Stability for DC v3.03 and Skylark v5.5

FWIW I believe I used this site to determine the Sun’s azimuth:

Things continue to go well since I moved the DC about 3’ from my WiFi AP. I’m at 6 days of up-time… 3 days without anything but the LNB plugged in… and since then, the WiFi is back in, connected to my home network as a client, 2nd SD card in, and I have another computer logging Tuner Stats and File Count data periodically via the API (thanks again @sv_sigint).

Does anyone know if/when file copies are performed to the 2nd SD Card, other than at boot? This is the only time I see the file-count grow on SD #2.

I guess I’m not the only one that lost all signals from the satellite

last file in what’s new: 5/2/2019 Wikipedia Suthida.html

edit: operator error… I did a config reset… and forgot to readjust the frequency when I restarted
all is back to normal now…

I show about 85 new files on my system in the last 3 days for the Wikipedia directory (using find ./ -mtime -3 | wc -l) command

My signal was a little bad earlier today, and lost lock some, which I attributed to weather moving through (my current setup doesn’t have enough margin for weather)

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I have 16+ days uptime on my DreamCatcher now, after having moved it about 3 feet away from my WiFi access point. I consider it case-closed that was the problem.

Thanks to all for the help on troubleshooting this one!

Yes - - being too close to your Wifi router does mess things up. Several of us have found that to be true. Ken

@kenbarbi do you think this warrants a note in the user guide you maintain? I added a “Dreamcatcher Placement” note in the Wiki, but I imagine many people start off with a copy of the user guide PDF (as I did) and may only figure this issue out by trial-and-error (as I did).

You have a great point Will. I’ll do that. With your recent experiences, do you think there might be some other areas needing more discussion in the User’s Guide? I wrote the thing because it was always a chore to find answers to setup questions on the Forum, as it is so large. Ken

Ken, at the moment I can’t think of anything else that I struggled with besides the placement near the WiFi access point, that wasn’t already covered in the User Guide. A few thoughts in no particular order:

  1. The topic of the 2nd SD card. I asked a few times here, and never got an answer. When do the backups to the 2nd SD card occur? I only see it happen during bootup. If it runs with 2 weeks of solid up-time, I don’t see any files copied over to the 2nd SD card. May be worth a mention that the backups aren’t continuous, and if the user really wants that up-to-date backup on the 2nd SD, they should do it manually or reboot the Dreamcatcher often. This item is sort of in-the-weeds as far as overall operation, so discussing it more than you already do may just be adding noise to the document.

  2. Perhaps add a hyperlink in the User Guide, right up front, to the Wiki page. Something along the lines of “additional information and recent updates not yet incorporated into this user guide are available in the Wiki

  3. I recall some forum traffic recently about WiFi dongles and connection issues? I didn’t go back through the older posts to discern what seems to be going on… so unsure if any other user guide notes are appropriate on this topic or not. (or the use of a USB Ethernet dongle not showing IP address, etc). It’s also outside of the generic / default use-case, so maybe it’s too much scope-creep to include other information? Entries into the wiki may be more appropriate.

Thanks for maintaining the user guide. My comments above are “for what it’s worth”

Thank you Will - - as I recall (but not too sure) the backup occurs every hour (I’ll have to look at my SD card to confirm that - maybe Syed knows for sure). Adding the Wiki page up front is a great idea. The USB Ethernet dongle is covered in the User Guide on page 20. Ken

PS If anyone else has any additions, please let me know so I can get them in. Usually I redo the User’s Guide after major hardware or software upgrades, buy I’ll do one out of cycle. Don’t think Syed will mind.

On my system, I see the disk cleanup once an hour, but I only see file copies at bootup, fwiw. I have a process logging the number of files in the /Wikipedia directory on SD1 and SD2. The number of files on SD2 hasn’t changed since the last reboot about 18 days ago now. Irrelevant to manual updates, just an observation.

Hmm - - that’s true. I see cleaning but can’t find new Wikipedia files on my SD card. I wonder why we all though backup was happening? My little test was Wikipedia files on my SD card prior to reboot = 4139, and after reboot = 4185 (which included several new files I know came down in the last day which did not get backed up prior to the reboot as you said).

So that begs the question, What gets backed up and when on the external storage prior to a reboot? Any thoughts on this, Syed? Ken

Instead of rebooting, can you try adding and removing the SD card?

In answer to removing the SD Card @Syed , that maneuver works. I found a recent Wikipedia file that came down today that had not been xfered to the SD card. I removed the card and replaced it, and the file got xfered to the SD card.

Again, this was a manual process, so automatic back up seems not to operate at this time. Ken

Yeah, that was the intended–or original–functionality. The 2nd SD was not planned on being there permanently. Many different users would bring their cards or thumb drives to update their content stores.

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Yes - - it does work in the fashion you and I have demonstrated which is good. My SD card has several thousand Wikipeida articles on it. I can see that as a real plus in remote areas receiving data needed to be stored for future use. Ken

I just had a chance to try this, and it worked, though at first I didn’t think it did.

After removing and reinstalling SD#2, it took about 15 seconds for SD#2 to become mounted and available for getting directory listings. The Dreamcatcher appeared to do nothing with SD#2 for the next two minutes.

As I was in the middle of writing this message (originally stating failure to copy), I glanced over at the DC and SD#2 LED was going like gangbusters. Running my file-count script showed /Wikipedia on SD#2 steadily increasing. The original count on SD#2 was 534. New count, after SD#2 LED activity stopped, is 1,024. So 490 files were just copied over. Nice.

This use-case makes a lot of sense (showing up with your own SD and getting a brain dump from Othernet)

Perhaps the initial delay in copying was Skylark figuring out what all to copy?


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while this is nice to have these files… the skylark search feature and wiki app really don’t allow any way to use all these files. Remember the search currently only searches the file ‘title’.

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Would you mind logging this under Feature Request?

NB I am seeing more lockups on my original DC board that I had such issues with originally. It moves around a bit in the room relative to my WiFi AP, with the various testing I’ve been doing, and the new variable is there is a Raspberry Pi (WiFi) in the room now, also a few feet away. The 2nd board I have doesn’t seem nearly as sensitive… in fact I don’t think it’s ever locked up.