Author Topic: Interference mode notification needed  (Read 598 times)

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Offline cbh3

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Interference mode notification needed
« on: April 29, 2017, 07:30:27 AM »
I'm trying to track down an intermittent interferer that is being picked up by my H-field antennas.

The trouble is that I have no way to be notified that the interference has return unless I just happen to be by the unit or logged into the units webpage.

Am I overlooking a was of having the unit notify me somehow so I can know when to start my troubleshooting?
WU: KROCKF4 || CWOP: C9861 || CoCoRaHS: MI-KN-83 || Blitzotung: 1737
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Offline miraculon

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Re: Interference mode notification needed
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2017, 08:49:29 AM »
There is an email function on Lightningmaps.org when you are logged in to email strokes within a certain distance. However, I am not aware of any provision to send an email based on noise.

Is your controller within earshot? You can set "Beep on interferences" on the Buzzer/LCD screen for the controller. I realize that this is only good for when you are in proximity of the controller.

Greg H.




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Offline cbh3

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Re: Interference mode notification needed
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2017, 09:57:18 AM »
Thanks for the advice Greg. I keep my controller on a garage shelf, so I'm not around it very often.

A simple email alert would solve this is the option existed. Not sure why this isn't a feature.
WU: KROCKF4 || CWOP: C9861 || CoCoRaHS: MI-KN-83 || Blitzotung: 1737
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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Interference mode notification needed
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2017, 01:59:34 PM »
If the disturbers are so sporadic that I need notifications, so I can troubleshoot, then they're probably insignificant in the overall picture.
If they're frequent enough to require 'troubleshooting', than I'd sure as heck have the controller at a more convenient location.
And if I required email notifications for 'interference', I'd probably not be in a position to 'troubleshoot' anyway.

Once a station is set-up optimized, according to the 'normal' EM environment,
The operating paradigm for 'normal' or 'burst' interference is:
"Accept the interference while it exists. Let the network 'work'. 
My station will resume normal operation when the conditions
that produce the interference subside"


A notification doesn't exist simply because I (and maybe one or two other folks :roll: )
would abuse it..., -wasting Server and Controller power and memory, and firmware code...
I'd be tempted to go "ride gain" on the system, therefore messing with the Server's current knowledge of my setup and environment,
thererore producing erratic inconsistent, and un predictable data.  Yes I would. I do. I did. I can't help myself. I experimented last evening
with "training" cells nearby... know what?  All I did was waste my time, and proved nothing, except there are numerous ways to go into and out
of interference... surely four years and two systems online would have nailed that knowledge permanently... but, then...  ](*,)

There exist many indications of when a station is in interference...
the Web GUI, buzzers, the flashing or steady controller LEDs, the Station page on Blitzortung Org, the User page on Lightningmaps.org...
The interference modes are designed, necessary features of the system. There for many reasons.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2017, 02:02:35 PM by Cutty Sark Sailor »

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Offline DaleReid

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Re: Interference mode notification needed
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2017, 04:48:32 PM »
The better thing would be to see if you can tell from studying the stuff your station sends to LightningMaps.org to see if there is a pattern, time of day, weekends more than weekdays, etc.  I am only speculating, but I think your performance is noted for strikes, but maybe when you drop off there isn't any indication that interference is causing the drop.  And it may not be real time enough to look around to see if an old car with unshielded ignition or service vehicle is down the street as a possible cause.

Frustrating but I agree 100% with Mike that you should decrease gains for awhile.  If you look at the storms last night and today going through Illinois and Ohio and Indiana, the system (there is no "I" in system) no longer needs 3,000 mile detection.  The spread of detectors through the midWest is now getting pretty high, and three to five hundred miles still makes the storms look like porcupines with all the indicators of stroke sense being shown.

I think the longest strike I sensed was over 4500 miles back with my RED station when I first got on the air, and had everything cranked up.  but if a storm got within 100 miles, I frustratingly went into interference mode and was irritated that the auto function wasn't working well, sensing when an interference had occurred and then cranking down my gains, monitoring until things were OK and then cranking them back up.  But I've not seen interference mode with strokes as close as 5 miles this spring as things rolled through and now, older and perhaps wiser, feel I'll leave the gains where they are since I still see Florida and Gulf storms from here in Wisconsin.

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Offline cbh3

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Re: Interference mode notification needed
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2017, 01:31:39 PM »
I will go for a week or more without having interference issues and then it will pop up for an 6-8 hour stretch seemingly out of the blue (when storms are distant as well). Discovering something like this before I go to bed, because of the unit's location, has robbed me of time earlier when I could have been working on it which is why I inquired about this capability.

Though I appreciate the replies, both suggest that I'm the problem either because of unit location or the way I'm viewing the situation, when that is not the case.

I merely wondered if a method was available to suit my need to be alerted to this kind of interference. If not, then that's fine. I'll look to solve it other ways.
WU: KROCKF4 || CWOP: C9861 || CoCoRaHS: MI-KN-83 || Blitzotung: 1737
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Offline Cutty Sark Sailor

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Re: Interference mode notification needed
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2017, 03:43:53 PM »
Though I appreciate the replies, both suggest that I'm the problem either because of unit location or the way I'm viewing the situation, when that is not the case.
I merely wondered if a method was available to suit my need to be alerted to this kind of interference. If not, then that's fine. I'll look to solve it other ways.
There are, at times, responses to folks, and attempts at helping someone, that might be perceived as patronizing or critical.. but aren't intended to be ... especially to someone 'new' to Blitzortung,  which is why, in my reply I never used the word "You" ... any conclusions drawn are the reader's ... not mine.

There are few paths to tracking down interference that operators haven't been down... and we know how irritating they are, especially to a recent install. I, for one, also want quick and easy fixes. I want all the 'built in assistance' I can get....  well... that's just not the way it is.
iNow, I can't speak for all, but if I've something occurring sporadically, I must watch for it, and I need controller, antenna and preamp, and Web GUI easy, quick access, in order to determine which direction it originates, if possible, whether it's in residence, or external, what type it is, .... etc.  And those sporadics are the biggest PITA of all the various types.

The replies all suggest directly or indirectly that proximity to the controller is a big key toward resolution... at the very least for the audible and visual indications.  Gosh, with E mail notifications, and the disturbers I have in my environment, my IP would get blacklisted from my RED and BLUE systems 'spamming' me... don't even want to think about it.

Since the device is "somewhat" portable in relation to the antennas,  the hints were given to gain proximity to increase the odds of a solution,.  That's all. If that's not possible, then it's just not possible.  No one was intentionally critical of anyone, or their specific installation.

No matter what, the system will not pop up a message that says,
"Hey, Cutty! I'm the street light a block away, and I'm shutting you down!"
or
"Hey There! I'm a nearby Electronic Doggie Fence, and My goal in life is to drive lightning locators crazy." 
But, in some fashion, the message is - "Heh, heh... Wanta play Hide'n'Seek?"

There's a 10 page thread devoted to this..http://www.wxforum.net/index.php?topic=20439.0 and many hours of PMs and Emails, and personal contacts as folks teamed up privately and worked on weird noise or operational issues.... sorry, there aren't easy fixes for this... very few disturbers are located without time and effort... whether I'm notified by email, carrier pigeon, or the built-in indicators available.

Good Luck, and Welcome Aboard!

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Offline DaleReid

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Re: Interference mode notification needed
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2017, 03:45:21 PM »
My apology if you thought I was implying you were the problem.  I meant no such thing.  But I also know how intermittent noise can be and how far it can travel.  And also how busy the developers are, who are the only ones that might be able to integrate your request into the next release of the firmware.  Sorry the noise continues.  I'd still suspect something like a furnace controller, thermostat, etc.  A portable, directional noise sniffer would be great, and I know both Mike and I think Greg did something like that with the early Green systems, but too expensive for me.

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