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Bluestar bluetooth adapter & Windows 8

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#1 stepcop

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 08:43 AM

Hi all,
My nexstar 11gps can't connect to pc via Bluetooth adapter with win 8 (same with vista and win7)installed on an Asus vivo tab Smart. I paired with pc and light on bluestar shows slow but when I check for a COM port in nexremote software I can't see them. So I change port number in the control panel and nexremote see them but when I choose one it says "unable to open serial".Please help me.Best regards

#2 stepcop

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 08:56 AM

No people can help me?:-(

#3 richard7

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 05:06 PM

I'm sorry you're not getting any responce but this sounds like something to take up with one of the manufacturers or designers.

#4 stepcop

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 10:48 AM

:-( Nobody from the Starry night support has a solution for me! Nobody in the forum knows if the skyq or other serial wifi adapters work good with old nexstar 11 gps. My only way to work with my telescopes probably is the cable again.
Thanks anyway to all
Best Regards
Stefano from Italy

#5 CarolG

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 06:41 PM

Hi Stefano. I have a Nexstar 11 that I used the Bluestar adapter. I don't have Windows 8, but when I upgraded to Win 7, I couldn't get the Bluestar to work anymore. I never have been able to get it to work and finally gave up and went back to the cable. Wireless was sure nice-one less cable to worry about getting wrapped up. But at least I'm not constantly getting frustrated when the telescope wouldn't connect.

#6 ccs_hello

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 08:18 AM

It's a 2005 product and the last supported OS is WinXP.

Bluetooth stack in recent Windows (7 and 8) can be tricky to use, unfortunately. BTW, 8 made a lot of old things obsolete.

<edit> more fun
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#7 Larry F

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Posted 08 June 2013 - 06:10 AM

Sorry to come upon your post so late. Bluestar isn't supported by 64-bit software. No driver available. I couldn't get it to work no matter what I did (including getting a new dongle and BT software for the 64-bit Win7 laptop) and so moved over to a wi-fi connection (Celestron CPC). I see no reason why the wi-fi (SkiFi or its Orion counterpart StarSeek) won't work with the Nexstar, since the ASCOM Celestron driver manages both Nexstar and CPC with the same setting. One of the cables in you get with Orion product is Celestron compatible. All you need is a virtual port driver; I downloaded HW VSP for free and it worked fine.

I know it's a pain to spend another $150. Unless you know how to write a 64-bit driver for the Bluestar (and you probably can't even if you knew how to write drivers since you won't be able to get any information about the Bluestar's programming modes), welcome to planned obsolescence and the vagaries of the marketplace.

#8 Atl

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 09:25 PM

Here is your solution. Simply uninstall Windows 8 And install an older version Of Windows. I actually don't expect The astronomy world to catch up to Windows 8 before it's no longer in use.

#9 Paul McC

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 09:21 PM

I am experiencing the same thing right now with a brand new Dell 64 bit laptop; it won't communicate with the Bluestar. It's built in Bluetooth sees the Bluestar just fine, but it won't connect.

It's interesting to note that on my old 32 bit laptop (a Gateway) I was able to boot into Linux Xubuntu which had no Bluetooth drivers available and I was able to use the Bluestar (and Cartes du Ciel) just fine. Crazy.

Win 8 assigns COM 3 for outgoing and COM 4 for incoming Bluetooth signals; I remember that there was only one COM port assigned in WinXP, so I'm not sure why two in Win8. This might be causing a problem.

It's possible that the Bluestar drivers need to be installed in WinXP compatibility mode as well, but Win8 is (in my opinion) a very hostile to use OS. It mostly gets in the way of everything I want to do. (I installed a program called Classic Shell to get past most of what I don't like about Win8...)

I am going to experiment some more to see if I can make this Bluestar work with Win8. If not, I will probably install a dual boot to Linux Xubuntu and just use that for guiding my scope around. I don't see the point in throwing away a perfectly good Bluetooth adapter.

In either case, I'll post my results here.
Cheers,
Paul

(FWIW, I don't remember the installation being a piece of cake in WinXP either; I know I did a full report on this years ago in this forum.I'll have to look it up.)

#10 Paul McC

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 11:04 PM

SUCCESS!!!!

I basically kept thinking, this has to be a COM port conflict; so, I kept approaching it from different angles till I happened on the right way to do it in Windows 8. It works!!!

In order to do this, I decided to switch off the new laptop's internal Bluetooth and use my Bluetooth dongle (Belkin mini) to hook up. I kept running up against all the same walls as outlined by others in this thread using the dongle.

At any rate, I decided to keep plugging away. Bluestar drivers are not necessary; some research showed me that they were probably never necessary for Bluetooth operation... only needed for USB to Bluestar connections. So if you installed these in Win8, dump them off your system if you are only going to use the wireless setup.

Another note; I hate, hate, hate the Win8 tile look. My nephew told me about something called Classic Shell (google it) that makes your win8 look like win xp or win7. I have mine set to look like win7. So my instructions below show you how to do this from a classic win7 GUI. You can probably still do this using the Win8 GUI stuff, but the tabs and places you need to get might mean a different way to get there. Just know that a Windows 8 64 bit laptop can talk to Bluestar and be used with your ASCOM driven planetarium software! In my case, I use Cartes du Ciel.

Here's the instructions (I'd post screen captures, but I've never figured out how to do this in this forum):

First make sure you get your Bluetooth linked to the Bluestar (also make sure the batteries in the Bluestar are FRESH!)- this has never been a problem for anyone here. It's getting your app to see the connection. Read on:

Control Panel>All Control Panel Items>Devices and Printers

Scroll down to Unspecified Devices and locate Bluestar

Right Click on Bluestar and Choose Properties

Choose Hardware tab

You should see:

Bluestar

Standard Serial over Bluetooth Link (COM x) (x=current COM port assigned­)- click on this line.

Choose Properties

Choose Change Settings

Press the Port Settings Tab

Choose Advanced

Look for COM Port Number and change this to an unused one. I chose 10, but it shouldn't matter too much. (Note, mine said COM 4, 5, and 6 were in use. Your mileage may vary)

Now go into Cartes du Ciel and change the COM port to 10 (or whatever unused port you chose).

It should link now. Mine did.

Cheers, Paul

#11 Paul McC

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 11:21 PM

Whoops! One more important thing about using the Bluestar fix above with Cartes! Make sure you set Cartes du Ciel's compatibility settings to Windows XP! (right click it's icon and look for the Compatibility settings) I think this is necessary to make the program and it's various scope drivers fully functional in Windows 8 as well. Doing this alone will not solve the problem though. I tried that. :)

If you are using another planetarium program, ymmv.

Cheers,
Paul

#12 wboeck

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Posted 14 July 2013 - 03:57 PM

Has anyone got it to work for windows 7 with Starry Night Pro? If so, please tell me how.

Thanks
Wayne

#13 Paul McC

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Posted 15 July 2013 - 10:14 PM

Wayne, it should work using the same stuff I outlined in the previous messages; especially since this device was made specifically for Starry Nights. I've never used Starry Nights though. I use Cartes du Ciel- it's free, and it's excellent.

My first guess would be that Starry Nights and the ASCOM (assuming Starry Nights uses ASCOM?) drivers might need to be booted in Windows XP compatibility mode. Cartes runs just fine in Win 7 and Win8, but it seems that it's scope drivers do not. So, what you want to do is locate the Starry Nights icon on your desktop and right click on it. Next Choose the "Compatibility" tab, and tap the box for "Run this program in compatibility mode for:" and then choose Windows XP if it allows you to. Once set, exit out of this and boot Starry Nights from that icon and see if your Bluestar and scope can talk.

If not (I'm assuming you've got the Bluestar and your Bluetooth paired?), try changing the COM port to a different one and do this however it's done in Starry Nights as well so that the COM ports match.

If none of this works, try downloading Cartes du Ciel and the ASCOM drivers needed for your brand/model of scope (all free) and see if you can get them talking using the steps I used above. If you can get Cartes and your scope talking, you probably can figure out how to get Starry Nights talking to your scope as well. You might even decide to just use Cartes with your Bluestar! :)

Good luck,
Paul

#14 wboeck

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Posted 21 July 2013 - 09:31 AM

Paul,
I downloaded the ASCOM drivers. I right clicked on the SN icon and checked the XP compatibility mode. My laptop is paired with the Bluestar. However, when I try connecting to the telescope in SN it says there is no Celestron telescope. I will try using Cartes du Ciel but I prefer SN. I may stick with using a cable. On a positive note, the Bluestar works perfect with my Android Galaxy tab II. However, there should be a fix for the Bluestar without deleting bluetooth drivers and reinstalling older ones.

Wayne

#15 wboeck

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Posted 21 July 2013 - 02:58 PM

Paul,
after writing the last post, I disabled my laptop's internal bluetooth and use my old bluetooth dongle. Windows 7 installed the drivers but it still didn't work. I decided to try installing the original drivers on the CD. It took a little playing with but it found the bluestar and paired and told me the com port. Starry Nights connected the telescope and works great! It even works with Celestron's Nexremote. One less cable. I was afraid that I was going to be forced pay another $150 for the Skyfi or Orion Starseek. These Bluestars are great when they work.

thanks
Wayne

#16 Paul McC

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Posted 11 September 2013 - 01:10 AM

Sorry to take so long to reply; glad you got it all working!

My new Asus laptop with Win8 and Bluestar wireless and Cartes du Ciel functioned perfectly all night under the stars last week.

It's a shame they stopped making this little device; it was spectacular! I love mine.






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