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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Those of you who won an ECoS will be eagerly awaiting the next update as it has many new features. ESU have made an announcement on the ECoS forum that it will be delayed as they want to make sure they get it right. They have also said that they are getting a bit peeved at ECoS users harping on about the delay on the ECoS forum. It will be with us soon though. Here is a translation of the message.

Dear forum participants,
In the past few days, you have to cope after the progress of the next ECoS-Updates inquired.
As you have noticed, we have the update was not until 31.10.2007 managed.

We need to test many new features, unfortunately, more time than assumed. With regard to the quality of the update, but we think that it is better to postpone an update, as a stubborn appointments scheduled.

Their reactions to the missed deadline at the end of October also showed us very vividly the problem in terms of updates:
Would we not give dates, or a "roadmap" with planned public functions, many customers would immediately in our desire to further develop doubt. Apparently, there is a very big interest of yours, the "direction" in the ECoS-Entwicklung to know.
But if we-as in the past-Road Maps, dates and Funktionsumfänge publish, I hereby would like to point out that they are planning. As with any planning can it be that these moves, so dates or Funktionsumfänge to move, for different reasons. To put it clearly to say: An Update-date is always a degree of fuzziness, and our goal is not to an update to an exact date, but to achieve a functionality that the device is better and your satisfaction increases .

It goes without saying that for the individual, who is on a certain function announced waits, a test of patience, then when the function is moved or not, as hoped. These customers patience, I would like to ask: Even without appropriate comments in the forum, we are aware of your situation and will try to implement all the requests. It helps no one, albeit mainly on their own wishes by reference. Each operates his hobby differently, and during the ECoS for an immature and absolutely useless see someone else enjoys it. It is not effective, this is another "to reproach."

ECoS will naturally expanded, and ESU as a market leader in Digitalsegement this can be achieved.

As for the new updates, I will in the course of this week continues. Until then, I wish you a few pleasant hours with your hobby ...
 

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QUOTE An Update-date is always a degree of fuzziness.

It was ever thus.

Thanks for the update update Neil

David
 

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As an ECoS user please excuse my ignorance on this. Do we know for sure yet what features will be added/improved in this update? I thought that it was basically to add the ability to use the mobile control to the setup. Is there going to be a lot more?

I have problems with the ECoS forum, my patients levels do not permit me to constantly using those online translators!

Rob
 

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QUOTE Is there going to be a lot more?
IIRC this version will add RailCom. Quite what how that's going to be presented on the console I don't know but it will be interesting to see it just the same.

David
 

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QUOTE (neil_s_wood @ 7 Nov 2007, 22:17) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>There is also software to assist with using SwitchPilot decoders where I beleive railcom is involved as a feedback mechanism. There may also be something to do with the new ECoS boost power boosters.

I'm under the impression we may also get some if not all the functionality of the lok programmer which will allow programming of loksound sound decoders. I.E upload/download of sound files etc

I may have dreamt it of course, but that would definately make the update worth waiting for.

Who cares if we have to wait a few days while they get it right.

Have a nice day

Mark

P.S. Anybody know when the switchpilot is going to be available, it's advertised in the US already by a few dealers with a bargain price of only $32, at todays exchange rate ony around 15gbp. WOW what a bargain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
QUOTE (markw @ 13 Nov 2007, 19:03) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I'm under the impression we may also get some if not all the functionality of the lok programmer which will allow programming of loksound sound decoders. I.E upload/download of sound files etc

I may have dreamt it of course, but that would definately make the update worth waiting for.

Who cares if we have to wait a few days while they get it right.

Have a nice day

Mark

P.S. Anybody know when the switchpilot is going to be available, it's advertised in the US already by a few dealers with a bargain price of only $32, at todays exchange rate ony around 15gbp. WOW what a bargain.
When I ordered my Mobile Control from Modelbahn Kramm I also ordered a couple of switchpilots. They came up on the list as "directly available". So I took this to mean they have them in stock. The manual is available for download (in German).

I remember something about limited Lok Programming too but I can't remeber from where. According to the ESU forum you will be able to do the full range of progamming on the main with the next update because of the Railcom feature. There are about three threads full of whingers complaining that the update is a bit late on the ECoS forum. I would prefer it to be correct rather than on time. They already had this problem with 1.0.4.
 

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Update 1.1.0 has appeared in the ESU support site this afternoon. So far the release notes are in German only.

This is a rough "off the tiop of my head translation". You upgrade at your own risk!

There are two important notes at the head of the list and I think I'd like to see an accurate English translation before I go ahead with the upgrade. I think the phrase "kann es zu Problemen kommen" translates as "can lead to problems". It's something to do with inter version compatibility so knowing exactly what it means is important.

The feature list roughly translates as:-

Addition: Voltage monitoring
Addition: RailCom - Loco decoders and Accessory (I'm assuming that's what Magnetic articles refers to) CVs can be read over the rails
Addition: Something to do with SwitchPilot
Addition: Mobile Control
Addition: I think this one "The system can be configured to stop shorts on external boosters shutting down the whole system".
Change: Performance
Addition: Loco pictures can be used together for multiple units (double / triple heading)?
Addition: ECoS Boost support?
Addition: Haven't a clue about this last one
Bug Fix: Small bug fixes
Bug Fix: New symbol of multiple units (double / triplet heading)
Bug Fix: Something in the PC interface possibly to do with computer control rather than the web interface for updating
Bug Fix: The turntable control is fixed in some way or other
Bug Fix: Something to do with Setup programming
Change: Something to do with ECoSLink

At the time of posting there had been 250 file downloads. So if there are any problems, they'll be hitting the support forum RSN!

David
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
That was a pleasant surprise to wake up to.

The translation I got from Google was;

Backup files in version 1.1.0 can no longer in older Sofware-Versionen (before 1.0.5). Prior Backup Files can, of course, in Version 1.1.0 continue to be used.
When attempting to reach a ECoS with firmware version 1.0.6 a previous firmware version harmony, it can lead to problems.

When importing of version 1.1.0, the ECoS in some cases, automatically restarted. After the update to version 1.1.0 is in the browser after update any message. If the Setup menu of ECoS software version 1.1.0 appears, the update process was successful.

The problem seems to relate to updating your ECoS if it does not have 1.0.6. I don't hve a choice anyway as I need the software for the mobile control.

If there are problems they usually issue a new software version pretty sharpish to rectify it.

I shall be doing mine later today and if it goes into meltdown I'll let you know.
 

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QUOTE I shall be doing mine later today and if it goes into meltdown I'll let you know.

I thought you might


I upgraded my unit to 1.0.6 and I haven't made any file back ups so I'm probably OK. Most of my decoders support RailCom so it will be interesting to see what actually happens once it is enabled. I am also very keen to get my hands on a mobile control.

David
 

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Well I have updated andit doesn't appear to be the worse for it. I do have to say that this update went very differently from previous ones. It did not restart the ECoS and the computer screen came up with a connection could not be established message. Having done the update twice and had the same thing happen I then checked the ECoS it does work normally and does say that it has software 1.1.0 so I "guess" it must have worked ok. I'll try running some trains later today and see what happens!


The most noticeable difference so far is a new icon at the bottom of the screen for the additional ECoS boost power supply. The ESU forum says that they will be making new information available over the next week or so about the new features.
 

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QUOTE It did not restart the ECoS and the computer screen came up with a connection could not be established message.

Ah ha! This is what the warning note is about! Wolfgang Leitenberger offered the following translation on the ESU Yahoo Forum:-

"the ECoS got updated but the browser did not. You have restart the ECoS and open the web browser again and now you'll see the firmware got updated to level 1.1.0."

Now I understand what's happening. You need to restart the browser connection. This is probably related the PC connection bug fix mentioned in the release notes.

Thanks for posting your experiences.

David
 

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Yes, this was my experience. I looked up the software edition on the ECoS which said 1.1.0 so I took it that it had been succesful. The new update seems to work fine. There is a new screen activated by the new icon at the bottom of the drive screen. It tells you how much current/power you are using and can be used for adding power boosters.

I noticed other new tick boxes on some screens for instance the edit loco one now has live as well as POM and Prog track. I assume this is for programming with RailCom. There was also an option for accessory decoder on the programming screen which will presumably be for the SwitchPilot. ESU say that new information will be released over the coming weeks for the new features. Looking good.
 

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QUOTE the edit loco one now has live as well as POM and Prog track. I assume this is for programming with RailCom.

I've been checking out just what RailCom does. First you have to activate it in your decoders and then hope the software in the decoder supports it. My experience is that some do and some don't


On the Lenz Gold and ESU Lokpilot CV29 bit 3 is the one which enables RailCom. It is off by default. The Zimo manual I have doesn't indicate which bit is used for activation but I tried CV29.3 any way on the basis that RailCom is being standardised by the NMRA. That seems to do the trick. The ECoS "Edit Loco" advanced panel has a check box for CV29.3 but no text telling you what it does.

I used a simple test to see if the decoders were supporting RailCom - I read CVs 7 and 8. That's software version and manufacturer ID respectively. If your decoder is supporting RailCom, you will get different (hopefully correct) value each time. If the decoder is not playing ball it appears that the ECoS reports the last value read.

The Lenz Gold with version 6.1 supports RailCom. It passed the CV 7 and 8 test and I was able to read the ABC CVs I set up about a month ago. This decoder is at least 18 months old, so I would think any Lenz purchased in that time frame will be fine.

Next I tried an ESU LokPilot which I bought about 12 months ago. I tried setting 29.3 in Setup mode on the programming track but the decoder would not accept it. 29.3 remained resolutely off. A re-examination of the LokPilot manual says "Nach update", so I guess it's not supported on my software version. How do you update a LokPilot? I don't know.

This brings me on to Zimo. I have four MX63Rs with 3 versions of software between them - 22, 27 and 28. I didn't bother with the 22 as I already know it doesn't support a lot of the features in the manual like ABC braking; you need at least 25 for that. I bought it about a year ago. The other 3 were purchased in the last couple of months. The 27 and 28 came in the same delivery about a month after the previous 28.

You can tell by the lengthy description that there's a difference between version 27 and version 28 and guess what? 27 doesn't support RailCom and 28 does. So that's two Zimos that need upgrading now. It looks like I'm going to need one of those upgrade thingies.

<Edit: I have just checked the Zimo website and there is no mention of version 27. Version 26 was released in November 2006 and Version 28 in February 2007. I guess 27 had a very short life. The latest version for the MX63 is 30 but it doesn't appear to have anything of interest to me :Edit>

I was doing this CV read back from the Setup / Spanner panel on the ECoS. I entered the decoder address into the address box; typed the CV number I wanted in the CV box and pressed "Read". So long as the loco was on the main, everything was fine.

There is a small bug (well I think it's a bug) in the Setup / Spanner panel on the ECoS. If you have an address entered, you can't read CV values on the programming track the "old fashioned way". That address has to be 0 for the original motor jerk to be operational.

So is it worth all the fuss? I think we still have to wait and see but I have to say that it's a lot more convenient to be able to read the ABC related CVs from wherever the loco happens to be rather than having to bring it round to the programming track to see just what it was you had written.

David
 

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QUOTE I think the Lokprogrammer does that.

Hmm. Prompted by that comment I've taken a look at the ESU web site to see what's available for download. I didn't find any new "silent" decoder files but there are plenty of sound data files. I then took a look at the Lok Programmer manual to see if there was any hint there that the basic decoder software could be updated. All I found were references to reading and writing CVs which is something which comes as standard on the ECoS and setting up sound files which is not available on the ECoS (but coming RSN??). I also read the release notes for the latest Lok Programmer code, but there are still no referenes to basic decoder software updates.

My conclusion at the moment is that there is currently no way to update LokPilot decoder software and I would include the "non-sound" portions of LokSound decoders in that category of "fixed at birth" software too. As far as I know, the sound file data is held on an external chip so updates to it would be a completely different process. Given the extra cost and wide variety of sounds required, I am sure that reprogrammability of the sound data files was a "feature" from day one.

Whether or not it will be possible to reprogram the decoder software in existing LokPilots depends on two things:-
1) That the code store in the decoder is "rewritable"
2) That the current decoder software already contains code for performing a "self update"

Item 1 can probably be deduced from the part number on the main decoder chip. Item 2 is known only to ESU.

Now that the ECoS supports RailCom, I am sure that there will be a lot of ECoS users who own ESU decoders with "disabled" RailCom who will be very eager to have it enabled. In other words ESU are going to have to come up with some kind of upgrade programme for these older decoders.

David
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Sorry David, I was sure I had heard somewhere that the Lokprogrammer could be used for software updates for Lokpilot decoders. I can't remember where I read that though. I have a feeling that it was the ECoS forum.

I do know for a fact that the Lokprogrammer can be used to update the software on the existing mobile control to convert it for use with the ECoS as I read that pretty recently. I'll have a look and see what I can find out.

ESU are supposed to be putting out some new info in the next couple of weeks so they may well adress this question.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
David, I have found this discussion on Railcom in regard to the update. Here is the Google version. I will stick in the original German below in case someone takes pity on us and gives us a better interpretation.

Meant is probably the Switch pilot, or?

Dieter @
Since RailCom now in the "isolation" of ESU and some others will be implemented, there is not so much what supports will be. The switch pilot is the first decoder, the RailCom, so feedback. So you can on the ECoS see if the turnout is running as desired. Moreover, the decoder, and with reading the CVs on RailCom well intentioned, fully programmed, when he track at the main exit of the ECoS connected. Yes sense of power when the decoder somewhere at the plate mounted and may still have boosters with electricity supplies. Otherwise yes would have to change the settings each time decoder to the programming track output can be connected.

Feedback from Lok decoders (LoPi, LokSound) are certainly not yet represented in this update.

Hi Dieter,

The first application for RailCom it will be that you can read CVs: You have to see the locomotives no longer on the programming gleis. This is in itself a step forward.
RailCom defined two main channels of communication (Attention Experts: Stark simplified representation)
1) Confirmation of CV-Werten and special, "Read-Only" variables such as motor current, actual speed, engine load at the request of the Central (channel 1)
2) Constant feedback without the address of the call center (on channel 2).

We start at 1): This is the "global detector thought of ECOS is installed.

2) is used for position determination is needed. This will require an outside, the so-called "local detector," in the ECoS by definition not in it can be: Here it takes external modules, each of which has a section of track monitor.

We will also shortly be an update for the LokPilot V3.0 on the network, so this technique also can test themselves times (if you do not have Switchpilot)

Hi ESU-Support,

The LokPiloten update today is a LokProgrammer necessary. Somewhere, I have sometimes snap that the possibility LokPilot- and LokSound-Decoder to program (sounds aufspielen, firmware update), in the ECoS land. Is that correct and if so, there is already one (approximate) indication of when this will be possible?

The function is planned and will come. Unfortunately, we can not currently looking to make an appointment.
We would not force a LokProgrammer to buy: Almost all good ESU Retailers have in the shop and make it sound even updates. This should help to reduce waiting time to overcome ...

So make take on this is that only the SwitchPilot functions with Railcom at the moment. There will be an update for LokPilot and Lok Sound decoder but it will require a Lokprogrammer to do it. Here is the original discussion.
................................................................................
.................................................................................
......

gemeint ist wohl der SwitchPilot, oder?

@Dieter
Da RailCom jetzt im "Alleingang" von ESU und einigen anderen implementiert wird, gibt es noch nicht so viel, was unterstützt wird/werden kann. Der SwitchPilot ist der erste Dekoder, der RailCom, also Rückmeldung, unterstützt. So kann man auf der ECoS sehen, ob die Weiche wie gewünscht geschaltet hat. Ferner kann der Dekoder, und das mit Auslesen der CVs über RailCom wohl gemeint, komplett programmiert werden, wenn er am Hauptgleisausgang der ECoS angeschlossen ist. Macht ja Sinn, wenn man den Dekoder irgendwo unter der Platte montiert und eventuell noch über Booster mit Strom versorgt. Sonst müsste ja zum Ändern von Einstellungen der Dekoder jedes mal an den Programmiergleisausgang angeschlossen werden.

Rückmeldungen von Lok Dekodern (LoPi, LokSound) werden mit Sicherheit noch nicht in diesem Update vertreten sein.

Hallo Dieter,

die erste Anwendung für RailCom wird es sein, dass Sie CVs auslesen können: Sie müssen folglich hierzu die Loks nicht mehr auf das Programmiergleis stellen. Dies ist an sich schon ein Fortschritt.
RailCom definiert im wesentlichen zwei Kommunikationskanäle (Achtung Experten: Stark vereinfachte Darstellung )
1) Rückmeldung von CV-Werten und spezieller, "Read-Only" Variablen wie Motorstrom, tatsächliche Geschwindigkeit, Motorlast auf Anforderung der Zentrale (Kanal 1)
2) Permanente Rückmeldung der Adresse ohne Aufforderung der Zentrale (auf Kanal 2).

Wir starten bei 1): Hierzu ist der "global detector" gedacht, der in ECOS eingebaut ist.

2) wird für die Positionsbestimmung benötigt. Dazu braucht es einen externen, sog. "local detector", der in der ECoS per Definition nicht drin sein kann: Hier braucht es externe Module, die jeweils einen Gleisabschnitt überwachen.

Wir werden demnächst auch ein Update für den LokPilot V3.0 aufs Netz stellen, damit Sie diese Technik auch selber mal testen können (sofern Sie keinen SwitchPilot besitzen)

Hallo ESU-Support,

um die LokPiloten zu aktualisieren ist heute ein LokProgrammer nötig. Irgendwo habe ich mal aufgeschnappt, dass die Möglichkeit, LokPilot- und LokSound-Decoder zu programmieren (Sounds aufspielen, Firmware aktualisieren), in der ECoS landen wird. Ist dies korrekt und wenn ja, gibt es schon eine (ungefähre) Angabe, wann dies möglich sein wird?

Die Funktion ist geplant und wird kommen. Wir können leider derzeit keine Aussagen zu einem Termin machen.
Wir möchten Sie nicht zwingen, einen LokProgrammer zu kaufen: Fast alle guten ESU Fachhändler haben einen im Laden und machen dort auch Soundupdates. Dies sollte helfen, die Wartezeit zu überbrücken...
 

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Thanks for taking the trouble to post that Neil.

My take is that LokPilots are not ready to rock and roll just yet, so the only ESU decoder that supports RailCom is SwitchPilot. There doesn't seem to be a release date for an updated LokProgrammer either. It's interesting that they are not expecting you buy one to update your decoder firmware but go to your dealer. That might work in Germany but it could be a bit tricky for the UK and yourself in Oz. The good news appears to be that the decoders are updatable, just not yet.

I think I'll postpone any LokSound purchases for a while; I had thought of getting the LMS Mogul sound for my Bachmann Mickey Mouse. I'll concentrate on track laying instead. I might just need some SwitchPilots for that.

David
 
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