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A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purposes

Using NeoBook to control external hardware and devices.

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A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purposes

Postby dec » Tue Oct 07, 2014 4:55 am

Hello to all,

More than never I need your help in order to test the first alpha version of a possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purposes. Currently you can open, close, set options, read and write strings to an specific COM port. I need your help in order to test the plugin and tell me what do you need in order to enhance it. It's my intention to add other actions like to get the options and set several COM port "flags", but certainly I do not want to go ahead before this plugin alpha release are well tested and demostrate their capabilities.

Remember I am not an expert in Serial Communications and only count with very limited (in my opinion) COM emulators. But some of my best customers want a plugin like that and therefore I want to at the least try to develop it, basically follow the interface provided by the widely used "Synopse ComPort" component for Delphi. Sorry if finally we cannot get something working. It's not the first time I start a plugin development and, for some reason, I become obligated to abandon their development. But this is the first time I publish an alpha release in order to obtain your feedback before continue or finally stop the development.

Any idea, question, comment, error report, etc., are very welcome (and really needed), so don't hesitate to write here your test results and anything else that you think can help us. Note the plugin do not have any help at this time, but I hope the actions are explained itself at this moment. Take a look specially at the "npCompSetOptions", since you can set here several options which can be of your interest.

You can download the first alpha version of npComp from the bellow link:

http://www.neoplugins.com/temp/npComp.zip

Hope this plugin can finally be useful for your projects. ;)
Last edited by dec on Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby michi » Tue Oct 07, 2014 10:56 am

Hi David, that's great! can't wait to try it! Unfortunately I haven't any device at home, but at work I've a datalogic powerscan. So I can try it, and then create a small application to test plugin strength that consider standard human use (how can it works in a compiled neobook application destinated to be used by an operator)

thanks in advance! I'll try it as soon as possibile and I'll tell you my opinion hoping to help you to find bugs and improve it.
Michi

Started to use Neobook in 2003 when I was 12 to make interactive books. Coders saw me and smiled.
Nowadays I'm still using Neobook to create advanced and powerful softwares. Coders see me and say: «how did you make that?»
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Tue Oct 07, 2014 11:17 am

Hello,

michi wrote:Hi David, that's great! can't wait to try it! Unfortunately I haven't any device at home, but at work I've a datalogic powerscan. So I can try it, and then create a small application to test plugin strength that consider standard human use (how can it works in a compiled neobook application destinated to be used by an operator)

thanks in advance! I'll try it as soon as possibile and I'll tell you my opinion hoping to help you to find bugs and improve it.


Thanks michi! ;)
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby DaveJ » Tue Oct 07, 2014 11:51 am

Hi David,
This looks great, do you know if you will be able to send and receive hex values instead of strings? My problem with the other RS232 plugin was that it would ignore Hex $00 which as ascii is a null.
I will give this a test as soon as I can get a few mins.
Good luck.
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Tue Oct 07, 2014 12:01 pm

Hello,

DaveJ wrote:Hi David,
This looks great, do you know if you will be able to send and receive hex values instead of strings? My problem with the other RS232 plugin was that it would ignore Hex $00 which as ascii is a null.
I will give this a test as soon as I can get a few mins.
Good luck.


This is something that currently is not supported, but, probably it's possible to add some actions in order to deal with hexadecimal values. To be honest I don't know how exactly at this time, but I think this is possible, converting HEX to STR or viceversa, or sending HEX directly,... it's something I need to study, but probablyl it's also something we can let to the near future: after we test if the basic plugin (presented in the alpha version) can really works or what. Thanks for the comment DaveJ.
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby ebear » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:30 am

Hello David,

Will be very glad to help. I have all the needed hardware available, please let me know which test you need.

Best regards,

Eric
http://www.lunarsoftware.eu - Lunar Software ERP database Development. Manufacturing processes, Document management, QMS, Stock management. Standalone solutions or connected to Helios Orange and other ERP systems.
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Wed Oct 08, 2014 9:38 am

Hello,

ebear wrote:Hello David,

Will be very glad to help. I have all the needed hardware available, please let me know which test you need.

Best regards,

Eric


Thanks Eric. In principle, with this alpha release, we can open and close ports, set several options, and write to the output and read from the input. Also this plugin have an "npOnCompRxChar" event, which apparently it's fired (and the associated subroutine executed) when some chars are available into the input. In this event we can use the "npCompReadString" action (at this time) in order to read such input.

So basically I need to know if the plugin can works in this alpha release. I want to add more actions, like "npCompWriteHex", and several others to set and get diferents port properties (like input size and output size) but probably we need to test before the plugin in the stage in which you can download right now. Of course also you can also communicate if you miss something in the plugin, in order to study if this can be added or what.
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Wed Oct 08, 2014 10:29 am

Hello,

I fix a minor mistake in the "npCompSetOptions" action and add a new one: "npCompGetOptions" in Options category.

http://www.neoplugins.com/temp/npComp.zip
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Thu Oct 09, 2014 2:08 am

Hello,

Added new actions: "npCompInputCount", "npCompOutputCount", "npCompClearInput" and "npCompClearOutput" in new "Input / Output" category.

http://www.neoplugins.com/temp/npComp.zip
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:41 am

Hello,

Added new actions: "npCompSetDTR", "npCompSetRTS", "npCompSetBreak" and "npCompSetXonXoff" in new "Transmission" category.

http://www.neoplugins.com/temp/npComp.zip
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:15 am

Hello,

Added new action: "npCompEnumPorts" in new "Utilities" category.

The plugin "Basic.pub" sample has been enhanced to list available ports.

http://www.neoplugins.com/temp/npComp.zip
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby ebear » Thu Oct 09, 2014 9:28 am

David,

Your'e great.

I'm already testing the plugin with the several hardware options I have over here available. Please await my feedback during the weekend.
This could be really the "Ultimate" communication plugin!!!!

Thanks friend.

Regards,

Eric
http://www.lunarsoftware.eu - Lunar Software ERP database Development. Manufacturing processes, Document management, QMS, Stock management. Standalone solutions or connected to Helios Orange and other ERP systems.
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Thu Oct 09, 2014 9:51 am

Hello to all,

ebear wrote:David,

Your'e great.

I'm already testing the plugin with the several hardware options I have over here available. Please await my feedback during the weekend.
This could be really the "Ultimate" communication plugin!!!!

Thanks friend.

Regards,

Eric


Thanks Eric. Hopefully we can have this in our toolbox. ;)
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby ebear » Thu Oct 09, 2014 12:19 pm

Hello David,

Should it not be npComm instead npComp :D

Greetings,

Eric
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Re: A possible plugin for basic Serial Communications purpos

Postby dec » Thu Oct 09, 2014 1:27 pm

Hello Eric,

ebear wrote:Hello David,

Should it not be npComm instead npComp :D

Greetings,

Eric


Yes; I think also in "npComm", however, the "m" letter appear too width, and join two "m" enlarge the plugin name, which affect in some way in various plugin parts. So probably I think in a possible "npComm" substitute, and then I found "comp" for "COM Port", so I finally put this name to the plugin. In a very early stage of the plugin change their name it's not too difficult, however at this time this implied too much changes in various ways: files, units, forms, identifiers, functions... so probably the plugin continue named "npComp", if we don't found some good reason to change their name. ;)
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