Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 1
julianh

eTrex Vista shows incorrect date

Recommended Posts

About 5 weeks ago, I purchased a Garmin etrex Vista. Within a couple of days, I had to return it because it started showing the wrong date – out by many years. In all other respects, the unit seemed to be working fine (acquired a satellite fix quickly, compass and barometer work OK, etc).

 

The faulty unit was replaced with a new Vista unit, which was working fine – until today! Now my new replacement unit is showing exactly the same symptoms. Today (17 November 2007) it is showing the date on the Main menu screen as 02-Oct-66. (There is nothing I can see which shows whether this is 1966 or 2066, but either way, the date is wrong.) It shows the correct time of day, however, and manages to get a satellite fix quickly, even though it appears it believes that it is living 59 years in the future (or possible 41 years in the past.) I have checked that I am running the latest system firmware (version 3.70), and have tried a full hard reset, changed the batteries, etc, but nothing I have tried will correct the date problem.

 

This makes the unit all but useless for me, as the downloaded track-logs show corrupt time and date stamps. One major consequence of this is that I can’t use the track-logs to geo-reference my digital photographs from my remote site trips, which is one of the main reasons I bought this unit. Interestingly, the downloaded track-log file shows the dates for the latest track-log points as being 24-Aug-30 to 27-Aug-30, whereas the unit itself is currently showing the date as 02-Oct-66!

 

Another critical issue is that I can’t download track-logs into MapSouce – the MapSource software attempts to download the current track from the unit, but then at the end of the download seems to recognise that the data is corrupt, and rejects the whole track-log.

 

I have contacted both Garmin Tech Support and the local resller, so far without success. Is there a known PERMANENT fix for this problem?

Share this post


Link to post

I have contacted both Garmin Tech Support and the local resller, so far without success. Is there a known PERMANENT fix for this problem?

Yes, it's called a Vista HCx. :santa: Sorry. That's extremely weird and I'd think Garmin would be very interested in fixing it (although, maybe not, for a very old model).

Share this post


Link to post

I have contacted both Garmin Tech Support and the local resller, so far without success. Is there a known PERMANENT fix for this problem?

Yes, it's called a Vista HCx. :santa: Sorry. That's extremely weird and I'd think Garmin would be very interested in fixing it (although, maybe not, for a very old model).

The Vista model may be a bit old (released around 2001, I believe), but Garmin is still promoting them on the website, and both of my units were brand new, and both showed the problem within a few days of purchase. In both cases, I was running the latest sysem software (3.70, released June 12, 2006).

 

I'll just have to wait and see what Garmin and / or the local reseller come up with, I guess!

Edited by julianh

Share this post


Link to post

I have contacted both Garmin Tech Support and the local resller, so far without success. Is there a known PERMANENT fix for this problem?

Yes, it's called a Vista HCx. :santa: Sorry. That's extremely weird and I'd think Garmin would be very interested in fixing it (although, maybe not, for a very old model).

The Vista model may be a bit old (released around 2001, I believe), but Garmin is still promoting them on the website, and both of my units were brand new, and both showed the problem within a few days of purchase. In both cases, I was running the latest sysem software (3.70, released June 12, 2006).

 

I'll just have to wait and see what Garmin and / or the local reseller come up with, I guess!

Sorry for being "age-ist". (2001 really isn't that long ago...!) You're right, though--Garmin likes to hold on to superseded models. Which is good in terms of support, anyway, but can lead to confusion.

 

I thought of something else--you updated the system software, but did you also update the chipset software? I don't know about the Vista in particular but I think at least all the "x" models have two parts to the firmware, and you have to run the Webupdater twice to catch everything. If the chipset software were out of sync with the system software, I could see how it could potentially cause weird problems such as you're seeing.

Share this post


Link to post

I have contacted both Garmin Tech Support and the local resller, so far without success. Is there a known PERMANENT fix for this problem?

Yes, it's called a Vista HCx. :blink: Sorry. That's extremely weird and I'd think Garmin would be very interested in fixing it (although, maybe not, for a very old model).

The Vista model may be a bit old (released around 2001, I believe), but Garmin is still promoting them on the website, and both of my units were brand new, and both showed the problem within a few days of purchase. In both cases, I was running the latest sysem software (3.70, released June 12, 2006).

 

I'll just have to wait and see what Garmin and / or the local reseller come up with, I guess!

Sorry for being "age-ist". (2001 really isn't that long ago...!) You're right, though--Garmin likes to hold on to superseded models. Which is good in terms of support, anyway, but can lead to confusion.

 

I thought of something else--you updated the system software, but did you also update the chipset software? I don't know about the Vista in particular but I think at least all the "x" models have two parts to the firmware, and you have to run the Webupdater twice to catch everything. If the chipset software were out of sync with the system software, I could see how it could potentially cause weird problems such as you're seeing.

 

Well, it sounded like a long-shot, but I figured: "What do I have to lose?"

 

I re-installed the latest system software again (version 3.70) - twice in a row - to make 100% certain that I was fully up to date. (As far as I know, the eTrex Vista only has one software download available.)

 

No help I am afraid - the unit is still displaying today's date as 04-OCT-66, and the current track-log still can't be used, as it is corrupt.

 

I will wait to see what Garmin and the local reseller have to say, and I will post an update if / when I hear anything.

 

Thanks for your suggestion anyway.

Share this post


Link to post

Well, it sounded like a long-shot, but I figured: "What do I have to lose?"

 

I re-installed the latest system software again (version 3.70) - twice in a row - to make 100% certain that I was fully up to date. (As far as I know, the eTrex Vista only has one software download available.)

 

No help I am afraid - the unit is still displaying today's date as 04-OCT-66, and the current track-log still can't be used, as it is corrupt.

 

I will wait to see what Garmin and the local reseller have to say, and I will post an update if / when I hear anything.

 

Thanks for your suggestion anyway.

Did you use the Webupdater software? Garmin doesn't seem to always have all the downloads listed for a particular unit, but Webupdater should pick it up, or tell you that you're up to date. Failing that, let us know what Garmin says.

Share this post


Link to post

I have some GPS's at work that show the wrong dates. but that was a Y2K problem as they were made before 2000. and the company never released a fix for that model, only their newer ones.

 

gps's made near or after 2000 having that problem just seems weird ;) ;)

Share this post


Link to post

Well, it sounded like a long-shot, but I figured: "What do I have to lose?"

 

I re-installed the latest system software again (version 3.70) - twice in a row - to make 100% certain that I was fully up to date. (As far as I know, the eTrex Vista only has one software download available.)

 

No help I am afraid - the unit is still displaying today's date as 04-OCT-66, and the current track-log still can't be used, as it is corrupt.

 

I will wait to see what Garmin and the local reseller have to say, and I will post an update if / when I hear anything.

 

Thanks for your suggestion anyway.

Did you use the Webupdater software? Garmin doesn't seem to always have all the downloads listed for a particular unit, but Webupdater should pick it up, or tell you that you're up to date. Failing that, let us know what Garmin says.

Yes, I tried using Web Updater twice in a row, and I also tried the manual download-and-install method twice in a row. Same result - no change - my eTrex Vista still seems to think it is October 1966 or 2066. (eTrex Vista only seems to have a single software download.)

Share this post


Link to post

Yes, I tried using Web Updater twice in a row, and I also tried the manual download-and-install method twice in a row. Same result - no change - my eTrex Vista still seems to think it is October 1966 or 2066. (eTrex Vista only seems to have a single software download.)

 

A master reset may be needed to clear the unit if you have left the batteries out for a long period of time and the unit comes up with the wrong year.

 

After a reset

 

If you have to perform a full reset using one of the sequences shown above you will need to allow the unit to collect a full almanac before normal can be resumed. First a fix will need to be obtained which can take from 5 to 10 minutes of leaving your unit outdoors, stationary, with a good sky view. After the first lock you will need another 12.5 to 15 minutes to get the almanac reloaded. Check the date to insure that the information was reloaded properly. Time will be shown as UTC time since your local time offset was lost in the reset.

 

Re-establish all of your preferences such as time zone, daylight savings flag, etc. Reload all your waypoints and saved routes from your backup. I do hope you have a backup. WAAS capable receivers will have to re-establish the WAAS almanac as well.

See link. Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post

I too noticed that my Etrex Vista has the wrong date and time. I only noticed because I forgot my watch so wanted to look at the gps for the time. I have mine in the car, and I will check it out shortly...

Share this post


Link to post

Coggins, thank you! The "super master reset" seems to have worked, at least for now.

 

Specifically, a normal "master rest" on the eTrex Vista is accomplished by holding down the "Page" button and "Enter" (i.e. the click stick) while powering up. You are prompted that a full reset will occur, and after confirming, the machine is reset. However, in my case, this achieved a full reset, but did not fix the date problem.

 

However, the undocumented "super master reset" on the eTrex Vista is achieved by simultaneously holding down the "Page, "Enter" and "Find" buttons while powering up. You have to hold all buttons in for about 5 to 7 seconds, and you DON'T get the warning message, but when the machine finally restarts, it is fully reset. After acquiring a satellite fix (took several minutes) - lo and behold - my time AND date both seem to be correct!

 

Oddly, neither Garmin tech support nor the local reseller seemed to know about this method of REALLY resetting the machine - I will pass on the information to them, for future reference.

 

Once again - thank you for pointing me to the link: http://www.gpsinformation.org/dale/secret.htm#reset

 

Hope this might also help other eTrex Vista owners who are experiencing the same date problem.

 

Yes, I tried using Web Updater twice in a row, and I also tried the manual download-and-install method twice in a row. Same result - no change - my eTrex Vista still seems to think it is October 1966 or 2066. (eTrex Vista only seems to have a single software download.)

 

A master reset may be needed to clear the unit if you have left the batteries out for a long period of time and the unit comes up with the wrong year.

 

After a reset

 

If you have to perform a full reset using one of the sequences shown above you will need to allow the unit to collect a full almanac before normal can be resumed. First a fix will need to be obtained which can take from 5 to 10 minutes of leaving your unit outdoors, stationary, with a good sky view. After the first lock you will need another 12.5 to 15 minutes to get the almanac reloaded. Check the date to insure that the information was reloaded properly. Time will be shown as UTC time since your local time offset was lost in the reset.

 

Re-establish all of your preferences such as time zone, daylight savings flag, etc. Reload all your waypoints and saved routes from your backup. I do hope you have a backup. WAAS capable receivers will have to re-establish the WAAS almanac as well.

See link. Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post

Coggins, thank you! The "super master reset" seems to have worked, at least for now.

You're welcome, keep us posted.

Share this post


Link to post

Coggins, thank you! The "super master reset" seems to have worked, at least for now.

You're welcome, keep us posted.

Coggins,

 

2nd December, and my unit is still holding the correct date, so it looks like the problem is effectively fixed. If the date goes out of whack again, I will try the super-master reset again, and hope for the best.

 

On the downside, I e-mailed Garmin tech support and the local reseller to let them know of the fix - but neither has seen fit to even reply!

Share this post


Link to post

dadgum!!!! 10 December, and the date on my eTrex Vista has gone haywire again! Oh well, the "super master reset" should fix it again, but it means I have lost my weekend's track-log data AGAIN!

 

Are any other eTrex Vista users experiencing this problem? I am still not getting any sort of response whatsoever from Garmin or their local resellers about a permanent fix for this recurring problem.

Edited by julianh

Share this post


Link to post

My first GPSr was a Vista and I never had the problem you are experiencing . . .

Share this post


Link to post

dadgum!!!! 10 December, and the date on my eTrex Vista has gone haywire again! Oh well, the "super master reset" should fix it again, but it means I have lost my weekend's track-log data AGAIN!

 

Are any other eTrex Vista users experiencing this problem? I am still not getting any sort of response whatsoever from Garmin or their local resellers about a permanent fix for this recurring problem.

 

Maybe they had a bad batch, it happens. Check what version unit software that is in the GPSr and use the webupdater to upgrade it if you have an older version than eTrex Vista Ver. 3.70 as of Jun 12, 2006. If that fails I would check with the local reseller about exchanging it for maybe a newer version such as a Vista HCx.

Share this post


Link to post

 

Maybe they had a bad batch, it happens. Check what version unit software that is in the GPSr and use the webupdater to upgrade it if you have an older version than eTrex Vista Ver. 3.70 as of Jun 12, 2006. If that fails I would check with the local reseller about exchanging it for maybe a newer version such as a Vista HCx.

 

Yes, I am definitely running ver 3.70 - that was the first thing I thought of, with the FIRST faulty unit.

 

Yes, I have contacted the local reseller - they are being good enough about the whole thing, but so far, neither they nor Garmin have offered me a permanent fix.

Share this post


Link to post

Well, I am having the same problem with my Vista. today, it read 26-Sep-25. Not sure if that is 1925 or 2025, and the time was wrong too. Yet, otherwise the unit works fine. I have been using the latest software (ver 3.70) for quite a while.

 

I did the master reset, and like you, if fixed nothing. Then I did the "super master reset" and now my date and time are fine! I'll keep my eye on it to see if/when the time and date get all messed up. Should be interesting...

Share this post


Link to post

This is a known problem on the old Vistas. Garmin knows about it and can provide a patch that 'fixes' it.

 

https://sourceforge.net/mailarchive/forum.p...e=gpsbabel-misc

 

I have a version of GPSBabel in the oven that detects this time travel and tries to beat the unit with a current date. The tester reported success, though I'm not at all sure that I want GPSBabel to be in the firmware bug fixing business....

Share this post


Link to post

Well, my Vista got buggered again. Still shows correct time, but I have the date as November 66. I think I'll soon be getting the Vista HCX, so I'm not going to worry about this too much.

Share this post


Link to post

This is a known problem on the old Vistas. Garmin knows about it and can provide a patch that 'fixes' it.

 

https://sourceforge.net/mailarchive/forum.p...e=gpsbabel-misc

 

I have a version of GPSBabel in the oven that detects this time travel and tries to beat the unit with a current date. The tester reported success, though I'm not at all sure that I want GPSBabel to be in the firmware bug fixing business....

I have had some feedback from the importer and the local reseller: The Gamin "fix" is only temporary - it's a piece of software that just overwrites the incorrect time and date with the current time and date. However, it won't prevent the date from going haywire again in the future. They say Garmin is aware of the issue with the old Vistas, but there is no permanent fix. I guess it must be a hardware issue, and / or requires some signficant reprogramming which they are not prepared to undertake for an older unit (even though I bought mine brand new from an authorised Garmin reseller only a couple of months ago).

 

I guess I will have to keep an eye on the date, and periodically do a "super master reset" whenever the date goes screwy (together with the loss of data that that entails). :laughing:

Share this post


Link to post

I decided to not go through with that in GPSBabel. I really don't want to try to fix Garmin's firmware problems. They need to get their device to not report dates that are decades in the future.

 

Next time you see a Garmin user sneering at Magellan's poor timekeeping accuracy, refer to this thread. At least the Magellans are usally in the right decade. :-)

Share this post


Link to post

This is a known problem on the old Vistas. Garmin knows about it and can provide a patch that 'fixes' it.

 

https://sourceforge.net/mailarchive/forum.p...e=gpsbabel-misc

 

I have a version of GPSBabel in the oven that detects this time travel and tries to beat the unit with a current date. The tester reported success, though I'm not at all sure that I want GPSBabel to be in the firmware bug fixing business....

I have had some feedback from the importer and the local reseller: The Gamin "fix" is only temporary - it's a piece of software that just overwrites the incorrect time and date with the current time and date. However, it won't prevent the date from going haywire again in the future. They say Garmin is aware of the issue with the old Vistas, but there is no permanent fix. I guess it must be a hardware issue, and / or requires some significant reprogramming which they are not prepared to undertake for an older unit (even though I bought mine brand new from an authorised Garmin reseller only a couple of months ago).

 

I guess I will have to keep an eye on the date, and periodically do a "super master reset" whenever the date goes screwy (together with the loss of data that that entails). :P

The recurring date error problem was driving me crazy - and rendering the track-logs useless for my purposes. It seems Garmin is aware of the problem, but there is no permanent fix, apart from the super-master-reset whenever the date gets upset (which causes you to lose all your recorded track-logs etc). If you don't need valid date-stamped track-logs, then there is nothing really wrong with the B&W Vista - but if time-stamped and date-stamped track-logs are important - ...

 

In the end, I did a deal with the local reseller, and swapped it for a Summit HC - same basic feature set, but I now have the colour screen and the high sensitivity receiver - very nice!

Share this post


Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 1

×
×
  • Create New...