Set up new weather station for Vintners.net PMI setup.

Begin here...
  • Buy yourself a weather station. Vintners.Net recommends the Davis Vantage Vue as the most affordable, yet of high quality station for our PMI network.
  • I just got a complete Vantage Vue setup for $408.20 (including shipping) (Nov-2019). I got it through WeatherShack.com, they have a low price match guarantee, be sure to google around and use it.
  • If you want to use a different system, all that matters is that Cumulus software will work with it. Go to their website (Sandaysoft.com) to check for compatibility.

Do NOT plug the base station into the computer yet. If you do this, Windows will attempt to load it's own driver for you - you do not want the MS driver getting in your way. Additionally, you will not be using the station vendor's software, so don't use their installation disk.

While waiting for your weather station to arrive, you can do the next few steps.
Create WUnderground account:

  1. Go to http://www.WUnderground.com/
  2. If you have an account already, log in, if not, go ahead and create a new one.
  3. Under My Profile, take "my devices".
  4. Add new.
  5. Click Personal.
  6. Give it your location, it can take a street address. Be sure to jigger the position on the map to the actual location.
  7. Hit Ok and Next.
  8. Make up a name, I'd recommend including the word vineyard - this is what will show up in a search for stations on WU.
  9. Accept and Next.
  10. I'd suggest yes on notifications.
  11. Jot down the KWA name you're given, and the password they'll have you make up; you'll need these below.
  12. Also jot down the Lat/Lon/Alt that it gives you, you'll need these again later as well.
  13. Txt/email MikeL with the KWA name you were given, he needs it to create your PMI account.

Give this computer a decent name:

  1. Windows-Key-r
  2. enter "SystemSettingsAdvanced"
  3. Click "Computer Name" tab.
  4. Click "Change" button to "Rename this computer".
  5. I recommend the initials of your vineyard, or the KWA name from WU (above), followed by "wthr". Check with MikeL.
  6. You'll need to reboot for this change to take effect.

Set system to automatically maintain correct time:

  1. (Win 10) right-click on the time on the screen bottom-right
  2. Click "adjust date/time"
  3. Make sure "set time automatically" is set to ON.
  4. Win7-Win8, right-click on clock, on "server" tab, set a time server to "time.nist.gov".
  5. Old, Old Windows (e.g. XP), download nistime-32bit.exe and follow it's install directions, info at nist.gov (scroll down to near bottom of page).
  • FYI: All descriptions/directions below assume Davis Vantage Vue.

  • Follow your station's installation instructions for the instrument cluster and base station. Do not connect it to the computer yet.
  • Get your instrument cluster talking to the base station.
  • Install your instrument cluster in your vineyard.
  • Install your base station somewhere within USB cable reach of an internet connected computer, preferably one that is left running permanently.
  • Grab a piece of scratch paper and a pen, and jot down the make and model of your weather station - you'll need this and we'll be making other notes later.

Get the weather station working with computer. (Davis Vantage Vue)

  1. Download cp210x.zip.
  2. In File Explorer, unzip (extract) this onto your HD somewhere (C:\TEMP\ is a good choice).
  3. In File Explorer, go into this cp210x directory.
  4. If you're on a modern 64bit machine, run (double-click on) CP210xVCPInstaller_x64.exe.
  5. Old 32bit machine do the "x86" version.
Reminder - if it's in, UNPLUG the base station USB. Do NOT plug this back in until you've made it through the following config steps.

  • Note! We are using an old version of Cumulus - install the old version archived below on this server, do not install the modern version from the vendor.
  • Download CumulusSetup.exe (local copy of version 1.9.4).
  • For reference, Cumulus was created by Sandaysoft.com. We are grateful for their work, as this is necessary for our data uploads.
  • Run it and follow the online install. Default everything at this point.
  1. Start Cumulus
  2. Go to Configuration->Station screen. screen shot
  3. Select your station type.
  4. Most important! Be sure to check that the Units are Inches and Fahrenheit, mph, etc.
  5. Select serial communications (yes, I know, this is a USB connection - trust me).
  6. Set serial port to COM port 3.
  7. Close On Suspend, Stop 2nd Instance, Restart if Unplugged.
  8. Be sure to enter your Lat/Lon/Alt, Name and Desc that you jotted down earlier.
  9. When you save, if you get a pause and an "initialize error", just ignore it for now, we'll get back this later.
  10. Go back in to Station screen, and check that the above changes were saved -- again - make sure you're set for Fahrenheit/Inches/mph.

NOW you can plug the base station USB in.

Start Cumulus.

  • If you get a warning about "cannot initialize", you may be able to fix it by correcting the COM port in the Station config screen. Try port 3 first, if that doesn't work try 1, 2, 4.
  • If this doesn't fix it, you probably did not get the pigtail plugged in correctly. Open the back of the base station, pull the plug, make sure there are no bent pins, plug it back in. It takes a very firm press to get it to seat properly.
  • Absolute last resort: If all else has failed, install original WeatherLink_Setup.msi. Do not use the latest version from Davis as this is a subscription-based setup; use the local version on this server.
    Once this is working, go to the config screen, find which com port is in use, then shutdown WeatherLink, go into Cumulus Station config, and set this COM port.

Configure auto start on power up:

    Directions for Windows 10

  • Set Windows to auto-login:
    • Windows-Key-r
    • Enter 'netplwiz'.
    • Uncheck "must log in".
    • Save/close.
    • (google "microsoft support 324737" for more info.)
  • Set to auto-start Cumulus:
    • Windows-key-r
    • Enter "shell:common startup".
    • Open another Windows File Explorer, navigate to C:\Cumulus\.
    • Right-mouse drag-n-drop from Cumulus.exe into startup folder.
    • If you get an error about "not admin, create on desktop?", go ahead and say yes, then do it again, this time right-mouse drag from the new desktop icon and move to startup folder. This time it'll go. (All you're doing is creating a "shortcut" to the Cumulus.exe file, in the system startup folder.)
Shutdown/reboot to make sure that auto login and Cumulus auto start are working.

Configure Cumulus generic: (screen shot)

Set to write to Weather Underground

  • Cumulus->Configuration->Internet Settings
  • Sites/Options tab
  • Weather Underground:
    Enabled: checked
    others unchecked
    Catch up: checked
    Enter Station ID from above (KWA.....###)
    Enter password for WU website from above
    Leave default 10 min interval

From here on out we're doing stuff specific to PMI.

Set to write files for PMI:
Cumulus configuration->Internet Settings
Sites/Options tab (screen shot):

  • ftp server: ftp.vintners.net
  • dir: /html/weatherstation/
  • user: (provided by MikeL)
  • pswd: (provided by MikeL)
  • Web Settings:
    Auto Update: checked
    others don't matter
    interval: 10 or 15 mins is good
    all Real time entries: unchecked

Cumulus Internet Files screen (screen shot)
Local filenamesRemote filenamesProcess?Realtime?ftp?utf-8
C:\Cumulus\data\alltimelog.txt/html/weatherstation/data/alltimelog.txt  checked 
C:\Cumulus\data\dayfile.txt/html/weatherstation/data/dayfile.txt  checked 
<currentlogfile>/html/weatherstation/data/<currentlogfile>  checked 
C:\Cumulus\web\sysparmsT.htm/html/weatherstation/sysparms.htmchecked checked 
C:\Cumulus\web\weather_banner.htin/html/weatherstation/weather_banner.htinchecked checked 

Download sysparmsT.htm
  • Save it into C:\Cumulus\web\ directory (be sure it is saved with suffix ".htm").
  • This file is displayed in the PMI "Manage Station" screen. It allows you to see certain values that would otherwise not be available, e.g. battery level in the base station and of the instrument cluster.
  • It is also used by the PMI software to alert you of problems, like any error message from the Cumulus software, or low battery levels.
  • If you have problems with this, it's ok to skip it for now, though you may have to back this filename out of the previous Cumulus Internet Files config (above).

Download weather_banner.htin

  • Save into C:\Cumulus\web\ directory (be sure it saves with suffix ".htin").
  • Edit this file and change anything appropriate, e.g. station name and city.
  • As above, the software can run without this file; if necessary, skip for now, and back this filename out of the Cumulus Internet Files config (above).

Note! MikeL may have done this next part for you on the server.
Use an ftp program to upload all files from C:\Cumulus\webfiles\

  • Upload to website in your /html/weatherstation/ directory. Do not nest them into a "webfiles" dir, they should be in the "weatherstation" dir.
  • ftp settings are the same ones you used in the Cumulus Configuration Internet screen above.
  • The following are the ones that make your "console website" look pretty:
    CumulusRealtime.swf
    weatherstyle.css
    wz_jsgraphics.js
    images/picture.jpg
  • Note the last file does need to be nested into an "images" dir.
  • Be sure that the "images" directory and it's contents uploaded - some ftp apps won't automatically do recursive uploads.
  • You can skip this for now, the only consequence is that your "console" screen at the web server will be messed up. You can fix that later.

Now go to Console Problems to check if all is right.


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