Sunday, October 21, 2018

upgraded Arnold's paddle


When I saw that Arnold was heading to the CAO for the work party, I reached out. Asked if he wanted to upgrade his NANJING IDEA GoToStar hand controller. He had been thinking the same thing.

I packed my Vixen Super Polaris mount bag sans counterweights, Prolific USB-serial converter, and ASUS netbook computer. I pre-installed all the software bits including iOptron "downloader" firmware transfer program, the Chinese version of the GTS downloader, and my copy of the 2009 firmware binary .BIN file. Tried to access the English version of the old version 1.0 GoToStar downloader but Yahoo!Groups decided to be cranky.


Around dinner time Arnold brought in his mount kit from his trailer and asked where I wanted it. Ah, anywhere. That was a little odd. And then when I was available, he was nowhere to be found. He had gone to bed, leaving me to do that task. Huh. OK. I thought he might want to help and observe. Alas, I readied to apply the update.

I first connected my supercharged Vixen mount to all the iOptron gear and connected to the John Repeat Dance computer and drove the mount from SkyTools. All was well.

I unpacked Arnold's gear. An EQ mount I didn't recognise with GoToStar motors attached. Same white hand controller. Clearly strained cables with internal leads visible. Ugh. He did not have an AC adapter so I used mine. Connected my computer-control cable. Fired up his system. The HC showed version 060714. Right.

I tried the GoToStar downloader 1.0.1, Chinese version. No joy.

Tried the Yahoo!Groups again. Success. The file server was up and running. I downloaded the GoToStar downloader 1.0.1 Global in Anglais. No joy connecting to the hand controller.

Weird. The paddle said "Comm. with PC" and the PC app said transferring, wait, but nothing happened. The progress bar did not advance.

Not hopeful, I tried the iOptron downloader v2.0. Nothing.

I tried different serial port references. Initially COM6 and then COM5 and COM2. No joy.

To verify general comms were good overall, I fired up SkyTools. I could slew his mount. Strange. Discouraging. I packed everything up and prepared to relay the bad news.


When Arnold appeared late-morning, I gave him my report. He thanked me for trying. But I told him I had one more idea. Perhaps we could avoid serial-USB conversion.

I had Arnold help me with set up...

I used CAO GBO Dell laptop with its built-in standard serial COM port. Progress bar! It worked! Well. Partly.

We were able to install "08" version but NOT the "09" versions. Tried mine and the W from Yahoo to no avail. So, not ideal, but this gave him beep control, fixed the spelling of "electric," gave him three-star alignment. I also noted the new "upgrade firmware" from within the handset.

The firmware loader software must have been sensitive to the USB-serial chip...

Good enough, we agreed.

No comments: