Version 1.4.0: Filtering function and auto-start

Filtering function*

Some scales and balances can only send data continuously, which means you get a constant  stream of weight values at rates of typically 5 to 10 values per second. SDL can easily keep up with these rates, but if you don’t really need that many values, it would be better if it could ignore most of them.

This is where the new filtering function comes into play:

Filter received lines

In the screenshot above, we set SDL to record one line for every 10 received lines (and ignore the rest). Assuming that your scale sends 10 values per second, SDL would now only record one value per second.

Start data logging with program start*

If you enable this function, SDL will connect to your measurement device on the last used port and start data logging automatically when the program is started:
Start data logging with program startThis eliminates the need to press the start button.

*These features require a paid Plus license.

Request features and vote for those we should prioritize

Both of the features above were requested by our users. You can do so on our forum or by emailing us. You can now also vote for features on our public development board (provided by trello.com).

Other improvements

Behind the scenes, the core functionality of SDL has been reorganized and is now more modular, testable and expandable. This means that we can add new features more easily, while knowing that they will not affect the existing functionality of the program.

Bug fixes

The new architecture enabled us to find and fix two somewhat exotic bugs:

Simple Data Logger software download and license purchase

Version 1.3.3: Acculab AL and Sartorius Entris device profiles

Acculab AL and Sartorius Entris device profiles

With the help of our users, we’ve added profiles for Acculab AL balances (discontinued) and the popular Sartorius Entris series1 to the most recent release of our Simple Data Logger weight recording software. You can select these devices in the input tab and press the set default parameters button to automatically set the interface parameters:

Acculab AL default RS-232 settings

Likewise, the polling command to immediately request the weight from the balance can be set by clicking the button in the control tab:
Acculab AL balance polling command

Improvements and bug fixes

  • The software reacts faster when stopping data acquisition (e.g. when the stop button has been pressed).
  • The time format used for the auto-stop feature in the control tab is now consistent across all region settings (always HH:mm:ss).

Simple Data Logger software download and license purchase


1 Also works with Sartorius ED, GK and GW balances (according to the interface description).

Version 1.3.2: New auto-stop conditions

New features in Simple Data Logger

Data logging can now be stopped automatically if the measurement value is less than or greater than the limits entered in the control tab or if a certain number of lines has been written to the CSV file:
Auto stop data logging

Auto-stop example 1

You’re using a scale to measure the amount of liquid draining from a test object over several hours and you only want to capture the measuring values up to a certain limit. You can enter this limit in the “value greater than” field.

Auto-stop example 2

You want to open the CSV file in Microsoft Excel and do not want to exceed the maximum number of rows (1048576):
Excel maximum number of rows

A timer to stop data acquisition is also still available (as in the previous versions).

Bug fixes

  • “Ohaus SPU, TA, NV” default polling command can now be set by pressing the command button in the control tab.
  • Pressing the reset button in the settings tab will correctly reset everything (except for licenses) and these default settings will be loaded when you restart the application. Previously, SDL would incorrectly revert to the settings of a previously installed version (if present).

Version 1.2.1: New A&D, Kern, Sartorius and Scale Manufacturers Association device profiles

The latest release of our data logging software includes many new device profiles:

Simple Data Logger software input tab with Sartorius (SICS) device profile selected

By selecting your scale or balance and clicking on the set default parameters for device button, you can easily set the required default interface parameters and the terminator:
Set default parameters for selected device

This also works in the control tab when polling the weight from the balance using a timer. With one click, you can set the command to request the weight immediately:
Set default command for Sartorius SICS

Visit the download page to get the most recent release of Simple Data Logger.

Version 1.2.0 released: support for Mettler Toledo SICS, new offline installer available

We’ve added an “MT-SICS” device profile for scales and balances which support the Mettler Toledo Standard Interface Command Set:
MT-SICS device profile

As an alternative to the ClickOnce installer, you can now download an alternative .msi Windows Installer Package (requires .NET Framework 4.7). Please note that settings are not shared between these two versions.

Further improvements in Simple Data Logger version 1.2.0:

  • On high DPI displays, the licensing tab contents are now resized correctly.
  • The TCP/IP protocol setting has been removed (it will be reintroduced when we add support for protocols other than ASCII/”raw TCP”), which enabled us to decrease the vertical size of the application window.
  • Minimum window sizes have been increased to ensure the application is still usable.
  • A warning is shown in the event log when polling is enabled, but no polling command has been entered.
  • An update notification is now shown in the status bar when a new version is available.

We’ve also updated our EULA and the message shown when the free version of the software is started to clarify that use in an organization (including academic institutions and non-profits) requires a paid license. You can easily purchase licenses online through our partner FastSpring (your license key and invoice will be generated automatically).

Note: If you’re already using Simple Data Logger, you may have to update manually to use the new features. Normally, the ClickOnce version can update automatically but we disabled this by mistake in the previous release. Simply go to the download page and click on install.

Version 1.1.2 released – support for Adam Highland balances and Kern KFB indicators

We’ve added two new device profiles to our data logging software:

Other improvements:

  • When a text device is selected, the decimal symbol setting in the output tab is deactivated (as it has no effect on text).
  • We’ve fixed a bug which prevented the weight sent from Adam CPWplus scales to be formatted as a number.
  • We’ve added configuration messages for some devices, these are shown when the set default parameters button is pressed:
    Adam Highland scale device configuration message

 

Version 1.1.0 released

This version contains a number of user interface improvements and fixes minor issues with “high DPI” displays.

To prepare for future functions, we renamed the following tabs:

  • Device tab -> Input tab
  • Timer tab -> Control tab
  • File tab -> Output tab

We added an auto-stop function to the Control tab (Plus feature). Data logging is stopped automatically after the set time (10 minutes in the screenshot below):
Control tab: Polling and auto stop

Version 0.9.0 – combine multiple lines into one row

With the new features in version 0.9.0, Simple Data Logger takes a big step towards the release of version 1.0 (planned for next Monday).

Combine multiple lines into one row

This is best explained with an example: We’re using a counting scale and it sends the (net) weight, count and average piece weight to the PC (each in a separate line):
Multiple lines received from counting scale

While we want to capture all of these values, we do not want them to appear in individual lines (rows) in our CSV file. Instead, these three values should be written into one row (as three columns).

This is now possible with Simple Data Logger by using the Combine setting in the Process tab:
Process tab

The result is one row containing three values:
3 lines combined into one row
Without this setting, the values would have been written into three separate rows:
3 separate rows

Ignore “empty” lines

In the example above, you may have noticed that the counting scale sent a fourth line containing only the carriage return and line feed characters. By selecting “Ignore received lines consisting only of white-space characters“, we don’t have to consider this row when setting the desired number of columns.

This settings also affects synchronized polling with a delay: “empty” lines are not considered to be an answer from the device and do not prompt SDL to repeat the polling command.

Show sent data in the event log

Until now, only data received form the connected device was shown in the event log even though SDL already had the ability to send commands. This sent data is now shown in green (the screenshot also shows the reply from the scale and the captured weight value):
Event log with sent dataYou can change this behavior in the Settings tab:
Settings tab

Line numbers and custom comments

SDL can add line numbers as well as a custom comment (e.g. the project or sample name) to each row. You’ll find these settings in the File tab:
Add additional informationResult:
Line numbers and comment

Bug fixes and UI improvements

We’ve fixed a bug which caused SDL to stop data collection when a number conversion error occurred. The error is now logged, but SDL does not stop.

We’ve also harmonized the positioning and margins of the user interface elements to make SDL easier and more pleasant to use.

Version 0.8.0

New features and improvements in version 0.8.0 of our data logging software:

Easily set the correct formats for your language and region (locale)

You can set the date, time and CSV formats by simply clicking on a button in the File tab (which shows your current language/region name):
Formats for English (United States)The formatted current date and time are shown to the right of the format boxes as examples.

It is, of course, still possible to manually change the format settings, i.e. to include milliseconds or to use a 24h time format.

Localized day and month names can be used by deselecting the “invariant culture” checkbox:
Formats in French (localized)

Flow control (handshaking)

Simple Data Logger supports XON/XOFF software flow control and RTS/CTS hardware flow control for RS-232 connections (as well as a mode that uses both). You can also enable the “data terminal ready” (DTR) and “request to send” (RTS) control signals by clicking on the corresponding button:
Flow control (handshaking)Some serial devices require one or both of these signals to be set before they will send any data to your PC. Please note that you cannot manually set the RTS signal when using RTS flow control.

A write timeout can be set in the Timer tab (default value: 500 ms). This is important when using flow control (handshaking) to prevent the port being blocked indefinitely on write operations:
Write timeoutTo disable the write timeout, set it to -1 (not recommended).

Additional COM port information shown in the event log

The RS-232 connection parameters, control signals as well as the polling command, timer/delay and write timeout are shown in the event log when opening the COM port:
Event log COM port information

This should simplify troubleshooting when we ask you for a screenshot.

Better display and handling of errors

Errors and important messages are shown in red in the event log:
Error messages

To trigger the errors above, we removed an RS-232 to USB converter while the port was open.

We’ve also fixed a bug which caused the application to exit when certain unusual errors (like the one above) occurred while using a timer to send commands (polling).

Reload user settings

Simple Data Logger saves all settings automatically when the application is closed. If you’ve made changes you want to undo, you can press the Reload button in the Settings tab to restore the last saved settings:
Reload user settingsThe Reset button is also still there and will reset everything to the application default values (as if you were running Simple Data Logger for the first time).