Is My DVB-T RTL Dongle Healthy?

ab cd

Senior Member

How To Test If Your DVB-T RTL Dongle Is Healthy

Following two options are described below:

OPTION-1: Dongle plugged into Windows Computer.
OPTION-2: Dongle plugged into Raspberry Pi.


OPTION-1: Dongle plugged into Windows Computer.

STEP 1 of 3:
Install dvb-t rtl driver zadig if not yet done so, as detailed below.

(1) Download Zadig 2.3.exe from

(2) Plug the DVB-T or ProStick in your Windows Computer.

(3) Follow the steps below:

(a) Double click Zadig 2.3.exe to run it.
The window below will open.


(b) On main menu, click "Options".
On the drop-down, place a check mark beside "List All Devices".


(c) From list of devices, select "RTL2838" which is actually DVB-T/ProStick.
Now click button which will either say "Install Driver" or "Reinstall Driver"


STEP 2 of 3:
Download from here:
Download Link:

Web Page:
(scroll down to bottom of page to find download link)

STEP 3 of 3:

(a) First EXIT dump1090 or RTL1090 or ModeSdeco2, or any other software using DVB-T to make the Dongle free for test.
(b) Un-zip It will create a folder RelWithDebInfo.
Inside this folder there is another folder rtl-sdr-release which contains several files and 2 folders named x32 and x64.
(c) Go to folder x32. You will find many rtl tools in it as shown in screenshot-1.
(d) Double-click file rtl_test.exe to run it.
A command console will open and if Dongle is OK, it will give output as shown in screenshot -2.

RTL-TOOLS Step-1-Easy.png

RTL-TOOLS Step-2-Easy.png


OPTION-2: Dongle plugged into Raspberry Pi.

Install the test tools package rtl-sdr
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install rtl-sdr
Stop dump1090 to free your Dongle for test

#choose one of the following commands,
#depending on which version of dump1090 you have installed.
#If you are not sure, issue all three one by one

sudo systemctl stop dump1090
sudo systemctl stop dump1090-fa
sudo systemctl stop dump1090-mutability

Now run the test command
 rtl_test -t
If your Dongle is OK,
Properly connected to Pi,
you will see this output
Found 1 device(s):
  0:  Realtek, RTL2832UFA, SN: 00001001

Using device 0: Generic RTL2832U
Found Rafael Micro R820T tuner
Supported gain values (29): 0.0 0.9 1.4 2.7 3.7 7.7 8.7 12.5 14.4 15.7 16.6 19.7 20.7 22.9 25.4 28.0 29.7 32.8 33.8 36.4 37.2 38.6 40.2 42.1 43.4 43.9 44.5 48.0 49.6
Sampling at 2048000 S/s.
No E4000 tuner found, aborting.

Reboot your Raspberry Pi to restart dump1090 and all data feeders, and restore to normal operation state.
 sudo reboot