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  1. #1
    First officer 1090 MHz's Avatar
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    New Firmware Update Pushed to FR24 Radios

    I noticed my FR24 radio received a new firmware update today...


    Previous version was: 20141022-0934

    As of today... new Firmware is: 20150220-1537

    The logs also show the radio is now not only using GPS for a time sync, but also using an NTP server, and is doing some very fine time adjustments. I'm guessing this is to improve MLAT resolution ?

    Maybe someone on staff can let us know what new features the new firmware will bring?

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    That explains the downtime of receivers around my place just now starting from around 0925 UTC and also while I was typing this, around 1225 UTC. It's obvious as those with wide coverage in West Kalimantan were not seen at all. And whole Borneo only left T-WBKK4 & F-WBGG1 & a few T feeders near East Kalimantan, whereas the Java Sea was all dominated by T feeders. I actually freaked out because I thought there's problem with my receiver as I tried rebooting it, but to no avail. Wonder if the changelog will be made available for us.
    Last edited by edward93; 2015-03-04 at 13:31.
    ~~F-WBGR1~~

  3. #3
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    I can confirm that my station is showing the new firmware too, I also had 2 network outages that were presumably down to the update, looking at the log there are a few tries for the NTP synching as it only appears to accept the time if the drift is less than 5 milliseconds, any higher and it will keep re trying.
    Is there any way to specify the NTP server it uses? As I run a stratum 1 server on my local network.
    Ben.
    FR24 F-EGLF1, Blitzortung station 878, OGN Aldersht2, PilotAware PWAldersht, PlanePlotter M7.

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    Interesting. As far as I know MLAT is based on GPS timing. Now we are heading for NTP. I wonder why... maybe it's because FR24 network coverage is global? So timing precision is better with NTP?
    Last edited by North Borneo Radar; 2015-03-04 at 14:25.

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    Is this new or do I just don't remember seeing it. I guess I could check my router logs to see the daily upload/download.

    2015-03-04 12:24:15 | [mlat][i]MLAT bandwidth reduction active, level 1

  6. #6
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    Just guessing here

    It would be more likely that the fr24 client is updating the system time via NTP and using that as instead of the GPS directly for its uses. As code wise its probably more efficient for the client to get its time that way (via a system call).

    I would also assume that the FPGA on the cape would time stamp the data at the point of receiving it, so as it moves through the system that packet of information maintains an accurate time.

    At any rate i very much doubt that the NTP reference in the log is a call to external server because if it wasn't available MLAT would simply break.
    Last edited by SpaxmoidJAm; 2015-03-04 at 19:12.
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  7. #7
    First officer 1090 MHz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpaxmoidJAm View Post
    Just guessing here

    It would be more likely that the fr24 client is updating the system time via NTP and using that as instead of the GPS directly for its uses.
    Maybe? They were using GPS before... maybe they still do or use a combination? Only someone from FR24 can tell us.

    This is what I'm now seeing in the logs... never saw this before...

    2015-03-03 15:48:37 | [time][e]Time synchronized, offset +0.0871 seconds, drift 0.0316 seconds/minute
    2015-03-03 15:48:38 | [feed][i]sent 99 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:48:39 | [time][i]Synchronizing time via NTP
    2015-03-03 15:48:40 | [mlat][i]Pinging the server
    2015-03-03 15:48:40 | [mlat][i]Stats 298758/4435
    2015-03-03 15:48:41 | [time][e]Time synchronized, offset +1.0224 seconds, drift 0.0314 seconds/minute
    2015-03-03 15:48:42 | [feed][i]sent 98 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:48:44 | [time][i]Synchronizing time via NTP
    2015-03-03 15:48:45 | [feed][i]sent 95 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:48:46 | [time][e]Time synchronized, offset +0.0619 seconds, drift -0.0535 seconds/minute
    2015-03-03 15:48:48 | [feed][i]sent 99 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:48:48 | [time][i]Synchronizing time via NTP
    2015-03-03 15:48:50 | [time][e]Time synchronized, offset +0.0960 seconds, drift 0.0300 seconds/minute
    2015-03-03 15:48:51 | [feed][i]sent 100 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:48:52 | [time][i]Synchronizing time via NTP
    2015-03-03 15:48:55 | [feed][i]sent 95 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:48:56 | [time][e]Time synchronized, offset +0.0758 seconds, drift -0.0176 seconds/minute
    2015-03-03 15:48:58 | [feed][i]sent 94 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:48:58 | [time][i]Synchronizing time via NTP
    2015-03-03 15:49:00 | [mlat][i]Pinging the server
    2015-03-03 15:49:00 | [mlat][i]Stats 303081/4323
    2015-03-03 15:49:01 | [time][i]Time synchronized correctly, offset +0.0729 seconds, drift -0.0025 seconds/minute
    2015-03-03 15:49:01 | [feed][i]sent 94 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:49:01 | [feed][n]syncing stream
    2015-03-03 15:49:04 | [feed][i]sent 96 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:49:08 | [feed][i]sent 94 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:49:11 | [feed][i]sent 95 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:49:14 | [feed][i]sent 92 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:49:17 | [feed][i]sent 91 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:49:20 | [feed][i]sent 95 AC in 3 packets
    2015-03-03 15:49:21 | [mlat][i]Pinging the server

  8. #8
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    That's the same packet timestamp sync we see on the beta uploader software

    Makes you wonder if NTP is being used all of a sudden to see if more MLAT can come online with those in bad GPS/not setup antennas

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oblivian View Post
    That's the same packet timestamp sync we see on the beta uploader software

    Makes you wonder if NTP is being used all of a sudden to see if more MLAT can come online with those in bad GPS/not setup antennas
    Ok thanks for the answer... inquiring minds want to know! So it's to help compensate for bad GPS antenna installs? Is mine working OK? If not I can always move it up the tower by extending the coax ... it's currently about 10 feet off the ground on a tower side bracket I fabricated.

    http://www.ads-b.ca/img_9393.htm


  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1090 MHz View Post
    Ok thanks for the answer... inquiring minds want to know! So it's to help compensate for bad GPS antenna installs? Is mine working OK? If not I can always move it up the tower by extending the coax ... it's currently about 10 feet off the ground on a tower side bracket I fabricated.
    I doubt your GPS antenna location has any issue. At one point I had it pointing at the horizon under an eave and it was locking 8 or so satellites which is more than plenty.

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