
SOOOO…. My friend and I decided to get a bit creative and modify the steps in this Knowledgebase article.
- We did a backup of the whole device using desktop manager
- We then opened up the backup in desktop manager in the advanced restore mode and deleted ALL the databases from the backup EXCEPT for Address Book – All.
- We then downloaded the free ABC Amber BlackBerry editor which lets you edit BlackBerry backup IPD files
- Then we opened the IPD backup we created earlier in ABC Amber BlackBerry Editor and saved it as another IPD file. For some reason this new file puts the contacts in the correct Address Book database instead of Address Book – All.
- We then did a selective restore of that address book to our BlackBerry from that newly saved IPD file
And IT WORKED! We still have a second Address Book – All but that could easily be fixed by wiping and reloading the BlackBerry. Let us know if this helps!