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Microsoft Streets and Trips 2010 & Garmin eTrex
Padeen
I've just downloaded Microsoft Streets and Trips 2010 for the 60-day trial (very liberal), after using S&T v10.00.09.1300 for six or seven years. One of my frustrations with the old version is it's inability to use USB-connected devices, and the constant hastle dickering w/ com ports. But lo, S&T v17.00.18.2200, when asked to locate my plugged-in and located Garmin eTrex, returns the message, "NO GPS receiver is detected. Make sure that the GPS cable is plugged into the communications (COM) port on your computer and that no other program is using it." COM PORT?!?!?! In 2009 (almost 2010!) Very disappointing, but perhaps not a deal-breaker. Unfortunately S&T doesn't let me start to configure the GPS, it just says it isn't found.
Can someone please help me get these two systems to talk to each other?
Thanks in advance.
tcassidy
Very few if any navigation programs will use USB connected GPS devices (except their own) without a driver. No reason to single out S&T for that shortcoming! If you must use a handheld as a GPS, invest in GPS Gate (the Express version is inexpensive and will do the job). It will find your Garmin and present a signal on a COM port suitable for virtually any navigation program, including S&T of any vintage that does navigation.

Terry
Padeen
Thank you for your reply and suggestions, but pardon my disagreement; a number of nav programs have no trouble with a USB-connected GPS, including one of the most popular, Delorme's Topo USA or their Street Atlas. It's seems an oversight that S&T would force a need for a third-party add in order to use their software.
"if you must" . . . I mustn't do anything, but I prefer not buying a duplicate device when I have, not only a superior device to the ones offered (capacity, display, signal acquisition etc, etc), but one that I'm familiar and comfortable with.
I'm interested in S&T primarily as a quick reference and routing/distance tool; for actual travelling I like the detail of the surrounding country, including river, altitude and mountain names, that Topo USA provides. To add the cost of an addon program to S&T's $40 price leaves me back with the old v10 edition. As I said earlier, I'm disappointed.
tcassidy
I may be mistaken but I thought Delorme's products would only work with there own Earthmate series USB GPS such as the LT-40. Are you saying SA will work directly with your USB Etrex?

Terry
Padeen
I can't confirm that today as I'm on the road and the computer I used SA & an eTrex with is at home. I can, however, say today that Topo USA (Delorme) and my eTrex have no problem communicating; the location dot goes green within 3 sec. of telling Topo to start GPS tracking (when the eTrex has been turned on and has already acquired, naturally). I used a Delorme Bluetooth Logger w/ a Bekin bluetooth USB adapter for traveling for a number of years, but I got so fed up with having to futz with the connection every time I tried to use it that I finally tried the eTrex and voila! it has worked well since, plus I have altitude info on the dash; lots of fun when driving through the Rockies.
Again, I'm sorry to disagree, but in my experience of dealing with devices connected to a PC, everyting from wifi to sailing nav programs to PDAs, to telephones, and even my Fluke multimeter, only the companies unwilling to upgrade their products are still using serial terminology. Does your computer even have a serial connector? Mine doesn't, nor has the last two I've owned.
Ken in Regina
Hey Padeen,

No need to purchase another device, but if you want to use the eTrex with Streets&Trips you will need GPSGate. S&T 2010 still insists on seeing the incoming data on a COM port running at 4800,n,1. Most GPS receivers supply a USB-to-serial driver that makes their devices show up on a virtual COM port so there has not been a lot of pressure for Microsoft to upgrade this aspect of S&T.

I just tried my eTrex Legend HCx (straight USB connection, no serial driver or other conversion) with Street Atlas 2010 Plus and it works fine with it. It's not automatic, though. You have to go into the GPS settings page, select USB, and select Garmin/Garmin (my Legend HCx only does Garmin protocol) from the list of supported Manufacturer/Protocol combinations (it also supports Garmin/NMEA on USB). The button turned green with a 3D lock in my basement office in under five minutes.

It obviously does not support the full Garmin protocol. When you switch to the Sat. Info display you get nothing, so it looks like it's ignoring all the data about which satellites the receiver sees, the almanac info and all the Dilution of Precision (xDOP) info. That's only of interest to geeks like me, anyway. It works great for navigation.

Terry, to check this with SA 2010, click the GPS tab. There are two icon buttons immediately below the "Clear Trail" button. Hover over the one on the right and it should say "Turn on/off various GPS features". You'll be impressed by the variety of USB devices SA2010 now supports.

Padeen is right: Products like Streets&Trips, Odyssey Navigator and iGuidance need to pull up their socks if they want to keep up with Street Atlas and Mobile PC in device support.

...ken...
tcassidy
Thanks for that information Ken. I was familar with the GPS options, but without a USB Garmin, could not confirm they applied to USB devices. Those options have been the same for at least several years and could have applied to serial connections. When you change the 'Device' dropdown, the 'Port' selection does not change or limit your settings.

Terry
Ken in Regina
Thanks for the clarification, Terry. I hardly use Street Atlas except when someone has a question about it so I've never messed with the GPS settings. When I've evaluated its nav features I just used either the Pharos 500 or BU-353, so I never had to try out any of that other stuff.

It's too bad Street Atlas doesn't have better street information in Canada. It has some fine features.

...ken...
Padeen
You hockey & Labats fans must be a bit burned at the limited Canadian coverage. I go between Portland, OR and Fairbanks regularly and am very disappointed in what I've found for "Oh Canada" detail. I'm not surprised that you guys are S&T fans; at least it shows a few local streets.
Still not sure if I"m going to register my S&T or not; if I do I'll likely get the GPSBridge Express. But now I'm headed home to Mexico, where even the Mexicans can't agree on which street is which, let alone the abysmal digital map coverage.
Buenas Noches
Ken in Regina
Hi Padeen,

All of the nav programs with Navteq data (Streets&Trips, Garmin Mobile PC, Odyssey Navigator and iNav's iGuidance) are better for street and address and POI coverage than Street Atlas. But even the programs that use Navteq data are somewhat lacking once you get outside the large cities.

Fortunately Garmin still makes a product just for Canada so folks like me who also want some decent coverage of smaller towns, geographic features and backroads have one option.

When you're heading up to Fairbanks do you go around by the AlCan Highway (Dawson Creek, BC .. BC#97)? Or do you swing west and up the Cassiar Highway (Kitwanga, BC .. BC#37)?

...ken...
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