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Old 11-16-2003, 04:37 PM   #1
T-WRX
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Default UTEC/USB Interface Issues - Please Help

I am trying to hook up my UTEC to a new laptop that has a USB.

I installed a USB -> Serial connection (radioshack), setting it to COM6.

The UTEC and Hyperterminal appear to communicate with each other, but instead of ASCII text, I get a bunch of x's and diamonds, little homeplate symbols, and other random looking garbage.

Does anyone have tips on what settings I need to change to obtain intelligible text again?
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Old 11-16-2003, 05:24 PM   #2
JustDSM
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Contact TXS directly. I needed a new UTEC.
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Old 11-16-2003, 05:52 PM   #3
T-WRX
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Thanks for the quick response JustDSM. I'll disconnect the UTEC to drive the car tomorrow, and contact TXS in the morning.

Some other odd things that may or may not be coincidental:

1) Long term (I've had the UTEC about 11 months), my serial cable connection would cut in/out. I figured the problem was with my laptop (from work), so I bit the bullet and bought a USB -> Serial connection to use my home laptop (no serial port).

2) As I needed to crack open the ECU panel to install the new cable, I figured before I changed out the cable, I'd upgrade from revision 2.5 to 3.1. First I saved all my maps, the I followed the instructions for the reflash. No problems at all with the firmware reflash.

3) When I went to upload my maps back onto the UTEC, my serial connection allowed me load one map, and then cut out again. I was able to re-establish, but it was intermittent. After about 1/2 hour, I could not re-establish a connection at all. Very frustrating. A search indicated that TXS Pete stated that bad serial cable connections were typically to blame. All connections appeared solid, so I figured it must be my laptop. What the hell, I was going to install the USB -> Serial anyway for the new laptop, so I got to work on it.

4) Once I got the USB hooked up, I could establish a connection with the UTEC, but could only view the gobbledygook posted above.

5) To my further dismay, when I keyed the ignition to "on", the UTEC no longer flashed the CEL to indicate what MAP I was on. I turned the dial to multiple settings, but no CEL flash when keying the ignition. Bizarre. This got me wondering if it was my laptop causing the issues, or if the UTEC itself was acting up? Did I need to reflash again? I was getting cold and frustrated in the garage, so I packed it up and posted above.

6) So . . . now I am afraid to drive the car at all until I either reestablish a connection, or disconnect the UTEC.

If it does happen to be a bad UTEC, it will be my second. My first UTEC put the car in limp mode regardless of setting. I spent a month troubleshooting it with TXS (slowly - I was really busy at work) before we gave up on it, and they sent me a new one.

TXS' customer service has been awesome with me in the past - so I look forward to hearing their assessment. Hopefully it is just something stupid, a quick fix.
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Old 11-16-2003, 07:47 PM   #4
JustDSM
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When my UTEC did what your experiencing now, I was able to switch maps via the remote selector (and it would flash the CE indicating which map I was using) however I was completely unable to connect to it.

At first TXS had me try a new serial cable.. No luck.. Then they verified my settings.. No luck.. They had me return it and had another at my doorstep in 2 days.

Keep that picture. Nathan wanted to take a peek at what mine was doing and I expect him to do the same.

Good luck resolving this.
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Old 11-16-2003, 09:48 PM   #5
T-WRX
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Well, I gave it one last shot. I reconnected my serial cable and repeated the firmware reflash using my work computer.



Everything now works like it is supposed to. While I am frustrated that I wasted so much time this afternoon and evening, I am also relieved that I do not need to remove the UTEC from the vehicle.

I'll still call TXS in the morning to see what they have to say . . .
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Old 11-17-2003, 09:02 AM   #6
JustDSM
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I'd be interested in what they've got to say.. please reply here.
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Old 11-30-2003, 04:02 PM   #7
John Sever
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Yeah please let us know what they say, I can't even get my laptop to communicate with the UTEC via a USB/SERIAL connection
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Old 12-02-2003, 06:34 PM   #8
AZScoobie
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You guys will be much better off with a PCMCIA Serial adapter. Most USB adapters do not work. Some do.... Most dont. If they do work I find uploading maps takes 5 minutes or longer where serial takes 10 seconds. The PCMCIA cards fly.

Clark
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Old 12-02-2003, 07:41 PM   #9
John Sever
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Quote:
Originally posted by AZScoobie
You guys will be much better off with a PCMCIA Serial adapter. Most USB adapters do not work. Some do.... Most dont. If they do work I find uploading maps takes 5 minutes or longer where serial takes 10 seconds. The PCMCIA cards fly.

Clark
Arrrg......Yeah I am about fed up with trying to get this POS to work....I HATE TECHNOLOGY!!!! If computers didn't get better so often I would be happy.
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Old 12-02-2003, 08:24 PM   #10
JScoob
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I've gotten my USB-to-serial adapter to work fine with the UTEC.
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Old 12-03-2003, 01:01 PM   #11
AZScoobie
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Jscoob.. Post the brand for us!

Clark
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Old 12-03-2003, 01:46 PM   #12
T-WRX
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Since the resolution to my problem (thread starter), my serial->usb connection has worked flawlessly.

Brand = RadioShack Serial->USB
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Old 12-03-2003, 01:46 PM   #13
JScoob
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I think it was just a cheap generic I got at Fry's. I'll take a closer look during my lunch break.

One thing to keep in mind is that not all USB adapters are created equal. There is USB 1.0 and 2.0. Your laptop will be one of the two. There are also adapters that are USB 1.0 or 2.0. You have to match them up correctly.
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Old 12-04-2003, 08:49 AM   #14
JustDSM
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I've used the Belkin with great success on the UTEC. Dont know the model number but its got a smoked gray (see-through) plastic casing. Never have I had an issue.
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Old 12-04-2003, 09:35 PM   #15
ccbad
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I also have the Belkin usb adapter. Hardest thing was finding out what the correct com port it was using. Otherwise, the adapter works great
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Old 12-04-2003, 10:52 PM   #16
amelnikov
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What you guys have sound like a problem that I had a work a while back. I work for as PC Tech and when the new computers started coming out with USB ports only we had big problem getting the USB to Serial adapters to work with Blackberry PDA's.
It turned out there are 2 kinds the slow and fast. The belkin adaper that's described above is the slow type. If it works, you will also have good luck with Palm usb to serial adapters as they are also the slow type. It sounds that UTEC does not like the high speed conection and that's why it's flaking out.

Alex...
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Old 12-08-2003, 05:59 PM   #17
John Sever
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I have the IoGear USB/serial adapter and have finally figured out which driver to use. I can get the UTEC home screen to come up but cannot type commands into it? Any ideas guys?
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Old 12-09-2003, 02:01 PM   #18
wop138
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Keyspan Serial Adapters...

These things rock... Work well on xp, 2000 and Os X with the UTEC... Granted, I had to fiddle... but, hey, that's what being a dork is all about...

--fed
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Old 12-09-2003, 03:30 PM   #19
GMTarkin
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are your dip switches/ toggle switches correct?

i remember trying to connect to the utec with hyperterminal after a utec software update, i forgot to put the switches back to normal position. and it looked alot like that does....
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