CW Skimmer Problems

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I am trying to get CW skimmer running and it appears to work fine when going to slice A but not other slices. I am using skimmer V2.0 and sdrbridge v1.5.1. Slice A is running in one panadapter and slice b in a second panadapter. The slice A pa is configured to dax iq1 and the slice B pa is configured to dax iq2. Skimmer is configured  to port 7310 for A slice and 7320 for B slice. DAX shows both iq channels are streaming and set to 96K. I can bring up skimmer just fine on slice A but when I enable slice B no data is transferred to skimmer. Any help as to what I might be doing wrong would be most welcome....

Thanks and 73's,
Harry
W0LS
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Harry Williams

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Posted 1 year ago

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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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K1DBO

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Give Slice Master 6000 a try.  It does about 95% of the CW Skimmer configuration for you.  It can usually tell you what went wrong if it cant manage to get it running on it's own.

You can find the README and download information here: https://github.com/K1DBO/slice-master-6000

 --Don
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K1DBO

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Harry,

It sure sounds like Slice Master is writing a good config file for CW Skimmer.  I'm at a loss for why it cant read data from the DAX channel.  

I do remember reading a post, though, where someone mentioned that their choice of "Audio I/O device" in the CW Skimmer settings caused a problem similar to yours.  But in your case, your working CW Skimmer is probably set to the same device as the non-working one.  It might be worth a look.

Another thing that makes no sense but sometimes helps is to go to DAX and toggle the stream on and off a couple of times.  This will usually cause Slice Master to stop and restart any CW Skimmers that are using that channel.

While in DAX what do you see when you hover the mouse over the button for the channel?  The button should be blue, it should say 'streaming' to the right and the hover will tell you about the current connection.  ...any chance something else on your network is using that channel? (Slice Master usually notices the busy condition)

Finally, shut down Slice Master and bring up the windows task manager. Look for any CWSkimmer.exe's that are running and kill them.  Since you just did a reboot, there shouldnt be any but... I've noticed that sometimes it will look like CWSkimmer is not running, but a process is left behind.  Usually when this happens, things dont work right.

Good luck!
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K1DBO

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That's great news Harry.

I'll have to add that to my list of trouble shooting question. 

I'm wondering though, did you look at the list of playback devices before running the uninstall scripts?  If you did, were there double entries for the DAX devices or did you have to remove the good ones before you could see the bad ones?
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Harry Williams

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Hey Don...no I could see the duplicates before I went into delete them...thats why I did it....

Harry
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K1DBO

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Good to know... my guess then is that I could write a test to check for the condition.  Were the duplicates showing up in CW Skimmer as "Signal I/O Device"  choices or only under the windows "Playback devices" settings?
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Harry Williams

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I was seeing the dups under windows playback devices. That display just seemed to be more readable. They might have been there in "Signal I/O Device" but that display was a little muddy...
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Harry Williams

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Thanks for the info...Tim I installed the sdrbridge beta but still have the problem but thanks for that. Don I will download your app and give that a whirl...and let you know the results...

Thanks,
Harry
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Rich McCabe

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I am having issues as well.  In my case the first instance (the one related to the IQ1.ini file) is slow. As soon as I enable it, the skimmer slows down to a crawl and looks smeared.  IQ streams 2,3 and 4 work fine.

I can check the box on SDR-Bridge for IQ1 and it will work as long as the slice is set to anything but IQ1 and CWskimmer is set to that IQ port as well.

I did a clean install on Smart SDR stripping out everything per Flex's instructions, did the same with SDR bridge and CWskimmer. I thought it was going to work, but did not last long before it deteriorated.
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k0eoo

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That's been my experience with CW Skimmer, not ready for prime time....
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Rich McCabe

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You would think that $75.00 means its ready for prime time !

:)
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K1DBO

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In all fairness guys, most of the CW Skimmer problems reported here in the community are related to configuration issues, not CW Skimmer itself.  The issue that started this thread (Harry's) turned out to be a Flex problem related to DAX drivers.  I'll even go out on a limb here and guess that Rich's problems are not directly related to CW Skimmer either. 

There are a lot of folks who have CW Skimmer working flawlessly with our radios and running on computers nearly identical to the ones having trouble.  The trick is finding the problem before giving up in frustration.  Working together as a community, I'm sure we can get to the bottom of this.  I'm also sure that if a particular problem can be attributed to CW Skimmer, Alex (VE3NEA) will put in the effort to correct it. 
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Rich McCabe

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I wish I could agree with that Don.

Even your CWS installation crashes with that error about 1 out of 10 times. That's a pretty poor track record.

If the program was not so powerful I think most people with give up on it.

But its an amazing program and I give Alex credit for his outstanding work.  However to think its OK for a $75.00 program to crash 1 out of 10 times (worse in my case) is just not acceptable.
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K1DBO

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I've put a bit of effort into trying to get CW Skimmer to crash when not run from inside Slice Master.  I'd like to send Alex a copy of the CW Skimmer log file when it happens.  Since I started the effort, I've been unable to do it.  I can, however, get it to crash consistently if after Slice Master launches it, I hit the 'X' button in CW Skimmer. So for now, I'm willing to blame that one on Slice Master.   
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Rich McCabe

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One thing you might try is shut down the skimmer and SDR-Bridge and see what ports are being used.

I just ran netstat and found my teamviewer is using port 7310 !

So I just changed my ports and going to see how that goes.
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Harry Williams

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Official Response
Well the problem has been solved after lots of fooling around. I finally discovered that I had duplicate DAX playback devices. So I used the scripts provided by Flex to uninstall the DAX drivers. Then I went into windows and looked at the list of playback devices and found I still had a number of DAX devices. So I highlighted each one, right clicked, and clicked on disable which got rid of it. I then rebooted the machine and checked again and all was well so then I went back in and ran the manual install scripts. Brought DAX back up and played with skimmer and now am able to run skimmer ok in multiple panadapters. Don't know how I ended up with duplicates but it was relatively easy to get rid of them.

Thanks,
Harry