Windows 10 1803 Serial Port Dropout
We are currently in Italy for 10 days driving from Rome up the centre to Florence and then back down the coast. I am having severe problems with the GPS dropping out after 1 or 2 minutes.

To clarify, the serial ports don't disappear. It's just that the PC stops receiving data from the GPS.

I am using the PC I used in France, Spain and Portugal for 5 weeks before Xmas and around Western Australia and NSW for a week each a month or so ago.

PC is Dell Inspiron 11 3000 2-in-1.

I am not using the same USB GPS (U-Blox 7) as I used on those trips because I loaned mine to a friend who is currently in Europe before we had the opportunity of a "respite from caring for 92 year old mother" trip because my sister who lives in London announced she was visiting home for 2 weeks.

I am using 2 older USB GPSs that have worked previously.

When we decided to come away I rebuilt our travel PC to 1609. I checked that the GPSs worked but only for a minute or so.

A week before we left Windows updated itself to 1803.

Yesterday at Fiumicino Airport after we got outside the rental company garage we parked until we got a satellite lock. A minute or two later we lost the connection. That's lots of fun in a complex airport exit interchange. By luck, or skill, I found the correct exit.

We parked again (and again and again during the day) and tried all the usual diagnostics:

* unplug and replug (which works until it drops out again)
* use different USB ports
* swap GPS
* swap USB extension cables
* plug GPS directly into PC
* use Device Manager to uninstall device
* Bypass Franson GPSGate and let Autoroute talk directly to GPS

Fortunately we have a Garmin PND so we were able to navigate from point to point using that.

Overnight I have:

* searched Internet for reports of problems with 1803 and serial ports
* redownloaded, uninstalled and reinstalled Prolific drivers
* installed GPS to BT app on 2 Android phones. The Bluetooth created serial ports drop out in the same 2 or so minutes.

I haven't tried nRoute yet with a GPSGate Garmin port. That's next on my list.

Has anyone experienced or read about problems with serial ports dropping out in Windows 1803?

Does anyone have suggestions about how I can stop serial ports dropping out?

Marvin Hlavac
Hi Andrew,

What a nightmare when something like that happens far away from home on a trip.

I'm not sure if this is going to help, but it may be worth trying. Go to Device Manager, find your USB hub or Bluetooth device, go to Properties and see if there is a Power Management tab. If there is one, click it to see if there is the option to disable "Allow computer to turn off this device to save power".
Ken in Regina
Marvin's suggestion brings up something I have found to be annoying lately in both Windows and Android updates. They often reset some settings to the default settings. They seem to do this randomly, not to all user-changed settings, so it's easy to overlook that it's happened. Until it bites you.

In WIN+X, Device Manager I deticked Properties, Power Management tab, "Allow computer to turn off this device to save power" for:

* Generic USB Hub
* Intel(R) USB 3.O eXtensible Host Controller
* USB Root Hub

GPSGate has stayed green for over an hour.

A few minutes ago we had an "Oh bugger!" moment when nRoute announced "Lost satellite reception". However, GPSGate stayed green. It was just a momentary glitch.

I won't declare "Mission accomplished" just yet - that never turns out well - but it is looking good.

The proof will come when we hit the road tomorrow.

The next time we are in Canada we will use S&T to visit Marvin and buy him a beer.

Thank you from me.

The navigator says "Thank you so much."
This sounds like a reasonable solution as I can't think of any other reason an update modifying USB port response. However, if the problem isn't resolved, you could probably roll the computer back to its previous update, whether that be 1609 or 1703.

Attached Images
Marvin Hlavac
Andrew, fingers crossed it'll keep on working. By the way, for several weeks now, I've been using my cell phone, via Bluetooth, as the GPS receiver for my Garmin Mobile PC running on my laptop. I find it as reliable as a USB or a Bluetooth GPS receiver. It saves me from carrying with me another unit (I have my phone on me at all times anyway). I haven't tried it with S&T or AR though, but it works perfectly fine with GMPC.
Ken in Regina
What are you using on the phone end to push the signal? GPSGate on the PC?

Marvin Hlavac
Ken, here: http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/5767-use-your-smartphone-gps-antenna-receiver-your-laptop

No GPS Gate needed, but it works with GPS Gate, too.
Ken in Regina
Thanks Marvin!! Somehow I missed that post.

Marvin Hlavac
Ken, no you didn't miss it. I just posted it. I didn't want to go off topic in this thread...
Ken in Regina
Originally Posted by Marvin Hlavac
Ken, no you didn't miss it. I just posted it. I didn't want to go off topic in this thread...
Thanks!! It will be a useful contribution.

I am sitting in a chalet at the Firenze (Florence) Camping (E44/night - recommended). GPSGate is green connected via BT to phone. I also get green if I use USB GPS.

However, as soon as we start to move GPSGate goes red.

Initially I thought this meant there was a problem with 3 physical USB ports (I have tried them all) but it also loses BT COM port which puts paid to that idea, I think.

We are getting used to using PND. Only 5 days to go.

TIP for nRoute

I have learnt how to create a waypoint at current location so when we, say, arrive in town I can see where we are parked and work out how to get to centro storico. Of course, looking for the torre on the chiesa (tower on church) works too.

Use phone to determine lat/lons.

Create random waypoint. Edit to change lat/lons.

You now have waypoint at current location.

This was vital a few nights ago when we were going to stay at an agriturismo. The plotted location was off road as shown on OSM in nRoute. PND wanted us to go up one mountain track and then make way across country.

I was able to find out where we were and see that there was strada privato that lead in right direction. It didn't help that sign on gate wasn't name of AT. Fortunately, owner texted us with directions just before I headed up the track, which was the correct one.
We are now staying at Hotel Panoramico in Corfino, 100km north of Florence, for E50 inc breakfast. We have a room with a balcony looking out on an amazing valley with mountains with some snow on them in the background.


After my lack of success using Share GPS and GPS over BT on my 12 month old Android phone I decided to give my 8 year old Android 2.2 phone a go (I keep it because it is so small I can carry it in a pouch on my belt which I can't do with our larger phone). Amazingly the GPS/BT app installed and it stays connected on the PC.

There is still one problem - Autoroute lags further and further behind as a trip continues. This makes it unusable.

CPU and RAM usage are both low (<50%) so I don't what is causing the problem. It worked perfectly on this PC in Spain in Nov/Dec. Any suggestions?

I have nRoute installed with the OSM map for Italy. nRoute keeps up without any problems. We now have a PC-based mapping system. Yay!

I thought that because Garmin nRoute on the PC and the Garmin PND both have the same OSM map installed there wouldn't be any differences of opinion but there were several times when they suggested different routes. I guess they must use different routing algorithms.


When I posted the above I got a message saying:

Your submission could not be processed because the token has expired.

Please push the back button and reload the previous window.

My post was lost.

Fortunately, I have the Comment Save extension installed in Chrome and I was able to recover my post. I highly recommend this extension if you post on web-based forums.
Isn't that caused by saving a log and it getting too big. I haven't run into it but think you brought it up as a problem some time ago.

It's a 3 week old clean install PC with almost no use of AR - because the bloody GPS didn't work - so I don't think that's the cause of the problem.

You are correct that if you keep using the same .AXE file for several days AR slows down. You should use a new file every day.

Ditto for nRoute. You have to clear the saved track regularly, after saving to a .GPX file if you want to keep the track.
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