Server Crashed, We're Back Online

On May 3, 2010 I upgraded to the latest version of Virtual Weather Station. This turned out to be a BIG mistake. For those familiar with my Nuts & Bolts post the Weather Station is connected to the computer via a USB cable and some Serial Port emulation software. One of the feature changes of the most recent Virtual Weather Station (v14.01) is the ability to use USB connection directly. Long story, short, whatever they changed caused the software to stop working with an error “Could not connect to communications device”. After several days of trying to fix this, I decided to bite the bullet and convert my software suite to wview which runs on Linux.

The move to wview has several benefits for me. #1 I no longer need to license Windows for my weather station. #2 I don’t  have to run a virtual machine on my server to run the weather station. #3 did I mention I hate Windows?

So, a quick status update about the site. Most of the graphs and graphics have been taken off because they were being generated by Virtual Weather Station. For now most of the vital information is being populated on the website. Over the coming months I will be working to create replacement graphs and graphics. toward the end my hope is to publish the software under GNU v2. So other weather station operators can setup a station, on Linux, and make use of the programs I use (in conjunction with wview).

So, why not use the htmlgend that’s provided in wview? I tried, however the software kept crashing and caused the whole wview software to hang. Data wasn’t collected and IPC’s were getting crammed with garbage messages. I had a look at htmlgend’s code, when I got to the comment that read.

“This is by far the ugliest code in the wview source. Shortcuts are taken to optimize image and HTML generation.”

I lost interest in attempting to debug and/or improve upon htmlgend for the following reasons. #1 My needs are different, I have a lot of summary, statistics, and data collation that I want my web page to show. For example the 10 minute wind average, the current, high, and low charts, and the Weather Summary grid. These are fairly data intensive and I felt my existing database structure was better equipped to handle them. My vision is to combine some of what Virtual Weather Station used to give me with some of the charts that Weather Underground creates.