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SkierM

Garmin Dakota 20

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Hi All

 

I have been an avid Geocacher for a number of years but am currently having major issues with my Garmin Dakota 20.  All my problems are around sending Geocaches to my GPS. So in a nutshell;

 

1. I used to use Garmin Communicator - this worked fine using the "Send to GPS" button on individual caches.  This has now stopped working and I constantly get the "Communicator NOT found" message even though I have downloaded the software again, installed it and can see it in my programs.

2. I have tried using Garmin Express.  This is also downloaded and installed and my GPS is added to the program.  However, I can not undertake software updates to the GPS - program indicates update time of a minute but the program just hangs and never completes the install.  I have also tried sending caches direct from Geocaching lists direct to my GPS but again the program just hangs and never transfers the files.

3. Finally I have tried using the GPX File button.  I click on this and save the GPX file to my desktop and then click and drag into the Garmin / GPX folder on my connected GPS.  I can see the file in the GPS folder on the laptop and also when the GPS is connected to BaseCamp but when I try to find it on the Dakota 20 "Geocaches / Find a Geocache I get  the error message "No Results Found - Try Adjusting Search Parameters".

 

All the above is now beginning to become very trying and I am close to just giving up with Garmin totally.  Can anyone help me to get any of the above methods to actually work.

 

Thank you !!

 

SkierM

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Yep. This post appears almost daily in some form or another. I bet you'll find answers just scrolling down the list of recent threads, let alone performing a little search.

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4 hours ago, SkierM said:

1. I used to use Garmin Communicator - this worked fine using the "Send to GPS" button on individual caches.  This has now stopped working and I constantly get the "Communicator NOT found" message even though I have downloaded the software again, installed it and can see it in my programs.

The communicator plugin is dead. Just don't even bother. It's not Garmin's fault. The platform it's built upon (NPAPI) is insecure and browsers are deliberately blocking all plugins built on this platform.

 

4 hours ago, SkierM said:

2. I have tried using Garmin Express.  This is also downloaded and installed and my GPS is added to the program.  However, I can not undertake software updates to the GPS - program indicates update time of a minute but the program just hangs and never completes the install.  I have also tried sending caches direct from Geocaching lists direct to my GPS but again the program just hangs and never transfers the files.

Make sure you have the latest version of Garmin Express. There have been changes so that it complies with Europe's new privacy laws.

 

5 hours ago, SkierM said:

3. Finally I have tried using the GPX File button.  I click on this and save the GPX file to my desktop and then click and drag into the Garmin / GPX folder on my connected GPS.  I can see the file in the GPS folder on the laptop and also when the GPS is connected to BaseCamp but when I try to find it on the Dakota 20 "Geocaches / Find a Geocache I get  the error message "No Results Found - Try Adjusting Search Parameters".

Make sure you don't have any filters in place, or that the geocaches you are trying to find are nearby. Your Dakota might need to have a lock on the satellites first.



As a premium member, you really shouldn't be relying on loading geocaches one at a time anyway. Use Pocket Queries (http://www.geocaching.com/pocket) to bulk load caches for an area in a single file. Way easier to manage. These will download and install the same way as #3.

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Hi

Many thanks for the replies.

 

With regards to point 3.  Why can't I see the GPX files on my Dakota 20.  When the GPS is plugged in to my laptop it appears as the "G" drive with the internal SD Card showing as "H" drive.  I can see the cache information in Basecamp but when I disconnect the Dakota 20 I can not find the cache on it anywhere - it constantly comes up with the message "No Results Found - Try Adjusting Search Parameters". 

 

Does anyone know why the above is happening?

 

Cheers

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Hey, 

 

First remove your SD Card. 

Then make a master reset. 

 

To perform the master reset:

  1. Power the device off
  2. Press and hold your finger on the upper left side of the display
  3. Power the device on while still maintaining pressure on the display
  4. Release on the display when the Do you really want to erase all user data? message appears
  5. Touch Yes. 

Load your GPX files and  put it into the main GPX folder on your Garmin. 

 

Let me now if it works. 

 

Cheers 

 

 

 

Edited by L_M_58

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Hi

 

Many thanks for your help.

 

Will give this a go tomorrow evening and let you know the outcome.

 

Kind regards

 

SkierM

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Hi L_M_58

 

I have tried the route you suggested and have performed the master reset.  I dragged the GPX across to the Dakota 20 main GPX folder but when I go to "Find a GeoCache" it is still coming up with the message "No Results Found - Try Adjusting Search Parameters".  I can see the file on the internal memory of the Dakota in Basecamp;

 

image.png.7b150a24a0ba8123e23a5dd9cc150ae4.png

 

Is it the computer causing issues here with the Firewalls we have installed perhaps?  This used to be so easy to manage and now I feel like I am fighting a losing battle with Garmin.

 

Regards

 

Skier M

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1. You're sure the GPX file is in the GPX folder? You don't need basecamp open at all to do this. Just open an Explorer window and go to G:\Garmin\GPX\ (substitute G: for whatever the drive letter is). Drag the GPX file over, or better yet save it.

2. Do you have any filters set up? You might try going to the geocaching filters and selecting one that shows everything.
Nevermind this one. If the Dakota acts like the Oregon 450, filters are not permanently applied and must be selected. So assuming you're actually selecting "Find a Geocache" and not Quick Filter or one of the filters you have set up, this isn't the culprit.

3. Do the geocaches appear on the map?

4. Are the geocaches nearby to you? Most handhelds won't display geocaches in the list if they are more than 100-150 miles away. 
4a. Does your Dakota have a satellite lock (IE, does it know your location) when you are checking this? If not, go outside and let it get a lock. Then see if it will search properly.

5. Let me make sure we're on the same page. You're dropping in a GPX of a single geocache and it's the only geocache you have installed on the device? Could it be that the device thinks you've found the geocache already? Does it appear if you select the "Show Found" option?

There are two more things that you can do to help reset geocaches. While your Dakota is plugged into the computer, go to G:\Garmin\ and delete the geocache_visits.txt and geocache_logs.xml files. These files store your geocaching activity, and if you mark any geocache as found or did not find, this is where the GPS keeps note of that. The geocache_visits.txt is also your field notes that you can upload to geocaching.com to keep track of which caches you found on your day out.

You can also delete the SQL folder, or the contents within. The GPS will rebuild the database files upon next boot. Sometimes the database gets corrupted and a complete wipe will clear up any inconsistencies with the GPX files.

I've got my Oregon 450 out so I can start playing with settings that might help you. It's basically a Dakota with a larger screen.

Edited by Mineral2
  • Helpful 1

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Hi

 

Many thanks for your continued help with this - it really is appreciated.

 

So I think I am making progress with your help.  I am at the moment indeed only loading an individual cache and it is 105 miles away.  I can now see it on the map on the Dakota !  When I go into the Search for a Geocache button that still says “No Results Found - Try Adjusting Search Parameters".  However I can now see the cache in the “Show Found” button - it is possible that I have found this cache in the past and forgot to mark it as such.  In this instance would the Dakota realise that it is one that I have previously found? That would explain why it appears in the found section.   I’ll try tomorrow to load a much closer cache that I know for sure I’ve not found and see if that shows up in “Find a Geocache”

 

SkierM

Edited by SkierM
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There are at least two possibilities here: 

  1. The GPX is marked as a found geocache. This is probably not the case since you would know if you had logged it as found on the website.
  2. You accidentally marked it as found on the GPS in the past. This is where clearing the geocache_visits.txt and the geocache_logs.xml would potentially fix some of the problems, along with a fresh GPX download from the website.
  3. You accidentally marked it as found while viewing the cache in Basecamp.

In any of these cases, I would recommend deleting the GPX file from your device (and the SD card if it's there too), make sure you empty the trash/recycle bin. Also delete the geocache_visits.txt and geocache_logs.xml files. And delete the SQL folder. 

Then put a fresh GPX file back on your device.

-------------------
But... if this is only a problem with one cache listing, you can also just select it from the "Show Finds" list and log it as Unattempted, and it should show up again in the regular list of caches.

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Hi

 

I’m finally there.  I’ve managed to save a GPX file to my Dakota which I can see and use to go Geocaching.

 

I’m going to set up a new laptop over the next few days with Garmin Express on it and start to explore using that to select multiple caches and send them to the GPS.  At least I know I have the GPX file method working now as a backup.

 

Once again thank you for all your help with this - it has been invaluable.

 

Regards

 

SkierM

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You might also want to look into Pocket Queries (PQs).  This would enable you to transfer multiple caches, up to 1000, in one go.  Once PQs have been run and downloaded, then you'd just have to unzip the file before transferring them to your GPSr - in a process that's the same as you used to transfer the single cache.

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Hi

 

Quick update for you - Garmin Express installed and working great in conjunction with the Geocaching.com website.

 

One question if I may, once I have completed a days caching and have marked the caches as found on my Dakota 20 how do I get the GPS to automatically the Geocaching website to show the caches I have found with the smiley face symbol and any comments I have made.  Are such updates possible?

 

Regards

 

SkierM

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There is no automatic updating of the website from the GPS. But there is a file on the GPS called "geocache_visits.txt" You can upload this file to the Drafts area of the website and then use the draft logs (formerly called field notes) to log your finds, DNFs, etc.

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