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Windows 10 "Anniversary Update" - Any SmartSDR concerns?

Steve K9ZW
Steve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
edited June 2020 in SmartSDR for Windows

With Windows 10 Anniversary Update rolling out just under a week from now, are there any SmartSDR issues/concerns/hints to get past this major update?

Rumble is that Windows 10 Anniversary Update is basically the latest Windows 10 Insider Edition with some final launch tweaks.  As several Community Members have said they are doing the Windows Insider updates I'm hoping they may have some advice.

Do we need to budget time to do one of the SmartSDR update procedures or will Windows 10 Anniversary Update install without messing about with SmartSDR/SmartCAT/DAX?

Thank you in advance to any community members and/or FRS who can offer planning advice for this upgrade to Windows 10.

73

Steve K9ZW

«1

Answers

  • Al_NN4ZZ
    Al_NN4ZZ Loganville GAMember ✭✭✭
    edited March 2017
    Steve,
    If you haven't seen it, there is a video that outlines the changes, and as you noted they seem to be mostly UI tweaks and a few other enhancements to programs that shouldn't impact SSDR.  (but you never know with Win updates)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=004slmUSxHk

    I was installing the insider updates on a test machine for a while but stopped when things got stable. 

    Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
    al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
    6700 - HW.................. V 1.8.4.84
    SSDR / DAX / CAT...... V 1.8.4.168
    Win10
  • Bill -VA3WTB
    Bill -VA3WTB Member ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    From that thread it looks like you know better than anyone Steve. So fix it then. As you state, that Flex is ignoring the problem.
  • Steve G1XOW
    Steve G1XOW Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Bill, thanks, but I already spend 6 days every week in my business fixing problems. I want radio to be my hobby if you don't mind. SSDR is not my baby, however, I will look deeper when time allows. Paying clients come first.

    ...trying desperately not to own a dog yet still finding the need to bark myself!

  • Dan -- KC4GO
    Dan -- KC4GO Member
    edited March 2018
    I'm running Windows Insider updates and have no problems. 
    I did create a COM port issue the other day but it was self inflicted. 
    As I look at most of the problems I have that seems to be the case.. 

  • Peter K1PGV
    Peter K1PGV Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    FWIW... I'm running the latest "fast ring" update (effectively an early release candidate of the Anniversary Update) on a Surface Pro 1 and I have the latest version of SSDR installed. I haven't tested it extensively, but I haven't had any problems so far. Peter K1PGV
  • KC9NRN
    KC9NRN Member
    edited October 2016
    I'm also on the fast ring, before each OS upgrade I uninstalled SmartSDR, when completed I installed SmartSDR again, so far it has worked flawlessly.
  • Gene - K3GC
    Gene - K3GC Member ✭✭
    edited February 2018
    I have insider build 14393.5 installed on my test machine.  As normal procedure I uninstalled  SSDR  1.8.4.
    When I reinstalled SSDR FlexVSP did not install,and reinstall, uninstall, and reinstall had no effect.  I finally did a search for  FlexVSP in Windows explorer and ran it from there.  It installed perfectly and there have been no further issues.
    Not having done further testing I do not know the cause and it may well be unique to my setup.
  • G8ZPX
    G8ZPX Member
    edited July 2018
    My previous post on this thread was removed earlier by Tim for suggesting the issue was being ignored, so for clarity here are 2 statements of fact :-

    1)      I have raised a couple of threads over a number of weeks about this problem.

    2)      At no point has FRS provided any official response by way of

    a.       acknowledging the problem

    b.       provided feedback that is being (or will be) investigated

    c.       come up with a practical solution

    The crux of this problem is that other than preventing Windows updates for good, this problem will not go away, and may perpetuate with every new Windows update that requires a registry refresh or a driver enumeration.

    Windows updates tend to happen in a chaotic way, almost randomly applied (often unannounced) during the shutdown and/or start-up routines. This means that you cannot take avoiding action before it happens (you won’t know when until it’s too late). You just have to sort out the mess afterwards.

    Suggesting a removal and fresh install of SSDR etc before every Windows update is dreadful. Even then you will still somehow need to know that the particular update is going to cause conflicts.

    I have seen reports of similar issues on this forum regarding Win 8.1 updates vs CAT/DAX, so it is certainly not a new issue.

    The anniversary release begins full roll-out from August 2nd. Fingers crossed!


  • Tim - W4TME
    Tim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited December 2016
    I recommend making a comprehensive search of the Community before making any proclamations of fact.

    The following post (https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/ms-windows10-auto-update-3-2016-warning), I wrote...

    The issue of Windows 10 upgrade trashing DAX and sometimes theCAT drivers is not a systemic issue by any means.  It is a real issue that affects a small percentage of our user base.  Some people experience the unpleasantness multiple times, which I know is very frustrating.  There are many, like Lee and myself that do not or have not experienced driver corruption issues with the Windows 10 update.  I did experience issues with the technical preview updates, but none with the release updates.
    We have and continue to investigate these issue when they arise, collecting data  in order to  determine any possible commonality that might lead to a clue as to what might be the triggering factor.  Unfortunately, to date, we have not discovered anything definitive.

    DAX seems to be more susceptible for getting hosed that any other part of the ecosystem.  I believe it is because DAX is emulating hardware with software (a virtual sound card interface) rather that a driver that is communicating with actual hardware.  The Windows sound system has been notoriously difficult to deal with for a very long time.  We have been "dealing" with sound cards and sound card drivers since the introduction of the original three board stack (the precursor to the DSP-1000), so this isn't our first rodeo.

    Leaving the SmartSDR ecosystem (SmartSDR, CAT and DAX) running when Windows does an OS update is not a best practice.  When Windows does a forced reboot, all sorts of things can go wrong.

    The aforementioned post covers your A-D points.  However, I reiterated that doing an uninstall of the SmartSDR ecosystem prior to an OS upgrade is a viable workaround with my official response on this post (https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/windows-10-upgrade-issues)

    This process has been verified by many community subscribers.

    Is this the "best" or most elegant solution?  Of course not.  But given the fact that we have not been able to identify root cause (which is required for a fix) nor have been provided any information from any other sources that identifies root cause, this current best practice is the most practical at this time.

  • KC9NRN
    KC9NRN Member
    edited October 2016
    Steve - Nobody is saying uninstall before every OS "update", the suggestion is before any OS "upgrade" remove SmartSDR and when the upgrade has been completed install SmartSDR again.

    Many of us are on the Windows Insider program so we get the OS upgrades on a fast or slower pace (ring) depending on which one the person chose. These are OS upgrades to a slightly newer version so Microsoft can vet additions or fixes prior to rolling them out to the public..

    The Anniversary Update is actually an Upgrade to the OS, similar to Service packs in the past. So, updates are fine and as far as I know have been so no need to remove SmartSDR since updates if scheduled can occur weekly.
  • G8ZPX
    G8ZPX Member
    edited July 2016
    Tim,

    Maybe you misunderstood. I mean my posts (recent questions) have not been replied to. Yes I can see those from over 4 months ago got put on the shelf. I was kind of hoping for some update/progress.

    in fact now you mention it, I can see many many posts on the same CAT & DAX vs W10 issues going back well over 12 months.
  • Steve K9ZW
    Steve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited May 2019

    Hopefully I have followed all this reasonably well.

    What I am taking away is:

    • Most systems seem to deal with the periodic Updates - the push stuff that Microsoft pushes to Windows 10 users to tweak/repair/adjust things.  In general unless you have had Update woes before you generally do not need to go through the remove & reinstall.

    • Less systems weather the full "service pack like" Upgrades - the instances where Microsoft does a larger scale overhaul of the Windows Package without a remove and install.  The same higher risk applies if upgrading Windows versions (say 8.1 to 10).

    • In all cases YMMV as the individual Windows Hardware/Software "brew" is varied in ways that can either mess with usually safe practices or even allow continued trouble free performance when problems might be expected.

    • In all cases allow either Updates or Upgrades to load while the SmartSDR systems are running is not a safe practice. 

    • The exact mechanisms that are causing problems are non-obvious and elusive, preventing FRS from reworking the SmartSDR infrasystem without risking breaking things but just in a different way.


    Whittled down further I've taken away simple rules:

    1. Don't let Windows 10 Update when SmartSDR ecosystem is running, though without SmartSDR running usually you can let Updates happen.

    2. Don't let Windows 10 Upgrade without making a backup of your profiles, doing the recommended removal preparation (which means by definition SmartSDR cannot be running) and then reinstall SmartSDR per recommendations after the Upgrade.

    3. If it breaks, try the FRS repair procedures first, and if they don't work put in a repair ticket so you can get the customized assistance your particular setup might need.

    Did I get the gist of all this right?  I'd really like to boil it down to a sort of a checklist for use with the hams I help with their setups.

    Critique/corrections appreciated.

    73

    Steve K9ZW


  • Al_NN4ZZ
    Al_NN4ZZ Loganville GAMember ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Hi Steve,

    RE: Don't let Windows 10 Upgrade without ..... doing the recommended removal preparation... 

    I've been doing all of my SSDR updates and Windows updates without removing SSDR first.  Maybe it's just been luck but so far no issues for either type.   I figured I can always do the removal and re-install later if I have trouble.    And so far haven't needed to. 

    The process of not removing the SSDR application is how I assume  Windows updates should work given I don't remove any of my other Windows applications when doing Windows updates.  

    I would be interested to hear if any others are using the same process for Windows updates. 

    Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
    al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
    6700 - HW.................. V 1.8.4.84
    SSDR / DAX / CAT...... V 1.8.4.168
    Win10
  • G8ZPX
    G8ZPX Member
    edited July 2016
    Steve,

    Almost **** on. But just a couple of notes. The way Windows updates/upgrades/releases are now being shaped, it is often hard to separate one from the other, or understand exactly what will get changed. Experienced I.T. guys tend to look long and hard and what will be changed before pressing the go button. For example I have seen a single driver update in W10 prevent the machine from booting afterwards.

    It looks like MS is aiming to make Windows an almost constantly moving feast of dribble-feeds, no new versions/releases etc, just meandering into the future.

    Before anything major like say the 1511 or the Anniversary upgrade I would always recommend a full image backup (to another drive) of the whole machine, it is not just SSDR that may go **** up.
  • G8ZPX
    G8ZPX Member
    edited July 2016
    Hi Tim, Agreed and this is said in jest with a smile on my face, so don't take offence please...

    If you spend too much time tasting honey, then don't be too surprised when the pile of festering poop goes **** all over your forum. 
  • Al_NN4ZZ
    Al_NN4ZZ Loganville GAMember ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    @Steve / K9ZW,
    You are probably already doing this but here is another thing to consider adding to your notes for the major updates.  Do the update  on a lower risk device (PC or Tablet) first if you have a few devices.   Here we have a Surface Pro Tab and a few Win10 PCs.  In addition to potentially discovering any issues, it gives you a chance to evaluate the changes.  My shack Win10 PC is the last one I update.


    @Steve / G1XOW,
    RE: Experienced I.T. guys tend to look long and hard and what will be changed before pressing the go button.

    I haven't had much luck finding out the details of what is included in the Win10 updates before the updates are applied and not much detail afterwards either.  Some of the descriptions are pretty vague.  And the new update process is not like on the older versions where you could pick and choose what to install after reading the descriptions.   Is there somewhere you have found that level of detail for Win10 updates?


    Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
    al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
    6700 - HW.................. V 1.8.4.84
    SSDR / DAX / CAT...... V 1.8.4.168
    Win10
  • Tim - W4TME
    Tim - W4TME Administrator, FlexRadio Employee admin
    edited December 2016
    Actually, #2, making a backup of your profiles really isn't required because they are stored on the radio, not the PC.
  • Walt - KZ1F
    Walt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    Al, I've never noticed on a Windows 10 update being asked first or being able to schedule it when it's convenient for me, What am I missing about Windows 10?

    This could all be avoided because, for whatever reason, Windows 7 didn't have this problem, people could just regress back to Win7.
  • Al_NN4ZZ
    Al_NN4ZZ Loganville GAMember ✭✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Walt,
    With Win10 PRO you have some control.    

    You can set your system to a metered connection and it won't even download them. 
     
    You can set when they get installed (or at least when your PC is restarted to activate them).

    You can "defer" the updates. 

    See snapshots below....but agree I liked the Win7 and previous models better.,

    Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
    al (at) nn4zz (dot) com
    6700 - HW.................. V 1.8.4.84
    SSDR / DAX / CAT...... V 1.8.4.168
    Win10


    image

    image

    image



  • Jay Nation
    Jay Nation Member ✭✭
    edited August 2016
    Steve K97W

    Your rules appear correct to me.

    I'll go way above my paygrade, and point out that whats going on is that for the upgraded files, inside the upgrade to be installed they have to overwrite some of the existing files that are parts of the running Windows 10 system. Windows can't overwrite a running file that's running from Memory (RAM) it "might" be able to overwrite the old file on the disk though. But later it might also overwrite that upgraded file with the older file from memory.

    The best approach is going to require ensuring that it's not holding any of the files in the upgrade "open" in memory. So first turn off as much audio related, stuff as possible. remember also that SmartSDR CAT, and DAX, get started at login, (at least they do here), so they also need to be turned off. Both might be holding Win10 Audio files/code, open in memory.

    Trying to place the blame on SmartSDR for problems being created by Windows is not part of figuring all this out. (and no one's suggesting that anyone is). The same issues apply when it's SmartSDR that doing the upgrade, (don't blame Windows for those either)

    Can't really expect a foolproof procedure, when fools are performing the procedure.
    Just pointing out there is a human factor (Did not intend to call anyone a fool), involved.

    My possibly overkill solution has been to disable SmartSDR CAT and DAX login startups. and the reboot the PC before installing upgrades.

    Ever notice that Windows Updates get installed Pre-Login and Post-Logout, that might be to ensure that nothing is loaded in memory when the overwrite happens.
     
    There is really quite a bit of stuff going on behind the curtain.

    73, Jay - NO5J
  • John, G3WKL
    John, G3WKL Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    Walt With the "base" Win 10 edition (Home?) you can defer the auto-update by connecting via WiFi and setting WiFi as "metered". Override this or connect via Ethernet when you are ready to install the updates/upgrades. 73 John, G3WKL
  • Walt - KZ1F
    Walt - KZ1F Member ✭✭
    edited November 2016
    Thanks John, thanks Al. Sorry guys, I agree with Steve on this one. Those are extraordinary counter measures to try to mitigate something from happening that never should anyway. I already don't want Windows 10 but I had to replace the machine that had Win7 so I 'inherited' win10. There is no way I'd actually pay extra for it. But that's me. I found another solution though so, in that sense, who am I to try and point out the obvious.


  • G8ZPX
    G8ZPX Member
    edited July 2018
    okay, maybe I found a clue.

    I had a full image backup of the machine just before, and another straight after the W10 upgrade. So, I thought I'd spend some time comparing them on a couple of VMs. Should be in bed long ago but this has got the better of me.

    When I unlocked the reg key allowing me to see hidden devices I found some ghosted ports. These were there even on the pre W10 upgrade image! something like COM110 to COM119 I think.

    I have not created these ports so I am guessing they might have been there for some time, maybe a previous version of SSDR, or maybe whilst having several SSDR versions installed concurrently. I really don't know where they would have sprung from.

    My proper ports are in 3 Groups. COM1=build-in mobo port, COM2 USB to RS232 port (adaptor), COM6-9 PCIe board to give 4 extra 232 ports for SteppIR, rotator etc., COM5 = SSDR

    I removed all the previously ghosted ports and then did the W10 update again and all went fine. So that is definitely the priority thing to check before an upgrade. With luck it may be the only thing to check, narrowing the effort and agro involved at least.
  • Jay Nation
    Jay Nation Member ✭✭
    edited May 2020
    Steve - G1XOW

    Yes, your on top of it now.

    Somehow Windows cluttered up your serial ports.
    For some reason Windows like to keep it's messes hidden.
    Once ghosted they will hang around forever it seems.
    The only real solution is to start over without the clutter.

    And that requires "manually" removing/deleting/uninstalling each ghosted port, one at a time until none remain.

    I'd swear I've seen Ghosted ports return after a reboot, immediately after removing/deleting/uninstalling all of the ghosted ports. So I throw in an extra reboot and re-verification, that they have really all been removed.

    Probably just an extra, un-needed, step.
    Caused by my own magical thinking, but I do it anyway just for luck.

    It seems to be more about Upgrades, either Windows, or SmartSDR, being performed over Ghosted Serial ports, and sometimes Ghosted DAX devices. 

    Cleaning out the clutter first is the solution.

    But if there's no hidden clutter, upgrades shouldn't break things. And your much more likely to enjoy quick/simple trouble free upgrades. 

    BTW, nothing wrong with having Image backups ready, ahead of time.

    I Do!image

    73, Jay - NO5J  
  • Steve G1XOW
    Steve G1XOW Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Jay,

    Almost 20 years ago whilst still in training we were sent to do a major upgrade on a Server. About 120 local clients, and about 40 dial-in users on an IBM AS/400

    The I.T manager on the site gave repeated assurance that they had a good backup from the night before so it was safe to proceed.

    Anyway, cut the story short, it all went pear-shaped and we needed to revert to the backup.  In then turned out that whilst his software was reporting a good backup to the cartridge (yes tape), the spooling motor had died long ago. Turned out they did not have a clean backup in over 6 months!

    We had to revert to the 6 month old copy after recalling it from their archive safe some 120 miles away. 2 days of downtime and a loss of 6 months of corporate data.
    I got fired (educated) that we I.T professionals should never ever trust a customer, especially one that calls themselves an I.T. mangler.

    My ethos: belt, braces and 2 pairs of pants to be sure. My engineers think I suffer from Backup-OCD, but I only got fired the once!

    73
  • Jay Nation
    Jay Nation Member ✭✭
    edited August 2016
    Steve 

    I was once close enough to hear the screaming when my manager made the mistake of approving an experienced tech doing a little minor mechanical maintenance on a 5ESS switch, outside of the normally "inviolate" Maintenance Window. Accidentally, a nice shiny wrench fell thru the ventilation openings of the switch, down into the innards. After the flames were extinguished and power was restored to the building ... everyone got busy with replacing the majority of the 5ESS switch. Our manager was given 6 months of further employment while, he paid a personal visit to each office in the entire state for a training conference about what Maintenance Windows were really all about. After his tour of shame, he was retired out. Telephone service was restored to the entire downtown Dallas business district after around 36 hours. The trouble hasn't returned either.

    Your story reminded me of this. Still makes me want to shudder.

    It was a Busy week!

    73, Jay - NO5J 
  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Hi Steve - Many people have had problems with Windows updates. Flex Radios are only one of many devices - I know, I spend a lot of time getting people's systems running again after updates. Audio problems are the most prevalent, and As long as the Flex radios and the others are using Windows 10, this is to be expected. Probably not what people want to hear, but part of life with Windows. 

    While I have not ever had the problem, it might be because I use Enterprise level and stable computers - who knows?

    But since I use my radio for emergency preparedness, and teach others the same, I also use DogPark on OS X. 

  • Michael Coslo
    Michael Coslo Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Walt - what happens after you defer an update as long as you can on W10 Pro, the update will arrive. I usually have to go back in to make certain that the update doesn't reset my settings, as it has several times. So after it gets reset, it doesn't bother to ask any more, just does it.
  • Jay Nation
    Jay Nation Member ✭✭
    edited August 2016
    All

    I'm just reporting this, and not advising anything. But once I quit trying to block the automatic installation of Windows updates, things improved. There has been some breakage once and a while, but it was breakage I could live with until subsequent updates eliminated the breakage. Image backups let me sleep peacefully overnight.
    I did have to resort to the ...
    https://helpdesk.flexradio.com/hc/en-us/articles/204975589-How-to-do-a-Complete-uninstall-of-SmartSD... 
    instructions once, but I've gotten pretty good at that.

    If blocking updates is working for you, Stick to what works for you.

    For me it's easier to leave it automatic, so far.image

    But there's nothing "mission critical" going on in my shack.
    And frankly, I enjoy the challenges

    73, Jay - NO5J

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