From time to time, device manufacturers release new versions of the software which runs on your tracking device tracker (called firmware) to fix bugs or add new features.


It is important that you keep your RockAIR's firmware up to date to ensure that you get the most out of your device. TracPlus will notify you via email if we determine that your firmware is out of date and needs updating. If you receive such a notification email, you should endeavor to upgrade your firmware as soon as practical.


The upgrade process is straightforward but can take some time. If the upgrade is interrupted or fails, there is a chance that the device stops working and may need to be returned to TracPlus or the manufacturer. As such, upgrades should be done when not under significant operational time pressure.


Before you start, you should ensure that the RockAIR (and the smartphone if you are using one) should be at a minimum of 40% battery. This is to avoid the firmware update failing partway through the process and "bricking" the RockAIR.


The latest firmware version for a RockAIR is 3.3.16 (please find the release notes at the end of this article).


How to update the firmware on a RockAIR:


There are three alternative methods that you can use to update the firmware on your RockAIR.


Option 1: Wireless Update with iOS device on TracPlus Connect.


Updating via a smartphone does not require the RockAIR to be removed from the aircraft. Ensure your smartphone has Internet access via Wifi or Mobile Data, and that Bluetooth is turned on when updating.


  1. Download and install the TracPlus Connect app from the app store.

  2. Connect to your RockAIR device via Bluetooth. If this is your first time connecting to the RockAIR you will require the unlock pin 1 2 3 4.

  3. Select Firmware Update in the My Device menu.

  4. Select Update in the top right corner.


If there is a firmware update available, the RockAIR will start downloading it through your phone's internet connection. This may take up to 15 minutes to complete. During this time, your smartphone must remain turned on and near the RockAIR with the TP Connect app running.


Once the download is completed, the RockAIR will restart and begin installing the new firmware. This will take several minutes. Once the upgrade is complete, the device will restart itself.


Option 2: Using a PC and USB cable


You can also update the firmware on your RockAIR by connecting it to a laptop or desktop computer with a USB cable:


  1. On the RockAIR, press and hold the yellow Monitor and blue Mark buttons. All six LEDs will turn on.

  2. Press the blue Mark button once. The yellow LEDs will flash in a distinctive inner/outer pattern.

  3. Connect the RockAIR to your PC using a USB cable. The RockAIR will appear as a
    mounted drive.

  4. Download the two files linked at the end of this article to your desktop computer:

  5. Copy the both files onto the mounted drive.

  6. To disconnect, eject the mounted drive, and disconnect the USB cable.

  7. Both the power and Bluetooth LEDs will flash to indicate the firmware is being updated.

  8. All six LEDs will then flash as the device restarts with the new firmware.

  9. Restart the device for normal use.


IMPORTANT NOTE: If the blue LED flashes after the upgrade, the RockAIR has entered a self-test mode and will require a hard reset to continue operation. To do a hard reset, press and hold the green button until all six LED's flash.


Option 3: Using a PC and an SD Card Reader


You can also update the firmware on your RockAIR by removing the SD card from it, and connecting to to a laptop or desktop computer with a SD Card Reader:


  1. Ensure the RockAIR is turned off.

  2. Remove the flexible silicon sleeve from the front of the RockAIR.

  3. Remove the SD card from the slot next to the green button by pressing the SD card in slightly. Note the orientation of the card as you remove it.

  4. Insert the SD card into a compatible SD Card reader connected to your desktop computer. The SD Card will appear as a mounted drive.

  5. Download the two files linked at the end of this article to your desktop computer.

  6. Copy the both files onto the mounted drive.

  7. To disconnect, eject the mounted drive, and remove the SD card from the SD Card reader.

  8. Reinsert the SD card reader into the RockAIR in the same orientation as you removed it.

  9. Replace the flexible silicon sleeve onto the front of the RockAIR.

  10. Power on the RockAIR.

  11. Both the power and Bluetooth LEDs will flash to indicate the firmware is being updated.

  12. All six LEDs will then flash as the device restarts with the new firmware.

  13. Restart the device for normal use.


IMPORTANT NOTE: If the blue LED flashes after the upgrade, the RockAIR has entered a self-test mode, and will require a hard reset to continue operation. To do a hard reset, press and hold the green button until all six LED's flash.


Troubleshooting


After upgrading, the tracker’s settings should be retained.  However, if your RockAIR does not operate as expected after updating the firmware, please contact TracPlus.


NOTE: If you have updated the firmware inside, take the device outside to ensure that a GPS fix is obtained, this so that it can then shutdown correctly. If this is not done after an update, the device may take a while to shutdown.


You may need to retry a firmware update attempt or try an alternative method if the firmware version does not change after attempting an update. If you continue to have difficulties, you should contact TracPlus.


Our support team can be contacted via Online Chat, by emailing support@tracplus.com or by calling +64 (3) 477 8656.


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3.3.16 Release Notes


AMS - "open AMS session + shutdown" behavioral upgrade (customer facing):


If an attempt to shutdown the RockAIR (i.e. either by removing power under the "Unlimited + Activate" External Power Mode or by pressing the green button for three seconds under the "Limited" or "Unlimited" External Power Mode), meanwhile an AMS session is open, the RockAIR will:

  • Provide auditory feedback (i.e. intermittent beeping)
  • Prevent shutdown until the AMS session is closed (i.e. pressing and holding the yellow button for 3 seconds)

This will help reduce the number of false Overdue alerts by reminding the operator to close the AMS session at the end of the mission.


Watchdog (non-customer facing):


A watchdog over the main CPU has been implemented to enhance its reliability.


Improved Log capture (non-customer facing):


The RockAIR Log system has been improved to capture more details enabling enhanced troubleshooting.



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3.3.12 Release Notes


SOG Monitoring (GPS errors):


These features depend upon SOG monitoring in order to adjust their state to correspond to being above/below a particular speed threshold:


• Fixed wing Taxi ing/Takeoffs/Landings

• Airborne vertical speed alerts

• Hover/Flight mode

• Auto Deactivation


Invalid GPS data over prolonged periods caused speed to be interpreted as zero leading to possible erroneous changes of state. State changes now occur only when supported by prolonged valid GPS data.


GPRS Log Upload:


Corrected an issue where some log files uploaded to Rock 7 via GPRS were corrupted (since V3.1.0).


Tracking Failures:


Corrected some conditions that can occasionally lead to automatic transmissions stopping. Some example cases:


• Deactivation/activation with, in particular, the activity+SOG feature enabled and burst mode fix rate set toward the faster end of its spectrum.

• Location refresh requests from the Connect App every 10 seconds whilst the tracker unable to obtain a GPS position fix.



SD card Insertion/Removal:


Improved reliability when experiencing frequent Insertion/removal of the SD card (i.e. that caused by mechanical vibration).



GPS failure at Deactivation:


Corrected a condition where particular configurations could cause a GPS fix to fail to complete, leading to failure of any further transmissions until the tracker is reset. The failure can happen when:-



GPRS with limited-power mode:


Corrected an issue where if a tracker was configured for limited power, and allowed to hibernate in GPRS mode so that GPRS communication was lost, it was not re-established when the tracker awoke. If awaking for a GPRS transmission then this would fail although if the tracker remained awake then the communication would eventually be restored.



Power Loss Deactivation with Power Loss Alert:


Corrected an issue where a simultaneous power loss deactivation and power loss alert (when configured) could cause a tracker to become unresponsive.

(Note: Only Griffin E boards are vulnerable to this issue)



Iridium/GPRS Contention:


Corrected an issue where transmissions became inhibited until a tracker reset, experienced in the following scenario:


• GPRS set as default transmit carrier.

• Deactivation immediately after an activation (mail check queued).

• Absence of Iridium network (mail check continuously retried)

• Re activation before deactivation is complete (contention between GPRS re initialisation and iridium transmit).


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