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  • Alternative software for connecting a computer to Carrera digital tracks

    The software available at my website (check the home page in my profile) allows you to connect a computer directly to the Control Unit and use it as a lap counter/lap timer. You need an appropriate serial-to-USB cable (or PC Unit). No seperate lap counter is needed. You can connect to one of the old lap counters (#30342), but not all features are available when connected to a lap counter.

    Software includes random race 'events' (flat tire, breakdown, etc), the ability to slow cars that are out of fuel, automatic adjustment of the max speed and brake settings for each car and car/driver combination and much more.

    Newest version includes sector timing. Connect one or two of the 30342 lap counters as well as a CU and get two or three split times along with your lap times.

    v2.0 introduced an 'Easy Mode', which offers a much simpler and cleaner interface that can be used for starting most races. The old interface is still available as an 'Advanced Mode' for those who want more control.

    v2.1 Introduced a display server feature that lets the software serve times, position, fuel, etc information to any device connected to the same local network as the track computer. Smart phones, tablets, other PCs and laptops, even a smart TV with a browser that supports the WebSocket protocol. iOS, android, and Amazon Fire devices can all be used.

    v2.2 added TeamRadio to the display server feature- connected devices can now receive audio updates re: fuel, race position, lap and sector times, etc.
    Last edited by b.yingling; 02-08-2018, 08:26 AM.

  • #2
    Can't wait to get home and try this out....

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    • #3
      IF YOU HAVE AN EXISTING VERSION!

      Make a back up!! A German user wiped his car database, but did have a backup. I know what caused his problem, but I probably won't be able to fix it before tomorrow.
      Last edited by b.yingling; 11-25-2011, 01:32 PM.

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      • #4
        I did put a new version up this evening with a fix for the nasty bug that fouled a German user's car database. Luckily he made a backup before using the beta. I also improved the start light synchronization. No more lock ups (I hope).

        Remember: the beta does not have all of the support files necessary to run on its own. You have to unzip the package in a folder containing a working version of the software.

        This is why I can't stress enough: make a backup. All you need to do is copy the contents of the program's folder (and subfolders) to a CD. Five minutes.

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        • #5
          I dont have the new cu yet and i dont have an old lap counter but I have rewired my old carrera bridge style lap counter to work with my laptop. What do i need exactly to upgrade to your system. Ive downloaded your software and upgrraded to beta version but I have no connections.Can you help a slow but steady learner. Thanks Great looking software.

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          • #6
            My software is for D132/D124 digital systems only. I'm not sure how that lap counter is going to read digital car IDs?

            If you have a digital system, and you want to connect it to a computer, I'd definitely recommend the new Control Unit. Then you need the proper serial-to-USB adapter cable to connect the CU to a computer. SCI member Slotfiend makes and sells them at a very reasonable price. You can also buy the Carrera PC Unit and use that.

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            • #7
              I have the D132 system and have been waiting for the new stuff. Now im ready to upgrade to a more stable system than I have now. Thanks for the reply Ill try to get in touch with the other member to order a cable.

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              • #8
                If you are using the software, or are planning to use it, please download the latest update!
                Last edited by b.yingling; 11-25-2011, 01:34 PM.

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                • #9
                  Beat 1.32 findings

                  Bruce -

                  A couple of items I've noticed now that I have 1.32 installed:

                  1. Still not seeing the fuel gauge appear in practice mode when Real mode being used.

                  2. In Real mode when racing the "Driver 1 you are low on fuel" message is playing when the tank is 3/4's full. I tried this using various settings. I didn't run into this with 1.31.

                  3. How does the fuel setting work on your RMS? I see you can select 1-15. Pre the new equipment we ran our cars at level 6. What would that equate to now?

                  4. I've entered new driver's in the Drivers database but can't seem to get them to stay in the DB. They don't appear as selectable drivers when you bring up the driver assignment screen however when you click the Add button in the driver assignment screen the drivers appear multiple times (I created the same driver a couple of times since they weren't staying in the DB),

                  I'll play around more tonight. Are you getting your adapter in time for the weekend? Thanks.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by guinner View Post
                    Bruce -

                    A couple of items I've noticed now that I have 1.32 installed:

                    1. Still not seeing the fuel gauge appear in practice mode when Real mode being used.

                    2. In Real mode when racing the "Driver 1 you are low on fuel" message is playing when the tank is 3/4's full. I tried this using various settings. I didn't run into this with 1.31.

                    3. How does the fuel setting work on your RMS? I see you can select 1-15. Pre the new equipment we ran our cars at level 6. What would that equate to now?

                    4. I've entered new driver's in the Drivers database but can't seem to get them to stay in the DB. They don't appear as selectable drivers when you bring up the driver assignment screen however when you click the Add button in the driver assignment screen the drivers appear multiple times (I created the same driver a couple of times since they weren't staying in the DB),

                    I'll play around more tonight. Are you getting your adapter in time for the weekend? Thanks.
                    1. I can't track this one down. I'll have to take another look. For now click the 'Show all IDs...' checkbox and you should see the fuel gauges.

                    2. What do you have the low fuel threshold number set to? The default is 2. When your fuel level drops to the low fuel threshold number, the low fuel message plays. My bet is you've set it to 12.

                    3. You can't select any fuel level within the RMS. You can change it at race start by clicking the lane change button- but that's because the CU changes the fuel level in your car. The software just reflects what the CU reports. The 0..15 fuel level is what the hardware allows- it isn't something the RMS came up with. As to fuel tank size of 6, I assumed the tank capacity still worked as it did before? Meaning you can still set the size of the fuel tank the same way you always could. If your tank size is set to 6, you will drain from 15 down to 0 quicker than if your tank size is set to 10. I assumed that was how they implemented fuel burn, as it makes the most sense, but I don't know. I can't test it yet.

                    4. They are in your database. That's why they're showing up more than once on the assignment window. They just aren't showing up in the drivers list that opens when you start the program. Do they appear if you click the 'Add' button on the main screen? Did you create them and then only use them in a practice session? The program doesn't auto-save a practice setup. What happens if you open a saved list of drivers that contains them?

                    I'm not expecting to see my pit adapter until next Monday or Tuesday....

                    (Edit to add- the tank capacity probably isn't part of real fuel management, as that info is maintained by the car chip, and the car chip has no way to transmit the tank size to the CU)
                    Last edited by b.yingling; 12-10-2010, 07:14 AM.

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                    • #11
                      I'm excited about the new (CU) control unit as well. You PC guys are lucky to have Bruce on the front line for you. Once my CU arrives next week I'm going to see if/how Slotbaer's trusty old Mac software iLap will work with the new BB technology.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by bostonbob View Post
                        I'm excited about the new (CU) control unit as well. You PC guys are lucky to have Bruce on the front line for you. Once my CU arrives next week I'm going to see if/how Slotbaer's trusty old Mac software iLap will work with the new BB technology.
                        It does! And we're all lucky to have Slotbaer, as he's the guy who makes it possible by decoding and sharing the Carrera protocol.

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                        • #13
                          I seem to have finally nailed down the start light sequence. v1.32 improves on v1.31, but the next release should be even better.

                          I found I had to slow down the rate at which the software polled the CU to prevent the lockups. Once the start sequence is over, the software goes back to the normal, quicker rate of asking the CU 'Whats up!'. There is one small downside to this- cars need to be placed a bit behind the sensors on the CU. If not, quick reflexes can cause the first car across the CU to be missed.

                          I've found placing the cars at the edge of the CU track piece, rather than the middle of it, is sufficient. I think I am going to take the starting grid track off of my old BB and place it immediately in front of the CU and use it for the starting position.

                          Edit to add: v1.33 is on the website. Tomorrow I'll be able to begin testing the fuel stuff and see if it works the way I intended. Guinner- I think it fixes the problem of fuel gauges not displaying in practice mode. I'll know for sure on Sunday.
                          Last edited by b.yingling; 12-12-2010, 06:27 AM.

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                          • #14
                            Bruce i have been testing the beta for about 4 hours. I have only found 4 issues.

                            1. I think it has been mentioned before. on the position tower ,the positions work but not the laps(when pc cable plugged in). And the information on the tower does not reset at the start of a new race.
                            When the pc cable is unplugged the tower works fine.

                            2. When you push the start button to start a race, the previous fuel information ( on the driver display ) do not reset to full, With the cable plugged in. unplugged works fine.

                            3. When you press start the driver display does not reset the race position, or the times that you pitted either, with the pc cable plugged in. unplugged works fine

                            4. Also when you press start you cannot set your fuel level at the start of the race with the lane change button (the fuel level does not flash). I did notice at the start of a race (with the pc cable unplugged) the fuel gauge on the driver display flashes, it can be changed when it flashes.

                            thanks bruce!
                            Last edited by Dommie; 12-12-2010, 05:23 PM.

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                            • #15
                              Hey Bruce-

                              Had our regular Saturday night races last night. First time we raced with the new stuff and we used 1.33. Everything worked really well and the Real mode was really fun. To eliminate some of the issues Dommie described I ended up resetting the CU after each race. The only thing that jumped out at me was something that I've run into with the old RMS. After completing a race in race mode we use practice mode for qualifying. Almost every time we go right from race mode to practice mode the RMS does not pick up any of the drivers or their times. My work around is to close out the RMS after every race , start it back up and click on practice and without fail it works every time. Thanks again.

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