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INDI Library v1.9.6 Released (21 May 2022)

Bi-monthly INDI Library released with new drivers and bug fixes.

Cannot connect Celestron NexStar 4SE to Raspberry Pi 4

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I've been tearing my hair out to make this connection, without success.
My Celestron 4SE is the older type with the "serial" handset connector, not USB.
I'm trying to make the connection using the following connectors
a) this USB-DB9 adapter
b) Celestron's 93920 adapter

I have also seen the advice on INDI's Celestron Page which informs me that
"You must power and align your mount using the handset using any supported alignment method (e.g. SkyAlign). Without aligning your mount first, the driver will not connect to the handset."
I am following this procedure.

I infer that the USB-DB9 connector is good because I can see that connecting it creates a /dev/ttyUSB0 device in the file system that is not there prior to connecting it:

Prior to connection:
astroberry@astroberry:~ $ ls -al /dev/ttyUSB0
ls: cannot access '/dev/ttyUSB0': No such file or directory

After connection:
astroberry@astroberry:~ $ ls -al /dev/ttyUSB0
crw-rw-rw- 1 root dialout 188, 0 May 19 14:04 /dev/ttyUSB0

My settings are as in the attached screenshots. Perhaps you can spot something wrong there.

[
Yet, when I try to connect, it always fails:
2022-05-19T20:19:31: [ERROR] Failed to communicate with the mount, check the logs for details. 
2022-05-19T20:19:31: [ERROR] Serial read error: Timeout error 
2022-05-19T20:19:26: [ERROR] Serial read error: Timeout error

Another symptom which may or may not be significant is that if I keep the handset connected and connect the 93920 to the AUX port, the handset says "No Response 17 Press BACK to continue". I don't know if it's possible to connect both at the same time or if this message is significant, assuming I could have made a connection.

I am left with the suspicion that the most likely possibility is that the mount's firmware is not up-to-date as is mentioned on your Celestron page.
My firmware versions are as follows.

HC: NXS 5.25.4320
MC: 5.20 5.20

However, I am reluctant to change this merely on general principles, as it poses some risk of unrecoverable damage, without some assurance that it's likely to help.
Can INDI or any readers of this message provide any information on what firmware versions this driver has been tested with using this mount, or with any assurance that updating the firmware will help resolve this problem?

One further question I have, assuming I can ever get connection to work, is why only EQ-N Mount setting is enabled and the others are greyed out. I would prefer Alt-Az, at least initally, as the 4SE's mount is notoriously poor at EQ mounting. Is Alt-Az mounting not supported in this INDI driver?

Thanks for your attention to this long post.

1 month 2 weeks ago #82958
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Have now upgraded to the latest firmware:
HC:NXS 5.34.2065
MC:5.20 5.20
Makes no difference. Same failures.

I turned on debug logging:
INFO	526.955078 sec	: Session log file /home/astroberry/.indi/logs/2022-05-20/indi_celestron_gps/indi_celestron_gps_19:35:29.log
DEBUG	551.499438 sec	: Connecting to /dev/serial/by-id/usb-Prolific_Technology_Inc._USB-Serial_Controller_COBIe108Y20-if00-port0 @ 9600
DEBUG	551.503902 sec	: Port FD 4
DEBUG	551.504011 sec	: Connection successful, attempting handshake...
DEBUG	551.504071 sec	: Initializing Celestron using Kx CMD...
DEBUG	551.504123 sec	: CMD <Kx>
ERROR	556.509289 sec	: Serial read error: Timeout error
DEBUG	556.559558 sec	: CMD <Kx>
ERROR	561.564823 sec	: Serial read error: Timeout error
ERROR	561.615042 sec	: Failed to communicate with the mount, check the logs for details.
DEBUG	561.615170 sec	: Handshake failed.

So, latest firmware, followed the instructions to align the mount first with the handset, disconnected the handset, plugged the connection to pi into the handset's port (not AUX), and still no connection. Help!
1 month 1 week ago #82979

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I finally achieved connectivity - by plugging my cable NOT into either of the jacks on the mount, but into the handset itself. In all honesty, I didn't even know this jack existed until I watched a clip showing how to upgrade the mount.
I'm not sure why this is (shouldn't they be identical?), and it's a bit inconvenient. But it works!
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Updating location is not necessary since mount is already aligned. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Updating time is not necessary since mount is already aligned. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Device configuration saved. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Saving device configuration... 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Device configuration applied. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Dome Policy set to: Dome ignored. Mount can park or unpark regardless of dome parking state. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Auto search is enabled. When connecting, the driver shall attempt to communicate with all available system ports until a connection is established. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Loading device configuration... 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Mount UTC offset: -6.00. UTC time: 2018-10-31T06:01:51. DST: Off 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Mount does not support guiding. Tracking mode must be set in handset to either EQ-North or EQ-South. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Mount is unparked. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] Mount is unparked. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [INFO] InitPark: No Park data in file /home/astroberry/.indi/ParkData.xml: No such file or directory 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [WARNING] Mount firmware does not support track mode. 
2022-05-20T20:05:41: [WARNING] Mount firmware does not support getting pier side. 
2022-05-20T20:05:39: [INFO] Mount model: 4/5 SE 
2022-05-20T20:05:39: [INFO] Controller version: 5.34


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Can someone explain what the difference is between plugging into the handset vs. plugging into the aux port on the mount or removing the handset and plugging into that port?
1 month 1 week ago #82980

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I could be wrong about this, but could it be that the mount jack is using a different baud rate? Is it even capable of control via PC? Though I think for the 4SE, you pretty much need to go via the handset itself.
Jasem Mutlaq
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1 month 1 week ago #83006

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Well, we’ll soon have a test. My Celestron 93922 cable supposedly designed for connections through AUX arrives today. I don’t see why whatever baud rate is necessary wouldn’t be supported by INDI. 9600 works through the handset.
1 month 1 week ago #83012

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