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TOPIC: "Solver failed. Try again." with ekos on OSX.

"Solver failed. Try again." with ekos on OSX. 4 months 4 weeks ago #19800

Hi, I'm having problems using the plate solver with Ekos. I'm using the OSX kstars available for download on the kstars website (KStars Version 2.8.3).

The same issue happens regardless of whether I use the internal or my own (homebrew installed) astrometry.net installation. Here is the error I get:
2017-09-23T20:08:43 Solver failed. Try again.
2017-09-23T20:08:42 Removing lines of (spurious) sources from xylist "/tmp/tmp.xyls.q7W5SO", writing to "/tmp/tmp.removelines.Fc9kAV"
Running: /Applications/kstars.app/Contents/MacOS/astrometry/bin/removelines -e 1 /tmp/tmp.xyls.q7W5SO /tmp/tmp.removelines.Fc9kAV
2017-09-23T20:08:42 Peak 12 subpeak 0 at (254,154): searching for centroid in 3x3 box failed; trying 5x5 box...
3x3 box:
  0.674297,0.896267,0.812561,0.780667,0.994061,0.847565,0.824422,0.916616,0.691532
Peak 29 subpeak 0 at (173,291): searching for centroid in 3x3 box failed; trying 5x5 box...
3x3 box:
  0.771339,0.906881,0.790095,0.845628,0.9827,0.954472,0.719289,0.831841,0.90242
Failed to find (5x5) centroid of peak 29, subpeak 0 at (173,291)
5x5 box:
  0.222683,0.674521,0.348315,0.599507,0.9827,0.758113,0.391394,0.508202,0.685786
Stepsize 0.1, step 0
x,y = (3,3), V=6.17114, Gx=-0.380388, Gy=0.194914
Stepsize 0.01, step 0
x,y = (3,3), V=6.17114, Gx=-0.380388, Gy=0.194914
Stepsize 0.001, step 0
x,y = (3,3), V=6.17114, Gx=-0.380388, Gy=0.194914
max_gaussian: 3,3
Peak 31 subpeak 0 at (397,304): searching for centroid in 3x3 box failed; trying 5x5 box...
3x3 box:
  0.66072,0.823554,0.887134,0.898522,0.974168,0.954348,0.898243,0.966083,0.922735
simplexy: found 52 sources.
2017-09-23T20:08:42 Nsigma=0.7, s=0.428715
simplexy: found sigma=0.428715.
simplexy: finding objects...
simplexy: found 52 blobs
simplexy: finding peaks...
2017-09-23T20:08:42 simplexy: measuring image noise (sigma)...
Sampling sigma at 832 points
2017-09-23T20:08:42 simplexy: nx=640, ny=512
simplexy: dpsf=1.000000, plim=8.000000, dlim=1.000000, saddle=5.000000
simplexy: maxper=1000, maxnpeaks=10000, maxsize=2000, halfbox=100
simplexy: median smoothing...
2017-09-23T20:08:42 Downsampling by 2...
2017-09-23T20:08:42 Running image2xy: input=/var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278, output=/tmp/tmp.xyls.q7W5SO, ext=0
nhdus=1
Got naxis=2, na1=1280, na2=1024
2017-09-23T20:08:42 Extracting sources...
2017-09-23T20:08:42 fits
Running: pnmfile /tmp/tmp.ppm.Z3JQlA
2017-09-23T20:08:41 Base: "/var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278", basefile "fitsU81278", basedir "/var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T", suffix "(null)"
Checking if file "/var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278" ext 0 is xylist or image: image
  (not xyls because: FITS file does not have any extensions)
Running: /Applications/kstars.app/Contents/MacOS/astrometry/bin/image2pnm --infile /var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278 --uncompressed-outfile /tmp/tmp.uncompressed.gsyAAH --outfile /tmp/tmp.ppm.Z3JQlA --ppm --mydir /Applications/kstars.app/Contents/MacOS/astrometry/bin/solve-field
2017-09-23T20:08:41 Reading input file 1 of 1: "/var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278"...
2017-09-23T20:08:41 /Applications/kstars.app/Contents/MacOS/astrometry/bin/solve-field -O --no-plots --no-verify --resort --downsample 2 -L 20.339 -H 25.424 -u aw -3 194.4 -4 22.9311 -5 30 --verbose --verbose --config /Applications/kstars.app/Contents/MacOS/astrometry/bin/astrometry.cfg -W /var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/solution.wcs /var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278
2017-09-23T20:08:41 Starting solver...
2017-09-23T20:08:41 Image received.
2017-09-23T20:08:39 Capturing image...

The file /tmp/tmp.removelines.Fc9kAV is empty.

The file /tmp/tmp.xyls.q7W5SO is a FITS file with the following header:
SIMPLE  =                    T / file does conform to FITS standard             BITPIX  =                    8 / number of bits per data pixel                  NAXIS   =                    0 / number of data axes                            EXTEND  =                    T / FITS dataset may contain extensions            COMMENT   FITS (Flexible Image Transport System) format is defined in 'AstronomyCOMMENT   and Astrophysics', volume 376, page 359; bibcode: 2001A&A...376..359H SRCFN   = '/var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278' / SourceSRCEXT  =                    1 / Source image extension (1=primary)             COMMENT Parameters used for source extraction                                   HISTORY Created by Astrometry.net's image2xy program.                           HISTORY GIT URL: https://github.com/dstndstn/astrometry.net                     HISTORY GIT Rev: 0.72                                                           HISTORY GIT Date: Mon_Jul_10_14:37:28_2017_-0400                                HISTORY Visit us on the web at http://astrometry.net/                           NEXTEND =                    1 / Number of extensions                           END                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             XTENSION= 'BINTABLE'           / binary table extension                         BITPIX  =                    8 / 8-bit bytes                                    NAXIS   =                    2 / 2-dimensional binary table                     NAXIS1  =                   16 / width of table in bytes                        NAXIS2  =                   52 / number of rows in table                        PCOUNT  =                    0 / size of special data area                      GCOUNT  =                    1 / one data group (required keyword)              TFIELDS =                    4 / number of fields in each row                   TTYPE1  = 'X       '           / X coordinate                                   TFORM1  = 'E       '           / data format of field: 4-byte REAL              TUNIT1  = 'pix     '           / physical unit of field                         TTYPE2  = 'Y       '           / Y coordinate                                   TFORM2  = 'E       '           / data format of field: 4-byte REAL              TUNIT2  = 'pix     '           / physical unit of field                         TTYPE3  = 'FLUX    '           / Flux of source                                 TFORM3  = 'E       '           / data format of field: 4-byte REAL              TUNIT3  = 'unknown '           / physical unit of field                         TTYPE4  = 'BACKGROUND'         / Sky background of source                       TFORM4  = 'E       '           / data format of field: 4-byte REAL              TUNIT4  = 'unknown '           / physical unit of field                         EXTNAME = 'SOURCES '           / name of this binary table extension            SRCEXT  =                    1 / Extension number in src image                  IMAGEW  =                 1280 / Input image width                              IMAGEH  =                 1024 / Input image height                             ESTSIGMA=            0.4287148 / Estimated source image variance                DPSF    =                   1. / image2xy Assumed gaussian psf width            PLIM    =                   8. / image2xy Significance to keep                  DLIM    =                   1. / image2xy Closest two peaks can be              SADDLE  =                   5. / image2xy Saddle difference (in sig)            MAXPER  =                 1000 / image2xy Max num of peaks per object           MAXPEAKS=                10000 / image2xy Max num of peaks total                MAXSIZE =                 2000 / image2xy Max size for extended objects         HALFBOX =                  100 / image2xy Half-size for sliding sky window      COMMENT The X and Y points are specified assuming 1,1 is the center of the leftmCOMMENT ost bottom pixel of the image in accordance with the FITS standard.     END                                                                            

astrometry.net options
-O --no-plots --no-verify --resort --downsample 2 -L 20.339 -H 25.424 -u aw -3 194.4 -4 22.9311 -5 30 --verbose --verbose

astrometry.cfg
# This is a config file for the Astrometry.net 'astrometry-engine'
# program - it contains information about where indices are stored,
# and "site policy" items.

# Check the indices in parallel?
#
# -if the indices you are using take less than 2 GB of space, and you have at least
#  as much physical memory as indices, then you want this enabled.
#
# -if you are using a 64-bit machine and you have enough physical memory to contain
#  the indices you are using, then you want this enabled.
# 
# -otherwise, leave it commented-out.

#inparallel

# If no scale estimate is given, use these limits on field width.
# minwidth 0.1
# maxwidth 180

# If no depths are given, use these:
#depths 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100

# Maximum CPU time to spend on a field, in seconds:
# default is 600 (ten minutes), which is probably way overkill.
cpulimit 300

# In which directories should we search for indices?
add_path /Users/jonny/Library/Application Support/Astrometry
add_path /usr/local/Cellar/astrometry-net/0.72/data/

# Load any indices found in the directories listed above.
autoindex

## Or... explicitly list the indices to load.
#index index-219
#index index-218
#index index-217
#index index-216
#index index-215
#index index-214
#index index-213
#index index-212
#index index-211
#index index-210
#index index-209
#index index-208
#index index-207
#index index-206
#index index-205
#index index-204-00
#index index-204-01
#index index-204-02
#index index-204-03
#index index-204-04
#index index-204-05
#index index-204-06
#index index-204-07
#index index-204-08
#index index-204-09
#index index-204-10
#index index-204-11
#index index-203-00
#index index-203-01
#index index-203-02
#index index-203-03
#index index-203-04
#index index-203-05
#index index-203-06
#index index-203-07
#index index-203-08
#index index-203-09
#index index-203-10
#index index-203-11
#index index-202-00
#index index-202-01
#index index-202-02
#index index-202-03
#index index-202-04
#index index-202-05
#index index-202-06
#index index-202-07
#index index-202-08
#index index-202-09
#index index-202-10
#index index-202-11
#index index-201-00
#index index-201-01
#index index-201-02
#index index-201-03
#index index-201-04
#index index-201-05
#index index-201-06
#index index-201-07
#index index-201-08
#index index-201-09
#index index-201-10
#index index-201-11
#index index-200-00
#index index-200-01
#index index-200-02
#index index-200-03
#index index-200-04
#index index-200-05
#index index-200-06
#index index-200-07
#index index-200-08
#index index-200-09
#index index-200-10
#index index-200-11

It seems that the removal of "spurious sources" results in an empty file?
I hope this information helps.. Any help would be most appreciated!

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Last Edit: by abhoriel.

"Solver failed. Try again." with ekos on OSX. 4 months 4 weeks ago #19801

Can you solve an image on the command line?
The following user(s) said Thank You: abhoriel

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Jasem Mutlaq
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"Solver failed. Try again." with ekos on OSX. 4 months 3 weeks ago #19812

I think I've fixed it.

Running it from the command line (as you suggested) gave more information:
$ solve-field /var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278
Reading input file 1 of 1: "/var/folders/zx/skmp1g7s43xdtwkgzq30gq400000gn/T/fitsU81278"...
Extracting sources...
simplexy: found 7 sources.
Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "/usr/local/bin/removelines", line 15, in <module>
    sys.exit(main())
  File "/usr/local/lib/python/astrometry/util/removelines.py", line 76, in main
    cut=opt.cut, ext=opt.ext)
  File "/usr/local/lib/python/astrometry/util/removelines.py", line 38, in removelines
    T = fits_table(infile, lower=False)
  File "/usr/local/lib/python/astrometry/util/fits.py", line 672, in fits_table
    pf = pyfits.open(dataorfn, memmap=mmap)
AttributeError: 'NoPyfits' object has no attribute 'open'
augment-xylist.c:589:backtick Failed to run command: /usr/local/bin/removelines -e 1 /tmp/tmp.xyls.GBsQG2 /tmp/tmp.removelines.Ck8df4
 ioutils.c:567:run_command_get_outputs Command failed: return value 1

For anyone else with the same problem, I fixed it by installing pyfits for the OSX's preinstalled python using:
sudo easy_install pyfits

It still fails to solve (but it actually makes an effort now). This might be because I need more index files, I'll look into it.

There are a lot of issues with python on OSX, as using homebrew results in the installation of separate copies of python than the preinstalled versions!
Thanks a lot for the help.
The following user(s) said Thank You: sterne-jaeger

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"Solver failed. Try again." with ekos on OSX. 2 weeks 2 days ago #22940

Hi,
since homebrew does not provide astrometry.net any more, I was forced to build it on my own. The build seemed to succeed, but I received the same error message as you. Installing pyfits solved the problem.

Thanks a lot
Wolfgang

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"Solver failed. Try again." with ekos on OSX. 2 weeks 2 days ago #22949

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Due to all the issues with homebrew,python, pyfits,etc, a few months ago I found a way to embed all of the needed items into the app bundle so homebrew would no longer be required at all for the end user. Astrometry.net is included in the kstars app. Are you using the mac dmg downloaded from the website? If so are you using the internal solver?

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"Solver failed. Try again." with ekos on OSX. 2 weeks 2 days ago #22950

Aaah, good to know! I wasn't sure and hence I tried to build it on my own.

The configuration dialog for switching between the internal astrometry.net solver and a locally installed version is slightly misleading. Activating the check box I would expect that the entered path will be used. Instead, it disappears and displays "Internal Solver".

BR
Wolfgang

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