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Author Topic: OBTAINING GFS DATA FROM CHRIS MC MAHON FOR USE IN WXSIM SOFTWARE.  (Read 312 times)

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Offline iapennell

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Hello.  My name is Ian and I live near Alston in Cumbria in the far North of England.  I have been  keen observer of the weather since childhood and have records going back 35 years.  I have recently purchased the WXSIM weather forecasting software (Professional Mode, Enhanced Customisation) and I am told that I can get the prerequisite GFS data files needed to make proper forecasts for my location using live data from Chris Mc Mahon.

I have the software on my personal computer, but unfortunately it does not have Internet (I am using my father's computer to get onto the internet). How do I go about procuring the pre-requisite data onto my pen-drive to get the data onto my computer? 

Assistance in this matter would be much appreciated.

 

Offline broadstairs

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Re: OBTAINING GFS DATA FROM CHRIS MC MAHON FOR USE IN WXSIM SOFTWARE.
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2017, 07:00:45 AM »
This is tricky because the program (wxsimate) needed to obtain the data for forecasting also normally obtains data from your weather station files which I presume are on your PC. The program would need to gather new data each time you run a forecast and it's not just GFS it collects. I guess you could run wxsimate on your fathers PC and set it to create the files on the pen drive, then run it on your PC to gather data from your weather station. GFS data is updated 4 times per day at 00,06,12 and 18 hours but the other data it collects may differ in update times. Is there no way to network your two PCs together? Right now I dont have access to my running wxsim or wxsimate to be more specific.

Stuart

Offline iapennell

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Re: OBTAINING GFS DATA FROM CHRIS MC MAHON FOR USE IN WXSIM SOFTWARE.
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2017, 12:21:55 PM »
I have contacted Chris Mc Mahon and he suggests having WXSIMATE on my fathers' computer to download the files required and I have also tried setting up WXSIM and WXSIMATE on my father's Computer.  Unfortunately, when I try putting in the Customisation and Upgrade Codes nothing happens, the whole thing reverts to Atlanta (USA).  WXSIMATE does download files but when I transfer these to WXSIM on my Computer, it does not fill in the regional data for weather stations just upwind of the UK, nor does it fill in data for upper air.  It does put stuff in the Interrupt Planner, but it is not remotely like what is predicted for the UK.

This suggests to me that WXSIM and WXSIMATE are downloading data appropriate to Atlanta in the USA, not for the North Pennines. The forecast was suggesting several days with light easterly winds and basically settled weather whereas most predictions I have seen over the last 48 hours are for deep depression (ex-hurricane Orphir) to push into the western approaches to bring strong winds and rain for northern England, albeit with mild temperatures with winds being south/south-westerly.

As to how to get around this problem, I could try and get Internet re-attached to my Computer. This is going to be a bit of a faff as I have Windows 7 and I will be bombarded with up-grade adverts and there is the threat of more potent viruses that Windows 7 might not cope with (one reason I wish my computer to remain disconnected from the Internet)! I could get round this by investing in some strong anti-virus software before connecting to the Internet, connecting to the Internet could be a job in itself since I am not so tech-savvy!

It seems to me that I cannot just copy the Custom and Upgrade Codes into WXSIM and WXSIMATE on my father's Computer because the software is write-protected (Copyright restrictions??), so in order to do this I assume this means that I might need to contact Mr Thomas Ehrensperger to buy the codes to get my home Customisations installed on WXSIM and WXSIMATE on my father's Computer. There is, of course,  the added matter as to whether my father wants to have all my weather-forecasting software on his Computer!

Is there a means of putting in the pre-requisite data manually having looked at surface and upper-air weather charts.  I know that there's this wdata.txt and a readydat.txt file but I would need to ascertain the codes of surrounding weather stations, though some of the codes- used for cloud cover, wind direction, wind-speed, weather-types I could probably find out so it is all put in the correct formats.

I have WXSIM connected to my Automatic Weather Station so no problems there.  I have managed to get that connected just fine.

I would just like to be able to get WXSIM up-and-running on my computer, and be able to use it to do proper forecasts using real data.  I can (of course) use websites like www.weathercharts.org which has model  ensemble predictions for surface temperature, pressure and wind changes for the surface and at the 500 mb level.  I can then use this to fill in expected changes to wind speeds, direction and atmospheric pressure on the Interrupt Planner and put in data on upper winds and the temperature/humidity profile at the start of a Forecast Run.  The little Regional Advection feature also allows you to type in data manually for various Sites up-wind and (of course) getting current conditions (or those at subsequent Advection Propmts) for such locations is not too difficult.  I can type predicted weather for say, Belfast (a common up-wind location) into AccuWeather and that will give me a good idea of what to put in the Advection Prompts that come up in a forecast Run in WXSIM.

Despite these few issues, I have to say that WXSIM is a great little piece of Software for predicting various interesting What-If Scenarios like (for instance) ten days of persistent 20 mph easterly winds originating over northern Russia in Winter, you can find out how cold it is likely to get using the Default Advection settings with the weak anticyclonic  curvature option (representing strong high-pressure over northern Scandinavia). Another example I have experimented with is having ten days with clear skies and high-pressure in summer, which with realistic starting conditions and light westerly winds (caused by an Azores High extending north) produces some hot days but nothing over 30C:  This agrees with the (rare) experiences of such summer anticyclones for where I live in the North Pennines.  It does produce realistic values of temperature, winds and rainfall, suggesting rainfall and possible thunderstorms when the atmosphere is convectively unstable (though you have to put your own precipitation amounts in the Interrupt Planner and if it suggests showers and thunderstorms on the first run you can put the amounts- going by the descriptions- into the Interrupt Planner on a second Forecast Run).  The programme even suggests when fog and stratus are likely to occur- rather common in the North Pennines at this time of the year! 

That said, it would be good to be able to use the software fully for the tasks for which it was originally designed!

Ian Pennell 
« Last Edit: October 14, 2017, 12:45:43 PM by iapennell »

Offline broadstairs

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Re: OBTAINING GFS DATA FROM CHRIS MC MAHON FOR USE IN WXSIM SOFTWARE.
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2017, 05:00:09 PM »
Ian I am just a little puzzled as to the issue you have with needing to use your fathers PC for wxsimate, especially as you need the download for every forecast for maximum accuracy. I am assuming your PCs are relatively close together (at least in the same property). Can they not be networked together in some way? This would allow the s./w to be on your PC and connect to the net to obtain the required data.

Stuart

Offline iapennell

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Re: OBTAINING GFS DATA FROM CHRIS MC MAHON FOR USE IN WXSIM SOFTWARE.
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2017, 09:27:42 PM »
@ Stuart,  Hello, it is good to make contact. I live at the other end of the country (England) to you as my home (and Weather Station) is in the North Pennines close to the Cumbria /Northumberland border.

Clearly I need really to get into the 21st Century and get my Computer connected to the Internet, especially since so much of what we do (including me typing this message - on my Android) is dependent on it. It'll be a bit of a faff to get my Computer connected up but once it's done I would be sorted.

Yes, my Computer and my father's Computer are about 10 metres apart- it's just down the corridor from my room.  Just out of curiosity, I mention that my Android phone is connected to the Internet via our home Wi-Fi, would it be possible to connect my Computer to my phone and download the data files that way? Just a thought!


I have no problem with data from my Weather Station which is attached to my Computer, by the way.

Ian Pennell

Offline gdumbleton

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Re: OBTAINING GFS DATA FROM CHRIS MC MAHON FOR USE IN WXSIM SOFTWARE.
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2017, 03:59:03 AM »
Hello,

This seems to me to be an odd problem, that is not really a problem.  Lets look at the what we know.

1. You have a computer that has Wxsim software on it that is not connect to the interenet.
2. You have your dads computer that is down the hall from  you (about 10 Metres)
3. You have Wifi in the dwelling because you said that your android phone is connected to the internet
4. I am assuming that you have no network cable to your room so that you can plug it into the network port of your computer.
5. I am assuming by what you said that your computer does not have WiFi capability.

Conclusion,
Why don't you buy a USB to Wifi adapter for your computer. Then connect it to the WiFi in the house. I am sure that you have the WiFi passcode as you have it on your phone.

To me, from what you said, with the purchase of a USB to WiFi adapter you would have what you need, rather that trying to get an unconventional work arounds that are not sound.

http://www.techadvisor.co.uk/test-centre/network-wifi/best-80211ac-usb-wi-fi-adaptors-2015-uk-3516879/

Gary
« Last Edit: October 15, 2017, 04:00:59 AM by gdumbleton »
Cheers,

Gary W Dumbleton

Offline broadstairs

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Re: OBTAINING GFS DATA FROM CHRIS MC MAHON FOR USE IN WXSIM SOFTWARE.
« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2017, 07:34:01 AM »
Ian I do believe Gary's suggestion would be the easiest way to resolve all this, USB wi-fi adapters are quite cheap and easy to set up then you have all the access you need on your PC.

Stuart