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 Post subject: Re: Wingridds beta 1.2
PostPosted: Fri Nov 10, 2006 4:26 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 3:42 am
Posts: 51
Location: In a tent in no mans land!
Hello:

I've recently downloaded this program (WINGRIDS) and it appears to be a great program! However, it seems that when I download the data, it takes forever to load (I run a pentium 4 with windows XP), so it should not take too long to get I would think. Anyway, I ran it yesterday morning, so I could get the latest on this huge storm coming our way. I started at 8 am, and by noon it was still downloading, and I could not get any maps done. Is there some way to get the data quicker so that I can view some charts?

And thanks Jeff for a wonderful piece of work!

Randy - a new and proud user!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Nov 10, 2006 11:04 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 11:42 pm
Posts: 298
Randy,

Welcome!!! I'm glad you find WINGRIDDS useful. As for your problem, specificly, what model/GRIB files are you trying to download, what server are you using & what is your internet connection speed? If you are trying to download a high-res NAM 20km grid with a 3 hour time step & you have a dial-up model, yes, it will take a very long time. Also, the NWS FTP servers transfer rates are slower than the NCEP's.

Regretfully, as models have been getting higher in resolution (more grid points), NCEP has abandonded the lower resolutions grids which would make the downloads quicker also, even though NCEP has gone to GRIB2 with file compression to supposedly make the file sizes smaller to ease download times, they are packing more model layers and more parameters into the file which winds up making the file size even larger!?!?!

Have you ever thought about a NOAAPort satellite receive system? ;-) All the GRIB info the NWS uses operationally are there & prices for the equipment have come way down.

Good luck,
Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: WINGRIDDS
PostPosted: Fri Nov 10, 2006 7:40 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 3:42 am
Posts: 51
Location: In a tent in no mans land!
Hi Jeff:

Thanks for your warm welcome!

I'm trying to download the GFS, NAM, and EC models from the NWSTG servers. I'm usually trying to get the time hour step which is fastest to download and I'm using high speed cable to download. I guess the time hour step thing confuses me some, as I am not sure which file(s) to grab.

Is there a way to do this?

Randy


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2006 12:42 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 11:42 pm
Posts: 298
Randy,

Yeh, the NWSTG Servers are slower than the NCEP Servers...maybe even moreso when the server is being updated with new model output.

The time hour step thing confuses you??? Why...it's so easy ;-) Both the GFS & NAM create forecast files for every 3 hour time steps (0,3,6,9,12,15,18,21,24, etc.). With the selections about which time-step to download, you can select every 3 hours which gets you every GRIB file created, every 6 hours (0,6,9,12,18,24, etc.) or you can select the 12 hour time-step (0,12,24, etc.). So, obviously, if you choose the 12 hour timestep, you will download much less data than every 6 or 3 hours.

Also, there is the situation of grid resolution. The larger the grid resolution (space between the grid points), the smaller the GRIB file will be. The choices with the GFS are quite limited but the NAM has more variety.

Good luck & I hope this helps.
Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: Data files
PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 5:46 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 3:42 am
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Location: In a tent in no mans land!
Hi Jeff:

Well, I'm beginning to see how this all works, and in the process, ran into another problem. I did not realize that the data files are saved onto my hard drive, and those files are huge!! :o

This will be a problem since my hard drive does not have much free space on it. Then, I still can't view any charts because every time I select a chart to display following a data download and process, it just seems to freeze up. Perhaps this is not the program I thought it was :(

Any takers?

Randy


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 11:16 am 
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Posts: 298
>Then, I still can't view any charts because every time I select a chart to >display ... it just seems to freeze up. Perhaps this is not the program I >thought it was
>
>Any takers?
>
>Randy

Randy,

(tough love/rant time) ---You've really got to be kidding me. How am I (or anyone in this Forum) supposed to direct and help you when you are not being specific in explaining what it is you are wanting to do (specific map area for viewing, for example), what GRIB files you are downloading (file names) or what specific operations you are doing within WINGRIDDS that you may be doing wrong. None of us are sitting next to you to *see* what it is you are doing so you must *explain* what it is you are doing...in detail. Or, you can email me your detailed questions with a copy of your AWINGRIDDS.LOG file so I can *see* what it is you are doing.

Back to your regularly scheduled programing...(I feel better). Remember...the more detailed the question, the more detailed the answer :-)

Thank you for your support!!
Jeff Krob
WINGRIDDS System Developer


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 Post subject: Re: Data files
PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 3:12 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 6:38 pm
Posts: 219
Location: New Brunswick, Canada
severe storm_forecaster wrote:
Hi Jeff:

Well, I'm beginning to see how this all works, and in the process, ran into another problem. I did not realize that the data files are saved onto my hard drive, and those files are huge!! :o

This will be a problem since my hard drive does not have much free space on it. Then, I still can't view any charts because every time I select a chart to display following a data download and process, it just seems to freeze up. Perhaps this is not the program I thought it was :(

Any takers?

Randy


You won`t find an easier application to use than wingridds. It does all the hard work for you, compared to GrADS or Gempak. What did you think wingridds was?

I was a little confused at first, but try reading the docs. It makes sense, and really Jeff offers this application for free :wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 3:37 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 11:42 pm
Posts: 298
All (you too, Randy),

Randy may not know it but he stumbled across several problems with NGRB2PCG32, WINGRIDDS and, yes, the GRIB data itself.

I'll bet he was trying to process some NAM grid 211 GRIB2 files. To the novice, exzecuting NGRB2PCG32 from within WINGRIDDS, it looks like it runs fine & when you try to open the new file in WINGRIDDS, WINGRIDDS appears to freeze (it is actually stuck in a loop). However, delete the PCG file & re-run NGRB2PCG32 from a command line & you see it actually crashes mid-way through the processing.

Debugging through the code, it is actually coming across a GRIB2 message with a 0 byte length (yo, NCEP...quality control!!). It has been presuming that every GRIB message will have an actual length with actual data and it did not know how to handle this situation, so it crashed & burned. However, when you look in the GRIDDATA directory, there is a data file, but since NGRB2PCG32 was not able to complete the process, there is no inventory that WINGRIDDS looks for when opening the file. WINGRIDDS needs to be changed to alert the user when a bad data file is being opened.

Thanks for the info, Randy...

Jeff


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 Post subject: Re: the program
PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2006 11:04 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 08, 2006 3:42 am
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Location: In a tent in no mans land!
Hey all:

I guess I was abit "out of sorts" with that post and I apologize for that!!!

The files I was downloading were the GFS 12 hour step files. It took awhile to get them, then process them. Once all that was done, I'd click to view a map, and the program seemed to freeze -- it would scroll some words really fast over the top of the screen. You would almost need to see it in order to know what I mean here. The moment I hit another key, then the program was "not responding".

I was downloading from the NCEP server. Then, I tryed downloading NAM data and the same thing. I got frustrated, and said some things I did'end mean. I'm sorry Jeff.

Randy


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2006 12:46 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2004 12:57 am
Posts: 128
Location: North Carolina
Randy,

Hi, and welcome to WINGRIDDS. Hang in there man. WINGRIDDS is an awesome and powerful program. Don't under estimate this program just from a few casual meetings :wink: . Working with grib and WINGRIDDS requires a little bit of education. I would strongly suggest to you and everyone who is new to WINGRIDDS to read all the available documentation (User's Guide, the latest release notes & post on this forum). Believe me, it takes time. But, in time it will start to make sense. Please remember that WINGRIDDS is a work in progress. It is by no means complete at this time. It does have some bugs, that's why it's in Beta right now. We're all in this together to help Jeff work out the bugs and get it to a finished product.

I started working with PCGRIDDS32 (now WINGRIDDS) in the summer of 2004. Hardly a day has past sense then that I have not spent some amount of time with the program each day. Because of that time spent, I have a fairly decent understanding of how to work with this program. I am by no means an expert. I leave that to Jeff. But, I do have a pretty good handle on how work with the program. I guess it all boils down to time. Time to read, time working with the program, time to experiment. Reading is the key.

One of the things I like to do is to read the User's Guide and start nosing into all those files in WINGRIDDS that I can open with a text editor. Like ".cmd" files in the "MACROS" folder. I like to print out various macro files and then take the info in the User's Guide and parse these macros apart to see what's going. What does all this stuff in these macros mean? What does this command and that parameter do? Like I said earlier, it takes time but, in the future it will pay huge dividends.

One of the most powerful features of WINGRIDDS is it's diagnostic capabilities. For example, the following is a chart I produced using WINGRIDDS showing the 6 hour 500 MB height change using the TDIF (time difference) command.
Image

Another great feature is the ease of customizing just about everything within the program. From contour colors, map background color, map line color even the maps themselves. With WINGRIDDS the possibilities are endless!



Happy griding,

Kevin


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