ASTRO-PHYSICS
GTO Keypad Firmware - Program Code
Current and Prior Versions

The GTO Keypad Firmware consists of two separate parts that occupy two separate memory areas in the keypad:

  • Program firmware: This firmware contains all program logic for the functions, menus, entry screens and all other aspects concerned with the operation of the keypad. It also includes the calculated values of the solar system objects and calibration stars. The keypad version number displays when you start your keypad. This page contains links and information regarding the program firmware.


  • Database firmware: The database firmware contains the information in the object database. This includes the catalog name, common name, RA and Declination coordinates, magnitude, object type, and constellation where the object is located. All keypads up to and including version 4.17 of the program firmware have the database level:0. The database remains in memory even when the program version changes. It does not need to be reloaded unless the database corrupts.
    Please note:
    even though the database itself is unchanged for all versions up to 4.17, the internet database loader requires version 3.20 or later. Please refer to Keypad Database Corruption and Reloading for details.

This page contains links to current and prior versions of the keypad program code. Please refer to these documents when making your decision:

GTO Keypad Controller - History of Revisions. This document will show the evolution of keypad features from the earliest versions.

Bug Lists for Keypad Versions 4.07 and Above. This document is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.0 or higher.


Keypad Firmware Upgrade Procedure - Overview
Determine if your keypad can be upgraded by removing the cover of the GTOCP1 or GTOCP2 control box. The label on the chip must be dated January 22, 2001 or later. Chips with an earlier date or no label at all, must be upgraded. Note: All GTOCP3 control boxes will allow keypad upgrades.

The firmware upgrade will be accomplished in two distinct operations:
  • Download the Keypad Upgrade Tool (a Windows based utility that enables the download) which contains the Keypad Firmware Update (actual changes to the keypad) from this site onto your computer hard drive. Please Note: You will need a password to access this area of the website. If you do not have the password, please contact Astro-Physics. We may ask for your mount or keypad serial number to assure that you are authorized to access this area of our site. You may also find the username and password in the cover letter that came with your mount's original documentation.
  • Upload the program to your keypad. This procedure must be done from a PC (my apologies to you devoted Mac fans) with Windows versions 95/98/2000/NT/ME/XP and later. The actual upload procedure to the keypad requires that the program be routed through the ROM chip in the GTO control box (you must have chip version C or above). In order to accomplish this, your mount (actually just the control box) must be set up with power near your PC. The motor cables do not need to be connected.
  • Please note that this process requires a straight through (as opposed to crossover, reversing or null modem) serial cable to connect your GTOCPx control box to your PC. We now have these Straight Through Serial Cables as well as USB to Serial Adapters available for purchase. The USB to Serial Adapters may be needed for laptops and newer computers without serial ports. Although we cannot guarantee performance on your particular computer, we have used these products without any problems for keypad upgrades from machines running both Windows XP and Vista and later.


Keypad v4.17 program code - Latest Version - For ALL locations - Especially Important if you are in Eastern Longitudes. We recommend that all users of prior versions upgrade their keypads to version 4.17.

July 9, 2014.

Please Note: Keypad firmware v4.17 addresses some issues that primarily relate to customers with eastern longitudes and fixes some bugs that were created in earlier attempts to address these issues in v.4.15 and v.4.16. However, we recommend that all customers in the western hemisphere also upgrade their keypad firmware to version 4.17 at this time. We have repaired a bug in v4.15 that only affected older keypads with serial numbers of 1490 and earlier (purchased before April, 2002). When v.4.15 was loaded into these older keypads, the real-time clock stopped functioning. There was no damage done to the clock, and clock function could be restored by simply re-loading v.4.12, or now by loading v.4.17. Version 4.16 fixed the clock problem, but had a separate issue with occasional random freeze-ups of the keypad during initialization, especially when resuming from Reference Park 1. We are now very confident that these issues have been resolved, but if you have a clock related problem or a keypad freeze-up after loading v4.17, please contact us at the e-mail address below:

support@astro-physics.com

Instructions:
Read the Download Instructions from This Site.
Instructions: Instructions for Uploading v4.17 to Your Keypad. Please print these instructions for your reference.
Firmware: Keypad417.exe

Manuals: GTO Keypad version 4.12 This is the primary Keypad manual. It is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher.
V4.17 Addendum to v4.12 Keypad Manual - documentation of the issues and changes from v4.12 to v4.16


Keypad v4.16 program code
This version is not offered for download since it contained a bug, which caused the keypad to occasionally freeze up during initialization. We encourage you to upload the most recent keypad version of 4.17 in its place. The Bug List document is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher.


Keypad v4.15 program code
This version is not offered for download since it contained a bug, which disabled the keypad's clock functions in older keypads (Serial #1490GTO and earlier). We encourage you to upload the most recent keypad version of 4.16 in its place. The Bug List document is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher.


Keypad v4.12 program code - Recent version - Do NOT use for Eastern Longitudes
Instructions: Read the Download Instructions from This Site.
Instructions: Instructions for Uploading v4.17 to Your Keypad. Please print these instructions for your reference.
Firmware: keypad412.exe

Manual: GTO Keypad version 4.12 It is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher.


Keypad v4.11 program code
This version is not offered for download since it contained significant bugs. This document is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.0 or higher. We encourage you to upload the most recent version of 4.x in its place.


Keypad v4.10 program code
This version is not offered for download since it contained significant bugs. This document is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.0 or higher. We encourage you to upload the most recent version of 4.x in its place.


Keypad v4.07 program code
Version 4.07 is not offered for download since it contained significant bugs. This document is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.0 or higher. We encourage you to upload the most recent version of 4.x in its place.


Keypad v3.2 program code
This version was not available through an internet download, however we loaded it onto new mounts. It is a very solid, trouble-free version. This is the oldest version to allow internet downloading of the database.

Instructions: Read the Download Instructions from This Site.
Instructions: Instructions for Uploading v3.20 to Your Keypad. Please print these instructions for your reference.
Firmware: keypad320.exe

Manual: GTO Keypad Controller version 3.2x, dated 11-18-02. This document is in PDF format and requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.0 or higher.


Download the FREE Acrobat Reader.

Thank you!
We extend special thanks to you, our customer and friend, for your thoughtful suggestions and recommendations. Many of them are implemented in the changes to date and others will be incorporated in future versions. You have great ideas and we appreciate your willingness to share them with us.

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This page was last modified: July 9, 2014

Astro-Physics, Inc.
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Phone: 815-282-1513   Fax: 815-282-9847