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frugal

SGPro - Updating Equipment Profiles

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TLDR: If you change an Equipment Profile, you need to use "File -> Apply Profile to Sequence" to update the Sequence. For Every Sequence you have that uses that Profile.

I spent quite a bit of last night pulling my hair out in frustration when SGPro decided that it was not going to wait for PHD2 to settle after dithering, SGPro just went blindly on and started the next frame, which of course led to horrible star tracks and subs that had to be thrown away (not something to do lightly given the poor weather recently).

After much experimentation I found the solution, and as I had not discovered it through my googling online I thought I would share it here in case anyone else has a similar problem:

Some scene setting; SGPro works using three main "Objects":

1 - The User Profile. This is the geographic location of the observing site and the details of the observer.

2 - The Equipment Profile. This is a set of equipment that is used together (scope, camera, filter wheel, guide scope, plate solver etc). 

3 - The Sequence. This is one or more targets that you wish to image along with their RA/DEC and the number of each type and duration of frame you wish to take.

One of your equipment profiles can be chosen as the default for all new Sequences. You can then either create (using the File Menu) a "New Sequence" (using the default Equipment Profile), or "New Sequence from Profile" which lets you chose a specific profile (if you have different set ups for wide field nebula or deep galaxy hunting). You can also associate a User Profile with a sequence. You can even change which User Profile a Sequence uses from within the Sequence (in case you take images from different sites).

What you can not do easily is change the Equipment Profile associated with a Sequence. I spent ages changing my default Equipment Profile (the one that the Sequence was using) and it was having no effect. It turns out that whilst the Sequence links to the User Profile, when you create a Sequence it takes a copy of the Equipment Profile at that point in time. any changes you make to the Equipment Profile after that are not changed in any Sequence that is using that Equipment Profile. To make matters worse, there is no way of changing much of the equipment settings once they are embedded into the Sequence. So I was changing the Dithering, Settling accuracy and Settling Time in the Equipment Profile and it was having no effect.

So if, you make a change to an Equipment Profile, once you have saved the profile, you need to open up your sequence and selected "File -> Apply Profile to Sequence" to change the Equipment Profile information stored in the Sequence itself. Then the next time you start your sequence the correct equipment values will be used.

Unfortunately SGPro does not inform you that the Equipment Profile has been updated since you last used the Sequence, so you will need to do "Apply Profile" every time you open a Sequence just to be sure.

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Thank you Frugal, for this important bit of information. I have not used SGPro in anger  - yet! I have been sorting out Profiles, Equipment profiles, sequences and generally familiarising myself with the SW. What you have posted may well of meant that I would have fallen at the 1st hurdle when I actually cam to trying to capture some images.

Thank you.

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You are welcome. The SGPro documentation assumes that once you have set up an Equipment Profile you will never need to change it. However somethings like Guiding settling time and accuracy can only be adjusted in the Equipment Profile dialog...

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This is one thing about SGPro that confuses me so that you for taking the time to explain it.

one thing though, I was changing my settle parameters mid-sequence and it seemed to work immediately. I wonder if more is at play?

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How bizarre, that is exactly what I was failing to do. 

I have posted a message on the SGPro forum to ask for the documentation to be made explicit that you need to manually apply equipment profile changes to existing sequences; and to also ask that if you edit an Equipment Profile with a sequence open, that is asks if you want to apply the new profile to the sequence when you save the profile.

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1 hour ago, Filroden said:

This is one thing about SGPro that confuses me so that you for taking the time to explain it.

one thing though, I was changing my settle parameters mid-sequence and it seemed to work immediately. I wonder if more is at play?

Jared, one of the SGPro developers has responded to my comment and pointed me to the FAQ for Equipment Profiles: http://mainsequencesoftware.com/Content/SGPHelp/UnderstandingProfilesFAQ.html

It turns out that "Tools -> Equipment Profile Manager" edits the profile for all future sequences, and "View -> Show Control Panel" edits the same parameters for only the current Sequence. Were you using the Control Panel to change the Settle parameters?

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Yup, Control Panel changes the equipment settings for the current sequence only, and you need to save the sequence for the changes to be carried over to the next time you use it.

I rarely use Control Panel as I generally want the settings to be remembered for future sequences, so I edit the Equipment Profile, save it and apply it to the current sequence, and also to any other sequences I have planned or on the go.

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I've always tweaked settings in the control panel, made sure they work then saved the sequence as a profile, selecting the 'make default' checkbox.

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I think I am starting to get a handle on how it all hangs together. I was originally using a different sequence for each target, then over the weekend I suddenly realised that does not work if you want to image multiple targets in a single night and don't want to babysit the system. So I tried setting up a sequence with all of the frames I wanted to capture for a couple of targets and then setting the "image until" value in the target list until it dropped too low in the horizon, or got too near the meridian (I have not figured out how to trust auto flips yet ;) ). 

So now I think I am going to have a single sequence with all of my targets in it (including the total number of subs I think I will need), and then on each night work out what I want to capture and use the "image from" and "image to" values to set specific targets for each night.

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54 minutes ago, frugal said:

I have not figured out how to trust auto flips yet ;) 

Now that is interesting, I'm trying my first auto flip here tonight, 16 minutes to go and counting...

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There is some EQMod magical setting I need to play with in order to turn on auto flips and I keep forgetting to apply them before I start a Sequence.

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Well that didn't work, had to manually flip, even though the notification area on the bottom on the SPG main window was showing time to flip. More playing required.

Huw

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Thanks for that Daz, hadn't seen that bit of the documentation. I had a play indoors tonight (clouded out today), and with a bit of fiddling got it to at least attempt the flip, but without a plate solver it fell over, but at least it attempted. Now lets see what happens when we get some more stars

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Guys,

This thread is being unbelievably helpful to me for many reasons.

I only had the chance to use SGP for the first time on Saturday evening. It turned out to be a failure in operation but enlightened me to other aspects of the software. I had populated my User Profile but had failed to select the user profile for the sequence.

Frugal,

I had not realised the significance of  Equipment & User Profiles to the Sequence.

I may have had other issues that I have yet to discover but I suspect that platesolving, Platesolve2, would not work as I had not selected the User Profile.

I suspect that it may be sometime before I get to try again but this thread has been really helpful in introducing some of the foibles of SGP as well as making think more about what I need to do to get a particular result.

Thank you all.

It is a very powerful bit of SW,just takes a bit of getting used to ?

Edited by Uplooker

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You can set the User Profile, and Equipment Profile, of choice to be the default when you start a new sequence - then there is no chance of forgetting to select it!

As Frugal now knows, the profiles selected are stored with the sequence when you save, so SGP always knows which profile is attached to which sequence. The latest version now shows the profiles in use on the title bar of the sequence, which is very handy!

 

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30 minutes ago, daz said:

You can set the User Profile, and Equipment Profile, of choice to be the default when you start a new sequence - then there is no chance of forgetting to select it!

As Frugal now knows, the profiles selected are stored with the sequence when you save, so SGP always knows which profile is attached to which sequence. The latest version now shows the profiles in use on the title bar of the sequence, which is very handy!

 

The trouble is that it doesn't store the equipment profile with the sequence, instead it stores a completely separate copy of the equipment profile as part of the sequence. So if you update the original profile, you also have to reapply it to the sequence. The fact that it puts the equipment profile name in the title of the sequence just adds to the confusion as it implies that the equipment profile is still somehow connected to the sequence.

I have not coded anything for over a decade and I still want to show this as a UML model, as it is just how my brain thinks ;) So this is what I thought SGPro was doing:

58dbd264654b2_-BlankUML-Page1.thumb.png.694a4e4248e429a193f68bd1a4b258e2.png

A Sequence is made up of 1 or more events; an Equipment Profile is used in zero or more Sequences and a User Profile is used in one or more sequences.

It turns out that this is what SGPro is actually doing:

58dbd26328bd4_-BlankUML-Page1(2).thumb.png.a9cc8ea4d3f7b72ec2152bff3b6cdf75.png

The User Profile is still connected to the Sequence as a link, but the contents of the Equipment Profile are copied at point of Sequence creation, and are thereafter completely separate.

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