Topics

Updated Explore Scienttific PMC-Eight ASCOM Driver


hubbell_jerry@...
 

I am getting ready to release the new version of the Explore Scientific ASCOM Driver. I am pretty much done testing it and am working on creating the installation setup package.


The major update to the driver is the addition of the ASCOM PulseGuiding function. Along with this comes the ability to update the RA and DEC Sidereal Rate fraction from 0.00 to 1.00 in steps of 0.05 x Sidereal Rate. You can change this on the fly in the ASCOM Driver setup dialog box under the new Pulse Guiding tab.


I have also updated the set park position functionality and tested it so it should work better now. Finally I tweaked the tracking rates to make them as good as possible, the four rates available in the ASCOM driver (your client program controls the selected value) are Sidereal, Lunar, Solar, and King rates.


This is a long overdue update that I finally have had time to complete. I want to thank Michael Fulbright for his help in discussing the changes needed to implement the PulseGuiding function without having to update the firmware, and also for testing out the method in his Linux INDI driver implementation of the PMC-Eight controller.

I hope to get the driver posted for use by Tuesday, February 16th. I will be announcing the release on the Yahoo group, on the CloudyNights Vendor Announcements forum, and on the Explore Scientific USA Facebook page. I will be updating the SDK and also probably post the driver installation package separately. I will be posting the ASCOM driver installation in the files section here on the PMC-Eight Yahoo Group.

Thanks again for your patience in waiting for this update.

Have a great day and Clear Skies!

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.



Sunil Bhaskar Bhaskaran
 

Excellent Jerry :) .

Sunil



Sent with Mailtrack

On Fri, Feb 16, 2018 at 12:40 PM, hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight] <ESPMC-Eight@...> wrote:
 

I am getting ready to release the new version of the Explore Scientific ASCOM Driver. I am pretty much done testing it and am working on creating the installation setup package.


The major update to the driver is the addition of the ASCOM PulseGuiding function. Along with this comes the ability to update the RA and DEC Sidereal Rate fraction from 0.00 to 1.00 in steps of 0.05 x Sidereal Rate. You can change this on the fly in the ASCOM Driver setup dialog box under the new Pulse Guiding tab.


I have also updated the set park position functionality and tested it so it should work better now. Finally I tweaked the tracking rates to make them as good as possible, the four rates available in the ASCOM driver (your client program controls the selected value) are Sidereal, Lunar, Solar, and King rates.


This is a long overdue update that I finally have had time to complete. I want to thank Michael Fulbright for his help in discussing the changes needed to implement the PulseGuiding function without having to update the firmware, and also for testing out the method in his Linux INDI driver implementation of the PMC-Eight controller.

I hope to get the driver posted for use by Tuesday, February 16th. I will be announcing the release on the Yahoo group, on the CloudyNights Vendor Announcements forum, and on the Explore Scientific USA Facebook page. I will be updating the SDK and also probably post the driver installation package separately. I will be posting the ASCOM driver installation in the files section here on the PMC-Eight Yahoo Group.

Thanks again for your patience in waiting for this update.

Have a great day and Clear Skies!

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.




r_hoskin@...
 

Thanks, Jerry!

That 'Set Park' change... 
Is that re: the issue I had a while back, where ASCOM became confused about the park state of the mount? 

- Bob


hubbell_jerry@...
 

Hi Bob,

No, not exactly, but I did fix that issue also. When an initial connection is made to the box via wifi or serial, I read the position of each axis twice to see if the mount is currently moving and also what the position of the motors are in counts. From that I determine whether the mount is tracking, and whether it is in the predefined park position as stored in the ASCOM driver profile. If you use the POTH hub you can set the park position via the POTH setup window, there is a button for it there. 

So now you can set your park position anywhere you like, power the box down, and then come back later and power the box back up and it will reset the motor counts to where you parked at and it will be back to where you were before.

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


r_hoskin@...
 

Jerry,

I've downloaded the driver.   I have my 'dumb user' hat on, and the first thing I hit is that I don't know if I'm supposed to install this new driver on top of the old one, or whether I should perform some deinstall steps first (the driver is visible in programs and features).

A short readme with revision history, plus a few lines on steps the user should perform for new install vs update install would be a good addition to the .zip.

- Bob

 


hubbell_jerry@...
 

Hi Bob,

I apologize for not having complete documentation yet of the changes I have done or how to apply the driver. For ASCOM drivers, the installation takes care of uninstalling the previous version of the driver and then loading the new one.  One thing you might run into is because I have not digitally signed the driver with a certificate so you may get a warning about it, therefore it is important that you use the links I provide to download the driver.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


Robert Hoskin <r_hoskin@...>
 

Jerry,

I've installed the driver (twice...), and no issues so far moving the scope after the last one, in a quick drive-around.  (Win 7 Pro, SP1, ASCOM 6.3, wired)

Weather's been bad all month, so I'm not sure when I'll be able to take it outside for a spin.

I'm not sure if I've given you a useful test or not, but if nothing else, I can discover things a user might become confused about.  :-)

I've attached some screen shot exhibits.  Here's my sequence, and points of confusion.

1.  I wasn't sure about deinstall/install procedure (You clarified this already).
2.  Clicked your installer, agreed as needed, then finished. I do not recall seeing a deinstall dialog pop up - if it did, I missed it.
3.  Brought POTH up, went to setup, checked your version in the 'About' and concluded from the date embedded in your version number, that the deinstall must have failed and the old version was still in place.  Checked what I thought was the proper directory, saw old dates on files, checked permissions and concluded that I needed to try again.
4.  Second try, I installed 'As Administrator'.  This time I noticed a deinstall dialog as things proceeded.  

Not much changed.  I realize now (looking at pictures side by side) that the new radio buttons for wifi/wired show in both screen shots, so it looks like both installs had succeeded. I just expected the version number and file dates to be newer, and when they didn't, it threw me.  

I looked farther in settings after the second install and did find that my mount choice and lat/long/elevation had gone back to the defaults and needed to be reset. I do not know if that happened on the first time or not.

[David - when you installed, did your 'site information' config survive?]

I don't think you need much in the way of instructions on this.  Just a few lines to assure that they install with the process you want used, and to set the users expectations on what they will see.  That 'readme' that comes up after the install still has a bunch of ASCOM/vb stuff in it.  You might want to replace that with a bit of version history/what's new...

Hope this helps...

- Bob
 



From: "hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight]"
To: ESPMC-Eight@...
Sent: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 11:24 PM
Subject: [ESPMC-Eight] Re: Updated Explore Scienttific PMC-Eight ASCOM Driver

 
Hi Bob,

I apologize for not having complete documentation yet of the changes I have done or how to apply the driver. For ASCOM drivers, the installation takes care of uninstalling the previous version of the driver and then loading the new one.  One thing you might run into is because I have not digitally signed the driver with a certificate so you may get a warning about it, therefore it is important that you use the links I provide to download the driver.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.



hubbell_jerry@...
 

Hi Bob,

I am not sure what file dates you are looking at, but they definitely have changed to February 19, 2018. The main driver file is located at C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\ASCOM\Telescope and is the file ASCOM.ES_PMC8.Telescope.dll . The date stamp should be 02/19/2018 11:47am.  

The new driver dialogue box is a bit different than the original one in that it has a Pulse-Guiding tab, a pull-down menu for Mount Rate selection (Sidereal, Lunar, Solar, King), and the version code in the lower left hand corner of the box should be 20180219_0A.

I tried to upload a screenshot but Yahoo won't allow me to for some reason.

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


---In ESPMC-Eight@..., <r_hoskin@...> wrote :

Jerry,

I've installed the driver (twice...), and no issues so far moving the scope after the last one, in a quick drive-around.  (Win 7 Pro, SP1, ASCOM 6.3, wired)

Weather's been bad all month, so I'm not sure when I'll be able to take it outside for a spin.

I'm not sure if I've given you a useful test or not, but if nothing else, I can discover things a user might become confused about.  :-)

I've attached some screen shot exhibits.  Here's my sequence, and points of confusion.

1.  I wasn't sure about deinstall/install procedure (You clarified this already).
2.  Clicked your installer, agreed as needed, then finished. I do not recall seeing a deinstall dialog pop up - if it did, I missed it.
3.  Brought POTH up, went to setup, checked your version in the 'About' and concluded from the date embedded in your version number, that the deinstall must have failed and the old version was still in place.  Checked what I thought was the proper directory, saw old dates on files, checked permissions and concluded that I needed to try again.
4.  Second try, I installed 'As Administrator'.  This time I noticed a deinstall dialog as things proceeded.  

Not much changed.  I realize now (looking at pictures side by side) that the new radio buttons for wifi/wired show in both screen shots, so it looks like both installs had succeeded. I just expected the version number and file dates to be newer, and when they didn't, it threw me.  

I looked farther in settings after the second install and did find that my mount choice and lat/long/elevation had gone back to the defaults and needed to be reset. I do not know if that happened on the first time or not.

[David - when you installed, did your 'site information' config survive?]

I don't think you need much in the way of instructions on this.  Just a few lines to assure that they install with the process you want used, and to set the users expectations on what they will see.  That 'readme' that comes up after the install still has a bunch of ASCOM/vb stuff in it.  You might want to replace that with a bit of version history/what's new...

Hope this helps...

- Bob
 



From: "hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight]" <ESPMC-Eight@...>
To: ESPMC-Eight@...
Sent: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 11:24 PM
Subject: [ESPMC-Eight] Re: Updated Explore Scienttific PMC-Eight ASCOM Driver

 
Hi Bob,

I apologize for not having complete documentation yet of the changes I have done or how to apply the driver. For ASCOM drivers, the installation takes care of uninstalling the previous version of the driver and then loading the new one.  One thing you might run into is because I have not digitally signed the driver with a certificate so you may get a warning about it, therefore it is important that you use the links I provide to download the driver.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.



David Pickett
 

Bob, Jerry,

I ran ES_PMC8 Setup.exe the other day, but when I
checked ASCOM.ES_PMC8.TELESCOPE.dll just now, I
saw it had the old date stamp of 28 Mar 2017.
POTH.log is, however, stamped today.

I then ran the installer again, both normally and
as administrator. Nothing has changed. Sometimes
the installer tells me it is removing the old
files, sometimes not. When POTH was running as I
was running the installer, the installer offered
to stop POTH temporarily, but then stalled and had to be aborted.

I didnt check the option "install the source
files", as I didnt know what these are for.

Bob: What "About" panel are you referring to?
Nothing that I have done has wiped my site info
config, or the selection of ES in POTH setup.

Hope this is helpful.

David

At 00:18 23/02/2018, Robert Hoskin r_hoskin@... [ESPMC-Eight] wrote:


Jerry,

I've installed the driver (twice...), and no
issues so far moving the scope after the last
one, in a quick drive-around. (Win 7 Pro, SP1, ASCOM 6.3, wired)

Weather's been bad all month, so I'm not sure
when I'll be able to take it outside for a spin.

I'm not sure if I've given you a useful test or
not, but if nothing else, I can discover things
a user might become confused about. :-)

I've attached some screen shot exhibits. Here's
my sequence, and points of confusion.

1. I wasn't sure about deinstall/install
procedure (You clarified this already).
2. Clicked your installer, agreed as needed,
then finished. I do not recall seeing a
deinstall dialog pop up - if it did, I missed it.
3. Brought POTH up, went to setup, checked your
version in the 'About' and concluded from the
date embedded in your version number, that the
deinstall must have failed and the old version
was still in place. Checked what I thought was
the proper directory, saw old dates on files,
checked permissions and concluded that I needed to try again.
4. Second try, I installed 'As
Administrator'. This time I noticed a deinstall dialog as things proceeded.

Not much changed. I realize now (looking at
pictures side by side) that the new radio
buttons for wifi/wired show in both screen
shots, so it looks like both installs had
succeeded. I just expected the version number
and file dates to be newer, and when they didn't, it threw me.

I looked farther in settings after the second
install and did find that my mount choice and
lat/long/elevation had gone back to the defaults
and needed to be reset. I do not know if that
happened on the first time or not.

[David - when you installed, did your 'site information' config survive?]

I don't think you need much in the way of
instructions on this. Just a few lines to assure that they install with
Hi Bob,

I apologize for not having complete
documentation yet of the changes I have done or
how to apply the driver. For ASCOM drivers, the
installation takes care of uninstalling the
previous version of the driver and then loading
the new one. One thing you might run into is
because I have not digitally signed the driver
with a certificate so you may get a warning
about it, therefore it is important that you use
the links I provide to download the driver.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.



hubbell_jerry@...
 

Hi David,

That is strange that the .dll file did not update as it should have. You definitely cannot be running any ASCOM client software while the update is happening. You can try and rename the March 2017 version of the .dll file by appending OLD or some other such text to the filename and then run the installer again to see if it puts the new version of the file in the directory. I will test this again on my system here to verify that there isn't anything else going on with the installer.

I posted a screenshot of the updated ASCOM driver dialogue box so that you can see what the new one should look like. It is a noticeable difference.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


Robert Hoskin <r_hoskin@...>
 

Jerry,

Attached is a screen shot with just about everything on it, so you can see file dates, driver tabs, etc.  I don't have the scope attached for this, so ignore the missing COM port.

Put David's report together with mine, and whatever else is going on, the installer is only pretending to work, so something is going wrong and the error's getting buried. FWIW, I'm not seeing the driver installer create a log of any kind, anywhere, and I've looked.  I'm accustomed to seeing package vendors hide things down in Appdata, so I looked, and your Test app did write there - but not the driver.  I'm assuming that's the first red flag that something's wrong, because I would have expected a log...

[David, the About link is in the upper LH corner of the Driver's panel.]

- Bob



From: "hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight]" <ESPMC-Eight@...>
To: ESPMC-Eight@...
Sent: Friday, February 23, 2018 11:01 AM
Subject: Re: [ESPMC-Eight] Re: Updated Explore Scienttific PMC-Eight ASCOM Driver

 
Hi Bob,

I am not sure what file dates you are looking at, but they definitely have changed to February 19, 2018. The main driver file is located at C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\ASCOM\Telescope and is the file ASCOM.ES_PMC8.Telescope.dll . The date stamp should be 02/19/2018 11:47am.  

The new driver dialogue box is a bit different than the original one in that it has a Pulse-Guiding tab, a pull-down menu for Mount Rate selection (Sidereal, Lunar, Solar, King), and the version code in the lower left hand corner of the box should be 20180219_0A.

I tried to upload a screenshot but Yahoo won't allow me to for some reason.

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


---In ESPMC-Eight@..., wrote :

Jerry,

I've installed the driver (twice...), and no issues so far moving the scope after the last one, in a quick drive-around.  (Win 7 Pro, SP1, ASCOM 6.3, wired)

Weather's been bad all month, so I'm not sure when I'll be able to take it outside for a spin.

I'm not sure if I've given you a useful test or not, but if nothing else, I can discover things a user might become confused about.  :-)

I've attached some screen shot exhibits.  Here's my sequence, and points of confusion.

1.  I wasn't sure about deinstall/install procedure (You clarified this already).
2.  Clicked your installer, agreed as needed, then finished. I do not recall seeing a deinstall dialog pop up - if it did, I missed it.
3.  Brought POTH up, went to setup, checked your version in the 'About' and concluded from the date embedded in your version number, that the deinstall must have failed and the old version was still in place.  Checked what I thought was the proper directory, saw old dates on files, checked permissions and concluded that I needed to try again.
4.  Second try, I installed 'As Administrator'.  This time I noticed a deinstall dialog as things proceeded.  

Not much changed.  I realize now (looking at pictures side by side) that the new radio buttons for wifi/wired show in both screen shots, so it looks like both installs had succeeded. I just expected the version number and file dates to be newer, and when they didn't, it threw me.  

I looked farther in settings after the second install and did find that my mount choice and lat/long/elevation had gone back to the defaults and needed to be reset. I do not know if that happened on the first time or not.

[David - when you installed, did your 'site information' config survive?]

I don't think you need much in the way of instructions on this.  Just a few lines to assure that they install with the process you want used, and to set the users expectations on what they will see.  That 'readme' that comes up after the install still has a bunch of ASCOM/vb stuff in it.  You might want to replace that with a bit of version history/what's new...

Hope this helps...

- Bob
 



From: "hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight]"
To: ESPMC-Eight@...
Sent: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 11:24 PM
Subject: [ESPMC-Eight] Re: Updated Explore Scienttific PMC-Eight ASCOM Driver

 
Hi Bob,

I apologize for not having complete documentation yet of the changes I have done or how to apply the driver. For ASCOM drivers, the installation takes care of uninstalling the previous version of the driver and then loading the new one.  One thing you might run into is because I have not digitally signed the driver with a certificate so you may get a warning about it, therefore it is important that you use the links I provide to download the driver.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.





David Pickett
 

Jerry,

I renamed the .dll and ran the installer again
and, as suggested, I now have an updated dll. It
is late here and I have to get up early in the
morning, so must stop at this point; but I have
checked that Cartes du Ciel works, and I can now
see "enable serial port", etc, as on your uploaded screen shot.

Am I now good to go? (I will return to this after about 12 hours!)

Many thanks!

Best,

David

At 01:09 24/02/2018, hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight] wrote:


Hi David,

That is strange that the .dll file did not
update as it should have. You definitely cannot
be running any ASCOM client software while the
update is happening. You can try and rename the
March 2017 version of the .dll file by appending
OLD or some other such text to the filename and
then run the installer again to see if it puts
the new version of the file in the directory. I
will test this again on my system here to verify
that there isn't anything else going on with the installer.

I posted a screenshot of the updated ASCOM driver dialogue box so that you can see what the
new one should look like. It is a noticeable difference.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


Robert Hoskin <r_hoskin@...>
 

Jerry,

Just looking at permissions...
...\Common Files\ASCOM
- Directory owner is SYSTEM.
- TrustedInstaller, SYSTEM, CREATOR OWNER, Administrators all have either Full Control or Special that amounts to the same thing.    
- Users just have Read &.Execute

The ..\Common Files\ASCOM\Telescope directory is much the same.

I would have expected that an 'As Administrator' install would have gotten me around a permissions problem like that, but evidently not.  FWIW, 'I' am the owner of the directory where ES_PMC* Setup.exe currently resides.

I could loosen the ASCOM directory permissions or take ownership and perhaps get around this for myself, but that would only fix my problem (unless you want to make that an installation instruction step for others). 

Where do you want to go from here?

- Bob






From: "David Pickett yahoo@... [ESPMC-Eight]"
To: ESPMC-Eight@...
Sent: Friday, February 23, 2018 7:57 PM
Subject: Re: [ESPMC-Eight] Re: Updated Explore Scienttific PMC-Eight ASCOM Driver

 
Jerry,

I renamed the .dll and ran the installer again
and, as suggested, I now have an updated dll. It
is late here and I have to get up early in the
morning, so must stop at this point; but I have
checked that Cartes du Ciel works, and I can now
see "enable serial port", etc, as on your uploaded screen shot.

Am I now good to go? (I will return to this after about 12 hours!)

Many thanks!

Best,

David

At 01:09 24/02/2018, hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight] wrote:
>
>
>Hi David,
>
>That is strange that the .dll file did not
>update as it should have. You definitely cannot
>be running any ASCOM client software while the
>update is happening. You can try and rename the
>March 2017 version of the .dll file by appending
>OLD or some other such text to the filename and
>then run the installer again to see if it puts
>the new version of the file in the directory. I
>will test this again on my system here to verify
>that there isn't anything else going on with the installer.
>
>I posted a screenshot of the updated ASCOM
>driver dialogue box so that you can see what the
>new one should look like. It is a noticeable difference.
>
>Thanks
>
>Jerry Hubbell
>Director Electrical Engineering
>Explore Scientific, LLC.
>




hubbell_jerry@...
 

Hi Bob,

I am sorry you are having issues installing the updated driver. It really shouldn't be that complicated. I have tested the setup program on 3 different computers and didn't see the issue you are seeing. What version of Windows are you installing on? Did you have any problems that you recall when you first installed the previous version of the driver? The only thing I can suggest, if you haven't tried already is to completely uninstall the driver and then reinstall the old version to see if it works. Make sure when you uninstall it, that it removes it from the ASCOM/Telescope directory. If that works, then repeat those steps with the new version of the driver setup and see what if it works then. 

It's hard for me to troubleshoot and fix all the different variations of peoples computers. This installation setup was built with the same setup template I have used previously and has worked in the past.

If anyone else has had success, or failure, if you could weigh in on this, that might help us get to the bottom of it.

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


David Pickett
 

Jerry,

Because of the clouds, I am doing this from the comfort of inside my home...

You didnt answer my previous message, which indicated that I had seemed to be able to replace the dll file by renaming the old one and then reinstalling. I wonder if Bob has also had success with that trick. Please review my message, which was sent about 0154 this morning local time (UTC +1).

I just connected to PMC-8 by WIFI for the purpose of testing the new ASCOM driver. I did not need to remind POTH of my coordinates, and I can control the G-11 with Cartes du Ciel. It slews and returns after a long tour to the same point when told to park. I have forgotten what all the new functionality is, but looking at the preferences panel, there appear to be options for:

Enabling serial port
Enabling WIFI
Setting tracking rate
Setting data on pulse guiding

-- among other things.

Are ALL these (and those I have not listed) now working? In particular, can we change from serial port to WIFI without using the terminal programs?

Is there anything else I can test from the comfort of my lounge, that will demonstrate that PMC-8 is now working as expected with the updated ASCOM driver?

Best,

David


Robert Hoskin <r_hoskin@...>
 

Thanks, Jerry!

Well, managing installations on desktops you don't control is always a bit of a nail-biter.  I've written installers (from scratch), and dealt with lots by others over the years.  It's not fun, and about all you can do to keep out of trouble from local differences is play defensive.  For now, I think you should take a close look at that installer for prerequisite checking and error handling.  Both David and I are reporting installation errors and yet the installer kept going like nothing was wrong. 

This is on Win7 Pro SP1, 64-bit.

I just went to Programs and Features to do the delete, and lo and behold, Windows thinks I have BOTH drivers installed!  So the new installer did accomplish at least some registry work to add the entries for the new driver.  But it didn't do the file portion.

I used Programs and Features to remove the 1.11 driver.  It looks like that did work, as the entry for that is now gone.  In the ASCOM/Telescope directory, only ReadMe.htm was deleted.  All other files remain.  So it does look like the deinstaller tried to delete at least some files.  The 1.11 deinstall reported success.

Interestingly, the subsequent deinstall of the 1.0.2.2 driver via Programs & Features did work!  The old .dll is gone.

I then tried the installer, and the new driver appears to have installed successfully.  I have a new PMC8 .dll and if I get into POTH and its setup, can see the new tabs.  My local site info survived, but my mount choice did not - it went back to Losmandy.

I won't be able to attach the mount and do more right now, but it looks like we're past the install.

Thanks!

- Bob





From: "hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight]"
To: ESPMC-Eight@...
Sent: Saturday, February 24, 2018 11:58 AM
Subject: [ESPMC-Eight] Re: Updated Explore Scienttific PMC-Eight ASCOM Driver

 
Hi Bob,

I am sorry you are having issues installing the updated driver. It really shouldn't be that complicated. I have tested the setup program on 3 different computers and didn't see the issue you are seeing. What version of Windows are you installing on? Did you have any problems that you recall when you first installed the previous version of the driver? The only thing I can suggest, if you haven't tried already is to completely uninstall the driver and then reinstall the old version to see if it works. Make sure when you uninstall it, that it removes it from the ASCOM/Telescope directory. If that works, then repeat those steps with the new version of the driver setup and see what if it works then. 

It's hard for me to troubleshoot and fix all the different variations of peoples computers. This installation setup was built with the same setup template I have used previously and has worked in the past.

If anyone else has had success, or failure, if you could weigh in on this, that might help us get to the bottom of it.

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.




David Pickett
 

Correction:

I went to look at ASCOM Properties and the site info had changed to 36.18 / -94.1 which looks like Jerry's location! So I DID have to reinput my coordinates.

When I clicked here to report this, POTH disappeared and had to be killed in Task Manager before I could get it again! Very frustrating...

But the good news is that I can control the G-11 with both Cartes du Ciel and Stellarium: the slewing is as accurate as I can tell with the iPhone compass and the park position is repeatable, as judged by the bubble levels on the mount.

Best wishes,

David


hubbell_jerry@...
 

Hi David,

The selection for WiFi and Serial has always been there from day one, but it is not automatic as I talked about in a previous message. To automate that will take a bit more work, so it was not included in this release. You still need to follow the instructions in the Application Note to swap the communications channel between WiFi and Serial at the time being. All the other selections on the driver setup work (as far as I know and have tested). I would be most interested in getting feedback from those out there who requested the pulse-guiding function to make sure there aren't any little hidden problems that may have snuck through.  I don't believe that is the case, but you never know.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Directory Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


David Pickett
 

Thanks for the reply, Jerry.

I saw a screen shot of the original build of the
ASCOM panel and realised that this feature is
"prepared for" and unfunctional. I didnt have a
comparison when wrote. I was also
uncharacteristically reluctant to try it out and
see what happened, given your warning elsewhere
about having to send the box to CA if I get it
into a state from which I cannot recover it!

But, as I wrote earlier, I think that
functionality would be well worth the effort in writing the code.

I have two more questions:

1. How is the tracking rate set when using
Explore Stars? Is it set permanently to sidereal
rate? I presume that the functionality of ASCOM
is incorporated into the ES app. Can the ASCOM panel be used to over-ride this?

2. Also, I re-read the CN thread that Robert
referred to earlier and was thinking about the
G-11 stepper motors. These are not only different
from those on a standard G-11, but are coupled to
the worm differently. Does this preclude the
backlash problems that I read of frequently on the Losmandy group?

Best wishes,

David

At 18:56 25/02/2018, hubbell_jerry@... [ESPMC-Eight] wrote:


Hi David,

The selection for WiFi and Serial has always
been there from day one, but it is not automatic as I talked about in a previous message. To
automate that will take a bit more work, so it
was not included in this release. You still need
to follow the instructions in the Application
Note to swap the communications channel between
WiFi and Serial at the time being. All the other
selections on the driver setup work (as far as I
know and have tested). I would be most
interested in getting feedback from those out
there who requested the pulse-guiding function
to make sure there aren't any little hidden
problems that may have snuck through. I don't
believe that is the case, but you never know.

Thanks

Jerry Hubbell
Directory Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.


hubbell_jerry@...
 

Hi Bob,

Thanks for reporting back, I am pleased you got it sorted. One thing I didn't mention is that I am developing this driver using Visual Studio 2015 on Windows 10 with the latest .NET ASCOM driver template, so if the desire is to install this on Windows 7 then we are relying on the intrinsic backward compatibility of the development platform. We don't really have the time and resources to verify this and rely on our customers to basically do this at their own risk.

Typically it works out well, but may have a glitch or two. Windows 10 is the recommended system to run our mount controller but you may get satisfactory results using previous versions of windows. I would not recommend running our system on anything older than Windows 7 though.

Having said that. It is probably possible, using the old version of the ASCOM driver template (using Visual Studio 6) to use all the source code and recode the driver into the older platforms and compile the driver yourself.

Thanks again for your feedback

Jerry Hubbell
Director Electrical Engineering
Explore Scientific, LLC.