Jul 13, 2014 at 9:11 pm #1318909
I just submitted this report to DeLorme support. We'll see what happens.
I took my inReach SE on a day hike in a park I've been too many times before. I'm on Firmware Version 2.6.25624. The device is not paired with my iPhone, I haven't used that feature in about a year.
I sent a preset message as I started hiking. I had 10 minute tracking turned on. I sent another preset message when I returned to my vehicle almost 5 hours later. I had tracking on while driving the 30+ minutes to and from the park. All of those messages have gone through on previous hikes in that same park, on many of the same trails. Last time I used the inReach SE on June 29, 2014, everything was working fine, though some of the messages took a while to go through.
Today – not a single message or tracking point went through!
None went through to the email and text addresses. None showed up on explore.delorme.com under my account, now over 8 hours since I started hiking.
I was so surprised, I reconfirmed that tracking was turned on several times since returning.
If I can't rely on the DeLorme SE, it's useless to me.
This is a very serious problem. I expect a quick reply from DeLorme, reassurance that this won't happen again, a credit to my account.Jul 13, 2014 at 10:07 pm #2119502
Richard CullipBPL Member
@richardcullipLocale: San Diego County
You weren't hiking near the Santa Cruz Mystery Spot were you?Jul 14, 2014 at 1:26 am #2119511
Everything went through OK with mine from July 10 to July 13. On July 12, it took 10-15 minutes to get one message up to the bird, but maybe that was because I was in a pretty deep canyon. I'm not in the habit of leaving mine turned on for that long.
Rex, is it possible that your device was dropped or something?
Did you try sending a free test message?
–B.G.–Jul 14, 2014 at 1:50 am #2119514
<< inReach SE: No tracking points, no messages went through today!>>
I hadn't tried my inReach SE since upgrading to the same firmware release as you (2.6.25624). I'm heading off for a 10 day trip on Wednesday, so your note inspired me to give mine a try before leaving on my trip.
Mine's not working either!
I've sent an email to Delorme Canada's tech support but I suspect it's too late for me. I'll probably try a factory reset before my trip if I don't hear back from tech support before I leave on Wednesday.Jul 14, 2014 at 5:55 am #2119525
Just trying to insert "failure" into google results ….Jul 14, 2014 at 6:02 am #2119526
@lori999Locale: Central Valley
An inReach delayed messages for hours when a friend was texting me about a mutual friend she had been hiking with and lost – I waited for hours while she found him, drove home, and then called me to tell me they were home. I got the message five hours later that he was found.
I have a PLB instead because I would never leave someone freaked out by the phone or computer screen like that. It's happened to others, it'll happen again.
reconn.org – leave an itinerary, regardless of what you do.Jul 14, 2014 at 6:13 am #2119529
This thread is now the 2nd hit in a google search on "inreach failure july 2014" (at the moment)…
… just another google ping. Hopefully others outside of BPL will chime in.
Yes, this is occurring on a Sunday night, but No response to Rex from Delorme?Jul 14, 2014 at 6:56 am #2119539
Ken T.BPL Member
In their contract with you do they opt out of being responsible/liable? Do they give any guarantee that messages will be 100%? If not, this device is really a toy and one's life would be better dependent on a PLB, yes?
One reason i got rid of my Spot.Jul 14, 2014 at 6:59 am #2119540
Jennifer MitolBPL Member
@jenmitolLocale: In my dreams....
Hmmm…I guess I should be happy I haven't installed the firmware update yet???
I'm going to try mine in the backyard as soon as I get home now. Yikes!!!!Jul 14, 2014 at 8:56 am #2119579
– Got an automatic reply from DeLorme shortly after I submitted the report. Their support is M-F working hours only, so not surprised.
– After previous trip, when it worked, I plugged the unit into the charger on a desk. Updated firmware July 6, then back to the charger.
– No tracking points on explore.delorme.com since June 29, which is suspicious. Usually one or two per day make it through the window while it's on the charger.
– Haven't tried resetting the unit, waiting for reply from DeLorme. I fully expect to be told to "reset and try again", as they work through their standard troubleshooting procedure. That solution will still be a big problem for me.
– I was several miles away from the Mystery Spot, but I don't know how far the reality distortion field extends :-)
— RexJul 14, 2014 at 3:42 pm #2119691
I did a factory reset with no luck (the unit couldn't find the satellites to reactivate my unit).
Talked to Tech Support (the Canadian version) and they told me to try a re-sync which just put me back where I started (with a current firmware and config that can't talk to the satellites). He said he would pass my case on to Delorme USA and would try to update me tomorrow.Jul 14, 2014 at 4:59 pm #2119708
Manfred KopischBPL Member
thanks for posting. This is critical for people to know. I just tested my inReach Explorer with firmware 2.6.25624.
The good news is that it sends tracking points, sends messages and receives messages. That is good to know as I will leave for a longer trip with my sons this coming weekend.
The map page on my DeLorme account is not showing these tracking points. Interestingly enough they are shown on the MapShare page my family will use to follow us along on our adventure. Go figure …
So while there is clearly a problem with displaying tracking points on my map page, they still got sent out and are visible to other people who use MapShare.
ManfredJul 14, 2014 at 8:54 pm #2119780
Hello, Chip Noble, Product Manager from DeLorme here. I've looked at the two accounts that had trouble sending messages and will get in touch with both of you in the morning to troubleshoot. I am not aware of any Iridium outages nor have I heard of any problems like this being reported with the firmware release. I used the inReach on Sunday to track while climbing Tumbledown Mountain here in Maine and all of my track points and messages went through.
Please note that I'm not trying to dismiss your reports and have verified that the server does not have anything waiting to appear on your Explore site from the date ranges you’ve described so we’ll need to talk this through and run some tests together. I just want to let people on this forum know what I have for details so far and that we’re looking at it. I see where a few have posted their own test results showing that they have been able to message and track, thank you for helping. For the gentleman who’s points appeared on his MapShare site but not on his Explore site, make sure you don’t have a time/date filter preventing your test messages from appearing.
I’ve been approached by one user who was concerned about using the inReach for an upcoming hike. I will be sure to check in with this forum after working with the two users who had problems to update everyone. I would encourage people to take advantage of the free test messages that you can send with your inReach (five per month) to test your gear any time you’re getting ready for a big trip, that's good planning. Send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org and the server will echo your message back to verify that the round-trip process is working.
So please stay tuned for a follow-up after we’ve had a chance to troubleshoot with the two forum posters that had trouble and feel free to reach out to me if any of you have questions of your own. I can be reached at email@example.com. Thank you all for your patience while we look into this.
DeLormeJul 14, 2014 at 9:23 pm #2119787
You know what would be helpful to inReach users? Troubleshooting hints. It is simply too difficult to send a message to DeLorme tech support and then to get no reply at all for a week or worse. Yes, that happens! It is too hard to search the meager support database for clues to a problem.
For example, if the user sends a message, how long should it take to clear the satellite and sound a success? A minute or two? What if it takes 10-15 minutes before success? I think that meant that I was in a steep walled canyon and the signal was not getting out very easily. What if it takes longer? That is just draining the battery without accomplishing anything.
Ordinary troubleshooting hints would be helpful to users without ruining the product reputation. We need to know what sounds like hardware failure versus firmware failure versus user error versus Iridium failure.
I sent an inReach message to a county sheriff's dispatcher phone number, and they never received it. The theory is that the published telephone number can't accept SMS messages, so that is nobody's failure.
–B.G.–Jul 14, 2014 at 9:36 pm #2119796
@jbcLocale: Cascade Mountains
>In their contract with you do they opt out of being responsible/liable? Do they give any >guarantee that messages will be 100%? If not, this device is really a toy and one's life would >be better dependent on a PLB, yes?
>One reason i got rid of my Spot.
I doubt it, they would be foolish to do so, no technology is 100%. Not even a standard PLB. Any locator device is a tool, it may give you an extra margin for error, but if you intend to go into the wilderness depending on one of these devices I think you should stay home. Depend on your skills and plan, the PLB is just a quicker way to contact emergency services should the shit hit the fan.Jul 14, 2014 at 10:28 pm #2119814
Chip – Thanks for following up on this issue.
One thing that I have in common with the other forum member that is experiencing problems is that we were both early adopters of the SE. Our hardware version is listed as version 2.0. I've checked a more recent SE and it is at hardware version 2.1.
Just thought I'd mention that.Jul 15, 2014 at 1:45 am #2119819
Oh, great! Now they are charging me for the free test messages.
–B.G.–Jul 15, 2014 at 10:23 am #2119897
James Couch wrote – "I doubt it, they would be foolish to do so, no technology is 100%. Not even a standard PLB. Any locator device is a tool, it may give you an extra margin for error, but if you intend to go into the wilderness depending on one of these devices I think you should stay home. Depend on your skills and plan, the PLB is just a quicker way to contact emergency services should the shit hit the fan."
Very good point.
SPOT and InReach are very open systems – a COSPAS-SARSAT PLB is not. "open" means that a body of users test the up/down success of satellite communication constantly – and any failure gets circulated around and around on forums into perpetuity. (and this thread will probably be used by InReach haters).
But failures will happen as the systems cannot provide perfect operation in all conditions. And the vaunted COSPAS-SARSAT PLB is no different – you just don't see it tested like you do InReach and SPOT.
I'm happy we have choices now and InReach is a very good one (even though I'm a happy long-term SPOT user).Jul 15, 2014 at 11:17 am #2119920
"But failures will happen as the systems cannot provide perfect operation in all conditions. And the vaunted COSPAS-SARSAT PLB is no different – you just don't see it tested like you do InReach and SPOT."
Multiple satellite constellations. Multiple satellites in each constellation. Two GEO satellites covering North America, with a spare in orbit on standby.
Multiple coordinated LEO ground terminals. Multiple coordinated GEO ground termials. Multiple Mission Control Centers. All in sync, and handling the vast majority of validations and communications via automated systems.
Testing? There are pages of PDFs out there with the results of testing – like 25 concurrent signals in high interference regions, etc. etc. This is government (including military), and you are suggesting that testing isn't thorough?
They aren't driven by ROI, P&L, or subscription efficiency. They have published operational standards, they test for them, and report them. No one bothers to look, or even care, simply because things work.
I'll grant there Can be failures, but that number is disappearingly small.Jul 15, 2014 at 1:57 pm #2119977
Thanks to Chip Noble at Delorme and Delorme Canada tech support, I'm back in business!
Since I am leaving on a trip early tomorrow, I had to resolve this issue quickly, so I decided to play the warranty card and get a replacement unit from the retailer.
The folks at Delorme were extremely accomodating and not only rushed my activation and account transfer through but have credited my account with the activation fee for the replacement device and prorated my bill for the lost access time.
I've been very impressed with these guys and they were sicerely interested in figuring out what went wrong with my inReach SE. If I'd had more time, I would have preferred to resolve the issue but a replacement was the only real option for me if I wanted to take the inReach on my trip.Jul 15, 2014 at 4:41 pm #2120016
Yes, impressive pictures and specifications – yet a user can block the the signal with their body. Regarding testing, spot is tested 1000000x more than than cospas-sarsat. And as inreach grows it will be tested 1000000x more as well.Jul 15, 2014 at 4:45 pm #2120018
There is no accounting for user error.
System reliability is another topic.Jul 15, 2014 at 5:00 pm #2120026
Manfred KopischBPL Member
I'm using the inReach now for two years (the third season) and must say I'm impressed by its ever improving capabilities. Sure I would always love to get more (for example a GPX import for the new Explorer would be nice), but I'm happy with the device. I just exported the GPX file of all my tracking points. There are 18869 of them in the file going back to a JMT hike in 2012, an SHR hike in 2012 and the TGO in 2013. The device has given my wife peace of mind, has helped me with current weather reports and has allowed me to communicate in the wilderness with another group member via their inReach.
The issue I reported yesterday could be called user error and was promptly addressed by Chip Noble (I had set a hide flag).Jul 15, 2014 at 5:35 pm #2120037
Thanks for that update Manfred.
I'm very interested to see what affected Rex and Mike. Hopefully Chip will keep us in the loop.
"Sophistication" certainly allows for more operator error than "just push the button".Jul 15, 2014 at 8:02 pm #2120085
Last night, I used the inReach SE to send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org, sent a test message to the unit through explore.delorme.com, then left the inReach SE outside overnight (about 8 hours) on our second-story deck. Neither message went through. The outbound message had the spinning icon when I checked this morning. The LED was blinking red.
Chip Noble at DeLorme and I exchanged several emails. We're pretty sure something is wrong with my unit. Troubleshooting by phone scheduled for Thursday morning, working around my work schedule and EDT vs PDT.
Chip and DeLorme are exceeding my expectations so far.
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