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curtismc

Blasted blinking LED/controller won't connect

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Okay, first I ordered a DIY controller and spent a couple of hours putting it together and everything SEEMED to go smoothly.

Installed software and drivers and hooked everything up. Hardware utility sees the port, but doesn't see the controller.

As it is getting VERY close to showtime, I panicked and ordered a gen 3 board already put together and tested.

Got it in and set everything back up. SAME BLASTED THING!!! And that stupid power LED won't stop blinking!!!!!

Cool down for a bit and decide to re-install my system OS, but back off of Vista Business and go to XP Pro that I have a spare license for.

Re-install software and drivers. Check device manager and it sees the USB-serial port. No conflicts. Okay, so far so good.

Shutdown and reboot, just to make sure. Start the LOR control panel and plug in the USB-serial adapter. System tray says it found the hardware and it's ready to go! Click the autodetect and pray the controller LED will stop blinking.

NADA.

SAME THING! Port is detected, but the controller isn't!

Manually changed ports in device manager and rebooted. Again, port is detected, but controller IS NOT!!

WHAT AM I DOING WRONG HERE???

Checked and swapped ALL cables with known good with no change.

Summary:

2 boards (1 DIY, 1 gen 3 non-DIY)
serial port is detected by Hardware Utility
controller board IS NOT detected.
Oh, and manual configuration does nothing either.

System config:
Intel atom 1.67 GHz, mini-ITX running Windows XP with 4 Gb RAM.

Curtis

p.s. At least at this point, I'm feeling better about my soldering skills...

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Have you tried to assign a number to the controller, even you do not recognize it assign an adress an igmore the error.Only connect to one controller at a time.

If you are using a USB adapter you will have to download the drivers for it

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Start the LOR control panel and plug in the USB-serial adapter.

To follow up on what Denis said:

1. make sure you are using the hardware utility (not the actual LOR control panel) to do your first test of the controller. Make sure every other LOR tool is closed (sequence editor, control panel, etc)

2. set the unit ID; force it to 01 or whatever ID you choose. But you need to set one the first time.


p.s. At least at this point, I'm feeling better about my soldering skills...

I would suggest getting your gen 3 going first, and that will confirm your usb/485 drivers, etc are all good to go, before you test the one you built. In the event you have a construction mistake, you could be chasing two issues, and making it more complicated for yourself.

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My newly finished board did the same thing last night.

As Don has stated....
Unload the LOR control panel
Make sure all other LOR programs are closed.

Open the hardware utility.

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I used the correct drivers from the LOR disk. It's recognized in device manager with the FTDI driver.

Already tried the manual/forced configuration. Nothing happens. Even went through all the serial ports with no luck.

I am using ONLY the 3g board at this point. Figure if I can get it working, the other SHOULD be a piece of cake.

Curtis

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So you hook up the 3g board, and then what are your steps? How are you attempting to set the unit ID?

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Don't use auto-detect the first time. Look in the lower left of the HU, use "change existing unit ID", and select your drop down to be "any unit"., then assign the unit ID.

And again, make sure the only LOR program open is the HU.

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DonFL wrote:

So you hook up the 3g board, and then what are your steps? How are you attempting to set the unit ID?




Been trying to reset the unit ID from the HU via the Control Panel.

Will try firing up HU directly when I get home this evening.

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DonFL wrote:

Don't use auto-detect the first time. Look in the lower left of the HU, use "change existing unit ID", and select your drop down to be "any unit"., then assign the unit ID.

And again, make sure the only LOR program open is the HU.


Will try firing up HU directly this evening.



Stand by for further developments...

Perhaps more cussing...

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curtismc wrote:

DonFL wrote:
So you hook up the 3g board, and then what are your steps? How are you attempting to set the unit ID?




Been trying to reset the unit ID from the HU via the Control Panel.

Will try firing up HU directly when I get home this evening.

you should be ok that way, but as we all are creatures of habit, i never run the CP except when running a show.

Main thing is, no sequence editor open at same time as HU.

Good luck, keep us posted.

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Well, there is no joy in Muddville or Amarillo tonight!

Fired up the computer, checked the USB to serial port. Changed it from 6 to 3 just for s&g's. Had to reboot at that point.

BTW, the port does go away when I unplug the USB cable and reappears wehn I plug it back in.

Plugged everything in. Fired up HU directly. Clicked auto-configure and waited.

Same result as before.

Tried the manual route, and set COM port to 3 and unit ID to 01. Nothing.

I even tried running a sample sequence in the present configuration. Looks pretty on the screen, but no lights flashing.

Oh, did forget to mention I'm using 16 single light bulbs plugged in via plug in sockets for testing purposes.

I'm seriously beginning to think the 485 adapter may be bad because the HU sees the port, but it doesn't get to the controller board and I've tried at least 2 known good cat 5e cables along with the green cable LOR sent me with the setup.

Could I pick up another USB to RJ-45 from say the local Best Buy and utilize it? Or has LOR done something weird in the wiring???

Any other ideas or suggestions would be appreciated as I am starting to get rather discouraged.

I'm also starting to think that blinking LED is just taunting me! : )

Curtis

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Success!!!!!

On a whim decided to check out the 485 adapter.

WHAT A HUNK OF JUNK!!!!! If I had done that sort of work in the Navy, they'd keelhauled me. Heck, if I tried to pass something like that off in my Networking classes now I'd be failed!

Straightened out the wires and put it all back together.

Fired up HU again and plugged in the cat 5e cable and was rewarded with a light flash!

Clicked on auto-configure and waited.

IT FOUND THE BOARD!!!

Looks like I'm back in business.

Still, my question from my last post remains.

Do I need to use LOR's USB adapter or can I go somewhere and buy a decent one?

Do appreciate everyone's comments and suggestions.

Curtis

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Their adapter is unique therfore you cannot use another,try lightorama helpdesk they may send you one asap if this is your problem which looks like it is

When you selected unit 1 did you press SET NEW UNIT ID

Denis
GREAT for you now lights are flashing in the neiborghood:P:P

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The thing is you aren't looking for USB to RJ45, you are looking for USB to RS485. Best buy will have plenty of USB to Ethernet, which is not the same thing no matter how much the connectors look the same.

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Well, NUTS!! Of course it would be proprietary.

Still, if that's a RJ-45 connector, guess I could cut off their piece of junk and solder a new on in place! After all, a connector is a connector is a connector! Just connecting the wires...

Curtis

-klb- wrote:

The thing is you aren't looking for USB to RJ45, you are looking for USB to RS485. Best buy will have plenty of USB to Ethernet, which is not the same thing no matter how much the connectors look the same.

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You could certainly change the connector. You might reach out to them. It sounds like your connector is not up to their normal standards. I have several USB-485ISO adapters, a few USB-485B, and one USB-485, and have not had any quality complaints with any of them.

They have, however had changes in their manufacturing facilities, and they would probably like to know about construction problems.

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Well, I've submitted a ticket. Now I can either wait, or attempt to make this unit functional.

I'll probably wait until Saturday then, if I haven't heard anything from LOR, I'll go out and get a replacement RJ-45 socket and do a swap out.

Curious how the entire package can be shutdown by one little piece of plastic and metal. You'd think LOR would want to ensure it was quality throughout the whole system.

Just my thoughts...

Curtis

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As mentioned previously, its not recommended to use auto-configure when you can't find a controller...put the port in manually.

You could have a bad adapter out of the box.I'm sure it happens...you may be the one in 1000.

I think if you hang around long enough, past 9 posts and just going thru the normal challenges of getting started, you'll find LOR equipment is as reliable as it gets. And you're also about to see how good the customer service is.

So did your DIY board work also? Both controllers tested and functional?

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Haven't tested the DIY board yet. May do that tonight and then again, may put that off until after Christmas...

Anyway, heard back from LOR and they're sending a new USB485 adapter via 2nd day UPS! That's what I call service.

I'm also going to take some pictures and send them to LOR so they'll better understand what sort of problem I was having.

If there is an interest, I can post the pictures here too.

Curtis

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curtismc wrote:

I'm also going to take some pictures and send them to LOR so they'll better understand what sort of problem I was having.

If there is an interest, I can post the pictures here too.

Curtis

I would be interested in seeing what kind of issues it has...

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-klb- wrote:

curtismc wrote:
I'm also going to take some pictures and send them to LOR so they'll better understand what sort of problem I was having.

If there is an interest, I can post the pictures here too.

Curtis

I would be interested in seeing what kind of issues it has...

Definitely..post pics. Great to hear Dan and Co. are taking care of you in typical LOR fashion.

And fire that DIY board up...nothing like seeing one you built yourself run thru its paces first time you power it up.

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Okay, sorry about the delay in getting the pictures posted. Office Christmas party...

Anyway, I'm posting 3 pictures showing the issue.

The first picture shows what the adapter looks like "naked", ie without the shell. Notice how the wires are sitting loose?

Looks like the forum will allow only 1 attachment at a time, so will have to break this into 3 posts.

Curtis




Attached files 294325=16243-adapter_opened.jpg

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