Programming via Computer

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k2ns

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I just got 2 new scanners--the BCD396T and the BCD996T. I programmed some frequencies by hand, and it is very tedious--especially the channel names. So, I downloaded a copy of FreeScan, and made up a file with info for my area. I can't find any info in the owner's manual for my 396 about programming via computer. I have the cable connected to the computer and scanner. The FreeScan program sees the scanner, but I am hesitant to go any further, because I don't know what state the scanner should be in to transfer the data. Should it be off, on, scanning, stopped, or what ??? Can I use the same file for both of my scanners ??? Thanks in advance for any info.


RON
 

n4yek

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The first thing I would do is see if there is a way to read from the scanner before you start trying to write to it. Then you can save the information it reads as a file, just in case you mess up when trying to program them. As far as FreeScan, I can't help you. I use the UASD program from Uniden, But your scanner will have to be turned on definitely.
 

DCMon

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Programming

I would recommend using Uniden's BCD396T UASD free program to at least load all your information to start out. Then if you choose to use some other program it is up to you. The Uniden program can be found at http://www.uniden.com/my/ Go in and create an account and it will then lead you through to get your free software and updates. Read everything carefully before doing it. As you have guessed you can mess up your 396 if you do it wrong.

Hope this helps, I really like my 396.
 

cpuerror

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.... So, I downloaded a copy of FreeScan, and made up a file with info for my area. I can't find any info in the owner's manual for my 396 about programming via computer. I have the cable connected to the computer and scanner. The FreeScan program sees the scanner, but I am hesitant to go any further, because I don't know what state the scanner should be in to transfer the data. Should it be off, on, scanning, stopped, or what ??? Can I use the same file for both of my scanners ??? Thanks in advance for any info.


RON
You can use the program for both of the scanners. The only thing is that if you keep the same file for both, only use one site per system on the 996 since this methology isn't supported by the 396.

You can click on the Down arrow button or simply select Scanner * Download Programming from the menu. It will read everything from the scanner and let you save it to disk. As for the scanner state, it just has to be turned on and out of the menu system. So either scanning or stopped is fine.

If you goto http://scannow.org/docs/progdoc/progdoc.html there is a guide there that can help step you through using the program with your scanner. Good luck.
 

k2ns

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You can use the program for both of the scanners. The only thing is that if you keep the same file for both, only use one site per system on the 996 since this methology isn't supported by the 396.
I don't understand what you mean"one site per system". I will probably have different files for the 396 and the 996. I assume that when I download a file to either, it will overwrite the existing file already in the scanner, not add to it, so any file I download has to be complete. Example--I have 200 channels loaded into the 396. If I find 10 more interesting ones that I want to add, I don't make up a new file with just those 10 channels--I have to add them to the original file that I downloaded into the scanner--Now I have a file with 210 channels. Am I correct ???



RON
 
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captclint

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I I find a 10 more interesting ones that I want to add. I don't make up a new file with just those 10 channels--I have to add them to the original file that I downloaded into the scanner--Now I have a file with 210 channels. Am I correct ???RON
Not necessarily. If you have 5 systems(Fire, police, EMS, State, County) with a total of 200 channels between all of them, then you can:
1. Download the new 10 into a new system without changing anything in the other 5)
2. Add the 10 to EMS, and download EMS without having to overwrite the other 4, but all previous EMS wil be erased.
A system, and all it's groups gets overwritten, but the others remain without being erased. I believe this is true for most programs, including Freescan, but I don't know about UASD

Each system is saved as a file, so you can load all or one system file. I don't know enough about the 996 to know why only one site/system, but It think that may only affect trunking systems.
 
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cpuerror

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I don't understand what you mean"one site per system". I will probably have different files for the 396 and the 996. I assume that when I download a file to either, it will overwrite the existing file already in the scanner, not add to it, so any file I download has to be complete. Example--I have 200 channels loaded into the 396. If I find 10 more interesting ones that I want to add, I don't make up a new file with just those 10 channels--I have to add them to the original file that I downloaded into the scanner--Now I have a file with 210 channels. Am I correct ???



RON
On the one site per system, every trunk system on the 996 is split up into individual sites, with individual sets of trunk frequencies. However, one the 396, one trunked system can only contain one site. So if you take a multi-site system from the 996 and upload it to the 396, the program will split the one multi-site system into multiple systems, and well things could get a little messy. If you arent monitoring trunk systems this isn't important.

For the channels you are right. Just add them to the 200 you have already and reupload, and click on were it says "Replace any system by the same name". In FreeSCAN all your systems, basically the scanner's entire memory, is stored and edited as one file. Some programs give each system its own file, and the configuration its own file as well, but i've always found that confusing.
 

captclint

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In FreeSCAN all your systems, basically the scanner's entire memory, is stored and edited as one file. Some programs give each system its own file, and the configuration its own file as well, but i've always found that confusing.
Thanks for correcting me. I have one of those "confusing" programs. :lol: I don't know if this has been discussed before, but it was one of your experiments that showed sequential frequency order allowed for faster scanning.

So with Freescan, you have to make sure the file you are using is completely sorted each time you load. The only complaint I have with that is that I would need 2 versions and must keep them synchronized. I really need to have one set organized by logical groupings of agencies within groups so I easily find things and add new frequencies to these logical groupings. It just makes mapping what I do and don't have easier. Even if I created lots of extra groups to do the same thing, it would still be a pain to have Police Zone H at the top of the list, and Zone A buried in the middle, and I'd run out of quick keys;)

With ARC, I keep 1 unsorted profile. When I need to add/delete, I just need to sort the one System, which is fairly painless. I send that one system down, and revert back to the non-sorted profile, having saved the change(s) first. Most of the time, I am adding new freq's found on search or new FCC license issues. I just have one system called Misc Searches, so this is really easy to sort and download. With FreeScan, I would also have a bit more downtime waiting for 1000+ freq to download, esp since many systems are locked out due to location. :( It is amazing how impatient we get. I can remember when waiting for a dot matrix printer was "fast", and now I get impatient at my laser printer. I guess I'd pull my hair out waiting for FreeScan :lol:
 
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garys

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Give BCTool a try. It will work with any Uniden DMA scanner. It's very easy to use and the developer puts a lot of time into improving the program. It's free, but he does accept donations.

Gary
 

cpuerror

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You can easily upload or download just one system at a time by clearing the checkboxes of the ones you don't want in the u/l / d/l screens, so you don't have to pull your hair out. But even if you had to do every system, not sure if anyone has ever timed it with a stopwatch before but FreeSCAN is the fastest program to download systems from the scanner.

I understand finding things can be a problem if you have a large number of systems. I'm not totally sure if I get the way you want to organize these things but the solution for people with a large number of systems is just to click on Favourites - Add to Favourites for the respective system/group you add. From that point on you can navigate to it in a couple clicks every time you reload the file.


Thanks for correcting me. I have one of those "confusing" programs. :lol: I don't know if this has been discussed before, but it was one of your experiments that showed sequential frequency order allowed for faster scanning.

So with Freescan, you have to make sure the file you are using is completely sorted each time you load. The only complaint I have with that is that I would need 2 versions and must keep them synchronized. I really need to have one set organized by logical groupings of agencies within groups so I easily find things and add new frequencies to these logical groupings. It just makes mapping what I do and don't have easier. Even if I created lots of extra groups to do the same thing, it would still be a pain to have Police Zone H at the top of the list, and Zone A buried in the middle, and I'd run out of quick keys;)

With ARC, I keep 1 unsorted profile. When I need to add/delete, I just need to sort the one System, which is fairly painless. I send that one system down, and revert back to the non-sorted profile, having saved the change(s) first. Most of the time, I am adding new freq's found on search or new FCC license issues. I just have one system called Misc Searches, so this is really easy to sort and download. With FreeScan, I would also have a bit more downtime waiting for 1000+ freq to download, esp since many systems are locked out due to location. :( It is amazing how impatient we get. I can remember when waiting for a dot matrix printer was "fast", and now I get impatient at my laser printer. I guess I'd pull my hair out waiting for FreeScan :lol:
 

k2ns

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State Of Scanner

Nobody has answered my most important question yet. When using FreeScan or UASD, what state does my scanner need to be in to transfer data to it ??? Off, scanning, on hold, etc. ???


RON
 
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hiegtx

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Nobody has answered my most important question yet. When using FreeScan or UASD, what state does my scanner need to be in to transfer data to it ??? Off, scanning, on hold, etc. ???


RON
It needs to be on. My 396 is usually scanning when I decide to tweak the programming. I haven't tried it, but perhaps if you used the menu key to get too deep into something it might not register, but scanning or on 'hold' either one works fine.

When you first "connect" the computer to the 396 (such as using the connect button in UASD), it will pause briefly as it makes the connection & reads the scanner, but then continues scanning.
Once you start to load systems/configuration, the display will show 'keypad lock' & the scanner will not be receiving.
Once the data transfer from the software to the scanner is complete, the scanner will be in "Hold" mode, on the first channel programmed. Press the "Scan" key to resume scanning.
 
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