Sunday, 8 April 2012

How to install FY31AP and Feiyu-Tech GCS

I have recently bought this autopilot system and initially I was a bit disappointed with the computer software that goes with it.  I just couldn't get it to work and there is very little help online.  But now it does work, I wanted to share the solutions I found.

How To Install and set up FeiyuTech GCS


Go to the FeiyuTech website and download the usb driver from them, the one that windows installs may not be the right one.  When on the website just type TTL in the search box at the top and choose downloads from the pull down box...

Then click 'USB-TTL Serial driver download'

Choose the driver that matches your OS - Windows 7 or XP

Save it somewhere you can find it.  I saved mine on the desktop.

While you are on the FeiyuTech website download the latest version of the GCS software.  Click on downloads on the top and you'll find it in there...

Now you'll need to install the google earth plugin.  Just type 'google earth plugin' into google search and it will be top of the list. 

Click that link and then on that page there will be a button to install the plugin.

Ok, now to start to install the USB driver. DO NOT PLUG IT IN YET

Extract the driver program from the .zip you downloaded earlier.  I put mine on the desktop in a folder.  Right click on the prolific usb driver program and 'run as administrator'

 When that has installed disconnect from the Internet.  This is to stop your computer using a driver from Microsoft and force it to use the driver you just installed.

Now you CAN plug the usb in ***BUT DON'T CONNECT TO THE FY31AP***.  (if you have done it before then you will have to use a different USB port to the one you used before)

Ok now the bit that makes the mouse go crazy when you plug in the FY31AP and how to fix it.
Its caused by windows thinking the 31AP is a mouse and installing drivers for it.

With the 31AP still not connected, click start then RIGHT CLICK on 'Computer' and then 'Manage'

This will bring up a new management window.  Click on Device Manager.
Expand 'Mice and pointing devices' and also 'Ports'

Now on this next bit you have to be quick. Plug in the FY31AP and wait 10 seconds.
You might see in the bottom right of the screen the message 'installing device driver software'  if you do then get ready to pull the plug out of the FY31AP.
When the mouse goes crazy or you see 'Microsoft Serial BallPoint' appear under mice on the device manager - PULL THE PLUG OUT OF THE 31AP - Not the USB

Now right click on the 'Microsoft Serial BallPoint' a choose 'Disable'

This will stop the mouse going crazy when you plug it in again. :)

If  the computer didn't automatically install the ballpoint mouse then you need to force it to.
In device manager, click 'Action' then 'Scan for Hardware Changes' with the FY31AP connected.
Then follow the steps above.

Before you close the Device Manager you need to change the speed of the prolific usb.
Double click on the Prolific USB-to-serial device and choose the port settings tab.
Change the bits per second to 19200

Now to install the GCS software. 
**Anti Virus software may think it is a virus**
You may need to disable real time scanning in your anti virus if it does.

Extract the contents of the .zip file to the desktop and then right click on the setup file and choose 'run as administrator'

Follow all the prompts and tick the box that says put icon on desktop. But don't launch GCS yet.

Find the icon on the desktop labelled 'FeiyuTech'
Right click and choose Properties.
Under the Compatibility tab choose run this program as an administrator.

Now to connect to your FY31AP!...

Connect the usb and the FY31AP first before you run the program.
Run the FeiyuTech GCS Program.
Then click Tools>Com Port Settings
Make sure the correct com port is selected.
Now click OK
You might find, depending on the speed of your computer, that it freezes now or within a couple of minutes of connecting.  This is caused by the data backing up in the buffers while the computer tries to process it.  If it does you need to change the rate that the FY31AP sends data to your computer.

To do this, the 31AP needs to be connected.
Click Tools>Downlink Data Rate and choose a LOW number.  On my old computer I had to choose 1hz!
When all is ok, you should see this in the bar at the bottom (I didn't have my GPS connected but I would normally)...

That's it, it should work now :)

Once you have found the best downlink data rate for your computer you can set it in the FY31AP's permanent memory so you don't have to keep changing it every time you plug it in.

Here's how....

Connect the AP and set your downlink rate as before.
Then click on Parameter settings...

Next click 'Read' at the bottom.  This should populate all the settings from the AP...
I don't have mine connected for this so I only have 0's

Make sure you have numbers in the fields above and then click on 'Save to AP'

This will save all settings in the permanent memory :)
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Saturday, 3 March 2012

How to connect a wireless router to another router

Ok, so I got my new 2.4/5ghz Virgin Media Super Hub yesterday. I wanted to use the 5ghz mode for my Xbox and new laptop, faster speeds and less interference. The only problem then was my older laptop, iPhone and wireless cameras don't see the new Super hub.  They are all on the 2.4ghz b/g wireless system.

I still had the old Netgear b/g wireless router so I decided to use both!
Here's what to do...

Connect to the main router by Ethernet cable (the one that will be connected to the modem)

Click 'Start'

Type 'cmd' in the box at the bottom and click the cmd icon at the top of the search.

In the command window type 'ipconfig' and hit enter.

Notice the 'Defult Gateway' ip address - Write this down!

Disconnect that router and connect the other one.

When connected type 'ipconfig' again.

Notice the 'Defult Gateway' ip address - Write this down again!

Now open your browser and type in that ip address.

Log into your router and navigate to the 'Lan Setup'

All routers are slightly different but have more or less the same options.

In the lan settings you need to change the ip address of the router.
The first 3 parts of this new ip (192.168.0.***) need to be the same as the main router's ip.  Then change the last part to a high number.  I use 200 (
The next thing is to turn off DHCP Server.  This function is going to be served by the main router now and there can be only 1 DHCP Server.

Make sure wireless is all set up on this router and then save the settings.

Thats it!

Plug the second router into the main router, DO NOT USE THE WAN PORT.
Just use one of the normal ports on both routers.

Turn both routers off for a few seconds and then back on.
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Wednesday, 29 February 2012

How to fix the Red Ring of Death – Xbox 360

The RROD is generally caused by damaged solder joints under the CPU, GPU, HANA or Southbridge chips.  It can also be caused by other damaged components but this is rare.

The best thing about the xbox 360 is it gives you an error code when red lights show.  This can be found by doing the following…

  • Turn the xbox 360 on, and wait till the 3 red lights are flashing.
  • Press and hold the sync up button (the small white one), while holding that button press the eject button.
  • The LEDs will now blink the first number in the code (as described below).
  • Release the eject button and press it again.
  • The LEDs will now blink the second number of the code.
  • Release the eject button and press it again.
  • The LEDs will now blink the third number of the code.
  • Release the eject button and press it again.
  • The LEDs will now blink the forth number of the code.
  • Release the eject button and press it again.
  • The LEDs will go back to the 3 red flashing lights.

You should be able to determine the difference between the 3 flashing lights and the error code lights by the rate in which they flash.

Here is how you interpret the LEDs to get the code number:

  • All four lights flashing - 0
  • One light flashing - 1
  • Two Lights flashing - 2
  • Three lights flashing - 3

Then look up the error code here -

Now most errors can be fixed quite easily by using a X Clamp replacement kit.  I sell a few varieties of these kits on my website and they start at £4!

Here’s how to fit the basic kit…

To Remove the X clamp

Looking at the bottom of the motherboard you will see the 2 ‘X-clamps’. Be very careful at this point as one slip with the screwdriver may cut a track and kill your xbox. To help prevent this, use 2 layers of selotape and make a selotape square around the xclamp so if you do slip you will catch the tape and protect the board.

Use a small flat screwdriver and prise one corner off. Insert the screwdriver as shown below. Twist anti clockwise to push out the bottom tab. That corner should spring off. The next one should be easier and so on. Remove both x clamps.

Now gently push the studs through the holes and the heat sinks should just drop off.

When you have removed the heat sink use a pair of pliers or a 10mm spanner to remove the 4 studs from each one.

Remove the old thermal paste from both the processors and the heat sinks. To do this you can use a match stick or a plastic card, or a cotton bud with the cotton removed. Use either of these to scrape as much of as you can as the alcohol wipe is only to polish up at the end. There seems to be 2 types of paste that MS used. Either really hard, brittle paste or nice soft paste. As you can guess the softer one is much easier to remove. The processors should be nice and shiny now as shown below.

Apply a thin layer of paste to the processors, only to the shiny metal part. It’s difficult to get the thickness right. You only need a thin layer of paste, about as thick as a layer of paper. The paste supplied with my kits will not conduct electricity and so will not affect any other components if it comes into contact with them.

Put a small amount on the processor and spread thinly and evenly with a credit card.

Apply a very thin layer to the heat sink. As per the pictures below. On the heat sink we only need enough to fill the tiny pits and grooves, to make a nice even surface for the processor to make contact with. The excess will be pushed out so we need as little excess as possible.

The pictures above show the old paste I used to use. This was a lot thinner and more difficult to spread evenly. The HY810 Silver/Graphite paste is much thicker and easier to work with. You still only need a thin layer of it though.

Your GPU heatsink may also look like this, if you have a newer console...

With the paste on the chips you are ready to put it all together.
We’re not going to use the old x clamps.

Set 4 screws with a nylon washer on each. Put them through the 4 holes surrounding a processer. You could hold them in place with a strip of tape or hold them with your fingers from underneath.
This is the tricky part.

Put a nylon washer followed by a metal one on each screw poking through the board as shown
Place your heat sinks onto the screws and hold them in place with one hand while carefully putting a couple of turns on each screw to keep the washers from falling off. I place the unit on the edge of a table and from below poke my screwdriver through the tape and turn the screw in a few threads.
Do not tighten any of them completely yet.
Push the heat sink down onto the processor and hold it there square. Turn each screw gently until you feel a little resistance. Do this to every screw before actually tightening them down.
With each screw thumb tight, tighten the screws ¼ turn at a time in opposite corners. So start top left, then bottom right. Top right then bottom left and repeat until the screws are fairly tight. Tightening down one side and then the other can result in a cracked processor die or bad solder connections on one corner.
Put the board back in the metal case. – Rear first.
Plug in the power button/ring of light board.
Plug in the DVD drive.
Plug in the fan.
Place the fan as shown in the picture below.

Now for the most important part...
This step requires you to overheat the GPU. The temperature sensor for the system is in the CPU, the one with the tall heat sync on it. To get the GPU to reach a high enough temperature so that the broken solder joints under it melt and reform, we need to cool the CPU so it thinks that it is at normal operating temperature, while the GPU has no airflow and is allowed to get hot.
With the console on a firm level surface, power on your Xbox 360. Some boxes may now work because the solder joints are touching with the pressure from the new screws. You still need to follow this step to make sure the solder melts and reforms properly. It will last longer this way.
Other boxes will still be getting 3 red lights. Don’t worry this is fine.
Heat the console for 30 – 40 minutes. Don’t move the box as when it is hot the solder may be
liquid and shock may move the solder.

Remember if you have 4 red lights the console will shut itself down.
If the fans don’t come on or come on and then stop, release all of the heat sink screws by ¼ of a
turn and try again.
When the time is up, power down your Xbox. Leave it perfectly still and wait for it to cool. 10 – 15 minutes should be enough.
Unplug the fan and put it in it’s right place.
Plug it back in.
Replace the white duct.
Replace the drive.

Full instructions, including how to take the Xbox apart, are provided with our kits at

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