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SDCC Monitor

Rog (RJ)

1931 posts

Keyboard shortcuts listed at the begining of the sketch

 

// Keyboard commands that can be sent via Serial Monitor://

1 = 1s refresh time//

2 = 2s //

3 = 4s (default)//

4 = 8s//

5 = 16s//

6 = 4 DCC packet buffer//

7 = 8//

8 = 16//

9 = 32 (default)//

0 = 64//

a = show accessory packets toggle//

l = show locomotive packets toggle//

i = idle packet display on / off toggle//

h = hexadecimal output of packet data on / off toggle//

b = binary output of packet data on / off toggle//

 

May be useful.

 

Enter values in the "Send" box at top of monitor screen and hit Send or Enter

Rog :-) I don't model anything in particular, I just play trains. Living on the South side of Nottingham. Keep taking the tablets. https://www.modelrailwayforum.co.uk/

Chrissaf

8281 posts


Community Moderator

@Rog(RJ)

Or is it reading the whole packet but not displaying it?

.

It is reading the whole packet but just not displaying it.

.

I did have some online dialogue with the software author when I first built mine a year or so ago. Basically he said that he couldn't see the point in displaying the WHOLE packet data, as the first part of the monitor display gave all the information needed. As he put it "already decoded into English"....albeit he was Dutch. It was remembering this previous dialogue with the software author that triggered my 'light bulb' moment in my reply edit.

.

PS - That KB command table is already in my monitor construction tutorial on the page 3 download link. I updated the document on the link to a later V2-1 version. If your copy of my tutorial didn't have the table then you might have downloaded my earlier V2 version.

Chris........ Making the wood in the trees visible.

Rog (RJ)

1931 posts

Kowing me, I've probably seen it but forgotten it.

Rog :-) I don't model anything in particular, I just play trains. Living on the South side of Nottingham. Keep taking the tablets. https://www.modelrailwayforum.co.uk/

St1ngr4y

2097 posts

I thought I would return to this thread to see if there is anyone who has built this monitor and uses an Elink. I have an Elite controller. I have noticed that, when Railmaster starts up, it displays on the "Splash" screen "Initialising DCC Controller". During this time, the green status box, to the right of the RM Programs Combo dropdown list, flashes a number of times. When I first noticed this, I counted the number of flashes, and there were around 27. It occurred to me that this was roughly the number of locos I have defined in my loco database. With the DCC monitor running, from this point onwards, 6 DCC commands were appearing for each loco on the DCC bus, and these were being repeated continually. Now, repeating the information for each loco, in my opinion, isn't a bad thing. It means that if a new command from the controller doesn't get through for any reason, then it is repeated very soon afterwards. However, doing this for ALL locomotives in a user's database, even though many of them might not be used in a RM session, seems to me a bit over the top. I decided to try to reduce this DCC bus traffic. I introduced a new group to the loco database called "Operational", and I assigned to this group only those locos which are used in my current program schedule. The number of these locos is 15, and, sure enough, when RM starts up, with "Operational" having been the selected group when RM last closed down, the number of flashes seen when the "Initialising DCC Controller" message is displayed, reduces to 15, and the DCC monitor only displays traffic for these locos.

These 6 DCC commands are as follows...

Loc xx Forw128 Stop

Loc xx L F4-F1 0

Loc xx F8-F5 0

Loc xx F12-F9 0

Loc xx F20-F13 0

Loc xx F28-F21 0

... and these are sent to every loco in the group, irresepective of whether the loco has all of these functions or not.

 

My questions arising from these observations are as follows...

 

1. Does Elink repeat these 6 DCC commands for each loco, as well as the Elite?

2. Why does RM send out this information to the controller during initialisation?

3. Is there a case for having a new system setting/INI file entry to make this initialisation optional? Maybe a new "Desirable Feature".

4. If the controller is busy sending out all of these commands to the DCC bus, does that increase the risk of missing an incoming command from the RM pc?

5. If the answer to (4) is yes, then is there a case for having another optional system setting/INI file entry which is similar to the Double Pulse command for points, which will instruct RM to send Function commands to the Elite twice, to reduce the risk of them being lost and for the controller to get out-of-sync with RM?

 

Ray

DCC Elite + Railmaster+ProPack, Windows 10 desktop

RAF96

10487 posts


Community Moderator

Why does RM load all user listed locos, why not just load them as required upon selection like the Elte does into its ESC list.

 

It seems to me that the current methodology is just a system resource hogger as is.

 

Rob

Halton Brat - Running Win 10, 64-bit - RM (Pro-Pack) with Elite as Controller-A, Select as Walkabout and E-Link as Controller-B - Locos are mostly TTS. http://www.halton96th.org.uk/page21.html

St1ngr4y

2097 posts

@RAF96

 

My thoughts exactly, Rob

 

Ray

DCC Elite + Railmaster+ProPack, Windows 10 desktop

Fishmanoz

9753 posts

Given that when RM is operating, and you aren’t using the Elite knobs, all either Elite or eLink is doing is passing RM DCC commands through to the track, I can’t see that there will be any difference in behavior in this regard whether you are using Elite or eLink.

 

I have of course been known to be wrong though?

and thanks for all the fish

St1ngr4y

2097 posts

Hi Fishy,

The point is, once any command is sent to the Elite, the Elite then repeatedly sends this same command if it hasn't anything else to do. As I described above, RM sends 6 commands for each loco in the current group to the Elite during initialisation, but it then repeats these over and over again. You can unload Railmaster and even switch off the pc, and the Elite will continue to send these commands out over the DCC bus. All I wanted to know was whether this was confined to the Elite or whether the Elink also repeats these commands while otherwise idle.

 

Ray

DCC Elite + Railmaster+ProPack, Windows 10 desktop

RAF96

10487 posts


Community Moderator

Probably nothing to do with this but worth a mention...

When eLink first came out I swapped it for my Elite in Rocrail to see if it would work.

Basically it worked but not correctly, all commands were being sent 5 times. My points use relays and as each command went out you could hear the relay click in and out, in and out. The commands were also echoed on the status screen. I never got to the bottom of it and their forum wasn’t interested so I went back to using the Elite in Rocrail, but it would be interesting to use the Arduino to monitor the Rocrail data flow for any clues.

Rob

Halton Brat - Running Win 10, 64-bit - RM (Pro-Pack) with Elite as Controller-A, Select as Walkabout and E-Link as Controller-B - Locos are mostly TTS. http://www.halton96th.org.uk/page21.html

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