Sentinel: Updating transmitter sites

rbuxton

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Mar 28, 2002
Messages
381
Location
Hesperus, CO
Here's the scenario. Some time ago I used Sentinel to create a favorite list of several agencies on the Colorado DTRS. In doing so, downloaded were all the transmitter sites, all good. Today, I add a new agency to the favorite list and I notice there are a couple of new sites in the database. When I download the new agency to my favorite list it did not bring in the new sites. Why is that? Is there a method to update the sites on a favorite list or is it necessary to create a brand new favorite list (with the most current site list) and append the existing favorite list agencies to it?
 

letarotor

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Joined
Dec 19, 2002
Messages
800
Location
Arlington, TX
As I am sure you have probably noticed, if you make any changes on whatever radio you have that do not reflect exactly what rr.com shows, you will have duplicates on your radio that reflect the rr.com data.

I don't know how big the new sites are on the Colorado system, but my recommendation is that you just manually go in and add them through the radio or software. The type of TRS information, or what is already entered from when you sucked down the rr.com data in the past, is already programmed on your radio and it should be in your software. You're just adding additional sites to that data which is very easy in most cases. I have no idea what radio you're using but if it's one of the SDS radios by Uniden, there's nothing to it. You can do it through the Sentinel software as well. But I like to just do it through the radio and then suck the programming up into the software and save it. But either direction you decide to go, programming it into the radio and then reading it with the software or creating it in the software and then writing it back to the radio, that will work for you and you will have your additional sites updated when you reprogram.

I don't think that Sentinel has any way to just grab updates. And if you've changed any alpha tags or things that are different in your radio's programming then the way RadioReference has it, it's going to lead to anything from creating a new favorites list to messing up or duplicating some of what you've already programmed yourself depending upon what has been changed. I personally hate the long alpha tags and the way that rr.com does its naming of things so I always change any dat a I might have grabbed off of the site. It's just too long of alpha tags, site names, and all kinds of things like that to be of any use to me when it gets longer than one line of text long. I like to put an asterisk at the end of the alpha tag on the channels I confirm on my radio and when some of them are three lines long you never do get to see past the first line unless you manually go in and edit the alpha tag to see what the whole thing says. That's just a big pain in the butt in my opinion so I'm going to name things the way I want them named and that also prevents me from just being able to suck down and update because it doesn't match rr.com's programming or names.

I guess what I'm trying to get at is this. If you've changed the delay times on a channel or really anything, it's going to be different when you try to grab the data from radio reference and it will change that programming in your radio. So you are better off to manually enter the new changes into the radio or software and then make your saves/reprogramming.

hopefully somebody else out there can help you out with additional details or information if there are ways around what I'm talking about doing.

Brian (COMMSCAN)
.
 

nessnet

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Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 22, 2007
Messages
454
Location
Kenmore, WA
You could manually add the sites?

Go into favorite list editor (the favorite list in question)
Go to the system in question. Click on the sites tab.
See the green plus sign?
 

n1chu

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Joined
Oct 18, 2002
Messages
718
Location
Farmington, Connecticut
Letarotor’s post is spit on... I can add this;

I use Butel software to program. Sometimes the overwrite or new stuff doesn’t take. So I try loading it again with better luck.

And when there is an update, and I want to replace an entire system, I make sure the “overwrite files with same name” box Is checked. Otherwise I end up with both the old and the new in my FL. But as Letarotor has mentioned, I also pair down the names RR gives for the systems. So it won’t overwrite the system because the file names don’t match. Instead, it will just add, In which case I just load the updated version and delete the older version. I have also done some manual editing but only when I am sure I have identified ALL the changes. If there is any question about “Did I miss something I need to add manually?” I just revert to loading the entire new system and deleting the old. I then go about my editing. (I’m a little paranoid about duplicate wording. If the line is asking for dept name I give it one. say for example it asks for department. I enter Police. Then underneath that RR lists the frequencies and what they are assigned to like “Police Dispatch” and “Police Detectives”, etc. I routinely clean up those entries by deleting “Police” from each line. Because I’ve already labeled the department as Police. I don’t need to see it on every channel they have!
 

hiegtx

Mentor
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 8, 2004
Messages
7,561
Location
Dallas, TX
Here's the scenario. Some time ago I used Sentinel to create a favorite list of several agencies on the Colorado DTRS. In doing so, downloaded were all the transmitter sites, all good. Today, I add a new agency to the favorite list and I notice there are a couple of new sites in the database. When I download the new agency to my favorite list it did not bring in the new sites. Why is that? Is there a method to update the sites on a favorite list or is it necessary to create a brand new favorite list (with the most current site list) and append the existing favorite list agencies to it?
In Sentinel, if you append one or more Departments to a Favorites list, it also appends all of the sites on the system. In many cases, you might then remove the unwanted sites from the system you just appended, as they are not in or near any area where you are, or possibly will be. I do that with one regional system that has some sites and departments near me, but the bulk of the departments & sites are much farther south, primarily in the Houston metro area.

If, at a later time, you see additional departments added to the system, you can append them, in Sentinel, to the Favorites list of your choice. As long as the name of the system, in both your list as well as the main database are identical, it will only append the chosen department (or departments if more than one are selected) to the system of the same name in your list. It will not also append all of the sites on the system, and also will not re-append the sites that you removed.

However, if the names of the system, both in your Favorites list and also the main database, are identical, you cannot append sites from the database, not even the sites recently added in the database. When the names are identical, Sentinel does not process an append.

If you add the sites manually, be sure to include the location and range data so that the sites will be enabled when location indicates they should be. As long as you have modified the name of the original system within the Favorites list, then you can append the original system, with selected departments, to your Favorites list. Since the name of the system in your list is not the same as that shown in the database, Sentinel treats it as a new append request, and will include all of the system sites. As Bill has suggested, you can then delete the old system and use the new instead. (I often do what Bill does, and alter the system and/or department names to something more to my liking.)

As you are a Premium subscriber, if you are using ProScan or ARC536 (the Butel software), you could simply use the import feature of the software to import additional sites and/or departments whenever needed. If you are using ProScan, but not a Premium Subscriber, you could make sure that the system name, in your list, does not match what is in the database. Then append the database system to your list in Sentinel. Now, in ProScan, you can "drag & drop" the sites from the newly appended version to your existing, but differently named list. Once you do that, then the full system you just appended can now be deleted. Be sure & save your changes so that your modified system. (I don't have the Butel software, but presume that there may some way to either drag & drop the sites or copy them from one system to another.)
 

drdispatch

Old-Timer
Joined
Feb 17, 2007
Messages
773
Location
Fightin' River, Michigan
Here's how I do it (I use Sentinel):

If there are a few changes, I append the system to my Favorites List and copy and paste the changed info from that into the existing system in my FL., (I rename systems and departments, too.), then delete the appended system.

If there are a lot of changes to sites, or a lot of added talkgroups, I will rename the appended system, delete the sites I don't need, then delete the old version of the system. I did this when several sites on the statewide system added 700Mhz frequencies.
 
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