Initial Base Station, NTRIP and Rover Setup- Beginners Guide

While its fresh figured I would pen this post for others using search terms I used and found very little. Also added to my draft Dummies guide located on google drive at AOG Dummies Guide Google Drive

Disclaimer: This is what I went through, your situation might be different. I am not a technology expert by trade, so this is a dummies guide, written by a dummy

I had some frustrations while setting up my Ardusimple receiver as a base connected by USB to a computer. Got it all configured as per the guides, but then ended up not working at all, and getting myself banned a couple times. Figured share some points for others in my shoes.

For those of you who want to get going right away. I also found you can ignore the point in ardusimples setup guide where it says mount your antenna permanently then leave it. Let’s face it we all want to try this gear out right away. My base antenna is currently on a 3ft tall stick in my sidewalk garden blocked on probably 270deg!!! It still got enough of a signal to allow me to set things up and try it. I am glad I did not spend hours mounting in the perfect spot before testing. 1 thing to remember is when you do move it to it’s permanent home. Make sure you reset it to survey with tightened settings, so it reestablishes its fix.

Tried sorting this a bit cause it got quite long:

Setting up your Base:

4 Points with Video
  1. Ardusimple offers config files and guides for base and rovers on their receivers, make sure you do this. One step is updating the firmware. I had issues with one of the 2 receivers I had and couldn’t update the firmware. Found out that if you downgrade ucenter to an earlier version 21.09 I think it was, it worked fine.

  2. Once you load your config files everything should work… right… wrong. The config files are written to set up your base with the radio antenna pushing the data out. If you are using a computer and USB, like I did, then nothing is being pushed out the USB. You need to change that. Within ucenter there are some config options that you need to engage. The video below was the key to my success, you just need to set up the ports based on what you are actually using, rather than following the video to a T. I also did the hide child messages in the nmea and it kinda screwed things up.

  3. Keys take aways are:
    a. Make sure you set Timemode3 to survey in, and make sure you fix reads TIME
    b. Make sure your ports are set to send out RTCM data over your connection method, either usb or uart
    c. Make sure the messages for RTCM are enabled for the port you are using, I enabled them all just cause, not sure if it matters. But he lists 4 key ones. This is where the config from ardusimple fails it doesnt turn on the USB connection for any of the RTCM messages.
    d. Once your base is setup in it’s final position I suggest going back into the timemode3 and tightening up your survey in settings. I plan on dropping mine down to .02m of 3d accuracy over 24 hours

  4. uCenter is a graphical interface nightmare. Horrible, easy to make a mistake. But fear not if you make a mistake and cant get it back, I found either a reupload of the ardusimple config file , or a firmware reflash gets it back to the start.

This video saved me!! Starting at 37 minutes in Neo-M8P RTK setup and demo (courtesy u-blox) - YouTube

Prepping your NTRIP Server/Caster

4 Points
  1. Download SNIP from Simple NTRIP Caster – SNIP. You will need to also register your mount name over at rtk2go.com that stuff is pretty straight forward. SNIP is what I chose to use, there are others, some probably better, so to each their own.

  2. SNIP is annoyingly helpful at times, with pop ups and messages. I failed to take time to review these initially… typical I don’t need instructions attitude. This caused pain… take your time and read through some of this stuff.

  3. Decide what you want. Its simple but can be confusing and lead to over thinking. I found there are 2 ways to go about it depending on what you want to do.

Options

a. Set up a direct computer connection to share your serial stream
b. Push out a serial stream to a remote caster so others can share your stream easier

  1. I have chosen to push out so my neighbors can use it as well, but from my testing I don’t think this is required. If you choose in stead to set up a direct connection, you must go through port forwarding and firewall rules for your specific setup. I used the standard ports of 2101. @BrianTee_Admin talks about this in a few videos of how you can use AOG to connect direct.

Serial Stream Tab

5 Points
  1. This is your USB stream from your newly configured USB connected receiver. Click add new and go through the boxes. I found most can be left blank, one that did prove critical (I think) was the drop down for type. I picked rtcm 3.x auto rather then the overall auto setting. This worked better.

  2. Choose if you want your stream listed in the caster tables with a check

  3. If you are going to push out your stream to rtk2go.com Once added, right click on the stream and under pfta make sure parse is UNCHECKED. If it is checked your push out wont grab it properly.

  4. Right click and connect, should be able to see the data start sending. Right click and see message log and it will show you the messages it is sending, you should be seeing rtcm in there, if not, theres a setting wrong, probably on ucenter. Close snip and re look at your message types.

  5. You can right click and see on map as well. This seems to use the location you manually input, and not the actual gps location, so don’t fret if this is off.

Local Caster

3 Points
  1. IP Table-This is fairly simple I found, fill in the IP as required, and make sure ports are whatever you have forwared on your router if any. Within the IP table is your outward public IP
  2. The IP on the caster page is your individual computer LAN IP
  3. Click test and it should load a snip monitor page, if it loads and lists your serial stream, this part is working.

RTK2GO.Com Caster

3 Points
  1. If you want to push out to RTK2GO.com you need to set up a push stream on the push out tab
  2. This will take your serial stream and then send it out again just as it comes in.
  3. Select your serial stream from the drop down, then in the box below type the mount name you registered earlier on rtk2go, case sensitive and make sure your password matches

Testing

3 Points
  1. If there are issues it almost certainly won’t be on the push out stream, except for password or mount name possibly. The push out is basically just a cloned copy of your serial stream.
  2. For a local caster, use the ip table and test to open up the test table. All the columns should have some stuff in it. It might say pending at the start
  3. You can right click on the serial stream to see connections status, will open a page, skim this page, and make sure most of the info is filled in if you see something missing ie: coordinates, message types, ect, you have a problem.

Rover connection

5 Points
  1. Configure and update your firmware on your rover chip the same as your base, but use the rover config file instead. I used the 10hz version.
  2. There may be other config files you can modify to make things better, but I didn’t change anything at all and everything seemed to work great.
  3. Follow @BrianTee_Admin video on AGIO, makes it fairly simple to set up.
  4. You will see data in and data out as soon as your connected to the NTRIP. I was getting data in even when my base was set up wrong. The key is the lights, your No RTK light will be solid if no fix is found, flash while its getting corrections, and go out when a fix is full RTK. You can also use ucenter to check this out and gives way more (too much) information probably.
  5. Once you have good data coming in, and the rtk light is out, you should be ready to roll.
  6. Last test I did when I thought I had everything setup was showing about 420 in and 1240 out in AOG next to the antenna. (not gonna lie don’t know what these numbers mean) I thought “frig yeah I finally got it”… not so much. The reciever never did go into RTK mode. Back to ucenter to further adjust some settings.

Potential Problems:

7 Problems
  1. You have everything setup but your local caster table is blank
    a. Chances are you missed a message format in the ucenter config
    b. Your signal types might not be configured properly
    c. You have an issue with your signal
  2. Your push out is data starved
    a. Ensure parse is off on your serial stream
  3. Your IP numbers are right, but the test still won’t show your table.
    a. Check to make sure your Ips are in the right boxes and not flipped
    b. You may have a firewall issue
    c. Your ports may not be forwarded right
  4. Your able to see your push out in the rtk2go table, but it is missing info
    a. Same as answer 1 above, the problems on the push out side, are always on the serial/receiver side.
  5. Push won’t connect to serial
    a. Issue with message format on serial possibly
    b. Check if parse is disabled
    c. Your IP may be Banned from RTK2GO.com
  6. No Caster tables will load, can’t get to the monitor
    a. Your IP is probably banned link below to check
  7. IP Banning from RTK2GO:
    a. Clients (rover, AOG) will take a long time to cause a ban if something is set up wrong, you should be able to tell its wrong before a ban will hit
    b. Pushing to the caster, bans happen very quickly, within 1/2hr to an hour of issue filled streams.
    c. To avoid being banned while doing your setup, when you connect your push out stream if there are issues with it, data starved, not connecting, slow, wrong messages ect. Make sure you disable it ASAP. Then go to your serial or your ucenter to trouble shoot.

Important Links:

Summary

Ardusimple Config: Configuration Files - ArduSimple
RTK2GO.com monitor: http://monitor.use-snip.com/
Caster: enter in either rtk2go.com for push out, or your public ip for local caster streams
RTK2GO Ban List: http://rtk2go.com:2101/SNIP::BANS
To Check if you IP is banned, simply go to the url above connecting on the same network as the machine in question. If you get a notice that you have been banned then you have your answer. Disconnect your cell phone from your wifi and go to the same URL, the website now should load a table of banned Ips and when they will be reinstated. You will see your url on that list. You can email the support and explain your issue and they will unban your IP. Make sure you fix your errors first though.
UBlox: This the actual fp9 chip on your ardusimple board. This is a great resource for support and help. https://portal.u-blox.com/s/?_ga=2.200545070.1879895680.1657123659-1717770487.1656019233

Tags:
Caster Table Blank RTK Fix Ardusimple ucenter fp9 SNIP rtk2go.com NTRIP ban serial rtcm

17 Likes

This is the first time I have ever seen openable bullets used on a forum, way to master the little known functions of discourse!

:+1: Did not know that was an even an option.

Well @PotatoFarmer you obviously did not answer the conversation with @discobot when you got your regular user badge :slight_smile: hahah

2 Likes

Hi! To find out what I can do, say @discobot display help.

2 Likes

Pinned and moved to Getting Started.

Nice post, thx

1 Like