Saturday, September 30, 2006

Upgrade Pricing

I am preparing the upgrade pricing for Weather Message 3.0. This should be posted on the Weather Message website on October 1st.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Weather Message V3.0 Beta 3 Ready

Weather Message Net Version 3.0 beta 3 has been posted. The download and release notes are at http://www.wxmesg.com/wxbeta

This release starts introducing new changes based on user requests. Finally... I was wondering if we were going to get to this day. There are still a few conversion tasks that need to be addressed before final release. Everything is coming together.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Litchfield Ohio Turns Outdoor Sirens over to Weather Message

The City of Litchfield Ohio turned over the duty of activating their outdoor warning sirens to Weather Message today. Chris Johnson dropped me a message today with the good news.

I have been working with Chris and Sentry Siren for the past couple of months to develop an interface for their warning sirens. An interface program was written that allows Weather Message to activate their sirens using a Zetron Model 15p paging encoder. The interface program can activate any number of programmed paging sequences in the encoder.

The system has gone through a number of tests over the past weeks to verify that it works under different conditions. Weather Message Scheduler has been used to activate the sirens during the weekly tests.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Priority Flag and Outlook Express

It appears that Microsoft is using a different method to determine when to enable the priority message flag in Outlook Express. The priority option in Weather Message enables the priority flag in Outlook, but not Outlook Express.

Changes have been made in version 3.0 to enable the priority flag in Outlook Express, when the priority option in Weather Message is enabled.

Monday, September 18, 2006

NetCode Licensing Issue

Weather Message 3.0 Beta 2 has an issue with the NetCode component. If you attempt to use the http post or http get capability, you will receive an error message reporting a licensing problem with the NetCode component.

I have identified the problem and will upload a revised beta Monday evening.

--- Update 9/18/06 ---
The problem with NetCode licensing has been resolved. The beta installs have
been refreshed.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Weather Message V3.0 Beta 2 Ready

Weather Message Net Version 3.0 beta 2 has been posted. The download and release notes are at http://www.wxmesg.com/wxbeta .

Call a telephone with a voice weather alert.

I user has asked that I add support for voice telephone weather alerts. I have been working with Group2Call to make this happen. Group2Call is a pay service, however their rates are very reasonable. They have made changes on their server that will allow Weather Message's http post option to activate their service. There will be full integration in Weather Message in the near future.

You can read about their service at http://www.group2call.com

--- Update 9/17/06 ---
Weather Message now supports http get's. This allows access to Group2Call using their default script. I have tested this using their demo account and it works. Setup information will be posted to the yahoo group.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Revised Connections Window

The connections window has been revised. It now supports resizing, along with adding the connection date/time.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Exceeding the maximum number of connections

It appears that the tcp/ip control is returning a connection identifier that is increasing with each reconnection. This is strange and it does not act like this in the 2.x programs. I am investigating the cause of this issue -- looks like the tcp/ip control is not working like it did in the past.

This increasing number causes the maximum number of connections to be exceeded even when there are only a few connections. I will follow up with my findings.

--- Update 9/14/06 ---

After discussing this with the tcp/ip vendor -- I found out that the .net version does not work like the version used in Weather Message 2.x. This will require some work on my part to accomodate this issue. I will post an updated beta when it is fixed.

--- Update 9/16/06 ---

After 8 hours of work, this problem has been resolved. In the process some optimization of memory was gained. The initial program start up memory requirements for each connection has been reduced to zero, while the processing time to accumulate and manage the connections has increased slightly. As each connection is made, the memory needed to track the connection is allocated.

Performance Monitoring

A user asked me about monitoring certain items in Weather Message Server. I will look at adding performance counters for messages processed, alarms activated, emails, pages, and faxes sent or failures. Performance counters are relatively easy to implement in the 3.0 programs.

This would allow these parameters to be monitored with windows "perfmon" and would provide some valuable information that otherwise would have to be discovered by looking through the logfile. I will add this to my list of items to implement.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Cookie Goes To Church

I just have to post about Cookie's trip to church. Sunday was an interesting day. I went to church just like normal. During Sunday School, we had an elderly lady pass out. Being part of the volunteer fire department, I went out to my car to get my "medical bag" so I could take vitals.

My dog normally follows me to church and stays by my car. She is part lab and great pyrenees. Well all the excitement got to her, she followed me back into the Sunday school room. In all of the excitement, I looked around there set that 80 pound dog. After making sure the lady was ok, I escorted Cookie back outside.

After a short wait, other members from the fire department arrived and then the ambulance crew. The patient was attended to and was transported to the hospital. A case of dehydration.

I along with everyone else went back into church for the worship service, which was starting late by now. I went in one of the side doors and proceeded to choir. Some one came in the front of the church and left the door ajar. I was watching carefully. The normal Sunday announcements started, then I saw a dog's nose appear in the crack in the door. Cookie proceeded to push open the door and walked down to the podium. I came down from the choir and escorted her back outside. She put all 90 people into a state of laughter --- which was needed after the medical incident.

I think we all needed a visit from Cookie.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Email Retries

I am looking at adding retry capability to the email subsystem. I want to accomplish this without having to implement a complete smtp server. It looks possible by make some relatively minor modifications to the system. There will need to be settings for retry after X minutes and up to Y times.

This capability may end up in the TAP / SNPP subsystem also.

---- Update 9/8/06 ----

The email subsystem now has this capability.

EMWIN Workshop

I have been asked to be a presenter at the 2006 Southeastern EMWIN workshop. Here are the details on the conference.

National Weather Service (NWS) offices from around the southeast U.S. will be hosting the 6th Annual EMWIN users workshop on Thursday, October 12th at the Jefferson County Emergency Operations Center, Jefferson County Emergency Management Agency, in downtown Birmingham. This workshop will bring together EMWIN enthusiasts from the general public along with users from local..state...and federal government agencies. Speakers will include experts in the EMWIN field...from the local to national levels. Details concerning registration fee for catered lunch, directions, and local hotel information will be provided shortly.

Please RSVP Jason Wright at either Jason.B.Wright@noaa.gov
or at Jason.B.Wright@noaa.gov by Friday, October 6th.

Weather Message and Windows Vista

I had the opportunity today to load Weather Message 2.10 and Weather Message 3.0 on a computer loaded with Windows Vista. Weather Message 2.10 complained about two missing "ocx" files. I will see if they are included in the full release of vista. If not, will update the install. Weather Message 3.0 installed and ran without any problems.

The software looks a little different on Vista. The visual difference requires a little adjustment. I kind of like the new window formatting. It is definately not as radical as the change from Windows 2000 to XP. The operation and performance was fine.

Initial Blog Entry

I have started this blog to post information about Weather Message software, EMWIN and my software development projects. I may also post notes about amateur radio and other things that come to mind.