Troubleshooting Hints

Below is a compendium of problems, most with solutions, that you may encounter in using the internet for transferring data files to your computer (downloading), and using your computer to transfer files to the Argus (uploading).  This page was originally written the '90s, when internet data transfer was slow and uncertain.   It is unlikely that any of the transfer problems will be encountered as of this 2004 update.

If you experience problems that aren't covered below, it would be helpful to us and to your fellow pilots if you could email us with information on the problem, and on the cure or workaround if you have one.

Disclaimer

We are able to provide this internet database capability at a major decrease in price precisely because it requires much less effort on our part to provide the service. Instead of shipping a package to our subscribers, we simply send them an email. We are committed to making this process work as efficiently and effectively as possible because it is good for everybody. However, it may be that, due to hardware, software, internet provider difficulty, or other causes, some individuals may not be able to take advantage of this service. In such cases, the alternative is either to obtain the data on disk or on memory card as described in the Argus reference manual and our current price list. 

Failure to transfer files fully

During the beta testing period, the problem most often encountered was the failure to receive a complete file over the internet. Occasionally a download would begin, slow down, and eventually grind to a halt. This appears to be a problem with the internet itself; occasionally it is overloaded and things slow down. If this happens to you, please email us and let us know where you are, who your provider is, and what time of the day you attempted to load the file. If any pattern emerges, we will try to make helpful suggestions.


Problems downloading files with AOL
 

Some people have reported having problems getting AOL's browser to perform the authentication procedure. So far, we have the following info on what works and what doesn't:


Problems downloading files with Compuserve

Microsoft Internet Explorer version 2.1 supplied with Compuserve version 2.5 on CD does not work.  However, Netscape 3.0 using the same Compuserve connection works well. Therefore, the problem seems to be the browser and not Compuserve itself. 


Problems with uploading files with WIN95 Hyperterminal.

We have found problems using this program, supplied with the operating system, to download data. Symptoms are incorrect reporting of termination by the Argus, and failure to complete a data transfer. This problem does NOT seem to be present in the Hyper Terminal supplied with Windows NT 4.0 or the terminal program supplied with Windows 3.1.

If you encounter this problem, try loading a later version of Hyper Terminal from the Hilgraeve site. We found "Private Edition" Version 2.0 to work.  As of March 2001, version 6.1 is current, and it's still free.

When you start Hyperterminal, the globe on it's "splash screen" (startup screen) appears to rotate.  If you don't see this effect, you must upgrade to a more recent version.

Additional Hyperterminal Hints

It is a good idea to copy your data files to your computer's hard disk. It appears that pauses caused by reading a floppy disk can sometimes cause problems.

If you have to change the baud rate in Hyperterminal, we have found that sometimes you will get "gibberish" on the computer screen after doing so. If you exit and re-enter Hyperterminal, it then works correctly. Once the computer and Argus are communicating, save the "connection" with its own icon and name. Then you will only have to click on that icon to re-establish the connection.

When you have established the Hyperterminal connection, the screen will show a series of characters which slowly gets longer. When this occurs, click on "Transfer" and then "Send File."  Select 1K-Xmodem as the protocol and type the name or select using "Browse" the file to transfer, followed by Send. The transfer will proceed automatically from there.


Problem with Communication Between Argus and your Computer: 

If you have connected the computer to the Argus and appear to be receiving no response at all, there are three possible causes (apart from incorrect setup, covered elsewhere in this section).

1: Computer problem
2: Cable problem
3: Argus problem

It is possible to determine which with the aid of a paper clip (or other small metallic object such as a key). The goal is to establish a connection between the Argus and the computer with the cable. If the computer isn't sending, the cable isn't connecting, or the Argus isn't receiving, nothing works. Here's how you can tell where the problem lies:

Computer Problem
Remove the cable from the computer's COMM PORT (usually 9-pin) connector, and, using a paper clip, short pin 2 and pin 3 of this connector together. (The pins are usually numbered in tiny print inside the connector.) While doing this, type characters on the computer keyboard. If you see the characters echoed on the computer screen when the short is present, and not echoed when the short is removed, then you are getting data in and out of the COMM terminal. If you don't get this behavior, then perhaps you are using the wrong COMM port, are having a problem with the Hyperterminal software, or suffering some other computer malfunction. As this is strictly a computer problem, there is little we at Eventide can do to help fix it.

Cable Problem
If the computer passes the test, reconnect the cable at the computer end and remove it at the Argus end. Again using the paper clip, short the "tip" and the "ring" of the miniplug together. (The tip and the ring will be obvious. Be careful not to also short them to the "sleeve.") Type on the keyboard; you should see the same behavior as above. If the screen does echo without the cable and doesn't echo with the cable, you probably have a defective cable assembly. Call us and we'll exchange it.

Note that the cable can be a tight fit.  Factory-supplied cables can be inserted properly.  However if you are using a homemade cable, it is possible that it isn't being fully inserted.  If it doesn't bottom in the Argus connector with a satisfying click, you may have to unscrew the barrel or otherwise get it to fit.

Argus Problem
If you are getting data through the cable but the Argus still doesn't respond after going into the data transfer mode, double check that the baud rate and other parameters are correct, the Argus baud rate is set the same as the Hyperterminal, and that the "Hardware Handshake" parameter is set to NONE or OFF. Clean the cable plug that goes to the Argus, and insert and remove it a few times. If it still doesn't work, the Argus may be defective, in which case we will have to service it.


Palm Pilot Hint from customer: 

The software I use is ProComm Plus. I have a 3Com Palm V hooked into my laptop Com1 serial port. A user must "disable" the Palm V in order to update the Argus 5000. Otherwise, the computer looks for a "Hotsync" operation and does not recognize the Argus 5000 during a data base update.

To disable the Palm V, go to the Palm Desktop, click on HotSync, click on Setup, go to the General Tab and disable "Always available (put in Startup folder)" by clicking on "Available only when Palm Desktop is running."

This might save somebody else who uses a pocket organizer with their laptop several hours of effort.


Packet Transmission Errors 

Once the transfer starts, it will normally run to completion.  Most programs, including Hyperterminal, indicate transfer progress, including percentage complete, and show an error count of retransmitted packets.  Normally there will be no transmission errors.  If there are one or two it may indicate a slightly noisy connection but is no cause for concern.  However, if you accumulate a large number of packet errors, the transfer may abort early or take longer than it should.  If you have gotten to the point where this occurs, the problem is most likely hardware related-you've done everything right.  Here are some things you might try: 


Return to transfer instructions

This page updated 04 December 2004