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163 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 185152 11-Nov-2015 19:34
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our  replacemen,t second hand , laptop we got to run our weather station keeps crashing.
we have  narrowed it down to the usb to serial drivers that connect the davis weather station to the laptop.
they kept wanting to reinstall and the laptop would get the BSOD.
we also noticed that everytime we turned a desk lamp  next to the lap top on or off the computer beeped.
then we realised that it was when we turned the lamp off that the computer crashed
they were both on the same plug box with the davis station.
what was happening. ?
was it a power surge when i turned the light off combined with the fact that i have disabled all the power saving features in the laptop so it runs constantly and does not shut down.
we had an old 2 GB ram toshiba running the station but it was getting tired, we have a POE weather cam and flight tracker and are ftping to different sites and it was very slow.
we now have a HP pro 6560 with i7 quad core with 8GB, very fast and very flakey

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gzt

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  Reply # 1426554 11-Nov-2015 21:25
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What is flakey about the new machine?



163 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 1426609 11-Nov-2015 22:35
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The old Toshiba never crashed and it was connected to the same circuitry.
Actually I think some of our older stuff does not like win 64 bit .
We have taken the lamp out of the picture.
If that was what was.causing all the crashes I would like to know exactly why

gzt

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  Reply # 1426646 12-Nov-2015 01:19
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It is hard to imagine a normal desk lamp causing that.

Is it a fluorescent lamp? They have inductive ballast can sometimes be faulty.

1. Maybe a power supply & filtering issue? Do you have an equivalent laptop power supply you can try with this machine and the lamp?

2. Try the lamp near the laptop while it is battery only. That will be interesting if EM shield failure.

3. Lastly run some memory diags on that machine. Maybe a borderline issue raised by the spike.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1426650 12-Nov-2015 06:52
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Thanks

gzt

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  Reply # 1427146 12-Nov-2015 20:09
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If bios beep then probably a power level event. Check windows event log for that time and see if it records the issue.

Bad fault on the lamp or maybe a multibox or other power issue?

Otherwise it is a machine/power supply issue. Call your manufacturer support and record the issue. It is possible they wlll send a new power supply or wait for some recurrence. Good idea to get this sorted well inside warranty if it is a machine issue.



163 posts

Master Geek
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  Reply # 1427265 12-Nov-2015 22:27
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It is second hand machine.
I have plugged lamp into extension lead on different circuit.
I think it is multi box, some of the sockets are loose.
It was cheap box
You get what you pay for.
We.will see if this stops crashing

gzt

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  Reply # 1427272 12-Nov-2015 22:42
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Yeah some of those are downright evil.

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  Reply # 1427304 13-Nov-2015 05:06
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Bluescreening on USB to serial devices is usually caused by counterfeit prolific pl2303 based converters. I have had it occasionally with some others if I unplug and replug it quickly or else accidentally short USB power so it re-enumerates quickly after disappearing.

The problems I have had with them is they will only work with old drivers, and they will bluescreen on disconnection often.

This is probably being caused by a spike on the ground because you have made a ground loop with the other end of the serial connection been grounded or coupled to the mains somehow with another power supply. If the beep when you turn the lamp on and off is the USB unplugged one, then thats pretty much certain.

So I would get a better USB to serial, and a RS232 isolator. Depending if you need handshaking signals or just data, you can get them pretty cheap on the usual china sources, some need power on both sides, others will have an isolated DC to DC converter in them to push power across to the isolated side.

This is assuming that it is the USB connection to the weather station causing the problem. If you have other stuff connected to the PC any of them could be doing it.

Possibly the old laptop did not have an earth on its power supply so was not able to make a ground loop with the weather station or something else you have connected?




Richard rich.ms



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1427326 13-Nov-2015 07:30
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Thank you I think you have completely summed up the situation.
We brought a separate data logger module for the Davis weather station from Davis . $360 not cheap.
And the beep was the disconnect hardware beep.
I am relived it is not a fault with the laptop.
The program .who crashed. Said it was the silicon labs drivers for the converter.
I think a serial port converter would have been more stable.but not all computers have them now.
The new stations are all going wireless.
But I prefer to use cabled stuff where ever possible to.keep my wireless space uncluttered for stuff that has to be wireless.
Based on your.info I am confident we can sort this situation.
Once again thank you , I knew asking on the forum was the way to go

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  Reply # 1427709 13-Nov-2015 18:03
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This is cheap enough its probably worth a gamble on. No idea how they are powering it, if its passivly stealing power off the handshake lines then it may not work if the weather station only has the data lines going anywhere.

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Hot-selling-Light-xtc-232-rs-232-serial-port-optical-isolator-rs232-serial-converter/32267779255.html?ws_ab_test=searchweb201556_1_21_79_78_77_92_91_22_80_61,searchweb201644_5,searchweb201560_9





Richard rich.ms



163 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 10


  Reply # 1427742 13-Nov-2015 20:11
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Thank you for that link.
Ever since I took the lamp out of the system there has been no problem
I think it must have been a grounding issue causing a power surge.
I will keep a note of the link in case we still have problems.
Cheers

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