FAQ
CALCULEX provides a full line of software products to complement our hardware.

For example, our PBIF software provides a fully-documented DLL with a user-friendly data transfer utility. We have also developed a wide variety of software for ground support systems and many other data acquisition and telemetry applications. For more information on our software, please contact CALULEX.

The PBIF Utility application software provides control of the basic functions of the PBIF hardware. 

Transferring files from disk to tape or from tape to disk can be accomplished in a few simple steps. In many applications, the PBIF Utility may provide all necessary functions, making development of user application software unnecessary. The tape drive status window displays the current state of the tape drive in an easy-to-read format. Tape location is displayed as time and date, physical tape address or elapsed footage. An Online indicator shows that the serial port used for tape control is active. The Ready indicator shows that the tape drive is ready to accept the next command.

Serial port communications settings are displayed as well as the drive type (e.g.  DCRsi 240).  These settings are user-configurable and may be saved by the user.  The application  restores the saved settings automatically at startup.

The tape drive control interface supports tape transport commands, including Load, Unload, Fast- Forward, and Rewind.  The Play and Record commands synchronize the tape transport operations with the memory buffers controlled by the PBIF for direct block transfer capability.  Data may be transferred from tape to a disk file, or from a disk file to tape.  User-customized applications can perform data reduction before writing to disk to avoid excessive data storage and transfer overhead.

A Verify command replays data from tape and compares it to known valid data.  This capability can be used to check a recording or to test the integrity of a tape cartridge and the hardware. Users may also send any command directly to the tape drive.  Raw, untranslated responses from the tape drive are stored in a history buffer which may be viewed at any time. The Test menu provides automated PBIF self-testing and some tape drive diagnostics, such as bit-error-rate via the DCRsi record/play tests.  The PBIF self-tests include an internal loop-back test which runs automatically when the PBIF Utility is started and an external loop-back test, which may be used to verify that the PBIF hardware is fully operational.  The external loop-back test requires the use of a special external loop-back plug, supplied with the PBIF.

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