Planefinder Sharing problems

#1
Hi

I have been a regularly uploading/sharing data from my SBS with Planefinder for over 8 months via Planeplotter. However, from 8am today something seems to have happened. Whilst Planeplotter appears to be still uploading data to Planefinder, the Planefinder Sharer List indicates that I have not shared any data since 8am this morning.

Any thoughts/suggestions appreciated

Nigel
 
#3
I'm not sure if it's the same problem Nigel was having, since this thread seems to have died, but I had shared my data for several years with no problems, and this week, after being offline for about 18 months due to a house fire, I started sharing again with the new client, and although I LOVE the new client, it seems to die on me regularly.. The Basestation software seems to continue to run, but either the PFClient locks up, or it sometimes seems to just die and go away.. Is anyone else experiencing this? Is there a way to turn up logging so I can see what it may be doing to cause this? Is there any documentation on minimum system requirement? I'm running on a Win7 virtual PC, running on an ESXi server. I have 2 processors, 6 gigs of ram, and 80 gig hard disk (20 free) assigned to the VM.

Any help would be appreciated!
 

Lee Armstrong

Administrator
Staff member
#7
Also thanks for the logs Steve,

We will try and replicate that as well. What version of Windows is it specifically please? We will get a VM running (or even better is your image small???).
 
#8
I have cloned the VM, and have started an upgrade to Win8.1 Pro on the clone.. The original was Windows 7 Pro "N" x64 version (Not sure how I ended up putting the "N" version in there, but that's what it was..
The image is unfortunately pretty big - 60+gigs I think.. I'd be happy to put it somewhere for you to download, or put it on a thumbdrive and mail it to you if you want, and/or I could give you remote access to it running via RDP through an SSH tunnel, although I'll have to shut down the Win8 version for it to have access to the reciever (the recievers can only handle one client at a time, right??)

If the Win8 upgrade fixes it, that's great, but I'm also happy to help troubleshoot it if you want.. I guess most people have probably moved on from Win7, so it's probably not a huge deal.. Up to you!

Let me know if the x64 is an issue.. I could go back and install a 32 bit version of Win8..

Thanks, and I'll let you know how the Win8 goes.. It's upgrading now..
-Steve
 
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Lee Armstrong

Administrator
Staff member
#9
Thanks Steve,

Will be interesting to find out if ok on Windows 8.

After the Christmas break I will setup a Windows 7 VM myself. x64 shouldn't be an issue at all.
 
#10
Sounds good.. It took several cycles of patching and reboots, but I've got it running on a fully patched Win8 pro machine, and it ran all night so it seems better now.. The only thing I dont have working is auto-running it at startup. Somehow, my auto-logon is working, and Basestation runs, but the PFClient isnt running automatically.. no big deal for now.

I still have my Win7 VM ready to turn on if needed for troubleshooting if you want to dig deeper, but since I'm only the second person to report this, and it works on Win8, that's up to you..

Merry Christmas, and I'll update again after the weekend with how it's doing..
-Steve
 
#11
Well.. Win8 didn't help.. It seems that sometime today, it stopped working, and PFClient just "went away".. My BaseStation is still running, and showing planes as normal.

In the interest of full disclosure, since my radio is in the garage, I have it on the other side of a powerline ethernet extender from the rest of the network, but since the BaseStation is still working, even if the connection to the radio dropped off intermittently, I dont think it should affect the connection from PFClient to "localhost"..

I'm attaching the last 2 logs, and I'll restart the client after..

Also, just found 2 events that might help from the event viewer.. including that too..

-Steve
 

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Lee Armstrong

Administrator
Staff member
#12
Thanks Steve,

I agree it shouldn't cause it at all but then not 100% sure what basestation will do!

You mentioned ESXi. Could you perhaps spin up a small Linux VM and install the client on there. Exactly the same really but it is our Linux version which is pretty rock solid. This would eliminate the setup or the platform of build.

Turns out after speaking to Mark we don't have 2 with this issue. Just one :)
 
#13
Absolutely! Do you guys have a preferred flavor of linux? Or.. well.. Let me go read about the linux install and I'll see if my questions are answered there.. I should have time to do that tonight or tomorrow morning no problem.. And again, it's a question that will be answered when I read the instructions, but if you have a RPi version, or if the linux version will run on RPi, I might just throw one of those physically out there because I had been thinking of using one for an aviation streaming server anyway, so I'd need a local sound card out there.. I'll check it out and get back to you..
 

Lee Armstrong

Administrator
Staff member
#14
Absolutely! Do you guys have a preferred flavor of linux? Or.. well.. Let me go read about the linux install and I'll see if my questions are answered there.. I should have time to do that tonight or tomorrow morning no problem.. And again, it's a question that will be answered when I read the instructions, but if you have a RPi version, or if the linux version will run on RPi, I might just throw one of those physically out there because I had been thinking of using one for an aviation streaming server anyway, so I'd need a local sound card out there.. I'll check it out and get back to you..
Debian is our preferred flavour! And yes Pi is probably one better again :)
 
#15
OK.. I'm almost there.. but, I'm confused.. (I know - what's new!) :)

In the "windows world" we run "BaseStation" to talk to the network based receiver and it translates data coming in on port 10001, and makes it available for the client to read from localhost:30006, right?

I've never really been clear on the difference between getting the data straight from the radio on 10001 vs. what basestation does with it before it provides it to the client on 30006, which is the basis for my confusion..

Everything I'm seeing on the RPi version shows installation of an SDR, with a "Dump1090" program, which I assume is some kind of demodulator to read raw audio wave data from the SDR and make digital data out of it.. (also could be confused here..)

BUT, since I have a "real" network receiver, I was assuming there'd be some way for the RPi to talk directly to the radio, but I'd assume it was different than for an SDR dongle??

I've got the RPi running the client successfully, but reading the data from the Windows 8 machine running BaseStation, but if at all possible, I'd like to get the Windows machine out of the loop if I'm going to use the RPi.

I do have an SDR dongle, if that's the desired configuration, instead of the hardware radio, in the RPI world, but I'd assume the hardware radio is still more desirable?

What am I missing?
-Steve
 

Lee Armstrong

Administrator
Staff member
#16
You don't need Dump1090 as you are right you have an SBS-1. Trouble is with the SBS-1 the stream is encrypted thus the need for basestation. The dongles are no where near as good as the SBS. People will argue with me but trust me we've done a ton of testing and they are no where near as good!

I wanted to eliminate the data stream (as it is a networked SBS/basestation) or our client on Windows.

If you leave the Windows VM running and Basestation and point our client on the Pi to 30006 on the Windows machine and monitor stability.
 
#17
Oh! Encrypted.. That makes sense then.. OK.. I'll leave it running as is for now then (BaseStation on Windows, Client on PI..)

I did have a problem over the last few days that MIGHT have been causing the issue, or at least confusing the diagnosis/making it worse..

I dont yet have "real" Ethernet into the garage, so I have been using a couple of powerline ethernet bridges to get to the garage. The SBS-1 is the only device on the "other side" of the bridge. These devices have worked well for me in the past, so I never really even considered that they could be the problem, but 2 nights ago, everything in my house just lost all connectivity, and my switches were going crazy. I should have run a wireshark capture to see what kind of traffic could bring down everyone on the switch, but I didn't really think of it at the time. The trouble ended up being the powerline bridges somehow killing the connection. I rebooted both sides, and it's been fine ever since.

The VM, when it was running BaseStation, would continue to have connection to the SBS over the powerline bridge, while the PFClient had stopped, so I dont THINK the powerline bridges had anything to do with it, but if it's possible that bad/broken/intermittent communication could have impacted PFClient without affecting Basestation (or maybe basestation just recovers better?) then maybe this could all be caused by my network situation..

I hoped to get a real network cable run last night but didn't have time. I'll try again tonight.

-Steve
 
#18
OK.. The more I watch what is going on, I'm more inclined to believe the problem may be the network connection to the reciever. It took me longer than I had hoped, but I just got it up and running on a WIRED network, so although it goes through 2 switches, it is at least going through real wired 100Baset and GigE connections to get to the VM (Basestation) now..

I tested on the Windows 8 VM client, which worked, and I have moved it back to the RPI client for now, just for another test. If that works stable for a day or 2 maybe I'll move it back to the Windows client to see if that is really stable now. My preference would be to leave it reliant on as few different parts as possible, so since we're already going to be reliant on Basestation on Win8, it'd be nice if the same machine could run PFClient to eliminate a point of failure.

I'll keep an eye out...
 
#20
I have had a couple of issues similar to those described in this thread.

I am running PF Client version 3.0 (2080) under Windows 7 and have been since mid 2015. After a 5 week uninterrupted spell of feeding, I saw my sharing statistics drop to zero on the PF web site. As I was away from home, this remained like this for 4 days until I could get to the PC.

When I got to the PC, the client log ended with a "Successfully sent..." message for the time when the central web site had last seen me and nothing more after that. The stats showed a perfectly healthy stream of received data still ongoing. But, curiously, the map view showed both moving aircraft plus hundreds of aircraft frozen at the point where they had gone out of my range. The data view held a great long list of aircraft far longer than normal. "Restarting" the client failed to restart the feeding, I actually had to exit the client and run it again.

This problem reoccurred yesterday after just six days of operation. The symptoms were exactly the same with the "Map" being populated with lots of disappeared aircraft.

Does anyone have any idea as to why this behaviour has started happening?

Martin
 

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