Get your DSI to work with 64 bit Windows 7 or Vista
Posted 02 November 2009 - 12:37 PM
as some of you may well have found out, none of the Meade DSI cameras work with 64 bit operating systems. This is very annoying as more and more PCs are now being supplied with 64 bit systems, and many people have gone back to using 32 bit operating systems because of software incompatibility issues with many astro related programs. 32 bit operating sytems can only use up to around 3.25GB of memory whereas 64 bit operating systems can use much more, and many new PCs come with 4GB of memory or more.
I've been operating Vista 64 on my main PC since its launch and most manufacturers have written 64 bit software for their peripherals. However, astro imaging manufacturers on the whole seem a little slow to keep up with the change in technology, and for that reason I've been using XP on my laptop for all my astro imaging software.
My old laptop recently died so I bought a new one with Windows 7 Premium 64 bit. I tried installing many of my existing astro imaging software programs and most wouldn't work. I managed to get some to work, and changed some programs altogether. For example, I couldn't get QCFocus to work with my webcam so I installed Craterlet which I had some success with. However, no matter what I did I could not get my DSI to work. I then decided to partition my hard drive and install XP so I could dual-boot the laptop and load all my astro related software on the XP portion. No such luck as Dell has not released XP drivers for that laptop yet, so every time I tried to install XP I kept getting the blue screen of death.
I later found out that Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate are designed to work with a Microsoft virtual PC that has to be downloaded from its site. You can not use Microsoft's virtual PC with my Premium version. Anyway, if you're unsure what a virtual PC is then I'll try and explain. You install a virtual PC program onto your existing operating system just as you would any other program. Using the program you then install whatever other operating system you want to and run that operating system from your desktop. You can then install whatever programs you want on your additional operating system and they will run as they would normally on that operating system.
Rather than spending more money on upgrading to Professional or Ultimate I looked online and found a free program called VMware. Below is a link that will take you to the download;-
Simply download the program, wait for the registration e-mail (takes a few minutes), install it and when prompted put in your operating system CD ( I used Windows XP Home). The program will ask you how much hard drive space you want to donate to your additional operating system. I chose 60GB but you could use far less. A window appears on your desktop and you'll see your additional operating system install within it.
So for me, I can run XP in a window from Windows 7 just like any other program. I have an icon to launch it from my desktop. I can minimise XP at any time to do something on Windows 7, and then go back into XP - it is so easy. All my programs have installed perfectly, including my DSI II and I'm so happy as it's far better than messing around with a dual boot system. When I'm in my XP window it sees the 60GB I allocated it as its C drive and I use it as I would a computer with XP installed on a 60GB hard drive.
You no longer have to settle for 32 bit operating systems, you can have the best of both worlds. If you've got any questions then feel free to ask but if I can do it then it must be easy!
Thanks for reading and I hope this is of help.
Posted 08 January 2010 - 09:30 AM
I really enjoyed visiting your web-site, very nicely done. I also have now tried the VMWare Player and also a free product they call “vCenter Converter” that lets you convert an existing XP installation into a “virtual machine” that can be installed into a Windows 64 bit environment. Pretty fantastic stuff but like you stated in your blog on your web-site, I also found it to be too problematic a solution for use with the DSI or LPI. I have been trying for several days and just can’t come up with a consistent, faithful operation.
But I am glad you were able to use Windows 7 32 bit and get things right again. Good for you. Enjoy your new baby when he or she arrives. Pretty impressive astrophotography, enjoy it.
Posted 23 January 2010 - 07:46 PM
I found out from reading this post and others that Meade does not provide 64 bit drivers so I could not get my LPI or DSI working.
I first tried downloading VMWare and installed XP in the virtual machine but still could not get the LPI or DSI working.
No help from HP after 3 phone calls. They were not able to provide me with a 32 bit version of Windows 7.
Finally I bought the full version of Windows 7 Professional and installed the 32 bit version on my laptop. The DSI started working but still no luck with the LPI.
I downloaded the Microsoft Windows 7 virtual machine and XP and installed them. Now the DSI, LPI, and USB to Serial adapter (for telescope control) work in the XP virtual machine. If I just want to use the DSI then I can run in Windows 7. For the LPI or both I run in the XP virtual machine. I have not used the virtual machine much yet so I hope I have better luck than you did.
Posted 20 June 2010 - 04:10 PM
Posted 17 July 2010 - 03:11 AM
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