CheckFox User Guide

How to work with your CheckFox, its interface and more

CHECKFOX USER INTERFACE AND OPERATIONS GUIDE 

 

We have tried to design the UI in a way that no User guide is needed but nevertheless here is an introduction.

 

Currently missing on the device are:

  1. the super simple field installation company end user mode that would allow to choose location and would provide simplified listing of the results (Good, Average, Bad, Do not install) and would switch off other menu items.

This we expect to have beginning of March2019. 

  1. Displaying summary and analysis after repetition and periodic measurements. To be released March 2019 or earlier



There are 5 documents (the links are clickable) :

 

  1. This one describing the device and operation with the device
  2. First things first. CheckFox and CheckFox dashboard prerequisites and setup
  3. How to install a SIM card into CheckFox
  4. CheckFox Dashboard web user guide
  5. Description of the Sigfox payload of CheckFox
  6. Description of the device log being logged and transferred via GSM
  7. Description of the XML dump of all the date from the dashboard.
  8. Release notes and outstanding issues for Dashboard and CheckFox Device
  9. Sigfox measurement methodology and protocol using CheckFox




Major updates in this document:

12 May 2018 

added description and explanation of the measurement results

added abbreviations used in Dashboard for place and type of measurement

added recommended measurement methodology

16 May 2018

Added IMEI number in the Service menu-About

23 May

Added new link to dashboard export documentation

24 May

Updated payload and device log description

29 May

Added “Battery low” warning at welcome screen (if battery voltage is under 3.7V)

Added GSM signal strength indication (Service menu / Device status)

30 May

Added description how to add payload for Downlink testing

8 July

Measurement methodology and protocol separated into new document



For all the support please go to https://ask.simplehw.eu/

 

First time use

Please follow step-by-step instructions in https://ask.simplehw.eu/knowledge-bases/2/articles/1521-first-things-first-checkfox-and-checkfox-dashboard-prerequisites-and-setup

Power management

Switch  the device on by pressing the power button. This is Full operational mode. You completely switch off the device by long pressing of the power button. 

 

By short pressing of the power button when in Full operational mode you go to power saving Standby mode. The backlighting of the display is switched off, the GSM connection and the GPS is in power saving mode. You switch the device back into Full operation mode by short pressing of the power button. It takes 1 sec to get into Full operational mode.

 

The device automatically switches into Power saving mode after 5 mins of inactivity and switches completely off after 6 hours. Those times can be changed in Main-Service menu-Settings.

 

There is “Battery low” warning at welcome screen (if battery voltage is under 3.7V)

 

Currently we don't have  precise data how long the device lasts in different modes. Calculation estimate is over ten days in standby and over 400 measurements in full power with backlit display.

GSM

We are using GSM to upload additional information during measurement and to download additional information from the Check Dashboard. We are using it also to upload logs after periodic measurements and to sync measurements where no Sigfox nor/or GSM was available.

Establishing GSM connectivity takes 6 secs from Cold start. If you plan to do multiple  measurements switch to Standby mode instead of total switch off.

GSM signal strength indication is under Service menu / Device status

GPS

The GPS fix outdoors with open sky takes 32 to 40 secs. It can take longer between high rise buildings or indoors. Again, if you do multiple  measurements, you can go to Standby mode, where the transition to Full power mode is shorter.

It also shows and records velocity as it has influence on the measurement.

 

The best practice is to do Outside Reference measurement with GPS fix before doing any Indoor measurements.

You can get quicker GPS fix if you lay or hold the device flat, display up.  

Accelerometer

We are recording orientation and shaking of the device during measurement.

Charging

Please use regular USB Type-C charger (It is not part of the shipment). The correct voltage is between 3,6V and 4,2V. 

There is “Battery low” warning at welcome screen (if battery voltage is under 3.7V

  

Menu

MAIN MENU

Please choose location of the measurement 

This is logged in Byte3 of the payload and also in the device log

You can also see the type of location by abbreviation in the Dashboard.

Outdoor above 1.3 meter  (4.3feet) - OUT

This is a measurement you do on rooftops, out of window, on trees etc.

In general results should be better than coverage prediction.

Or you can use it as non reference outdoor if you cannot stick to the condition of distance from obstacles.

Outdoor at 1.3 meter (4.3feet)  Reference - REF

This is a reference measurement at 1.3m above ground. You also must be at least 1m (3.3 feet)  from any obstacle.

The results should match coverage prediction.

Outdoor Ground level - GND

This is a signal measured at ground. Suitable before measuring any under earth installations (parking meters, recycling bins, water shafts etc.)

Indoor - IND

This is a signal inside a house in a room with non-metallic windows at ground level. Attenuation is around 20dB and the coverage should match -20dB prediction. You can also use for behind shield measuring while driving.

Deep indoor - DIN

This is a signal at ground level inside a house behind metallic windows or in a room without windows or shallow below ground.

Attenuation is 30dB and coverage should match -30dB prediction.

SERVICE MENU

Goes into Service menu

MEASUREMENT MENU

Here you decide whether this is survey or final destination and how many uplinks you want to test.

The type of measurement is recorded both in Byte3 of the payload and in the device log.

You can also see the type of measurement by abbreviation in the Dashboard.

 

Survey 1 - S1

Immediately sends one message, uploads the conditions via GSM and shows the results.

Gives on display TAP ID, RSSI, SNR, Reps

Survey 6 - S6

Immediately sends six messages, uploads the conditions via GSM and shows the results.

Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard.

Final 6 - F6

Records the location as final (directly by the pipe/valve, under the sink, by the wall) and sends six messages, uploads the conditions via GSM and shows the results.

The difference between Survey and Final is only in the tag.

Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard.

Final 6 delay - D6

For locations behind metallic doors, or when you need to lower CheckFox with a rope, the measurement is delayed by 30 sec. Sends six messages, uploads the conditions via GSM and shows the results. 

Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard.

Periodic - P

Gets you in Periodic measurement menu

Downlink - DL

Sends an uplink with downlink request and waits between 20 and 45 secs. Shows result and uploads the conditions via GSM. The module does not provide neither RSSI nor SNR. In the future we could read, record and show the OOB ACK of the downlink with the RSSI.

 

The budgetlink for uplink and downlink are the same so the results should be similar to uplinks.

 

PERIODIC MENU

Here you can select which kind of periodic measurement you want to do. It is also recorded in Byte3 of the payload and of the device log. The periodic measurement lasts until you interrupt it. 

 

Each minute with GPS - P1G

Suitable for measuring while driving. The whole log gets uploaded after the finish of the measurement. Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard.

Each 10 minutes with GPS - P0G

Suitable for measuring while driving. The whole log gets uploaded after the finish of the measurement. Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard. 

Each 60 minutes with GPS - P0G

Suitable for measuring while driving. The whole log gets uploaded after the finish of the measurement. Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard. 

Each 10 minutes without GPS -P0N

Suitable for stationery/indoor installations where you want to be sure how the quality of signal evolves in time. Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard.

Each hour without GPS -PHN

Suitable for stationery/indoor installations where you want to be sure how the quality of signal evolves in long periods of time. Gives on display summary of all the measurements (TBD) and details in the dashboard.

Measurement display

Single repetition measurement

The data from the first basestation is displayed immediately, others follow in a few seconds.

The results can be paged by up and down arrow.

 

ID of the basestation 

(location is not public information, but SOs can see it in the Dashboard)

 

RSSI

This is the strength of the signal (how loud you hear the shout)

Values can be be between 90 and 142. The lower the number, the stronger the base station hears the message and it is better.

The best repetition is taken into account.

 

SNR

This is the difference between the shout and noise in the room. The higher, the better the shout can be distinguished from the general chatter noise level in the room and the better it can be understood.

Values can be between 0 and 70.

The best repetition is taken into account.

 

Repetitions

How many times you were understood from your 3 shouts. The higher number, the higher probability the message will be delivered.

 

In case we don't get any data we try to repeat the backend query ten times.

In case there is no Sigfox coverage at the location, we show it on the display and we record it the log.

 

Summary and analysis is in the Dashboard



6 repetition and periodic measurements series (TBD)

All the details are in the Dashboard

Summary applies to all the messages in the series (either 6 in the repetitive measurement or x in the periodic measurement)

Page 1 all messages

Example:

Delivered 5/6 msg.

Distance 3 km-211 km

Total unique BTS 32

BTS all the msg. 0

 

Delivered 

The most important data, how many messages got delivered.

Distance 

Sigfox operators can see distance to closest and farthest base station in km

Total unique BTS

How many unique base stations saw the series. 

BTS all the msg

How many basestions saw all the sent messages. 

It should be 2 or more for reliable redundant reception.

If one or more messages got lost, 0 is the result.

Page 2 per message

Example:

BTS/Rep/2SNR/2RSSI

Min 2/4/5/120

Max 20/30/50/130

Avg 10/14/25/125

 

In this matrix  we look at the characteristics of the series. We analyze all the messages in the series and look at worst and best performing message. We average across all the messages.

If the environment is stable, the spread should be low. In case of periodic interference the spread will be large.

 

The first number gives the number of base stations processing the message, the second the total number of repetitions (total redundancy), the third takes SNR of the second best basestation (SNR cannot be averaged as the results would be skewed by far-away basestations, 2nd best gives most consistent results and we use it in Dashboard as well), the fourth second best RSSI.

SERVICE MENU

 

Settings

Here you can find various settings

 

Beeper ON/OFF

Backlight intensity

Automatic standby timeout

Automatic power off timeout (TBD)

GSM APN server

Checkfox data server URL (please don’t touch it unless asked)

About

Static info about the device

 

ID of the device

original PAC 

if you have CheckFox with any kind of subscription and you want to transfer it, don’t use this PAC but the PAC at device provided by online CheckFox dashboard

Frequency band

Firmware version

IMEI number

Device status

Dynamic info about the device

 

Battery & charging status 

Internal module temperature

Internal log memory space

GSM operator and connection type (GSM access technology selected)

GSM signal strength

Live GPS

Real Time GPS data

Log upload

Upload of the log in case the device was out of GSM network reach.

Firmware update

Update to latest version of firmware.

 

Sigfox measurement methodology and protocol using CheckFox