VMSpc J1708 Interface Board Problem

I'm having a problem with hooking up the VMSpc J1708 Interface Board (JIB) to an HP Pavilion zt1145. The JIB of course, captures and sends engine and transmission data from the diagnostic port on the MH to a laptop which displays the data. The port that connects the JIB to the laptop is a serial port. Since most laptops no longer have serial ports, a USB-to-serial adaptor (USB adaptor) is required to make the connection. I have been told by several people that not all USB adaptors are the same -- some adaptors may work on a particular laptop and others may not. We tried three adaptors and none of them worked on the HP laptop. Using another laptop, with a serial port, we installed the software and the JIB passed the data to the laptop as it should have. Therefore, we believe that the JIB and associated hardware and software is functioning properly. The HP Pavilion zt1145 has three USB ports which all seem to function properly with other USB devices. Using two different USB adaptors and two of the HP USB ports, Comm Ports 10, 11 and 12 were assigned by the HP when the USB adaptors were installed. The appropriate Comm Port was set in the VMSpc software and when the JIB was hooked up to the HP laptop, the green power light on the JIB was on and the red data light was blinking rapidly, indicating the data was being passed. However, no data was appearing on the HP laptop screen. Clicking the Advanced Tab on the VMSpc program and then Communication yielded a window that announced "PC Port Failure". This was the case for each USB adaptor and USB port used. Setting the Comm Port in the VMSpc program to Comm 3, with only the USB adaptor connected to the HP laptop, gave an error that indicated that the JIB was not connected -- this indicates that the adaptor seems to be working and that the problem seems to be when the data is sent to the assigned Comm Port. The speculation is that something (Windows Xp utility program?) is grabbing the data being sent to the assigned Comm Port before it gets to the VMSpc program.
So, basically I can't get it to transmit the data to that laptop. Any thoughts or suggestions?

Have You Tried This?

I am one of the few with serial ports on my ThinkPads, but I have heard of a procedure from others with only the USB Port and it can surely be found by searching on this forum as well. The mouse competes for the assignment of the USB to serial port (BAFO) and the way around that is to boot your computer with the serial to USB adapter plugged in but without the JIB connected. After you are booted plug in the JIB. Let us know if this works.

Jim Walker
Northern Virginia

My Experience with a HP

I aways left the USB adapter plugged into the JIB connection. And had the USB unconnected from the Laptop until the Laptop was completely booted up.

Then I plugged the USB in and then started the VMSpc program. If I used the same USB port on the Laptop every time, it would stay on the same COM port every start up.

I had the Auto Restart checked in communications. Then if it didn't start. I would have to unplug and replug the USB from the Laptop a few times before the program would finally start.

If you are using a GPS at the same time on the Laptop then it was better to start the GPS program first, before plugging the VMSpc USB in.

I used the Bafo adapter with mine for over two years until a friend gave me a old Laptop that had a serial port. That got rid of the frustrating start ups.

Larry