• To anyone looking to acquire commercial radio programming software:

    Please do not make requests for copies of radio programming software which is sold (or was sold) by the manufacturer for any monetary value. All requests will be deleted and a forum infraction issued. Making a request such as this is attempting to engage in software piracy and this forum cannot be involved or associated with this activity. The same goes for any private transaction via Private Message. Even if you attempt to engage in this activity in PM's we will still enforce the forum rules. Your PM's are not private and the administration has the right to read them if there's a hint to criminal activity.

    If you are having trouble legally obtaining software please state so. We do not want any hurt feelings when your vague post is mistaken for a free request. It is YOUR responsibility to properly word your request.

    To obtain Motorola software see the Sticky in the Motorola forum.

    The various other vendors often permit their dealers to sell the software online (i.e., Kenwood). Please use Google or some other search engine to find a dealer that sells the software. Typically each series or individual radio requires its own software package. Often the Kenwood software is less than $100 so don't be a cheapskate; just purchase it.

    For M/A Com/Harris/GE, etc: there are two software packages that program all current and past radios. One package is for conventional programming and the other for trunked programming. The trunked package is in upwards of $2,500. The conventional package is more reasonable though is still several hundred dollars. The benefit is you do not need multiple versions for each radio (unlike Motorola).

    This is a large and very visible forum. We cannot jeopardize the ability to provide the RadioReference services by allowing this activity to occur. Please respect this.

Spectra RSS: "Busy Line Locked"

Status
Not open for further replies.

mfn002

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 26, 2006
Messages
2,142
Location
Bryan, Texas
When I try to program my VHF Spectra (Low-Power model), I get this "Busy Line Locked" error. I made the programming cable using the schematics on BatLabs. I've checked every connection at least three times, but there is no problem there. Can someone explain what this error means and how to address it?
 

mfn002

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 26, 2006
Messages
2,142
Location
Bryan, Texas
The RIB I'm using is the Price Industries M-2000A. I'm using a Gateway Solo Pentium II laptop with Windows 98 and DOS on it. I run the RSS in DOS mode. The radio is a front-mount model. This is the first time I have tried to program this radio, which replaced another one I had that stopped receiving. The old radio programmed fine, so I don't know what's going on. I experimented running the program in Wndows, but I kept getting a "Power Fault" error. Oddly, when I was getting the "Power Fault" error, the display on the radio would say "PROGRAM". On that last part: What's the "Emergency Line"?
 
Last edited:

radioman2001

Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2008
Messages
2,858
Location
New York North Carolina and all points in between
Ok, let's handle this one issue at a time. Computers must be slow, 486-25sx is the fastest I even had luck with using the Spectra software, the program must be run under DOS natively, with enough memory, not under a DOS box in windows, and the computer must have a real serial port, no USB adapter. That said, if you have programmed other Spectra radios with this setup before, including your RIB (check the batteries and or power cable) to radio cable I would look at rear connector of the newer radio first. Does the newer radio work properly, all the buttons work, and you can key up and get power and receive? If not check the 15 pin cable to make sure the EMERGENCY line is properly connected. I have seen some radios that lock up if that line is no properly hooked up. BTW they may or may not program either.
Have you tried to verify that you are using the correct serial port by running the test F-6 in the setup menu. Does the radio flash PROGRAMMING when it tries? If you get a confirmation that you have the right port, and the radio does flash PROG, but still fails. I would look at the computer speed, but you have to get to this point first.
 

mfn002

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 26, 2006
Messages
2,142
Location
Bryan, Texas
Everything on the radio works fine. There are no error codes, or anything like that. It does transmit, but, unfortunately, my power supply isn't strong enough to handle that. Also, the radio came from a previous owner that lived about 60+ miles away, so I can't really test the RX on it. Where is this emergeny line? Is it another term for the ignition sense wire? If so, that's hooked up properly. Also, I am running the software in DOS directly (not a window).

The computer has a serial port. Hitting F6 in the RSS's setup screen gives me that error. I do notice that the "RADIO" and "PC" lights on the RIB will both light up briefly, but then shut off when the error message appears.
 
Last edited:

radioman2001

Member
Joined
Mar 6, 2008
Messages
2,858
Location
New York North Carolina and all points in between
You get lights on your RIB (I am not familiar with that brand RIB) which means that the computer is sending RS232 data, but the radio is not receiving it. Have you tried a different port (com1 or 2) just to make sure you didn't accidently change it for another purpose( don't forget to save F-8 before exiting or it goes back to original setting ), and let me get this straight this setup worked on the old radio? Can you still talk to the older radio. If so I would look at the db-15 connector on the back of the radio. I have had some that get weak and loose connections, try changing it out with the one from your old radio that did program. Beyond that I would start looking at the logic board, which is not worth it. You could take the entire logic and MLM out of the old radio and put it in the new, and just realign the radio.
 

jim202

Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2002
Messages
2,668
Location
New Orleans region
I might ask here what is the model number of the radio your trying to read? By any chance does it start with a D04 number? If so, you have an Astro Spectra that needs a different software package to read.

Another trick that I use at times when I get the busy line error, is to shut the radio off and back on when trying to read it. Wait for the error and then cycle the power. Seems to get me over the problem when a radio seems to get hung up for what ever reason. The program will resume and every body is happy.
 

mfn002

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 26, 2006
Messages
2,142
Location
Bryan, Texas
The model number is D43KMA7JA5BK.

It seems that COM1 and COM2 are identical, because I get the same error on either one.

I'll try that power cycle thing, but the error comes up almost immediately, so I doubt I could do it in time.
 

b7spectra

EMS Dispatcher
Joined
Jul 8, 2002
Messages
3,151
Location
Cobb County, GA
Only other possibility is your software is corrupted.

I'm still programming Spectras & Sabers with my Pentium 166 and haven't had problem one.
 

RKG

Member
Joined
May 23, 2005
Messages
1,094
Location
Boston, MA
Three possibilities come to mind:

1) Bad RIB-to-radio cable.

2) Bad RIB (or exhausted RIB battery).

3) You think you're in DOS but you're actually in a DOS window under some flavor of Windows, and it is not sending your COM1 or COM2 service requests to the serial port because Windows tends to intercept such requests.

#3 is the most likely.
 

zz0468

QRT
Joined
Feb 6, 2007
Messages
6,036
The software is looking at the status of one of the RS232 control leads, and if it's not going to the right state, the software generates the error.

One of my older laptops is missing pin 8 (CTS) from it's serial port and it will generate that error when attempting to read or write to a Spectra. Oddly enough, it works just fine on an MSF5000 with the same RIB.

I've also seen that error when the RIB is receiving no power from either it's battery or external source. That would cause the RS232 control leads to assume an invalid state and cause the software to arf.
 

mfn002

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 26, 2006
Messages
2,142
Location
Bryan, Texas
I fixed the problem. Apparently, the computer didn't like the RIB. It showed that error message EVEN WITH THE RIB DISCONNECTED FROM THE COMPUTER. So, I tried an older laptop I have, and, lo and behold, it worked. The radio programmed successfully.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top