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flex 6400 / 6600 boot up time

2

Answers

  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    I'm not certain about touching a nerve, but what you see as an intractible problem is not an issue for most of us. So I must apologize if what seems sort of confusing is interpreted as being overly sensitive. My computer and Flex software takes longer to boot up, than the radio. Tube linears take longer to boot up than the radio. It's a non issue for almost everyone.  I always like to offer solutions when people have problems. It's hard to find one for your problem without either keeping the radio and computer turned on, or switching to a different radio that meets your needs. Since you have made it clear you need immediate access, Flex has no solution. That's not being overly sensitive, that's the answer to your problem.


  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    It is a strange thing, as I never even considered the radio bootup time at all, much less as a problem. Because of all my daily preparations for operating, the radio is really a good while before anything else 
  • Burch - K4QXX
    Burch - K4QXX Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    By the time I turn on my computer, put in my password, and then open up my logging program, my Flex is already online (if I turn the computer on the same time as the radio).  I had this same sequence before I had my flex.  Even when I had my Icom 756 Pro, the radio would be available before my computer was online but I didn't even start tuning around until my log program was running.  It's one thing for the radio to take 5 minutes but 50-65 seconds?  My MacBook pro takes 10 seconds to boot but I still have to type in the password and wait a few seconds before I can open programs. Radio would still be available in 30-40 seconds if I turned it on at the same time.  I guess I must be missing a lot of DX in 60 seconds.  I'll have to leave my radio on full time now! :)

  • Larry - WA7LZO
    Larry - WA7LZO Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    The single biggest complaint about linear amps running the venerable Eimac 8877 is it takes 180 seconds from the time the op hits the On button until it is ready to go key down. I have read so many posts from Hams complaining about this wait time, saying it causes them to miss DX opportunities. Never understood this, but I guess some ppl just like complaining!  LOL

    Br,
    Larry
    WA7LZO




  • Lasse Moell
    Lasse Moell Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    My Maestro is a few seconds faster to boot than my 6500... Boot up time is no biggie, I am a bit curious on what is going on from a technical view. FPGA usually loads its firmware from a serial prom, and this should only take a few seconds? Now this calibrating stuff, not fully convinced, no critical analogue circuits that drift, and the radio has not reached its steady temp either. Would love to hear about what is going on :)

  • Mike VE3CKO
    Mike VE3CKO Member ✭✭✭
    edited April 2019
    I would think if an explanation of boot process is forthcoming, it will be brief as I would think it's proprietary information. Suggestions on what to do while your radio is rebooting. Say hi to your kids, kiss your wife, **** your nose, take a sip from your coffee cup. Download LOTW updates, check email, come on guys, help me out :)
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Technically you might call my station a Superstation because I have a SteppIR MonstIR and a SPE 2K-FA solid State Amp to compliment my 6700. I usually am the first to bust a pileup. Realistically it takes longer to rotate my beam than it does to boo tthe. Radio or Amp. So I am really trying to understand a use case where instant turn on would make a difference unless perhaps you were trying to work that rare DX before I called. In which case you shud just leave the radio on 24/7.
  • mlstutler
    mlstutler Member ✭✭
    edited July 2018
    I have never found that drinking and DX mix very well.  I sent a  question to Flex regarding boot up times and will deal with their support directly in the future if I have any questions. 
  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    That's probably for the best, because a lot of us are kinda confused about the Flex's bootup time being a good reason to dislike the radio. There are several fixes for the present lineup, but none of ours were acceptable for you. Especially since you are actually asking is for an alpa team member to violate their NDA, since the radios you are asking about aren't even released until late this year. We don't have them, and won't for some time.
  • Ken - NM9P
    Ken - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    I have heard this complaint before and think it is a symptom of our "instant gratification" society. "It's my money and I want it NOW!" My 6500 usually takes about 45-55 seconds to boot from a complete power down, depending upon which version of software is installed. During that time the rig is running a self diagnosis, calibration (it's no secret, the display says "calibrating"), and other routines. Is this too long to wait? Well let's see..... while the rig is booting up, I am waiting for SSDR to load on my computer, loading my logbook, loading PSTRotator, loading DDUTil, and opening an internet page for dx spotting, or six meter sporadic-e or aurora warnings......not to mention the time required to reboot the computer if that was necessary. Sometimes the computer itself takes longer to boot up than the rig. I am also connecting my antennas, putting tha antenna switches in the proper position, connecting the rotator plug, positioning my mic or Keyer paddles, and adjusting my chair, whose pneumatic lift is constantly losing its position. Usually the rig gets done before the rest is finished. If I'm am really in a hurry to get started, I start things booting up and walk across the hall for a pit-stop while the electronics are waking up. It seems to me that this is a non-Issue. Beside, I usually leave the rig running on days when there is no threat of lightning in the area. But this doesn't speed up all the other computer stuff that needs to load.... Ken - NM9P
  • Mark WS7M
    Mark WS7M Member ✭✭
    edited June 2019
    Wow... I cannot believe some of the posts about boot time.  

    Unbelievable...  Perhaps it would be better if some of these folks were NOT flex users.  They seem to prefer an instant on Icom and all the firmware upgrades they will get (which by the way will not be many!).

    Sorry and I know the flames will come but this is just silly.  Even if it took 3 minutes what in the heck are you guys doing?  Checking for a DX spot then hitting the button and hoping to be on the air in 2 seconds?  Leave the radio on during the times you plan to us it.

    If you come home and want to operate, turn the radio on, then go change and get comfy.  It will be ready when you are.

    It also seems to me that those of you that are complaining bought the flex radio already?  If you didn't like the boot time which hasn't changed that much then why didn't you return it within the first few days?

    Mark - WS7M
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    the Anan does not boot up any faster then the computer it is hooked to. My Flex 3000 is as fast as a single click all done,,but it waits for the computer.
  • W5XZ - dan
    W5XZ - dan Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    ha ha ha, george...you ARE a crusty old ****..like me..

  • W5XZ - dan
    W5XZ - dan Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    yeah, but.....

    in a time long ago....i could flip the switch on my ft107, and pair of 3-500's or 3-1000 and be qrv NOW....

    like when bouvet shows up on 160m...

    'just sayin...'

    73, w5xz

  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    The reason that this is become so Polarizing is that most people cannot understand a practical use case for saving a few seconds on boot up time. most people do not want flex to waste one iota of their precious development time on saving a couple seconds To further exasperate the situation there are so many practical workarounds like just leave the radio on but the use case doesn't make much sense to anyone except for the very few people who seem to want it. So I guess what I'm saying is that unless the questionnaire could put forth a use case that was easily understandable as to why he needs a fast Boot ( clue that it feels better ) and why the numerous practical workarounds do not work anymore people just think it's a silly question
  • mlstutler
    mlstutler Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    It was just a question.  All I wanted to know if it boots faster.  I did not advise the community or Flex that this was a priority.  I assumed the boot latency was due to hardware not software.  

    This thread has shown me that this community is no different than the Icom community that bashes Flex at every turn.   I was hoping that maybe one person at Xenia asked a Flex rep the boot time question for the 6400 / 6600.  

    I never said the boot up time was a deal breaker.  Like George said earlier in his post :

    Faster boot time? Sure, would love it. Think we're probably pushing the state of technology with what we have now.

    That was all I needed to know.  I don't need the community's wisdom on how to run my station. 

    I am done with the community.  There are far more important things in life than this. 
  • Ria
    Ria Member ✭✭
    edited November 2019
    I don't think it will be significantly different. The radio server has to boot Linux and that is what takes time. Ria
  • Mark WS7M
    Mark WS7M Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Point taken... But if you need to be QRV that fast then leave everything on, at least that stuff that takes a while to boot up including the ever required computer at the station these days.

    I will say that the 6500 is doing a lot more on boot up than most amps.  My SPE 1K is not ready for about 10 seconds on boot.
  • Mark WS7M
    Mark WS7M Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    I think it is just the timing and perhaps how the question was asked.  You lead in with "complaint" and there are lots of people a bit sore around here...

    And quite frankly, you know Hams... they will always try to tell you what to do.  :)
  • Ken - NM9P
    Ken - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    Mike, I think most of the comments have not really been directed at you, per se. But as Mark said, you prefaced your question with "one of the complaints I have heard is..." and in the next post responded with "The anti-Flex crowd uses that as one of the minuses the Flex has....."

    I think those two statements were probably the pieces of raw meat that triggered the "Here we go again" reaction. Not to mention the post Hamvention and post contest adrenaline in the community.

    As I reread my own post -- which was intended to be a humorous and light-hearted response the "anti-flexers" you mentioned, giving you some practical responses for them -- I can see that it may have come off sounding a bit condescending , which was not intended. My apologies if it offended you.

    In any case, we don't yet have boot-up stats on the new rigs. However, since all of the 6000 series...old and new... have multiple processors which must boot up in sequence. And the "M" series have an additional processor to run the control panel. So I doubt that there will be any earth-shattering difference in boot-up times.

    Ken - NM9P
  • Ned K1NJ
    Ned K1NJ Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017

         In any case, the time it takes to boot today will likely be different from the time
    it takes to boot when it is released. So, a "real" answer will have to wait.

    Ned, K1NJ

  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    And BTW, at least the IC-756 Pro's have a boot up time as well. Someone's going to miss an ATNO because of the ten seconds they had to wait. 

  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    Every solution to the complaint was dismissed as unacceptable. At that point, it become indistinguishable from complaints for the sake of complaining. But if indeed was legitimate complaining, and none of the solutions offered are acceptable, then a radio that boots instantaneously is required, and a Flex Radio does not meet that requirement, and therefore is not an acceptable radio. And yes, the new radios will probably have a similar boot time, but few among us know.

    Now that being said, I think  the community exercised great restraint  in airing  their responses.
  • James Whiteway
    edited May 2017
    Mike, I do not know the definitive answer to your question regarding boot time for the new radios, but, I suspect it will be close to the same as the current 6000 series radios. The  radios run a variant of Linux and that OS, (just like Windows) takes time to load. Plus the radios do a calibration and systems check since there are several processors in the radio besides the FPGA. I think given the  type of system the 6000 series radios are (not just SDR, but servers as well) accounts for the difference between flipping the switch on my Yaesu FT-1000MP MKV and it being up and running in a short time, (biggest wait on that radio is the display) and the wait time of my 6500, which takes a bit less than a minute,
       Don't give up on the community,  sometimes folks get defensive about their radios, (same with any given brand) and over react to a simple question. For a better answer, I'd call FRS tomorrow and ask if they can provide an answer for you. I plan to ask that next week at the HAMCOM hamfest in Dallas next week. Plus, get up close and personal (in the  crowd that sure to be at Flex Radio's booth) with the 6600M I have on pre-order .
    james
    WD5GWY
     
  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member
    edited May 2017
    Who was silenced? The question was asked, then people answered, and none of the solutions were acceptable. Tht's pretty cut and dried. 

    Now let's look at the boot up issue. This far out from product release, it is very likely that FlexRadio Systems could not at this time give an accurate response regarding boot time.  That will likely be known by them only as the new radios are very near to release. And I'd bet it will be similar. 

    When asked why, the poster noted that "haters" found bootup time a problem, then showed pretty clearly that he did also. That told everyone that he agreed with the "haters" that bootup time was a problem. In that vein, I believe we exercised great discretion, as I have certain thoughts about the boot up time that I definitely didn't air. 

    Anyhow, electronic posting can be a problem when dealing in matters of intent.  Most of us will apologize if we think we've gone too far. Meanwhile, the thread goes on, and no one has been silenced.
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    For the M models I would think the startup time will be good..but the other models still have computer startup time.
  • N6OIL
    N6OIL Member ✭✭
    edited September 2018
    I leave mine on pretty much 24/7 so I can send my spots to PSK Reporter and HamSpots for JT65.
  • Paul Christensen, W9AC
    Paul Christensen, W9AC Member ✭✭
    edited May 2017
    >"I don't understand why this seemingly straightforward question has polarised people."

    I don't understand it either -- It's not as if a faster boot-time request impinges on the user experience of others, nor should it detract from FRS' ongoing coding resources.   

    I have lost several DX contacts due to slow boot time and amplifier warm-up time when using some of my older vacuum tube amps. Thankfully, we no longer need to wait for filaments to come up to temperature on transceivers like we did when operating older Heath and Drake gear from decades ago. 

    Moreover, some of us simply do not want to leave our 6K transceivers operating 24/7, especially if our operating time is erratic like mine - primarily due to work constraints.  That's becoming a foreign concept to the growing number of users who have time sit, play, and be unproductive all day.  Allow me to digress:  I don't mean to nitpick this but I find that as time goes on, a growing number of my radio friends and family automatically assume that if they are retired then I have their free time too.  If I choose to run an instant-on solid-state amp, then I would also like to operate a near "instant on" transceiver. 

    There may be an option to satisfy both crowds: first, without an official response from FRS, we do not know if the ~ 1-minute boot time is absolutely compulsory or if some of that time can be pared back if we choose to bypass some diagnostics.  If that time is mandatory, so be it.  Then leave it as it is.  But, if it's not, perhaps FRS could offer a user boot option with a quick double-press of the power button within 1 second, enters a fast boot mode.  That would cause the most efficient boot at the expense of a more precise boot routine that runs diagnostics.  Under the fast boot option, make your DX contact, then conduct a full reboot after moving on.  Both crowds may then be satisfied.  

    Paul, W9AC 
  • Mike VE3CKO
    Mike VE3CKO Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2017
    If I'm correct the radios use Linux o/s, Maestro uses Windows 10 so unless they are changing the o/s for Maestro and totally re-writing software (highly unlikely), the 6600M will have two o/s booting up simultaneously. The front panel and radio will have to poll each other to see if ready. That could add milliseconds or even seconds, oh my.

    I could be wrong as did make a mistake once a few years ago. That's a joke!

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