Last updated: 31 January 2007

This page is for user comments and information specific to the Meade AutoStar Suite. If you have any comments, suggestions, questions or answers to questions posed here, e-mail them to me and I'll post them. Please use an appropriate Subject Line on your message. Thanks. (The Lunar Planetary Imager, LPI, and Deep Sky Imager, DSI, are covered in the Helpful Information - Astrophotography area.)

Subject:	error-1
Sent:	Saturday, January 27, 2007 19:04:31
Do you know what could be causing the Autostar to give a message of
error-1 can't open com1?
Mike here: I have never heard of such an error appearing on the AutoStar display. Which model of the AutoStar do you have?


Oops sorry I didn't mean the Autostar was giving the error message it is
the computer saying error-1 can't open com1.  This happens right after
trying the protocol autostar via comm port it does this.
Mike here: It is likely there is some other application tying up the serial port. Typically that could be fax software.
Subject:	re: Question about Error "Invalid Alignment Mode" ETX 105 PE
Sent:	Monday, January 22, 2007 19:58:52
From:	richard seymour (
A COM testing method which uses Hyperterminal is detailled
on this page on Mike's site:

good luck

Subject:	Question about Error "Invalid Alignment Mode" ETX 105 PE
Sent:	Friday, January 19, 2007 15:32:10
From:	Lozupone (
When I try to connect to with Autostar S/W I keep keep getting the above
error, even though I completed a successful alignment.

I'm connecting the COM port

Any ideas?

Vinnie Lozupone ( 
Mike here: Have you enabled the "network protocol" in the AutoStar Suite software? (I assume that is the "Autostar S/W" you mean.)


Yes, I go to Telescope/Protocol/Autostar Via Comm Port
That's when I get the error.
Some times a get a Read Time out error but mostly the former error pops
Mike here: OK, lets back up a step. Are you trying to use the multiple AutoStar Suite apps via the single RS-232 serial port on your computer? If so, you need to enable the Network Protocol. Are you using a USB-serial adapter? If so, be advised that not all work with the AutoStar. For more on the Network Protocol and on USB adapters, see the Helpful Information: AutoStar Info page.


I also tried the Network Server  as well and that doesn't work.

I'm not using the USB to serial. All I'm trying to do is connect my PC
with Autostar S/W to my telescope.

When you say Enable Protocol I assume that you do that from going to
Telescope/Protocol/Autostar Via Comm Port,  unless I'm missing

Thanks Mike!
Mike here: So, using a real serial port (not a modem port) on your computer, you have connected a #505 serial cable to the jack in the AutoStar handset? Lets try a test: run the AutoStar Update application by itself and see if it connects to the handset. Let me know.


Interesting, I get the error "Could not connect to Comm Port.
Then when I execute Mode from DOS prompt it returns with all COM1 port
What do you think?
Mike here: Usual culprit is some other software tying up the serial port, typically that is fax software. Could also be a bad #505 serial cable or a bad jack in either the computer or the AutoStar.
Subject:	etx 80at tc, 506 cable and lpi w/autostar suite compatibility
Sent:	Friday, January 12, 2007 03:35:51
From:	Renee Ann Wirick (
Thank you so much for your site, it is always a big help!  With my
birthday coming up I am going to buy the LPI/Autostar suite package.  My
question is this- since the 80AT/494 autostar uses the 506 connector
cable and the package comes with the 505, if I puchase the 506 cable
separately will I be able to use the additional guiding features of the
LPI/Autostar Suite using it?
Thanks again,
Renee Wirick
Norfolk, UK
Mike here: The AutoStar Suite software that controls the LPI and the ETX requires a #497 AutoStar and won't work with a #494. So you would need to get a #497 AutoStar as well. No need to get the #506 cable.


See?  This is why I came to you :)  Many thanks, not least for saving me
50 bucks.  When I upgrade to the 497 one of these days I will be all
set!  I thought about the DSI but decided that with the longer exposure
times having the autoguide feature would be a necessity.  Time to start
putting money away into the astronomy fund!
Renee :)

Subject:	Re: remote imager access
Sent:	Monday, January 8, 2007 09:54:32
From:	Dave Arnold (
I came across this company while trying to solve the remote lpi problem.
Their product usb@nywhere would appear to solve it for $10-$20 and can
be tried for free.  I haven't been able to try it myself as I don't have
a computer cable yet.  But instead of waiting for it I thought someone
else might give it a try in the mean time.

Regards and Thanks again for the site.
--Dave Arnold

Subject:	ETX-90 w/Autostar Suite LPI
Sent:	Monday, January 1, 2007 17:39:47
From:	Kenneth W. Egan (
I got my daughter the Autostar Suite w/LPI camera for her ETX-90.

She is having problems with targeting, When using the computer to target
a star, the ETX never points to the right star. The handheld controller
works fine with alignment and later object targeting, but not through
the PC w/Autostar.

Anyhelp would be grateful.

Mike here: So, if I understand the problem, you get a good alignment and GOTOs using the AutoStar but if you select an object using the AutoStar Suite Star Map, the ETX doesn't go to it reliably? Are you using the "network" option in the AutoStar Suite application? What happens if you use the remote handbox application in the AutoStar Suite?

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