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Programming Motorolas yourself?

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Cressida81

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We have several handheld and mobile radios from motorola in my Campus Security department. Often we start having problems with them and have to call the radio company to come out and fix them. This can take days.
The radios are similar to these two models but a little older i think:
http://www.motorola.com/governmentandenterprise/northamerica/en-us/public/functions/browseproduct/productdetailpage.aspx?navigationpath=id_803i/id_1387i/id_2353i/id_1762i
http://www.motorola.com/governmentandenterprise/northamerica/en-us/public/functions/browseproduct/productdetailpage.aspx?navigationpath=id_803i/id_1388i/id_2353i/id_1787i

Is there anyway to easily program these? The radio company we use just brings a laptop and connects it to fix the problems. I was thinking i could save our department a lot of money if we could program the radios ourselves.
 

SCPD

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Cressida81 said:
Often we start having problems with them and have to call the radio company to come out and fix them. This can take days.
What sort of problems?

The radio company we use just brings a laptop and connects it to fix the problems.
Radio programming is normally done once. If re-programming the radio "fixes" the problem then the radio was mis-programmed.

I was thinking i could save our department a lot of money if we could program the radios ourselves.
You can purchase the software and cable from Motorola.

-rick
 

Cressida81

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Two recent issues: One locked up mobile radio stopped working, looks like it will need to be totally reset. That issue has happened a couple times in the past couple years as well.

a second issue also on the mobile radio is that they programmed in the maintence frequencies into the mobiles so when we have it on scan during the day we keep getting all of their unprofessional chatter. We would like to remove the maintence freqs from the mobile radios or from the scan list.
 

Josh

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Radios don't just "lock up"... and there is no magic "reset" button, that one will have to be sent in for repair.

As for the scan issue, if your radios have a "menu" button programmed, you can try and see if scan list edit has been enabled somewhere, or at least a scan lock-out key. Otherwise, scan list editing via CPS is in order.

-Josh
 

Cressida81

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None of the buttons on the mobile work, it won't turn off or on, and the screen says ERROR. Because its hard installed into the vehicle the only way to try and reset it would be to disconnect the battery, its hard to convince my direct super to let me pull the plug and see what happens.
 

CVPI4Ever

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I have worked in Security for years. The more channels you can monitor for Campus services (Security, Maintenance, etc) the better off you are. It would be unwise IMO to remove it. I would lockout the maintenance channel if I were you instead.

Also, maybe your radios just suck. Maybe try and replace them? That or you need to find another company to do the work for you. If your boss is being difficult when it comes to an essential tool such as your radios, maybe he needs to look for a new line of work.
 
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Rayjk110

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Just an FYI (after having used many CDM1250's)....

To turn the radio on/off (the mobile one), you actually need to PUSH the power switch like a button, rather than twist it down and hope for a click. You may have already known this, but just an FYI incase you don't use 'em much.
 

Cressida81

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My super let me do the battery to "hard reset" the mobile radio. No dice. The radio came right back on with the same "error" on the screen. Also, i know how to turn it off with pushing the volume knob in, that doesn't do anything (as in, it doesn't even turn off). Our handhelds still have the maintence freqs, so its not really necessary to have them in the mobile, but locking them out would be fine.

Since i know more about all this stuff than my boss, i'm hoping that he will let me talk to the radio tech, to get some things worked out with them.
 

Dave520

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I don't think you will find the software on Ebay.
As with all software, you are "supposed" to be licensed to use it. Only Motorola will sell you the software that you need. That could cost you hundreds of dollars alone! Then you have to know what you are programming. I have seen the software for some older radios and it is not very user friendly and will only run on old DOS laptops. Now you have to buy a cable to connect to the radio and the computer. One for mobiles and a different one for portables. That could cost you another $100 each! You may need what is called a "RIB Box" to go in between the computer and the radio cable. That depends on the software and the radio model.
If you make a mistake and do something wrong in programming, you could end up with a very expensive paper weight that may not even be repairable by Motorola!
As you can see it starts to cost alot of money to program your own radios. I would check with your boss to see if they want to put out that kind of money.
The problems that you describe sound like more than just programming issues. A trained radio tech would probably be able to correct your problems.

Your better off just letting a good radio tech service your radios. I would not want the responsibility of that. Something goes wrong and you are going to be held accountable!

Good luck,

Dave
 

NeFire242

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Do you even own the radios? Is this simplex or are you using a repeater, your own or the radio shops? If it's their equipment they won't let you program it, how else would they make their programming fee.

Perhaps you should look over your service contract or shop around for a better shop to work on your equipment if their response time is too slow, or perhaps you haven't stressed the importance of having a working radio since you do campus security.

And why don't you have spare mobiles and portables?
 

Cressida81

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Ok, i didn't know it was so hard to program. I'll just 22 that idea then.
I don't now if we own the stuff or not, we have 2 repeaters installed on site.
We have spare portables but not mobiles. So we are not without radio coverage, but when we need to go further than a 1/2 mile away from the repeater our handhelds become almost useless and the mobile in the is the only to communicate.
My bosses don't not care, just sometimes a little slow on the ball to get contractors out, and then sometimes the contrators are a little slow to get out, and low and behold a month goes by...
 
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