How to get waypoints / routes in .gdb files to Garmin Mobile PC?

New member here. I think I've read every relevant post about using MapSource and Garmin Mobile PC, but for some reason I haven't got any smarter.

Using MapSource is essential for me, as Garmin Mobile PC is used on my MC, and getting from A to B is often a matter of creating the most scenic route.

Here's what I have :

Registered Garmin 2720 Streetpilot with defect USB port.
City Navigator NT+ Europe V8
City Navigator NT Europe 2008 Update DVD
City Navigator NT Europe 2010 Update DVD

These maps were all bought when the 2720 was working.

Garmin Mobile PC installed on a computer. GMPC bought without GPS.

I tried installing MapSource on the same computer Garmin Mobile PC is located on, but MapSource cannot detect any maps.

So, I have three questions:

1. What would it take to have MapSource working with Garmin Mobile PC?
2. I have a large collection a waypoint / routes stored in .gdb files. Any chance of getting these to GMPC?
3. What if I bought a second Garmin device and installed Mapsource on the same computer where GMPC is located, would I then be able to select GMPC as a device for transfer?

Sorry for the slightly misleading title

Thank you for your time,
The maps that come with Garmin Mobile PC are compiled and won't transfer to MapSource. However, even without a map you could open the gdb files in MapSource and transfer the waypoints and routes to Mobile PC.

The first time you want MapSource to see Mobile PC, you must have both programs open at the same time. After that, MapSource will have Mobile PC as a location to transfer items to /from regardless of whether Mobile PC is running.

Buying a new Garmin device does not guarantee you will get maps for your MapSource program. If a free update is available for the GPS device, the download can be installed in MapSource though.

What GPS device are you using with Mobile PC?

Attached Images
When you purchased the update DVDs for your 2720, didn't you get MapSource and maps for your computer. I know I haven't done that since the Street Pilot III (not USB) but that is what I remember. You had to use MapSource with the DVDs to compile the maps for the GPS. In my case, transfer to a special Garmin card.

Did you register your updates with MyGarmin? You may be able to unlock those maps (if you have them on the computer) using the Garmin Online unlocker tool. Make sure you have the latest version of MapSource.

Hi Terry

I'm using the GLOBALSAT BU-353. As I'm using the system on my MC it was a requirement that the GPS would be waterproof, and I don't think the Garmin's are.

I'm a bit out of luck with regards to maps.

City Navigator NT+ Europe V8 maps work, and I can get Mapsource up and running. From here I can transfer waypoints and routes.

The City Navigator NT Europe 2008 Update DVD is apparently broken, the
City Navigator NT Europe 2010 Update DVD works fine, but I cannot unlock it because the USB port on my 2720 does not work either, and as far as I can tell Mapsource offers only online unlocking, and online unlock requires your USB device to be connected.

So, I'm actually stuck with some pretty old maps.

Btw; The USB port on the 2720 stopped working a month after I bought the lifetime map update for it

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if I wanted to work with current maps in Mapsource I would have to get hold of another Garmin device, buy a lifetime map update for the device, create my routes, and then transfer them to Garmin Mobile PC?

Best Regards
Did you talk to Garmin about the USB issue? They might be willing to email you the code required to unlock you existing maps in MapSource if you explain the problem. I know they can do that as I just had a similar problem with transferring a new update to a computer running Win7. As the online unlock doesn't yet support Win7, they emailed me the appropriate files based on my registered Nuvis. It is certainly worth a try as you are entitled to them.

Otherwise, you are probably right. The easiest way to get updates is to buy a new Garmin PND.

Ken in Regina
Hi Brian,

Terry is being a little bit laid back on the unlock issue. If it were me, I would insist that they provide me with the 25 character unlock code either over the phone or by email. I would be polite but adamant. You have paid for your existing maps plus the lifetime updates for the StreetPilot. It makes no difference that the USB port is now non-functional. You are still entitled to use those maps in Mapsource.

Having said that, Garmin is usually very helpful in situations like this.

Have you checked your MyGarmin account? When I go into mine and select the myMaps tab and then click on Manage Maps and make sure the appropriate device is selected in the dropdown list (in this case, my Nuvi)it lists any available downloads from previous updates. If I scroll further down the page it lists "Installed Maps". For each installed map product for the selected device it lists, among other things, the 25 character unlock code for that product. In Mapsource I can use the map manager to enter the unlock code manually to unlock the maps. I also keep a copy of all my unlock codes in a text file on my computer, just in case.

If you don't have a MyGarmin account you should consider getting one and registering everything on it, now and in future. It's a lifesaver in many ways. In the meantime, do phone or email Garmin, explain the situation and ask them to provide you with the unlock codes for your products.

Ken, the manual unlock wizard (the thing that accepts the 25 digit code)does not appear to be in later versions of MapSource unless I am looking in the wrong place. Are you sure you are not working with MapSource 6.13.7 to use that code?

It is not the 25 character code they sent me but rather a gma file to put in a certain folder (for Win 7). Where this resides in XP, I don't know but suspect a correct entry in the registry would resolve it.

Ken in Regina
Works in every version up to, and including 6.16.03beta.

In Utilities > Map Product Manager > Unlock Region tab click on the product you want to manually unlock and click the "Add" button. In the popup window you can enter the 25 character unlock code.

In more recent versions it's even less intuitive than older versions, which weren't very intuitive to begin with. I wonder if the tech support people pay the developers for some of these dumba$$ user interface changes as a form of job security??? I can't think of any other explanation...

Got it now Ken, thanks. I looked at that but didn't realize what the Add button was for.

Ken in Regina
Yeah, it had me scratching my head, too. But I'm genetically compelled to push-it-and-find-out. Sometimes it has positive results.

Sometimes not so much .....


Thanks alot for your help and support.
I had the "Unlock Region" mistaken for being some thing that had nothing to do with unlocking the full map.

It seems to me that it is not possible to download the new map updates unless you have your device connected via the USB port.

Believe it or not, but I actually deleted my 2720 device on the my.garmin site, because I thought that I would never use it again. I have a faint hope that I can register it again when I get back home later today.

On a side note I have emailed Garmin support regarding the use of map updates for Garmin Mobile PC. As you probably know it is not possible to update maps on the non-gps version of Garmin Mobile PC.

I was told that it is possible to update maps if I registered the GPS version of Garmin Mobile PC (the GPS device), AND that I could use Mapsource with the GPS version of Garmin Mobile PC.

Can any of you verify this?

I would be willing to buy the GPS version of Garmin Mobile PC just for the sake of being able to use Mapsource without having to install another full mapset intended for another device (ie the 2720)

Best Regards
If you are asking whether the maps that ship with Mobile PC will be visible to MapSource, then no. It doesn't matter which version of Mobile PC you have. However, if you buy other locked maps, they can be unlocked to the GPS included with Mobile PC. MapSource can be used to move them to Mobile PC.

The one time or lifetime map update is available for Mobile PC if you have the version with a GPS. However we have heard those downloadable updates are not in a form you can use with MapSource, unlike your 2720 updates.

Ken in Regina
What Terry said.

One additional comment: Mapsource can be used with any version of Mobile PC for a variety of very useful things. You can use it to transfer waypoints, routes and tracks between Mobile PC and Mapsource, both directions. You can also use Mapsource to transfer maps to any version of Mobile PC as long as the maps are not maps that need unlocking. That would include Garmin products like Topo Canada, Metroguide Canada and the various Topo USA maps. It would also include the huge variety of free maps from such places as GPS File Depot and Open Streetmaps.

As Terry said, the only thing you cannot do with Mapsource for the software-only version of Mobile PC is transfer locked maps to it because there's no Garmin GPS device to unlock the maps to.

Just an update: Garmin support refuses to provide me with a way to download the updates, even though I have kindly insisted :-)
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