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Windows 10 Automatic Update Created Issue with Serial Ports

fjk5146
 

I don't know if any of you have experienced the issue that I ran into yesterday.  The Windows 10 desktop used for my ham shack was automatically updated to Version 1909 on March 4th.  I tried to operate my station  for the first time since the update yesterday.  I quickly discovered that Commander was not communicating with my radio.  I also found the DXView could not communicate with my Green Heron RT-11 Rotator. 

When I assembled this computer for the shack I had installed two PCI Serial Cards which gave me 8 real serial ports.  I wanted real RS-232 ports because I had experienced some issues with some USB to RS-232 adapters disconnecting during contests (sometimes requiring a reboot).  The serial ports have worked fine for the past two years until this most recent Windows 10 update.  After a bit of sleuthing I figured out that the update had re-mapped all the physical RS-232 ports to different numbers.  Also, they were not re-numbered in any logical sequence.  I was able to use a piece of software that I use with my scanner to re-identify each of the ports.  This software searches each of the ports to determine which port the scanner is connected to.  I was able to move it to each of the connectors until I had identified the COMM number for each connector.    

I don't know if anyone else has experienced this issue.  if so, is there any way to keep Windows updates from changing COMM port numbers already to assigned to physical ports?   I know this can be done with USB to RS232 converters, but it doesn't seem to work for actual serial ports.  

After a couple of hours of frustration I managed to get all the ham gear communicating with the computer again.  

73,
Fred, KC9QQ
--
Fred, KC9QQ

Peter Laws / N5UWY
 

On Wed, Mar 25, 2020 at 1:22 PM fjk5146 <fredjkeller@...> wrote:

I don't know if any of you have experienced the issue that I ran into yesterday. The Windows 10 desktop used for my ham shack was automatically updated to Version 1909 on March 4th. I tried to operate my station for the first time since the update yesterday. I quickly discovered that Commander was not communicating with my radio. I also found the DXView could not communicate with my Green Heron RT-11 Rotator.
Dave has (somewhere) instructions on disabling automagic updates.
I'll dig for those and see if I can beat AA6YQ to it. :-) It is a
little dependent on which level of W10 you have, IIRC. Tools like USB
Device Tree Viewer (https://www.uwe-sieber.de/usbtreeview_e.html) and
screen shots are helpful for reconfiguring regardless.

USB -> RS-232 is stable in my experience if you follow (again!) Dave's
advice about configuring the ports, the important thing being don't
let them take a nap.

My PC (an Intel NUC) has no legacy ports and no slots for
old-fashioned cards, so all my serial ports are connected via USB,
whether it's the 4-port Siig adapter, the Arduino Nanos in my Morttys
or the CI-V adapters I have for some of my Icoms.


--
Peter Laws | N5UWY | plaws plaws net | Travel by Train!

Peter Laws / N5UWY
 

On Wed, Mar 25, 2020 at 1:38 PM Peter Laws via Groups.Io
<plaws0=gmail.com@groups.io> wrote:


Dave has (somewhere) instructions on disabling automagic updates.
I'll dig for those and see if I can beat AA6YQ to it. :-) It is a
little dependent on which level of W10 you have, IIRC.
https://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/PreventUSBPortPowerDown

Other stuff at https://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/WindowsTricks
including how to better control updates.


--
Peter Laws | N5UWY | plaws plaws net | Travel by Train!

Danny Douglas
 

USB -> RS-232 is stable in my experience if you follow (again!) Dave's
advice about configuring the ports, the important thing being don't
let them take a nap.


That is a real problem here. I turn off all computers when I get up and walk away for the night, or even in the daytime, when weather has any indications of rain. I have lost three computers. a rig, an antenna tuner, and numerous other electronics in the past 20 or so years here. Its down right aggravating that MS continues to ignore there software doing such things as changing ports and other such actions - even when we have told their software NO.

N7DC@...
Ex WN5QMX,WA5UKR,ET2US,ET3USA,SV0WPP,VS6DD,N7DC/YV5/G5CTB
QSL Bureau, DIRECT, LOTW Preferred, eQSL used but upload at a courtesy only, as do not use the system for awards.

On March 25, 2020 at 2:38 PM Peter Laws <plaws0@...> wrote:
Danny
N7DC

Dave AA6YQ
 

+ AA6YQ comments below

On Wed, Mar 25, 2020 at X1:41 AM, Peter Laws wrote:

On Wed, Mar 25, 2020 at 1:38 PM Peter Laws via Groups.Io
<plaws0@...> wrote:


Dave has (somewhere) instructions on disabling automagic updates.
I'll dig for those and see if I can beat AA6YQ to it. :-) It is a
little dependent on which level of W10 you have, IIRC.
https://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/PreventUSBPortPowerDown

Other stuff at https://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/WindowsTricks
including how to better control updates.

+ At this point, the best a Windows 10 user can do is

1. document your serial port assignments

2. configure Windows 10 to only apply updates when you direct it to do so

3. after Windows 10 completes an update, immediately check the serial port assignments, and correct any that have changed.

+ Perhaps someone with Windows device driver programming experience will create a tool that can take a named snapshot of serial port assignments, and restore serial port assignments to those specified in a named snapshot. 

          73,

                Dave, AA6YQ

 

 

fjk5146
 

Thanks to everyone for the helpful information.  I will see if I can do a better job of documenting the serial port information.  I may try to if I can get details at the hardware level that I can use to identify what hardware addresses are connected to each COMM port before and after an update.  Maybe that can be used to ease the remapping.


Also, thanks for the confidence in USB to RS232  adapters.  The device I had the problem with was the USB port on the Green Heron RT11 Rotor controller.  I even installed large chunks of ferrite on the cable without success. I may try using an actual USB to RS232 adapter on the Green Heron serial port to see if that works OK within some RF.  

Thanks again for all the good advice,
--
Fred, KC9QQ

w6de
 

Have Windows-10 stop updating device drivers automatically.

https://www.windowscentral.com/how-disable-automatic-driver-updates-windows-10

Choose the “How to stop updates for drivers with Windows Update using Group Policy” this is a little saver than editing the registry.

Follow the directions given.

I know this works for Windows-10-Pro.  If Windows-10 for Home won’t allow you to perform this group policy change, you’ll have to use the Registry Edit procedure.

 

Make sure your USB to serial adapter is a FTDI chip based adapter.  Also down load the FTDI driver.  And, perform the Group Policy change to keep automatic updates from overloading your FTDI driver with the Microsoft generic USB driver.

 

Even if you aren’t using the USB to Serial adapters, stop the automatic driver updates.

 

Now, having said that, with my Windows-10 update to version 1909, the V-1909 update among other things un-did that Policy Change, threw away my FTDI driver, changed all the port assignments AND screwed up my default sound card assignments.

 

73,

Dave, w6de

 

 

From: DXLab@groups.io [mailto:DXLab@groups.io] On Behalf Of fjk5146
Sent: 25 March, 2020 21:32
To: DXLab@groups.io
Subject: Re: [DXLab] Windows 10 Automatic Update Created Issue with Serial Ports

 

Thanks to everyone for the helpful information.  I will see if I can do a better job of documenting the serial port information.  I may try to if I can get details at the hardware level that I can use to identify what hardware addresses are connected to each COMM port before and after an update.  Maybe that can be used to ease the remapping.


Also, thanks for the confidence in USB to RS232  adapters.  The device I had the problem with was the USB port on the Green Heron RT11 Rotor controller.  I even installed large chunks of ferrite on the cable without success. I may try using an actual USB to RS232 adapter on the Green Heron serial port to see if that works OK within some RF.  

Thanks again for all the good advice,
--
Fred, KC9QQ

Dave AA6YQ
 

+ AA6YQ comments below

On Wed, Mar 25, 2020 at 04:38 PM, w6de wrote:

Have Windows-10 stop updating device drivers automatically.

https://www.windowscentral.com/how-disable-automatic-driver-updates-windows-10

Choose the “How to stop updates for drivers with Windows Update using Group Policy” this is a little saver than editing the registry.

Follow the directions given.

I know this works for Windows-10-Pro.  If Windows-10 for Home won’t allow you to perform this group policy change, you’ll have to use the Registry Edit procedure.

 

Make sure your USB to serial adapter is a FTDI chip based adapter.  Also down load the FTDI driver.  And, perform the Group Policy change to keep automatic updates from overloading your FTDI driver with the Microsoft generic USB driver.

 

Even if you aren’t using the USB to Serial adapters, stop the automatic driver updates

+ Thanks, Dave! That article is now accessible via


<https://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/WindowsTricks>

       73,

               Dave, AA6YQ

neil_zampella
 

FWIW ... also check the privacy settings for your Microphone, as it appears that M$ is trying to 'help' you by turning off stuff you turned on.   Check to make sure that WSJT-X still has access to the mic.

Neil, KN3ILZ

On 3/25/2020 2:58 PM, Dave AA6YQ wrote:

+ AA6YQ comments below

On Wed, Mar 25, 2020 at X1:41 AM, Peter Laws wrote:

On Wed, Mar 25, 2020 at 1:38 PM Peter Laws via Groups.Io
<plaws0@...> wrote:


Dave has (somewhere) instructions on disabling automagic updates.
I'll dig for those and see if I can beat AA6YQ to it. :-) It is a
little dependent on which level of W10 you have, IIRC.
https://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/PreventUSBPortPowerDown

Other stuff at https://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/WindowsTricks
including how to better control updates.

+ At this point, the best a Windows 10 user can do is

1. document your serial port assignments

2. configure Windows 10 to only apply updates when you direct it to do so

3. after Windows 10 completes an update, immediately check the serial port assignments, and correct any that have changed.

+ Perhaps someone with Windows device driver programming experience will create a tool that can take a named snapshot of serial port assignments, and restore serial port assignments to those specified in a named snapshot. 

          73,

                Dave, AA6YQ

 

 


Virus-free. www.avg.com

fjk5146
 

Dave (w6de)

Thanks for the information on disabling automatic driver updates.  It is good to know that the V1909 update also caused problems on more than just my system.  I have another computer that I use to monitor and record several security cameras using BlueIris software.  The Windows 10 update deleted my current BlueIris configuration file.  When BlueIris restarted after the Windows 10 update, it fell back to an older version of the configuration file.  I spent several hours trying to figure out why several of my cameras were no longer accessible!  I ended up rebuilding the configuration.  I also saved several backup copies of the corrected configuration to locations Windows cannot access!

I had read somewhere that when this update was first pushed out last year, that some systems were  experiencing data loss.  I think they stopped rolling out the update to correct the problem.  When it showed up on my system earlier this month I didn't anticipate any problems.  I guess I was wrong! 

I've now spent a lot of time documenting the hardware information of each of the serial ports should this happen again.

Thanks again to all that provided helpful information.

--
Fred, KC9QQ