Author Topic: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me! Solved: dongle faulty.  (Read 15413 times)

Offline skygodtj

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #15 on: December 01, 2008, »
It seems that Access Denied/Com port unavailable is a common problem I was suffering also and apparently quite a few others are too.. It doesn't seem a driver problem as we are removing/reinstalling the drivers repeatedly..  But getting the same result..
I don't have a splitter to put inline.. My PICs are at Todds getting burned with new Hex dump but I have a new set of 2.0 usb cables to try..   

TJ
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Offline ThaiWay

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2008, »
When the last attempt (putting the Splitter after the Dongle) also failed to resolve the issue, Bill suggested in chat that I replace the Lynx RS485 chip.  It fixed the problem... for now.  My test sequence #2 ran for an hour with no error message in Vixen.  I then became adventurous and created a new more complex sequence - still only 4 channels - and it's been running continuously now for eight hours.

Wish me luck!

John
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Offline skygodtj

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2008, »
Was the RS485 available locally or internet/mail-order?  Just wondering if I can pick it up at Frys Electronics or similar spot to get them in hand quick...  Same goes for some 4467's/847's I think are bad..

teege
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Offline ThaiWay

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #18 on: December 02, 2008, »
TJ... I stole it from my second - as yet unbuilt - Lynx.  When I have time to make the trek I'll check if I can get a replacement at the local Bangkok electronics supermarket.

Good luck,

John
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Offline skygodtj

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #19 on: December 02, 2008, »
Thanks John, 'glad those two Lynx's worked out as part places :)

teege
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Offline ThaiWay

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #20 on: December 02, 2008, »
It seems my success was short-lived.  After shutting everything off last night and powering up just now, I got "A device attached..." message 2 times.  This is frustrating, as this Lynx is my first build of a controller and I've got 10 more to do.  But if I can't get beyond problems with the first...

John
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Offline RJ

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #21 on: December 02, 2008, »
John I am sorry you are having issues. I have seen this problem most often be a usb cable that for what ever reason they do not like. It took rick 3 to find one that worked. I recommend you get a very high quality, high speed v2 usb cable that is 6 to 10 ft long and try it.

RJ
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Offline wbuehler

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #22 on: December 02, 2008, »
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John I am sorry you are having issues. I have seen this problem most often be a usb cable that for what ever reason they do not like. It took rick 3 to find one that worked. I recommend you get a very high quality, high speed v2 usb cable that is 6 to 10 ft long and try it.

RJ

Also Bagley who was having program problems went out and got a V2 USB printer cable and was then able to program OK.

Bill


Offline ThaiWay

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #23 on: December 03, 2008, »
Well... I got the most hefty high quality USB 2.0 A to B cable I could find in Bangkok, and my Dongle/Splitter/Lynx setup has been running flawlessly now for almost three hours.  I even shut down the PC and restarted, plugged in the Dongle and started Vixen.  It's working!  I'm encouraged again.

Thanks RJ for your input, and Bill too for spending many an hour in chat helping me troubleshoot.  I guess it's safe to say I can use that RS485 chip I swapped out from my other Lynx when I start building it tonight. 

Teege I hope you see this.

John
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Offline wbuehler

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #24 on: December 03, 2008, »
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Well... I got the most hefty high quality USB 2.0 A to B cable I could find in Bangkok, and my Dongle/Splitter/Lynx setup has been running flawlessly now for almost three hours.  I even shut down the PC and restarted, plugged in the Dongle and started Vixen.  It's working!  I'm encouraged again.

Thanks RJ for your input, and Bill too for spending many an hour in chat helping me troubleshoot.  I guess it's safe to say I can use that RS485 chip I swapped out from my other Lynx when I start building it tonight. 

Teege I hope you see this.

John

Awesome glad to hear.

Yes please try that RS485 chip.

Bill


Offline bittrix

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #25 on: December 03, 2008, »
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Well... I got the most hefty high quality USB 2.0 A to B cable I could find in Bangkok, and my Dongle/Splitter/Lynx setup has been running flawlessly now for almost three hours.  I even shut down the PC and restarted, plugged in the Dongle and started Vixen.  It's working!  I'm encouraged again.

I did a bit o' searching, and found no authoritative answer. I suspect (without evidence) that incident RF might be inducing an occasional 1 bit error in the cable. The USB port/FTDI chip would self-correct/reset in the space of 1 or 2 packets,  but the FTDI driver might get confused when that happens. It is a known issue that ports don't always get released properly when a device is disconnected. USB was built to hot-swap, com ports were not.

My point is, I'm guessing that adding an RF choke(s) to your USB cable, plus shielding/routing the cable away from transformers/AC inductors or any components that switch... might keep the serial signal intact.

Or it could be gremlins.
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Offline skygodtj

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #26 on: December 03, 2008, »
Yep.. just a sigh of relief..really good that fixed the problem (fingers crossed)
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Offline ThaiWay

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #27 on: December 03, 2008, »
Thanks for that  bittrix... I do have a bunch of ferrite chokes, and was thinking I should add them in my chain.  The thought crossed my mind as I remembered watching those xmus YouTube vids long before I even found DLA.

Teege... fingers crossed but ever so less tightly clenched!

John
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Offline gwindman

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #28 on: December 05, 2008, »
Tuppet,
I had EXACTLY the same issues.  I had 4 Lynx.  I consistently had the same errors you mention when I started up.  I would crash anywhere from a few minutes out to over an hour.  Never knew how long I would run.  I debugged like you did - first dongle worked by itself.  Then added cat5 cable to lynx (which was not powered on) and it ran pretty much forever.  Then I powered up the lynx and it would crash at various times.   Consulted RJ and tested voltages - everything seemed ok.  So on a whim, I attached my one spare Lynx that wasn't used as the first Lynx down the line from the Dongle.  It works almost all the time now.  The only difference is it is attached with a 25 foot cat5 cable.  The other one was a 50 foot cable.  Maybe the 50 footer has something wrong - draws too much current or something.   Anyway, I now have the 25 foot cable and then the 50 foot cable and then 2 more 25 foot cables.  And as mentioned above, it works almost all the time.  Maybe once every three nights it fails, but otherwise runs for 2.5 to 3 hours straight.
Maybe this will help - at least you know you aren't alone!!!

Offline ThaiWay

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Re: Dongle and Lynx are conspiring against me!
« Reply #29 on: December 07, 2008, »
After spending most of the day yesterday mounting Lynx#2 at the front door and finishing the rope light connections to it and then connecting a new cat5 I made to the Splitter, I fired everything up.  At :45 into the sequence the dreaded "Access" message hit me again.  I spent the next three hours experimenting with another expensive USB cable to the Dongle, switching ports on the Splitter, eliminating the Splitter, trying different turn on steps, adding ferrite chokes to the cabling... all to no avail.

I went back to the #1 expensive USB cable and the Dongle>Lynx#1 ran for two minutes and then the Access error.  Took a break for dinner.

Back from dinner, reboot, check Device Mgr etc, same config as above, start Vixen, start sequence, powered up Lynx#1 at 22:50 and it kept running!  I woke up at 01:50 and it was still on!

One thing I noticed - and I am not a Windoes fan - is that the PC makes a sound when I disconnect or connect the USB cable.  At various times when a sequence was running I would hear a similar sound.  There's nothing else running on this PC.  I have no idea why that sound was happening while the sequence played.

Now, this morning I started Vixen and the sequence, and it's running for 30 mins.  Looks like more experiments in store now to get Lynx #2 up... I think another set of cat5 cables is the next step.  Any other ideas? 

Thanks for your help
John
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John

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