Beta versions
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What is beta software?

Beta software is an updated version of an existing program designed to either fix some particular problem, or to experiment with various new features which may, or may not be in the next version of the program.  
A full release of the program will have been widely tested (through the beta process), and will contain all the files required for running the program such as data files and, where applicable, update Help files.  A beta version, by contrast, may contain just the program and some basic release notes, and none of the other files required for the program to function.

Before using any beta software, you should have a full current version of the program installed, and it should be working correctly.

This beta software:

  • requires the current, released version to be installed and working
  • is updated without notice
  • has no support available
  • has features that may not be in the next released version
  • is not guaranteed to work
  • may have time-limited functionality
  • may crash or give false results
  • requires that you read the release notes
  • .. so use at your own risk!
  • .. and please keep a working backup!

How do I use beta software?

As opposed to a full installation, beta software may just contain just an updated executable file, and will therefore need some additional steps in installing.  If you are not comfortable following steps like those listed below, please be patient and wait for the next released version.  Be sure to have the current released version installed and working before applying a beta update!

Updating a typical program - example for the MSG Data Manager

  1. Make sure you have the most recent release version of the software installed and working properly.
  2. Visit my Web site, download and save the beta of the MSG Data Manager from the page.
  3. Right-click the saved file, Properties, and click the Unblock button if one is present.
  4. This Zip file contains an updated MsgDataManager.exe program file and an updated MsgDataManager.txt "read-me" file.
  5. Locate your existing installation of the MSG Data Manager.  Most likely this will be (for an English language install):
  6. In the case of the MSG Data Manager, this folder will contain files named e.g. WaveletDLL.dll as well as the MSG Data Manager program file.
  7. Stop the MSG Data Manager and close the program down.
  8. Rename the existing executable file:
    to, for example:
  9. Copy the new MsgDataManager.exe from the Zip file you downloaded in step 1 to the folder you located in step 3.
  10. If there were more file in the beta download, copy those as well having backed up your working versions.
  11. Restart the MSG Data Manager.

For other programs the beta will typically contain just the executable and some documentation.  Take a backup of the files you intend to replace, close down the software if it is running, and copy the files from the .Zip update on top of the existing files.

Reverting to the original program

  1. Stop the MSG Data Manager and exit the program.
  2. Rename the new executable file:
    to, for example:
  3. Rename the previous executable file you renamed in step 6:
    back to:
  4. Copy any other files you backed up to the appropriate directory.
  5. Restart the MSG Data Manager.

The same general procedure is true for all my beta updates.  Please be aware of the limitations of beta software which are listed above.

What are these MD5 signatures?

They are a way you can check if you think your download might be corrupt - very unlikely, but...  Please see:

Runtime update required

If you get a message like:  Ipl.dll function iplAllocateImageFP not found (error 126)  you will need to close any of my programs which are currently running, uninstall, and update the runtime Library Bundle you have installed at the moment.  This update includes the function listed above, which will make some of my software run more quickly.

Current beta-test versions:

As I know that testing by users is far more likely to detect errors that just testing by me alone, I am making programs available here.  Please make a backup of your working version before installing these programs, and please only install them on top of a working version.  You will need a licence for the current release version of the software.

  • BUFR Viewer - V2.0.3.74 - Use Francis Breame's more recent extractor, detect AMV files containing '-MSGAMV' in the name.
    MD5 signature: E26A722675F6512C48C8495A0DC67585
  • BUFR Viewer - V2.1.1.75 - Version for newer AMV data - results need to be checked before use!  Newer Francis Breame's extractor.
    MD5 signature: D9CD4D16A10A1D9CCB712DB448E3F53C
  • FastWXtrack - V1.1.2.15 - Experimental program for faster DDE tracking and Doppler updates.  Option to force Doppler text to upper-case, add setting of radio mode, freeze updates while mode list is dropped down, layout enhancements, issue with date/time display on Win-10 Creators noted and worked-round, honour Windows themes, reduce the frequency of some displayed data (makes it easier to read the values, but Doppler and pointing still calculated as fast as possible), high-precision DDE option.
    MD5 signature: AA81A4004B45486FDCCA5B74C135ED3A
  • GeoSatSignal - V8.2.7.1191 - Support GOES-18 work, use GOES-18 for EUMETCast Browse|Latest, label GOES-17 data as "GOES-18", update Mid-Atlantic 500mb overlays for 24-hour and 36-hour versions.  
    Sources: (36 hour) (24 hour)
    MD5 signature  - CFD08B69912325033E6D4C064CA694A3
  • GRIB Viewer - V4.0.5.268 - Update for revised FIR data, faster start-up, accept FIRG GRIB data.
    MD5 signature: 61A16FFA861A0A13F506F22346DE3139
  • Ground Map - V3.0.3.161 - Support more satellites, faster start-up - just enter your existing licence without using Run as Admin.
    MD5 signature: F95BCBAD400F97F8C50293ADC29C12DE
  • HDF Viewer - V2.0.3 - Update for recent FRM changes, support MSG-Disk size (3712 x 3712) data, faster loading (enter the licence key in USER, not ADMIN mode).
    MD5 signature: C78F7AF419412A4A1EA8A2846E495780
  • HRPT Reader - V3.0.11.824 - Extend Meteor-M support - files named like: 2_HRPT_20210227_1506_MN2.dat, start Meteor-MN2-2 support files named like 2019-07-18_1429_MN22.dat, add simple .KML reader option for boundaries, correct error in "FY-3C ?" Kepler request, experimental histogram equalise in RGB|Adjust.
    MD5 signature: 7E67248C7426118D8CDBEE807B65C13
  • Map-to-GEO - V2.0.5.58 - Support PNG input interactively, support TIF input interactively, support NESDIS GOES-E and GOES-W subsets (will look for .TFW file in the same directory, but provide defaults if .TFW is not present, batch operation supported, remapping to EUMETCast GOES-E/W projections), add GOES-16 (as GOES-E) segment (typical output filename: GoesEast04I22530245.bmp), move GOES-W to 128 W, add GOES-17 (as GOES-W), support FY-2H data at 79 E, add IODC at new location: IODN (including HRV disk).
    MD5 signature: 89F77F137C9874D384988CE966D42DF7
  • Metop Manager - V3.0.5.360 - Make "display times" the default in the browser tab, make GAC Composite Image from thermal channel (option to use descending & visible, ignoring daylight threshold), add option for PyTroll users to save source files as received, clarify "Is NOAA-19 handler" checkbox (uncheck not to delete processed NOAA-19 images and enter a dummy directory not to process NOAA-19 data).
    MD5 signature: 4780D0461348F9DC865E1ED7899AC42F
  • MSG Animator - V3.1.9.318 - Support GOES-18 data replacing GOES-17, work on new format MPEF names, .MPEG recognised as well as .MPE.
    MD5 signature: CF32139A4C9083B7880F5859560639C1
  • MSG Data Manager - V3.1.23.1360 - Update reporting for IODC and RSS new MPEF names, update MPEF retention to include any mpeg files, update for Met-11 being RSS, and Met-10 being Prime. Correct Met-11/RSS file logging and save directory.
    MD5 signature: 22E9EB00A85C670CE906E744DF91E867
  • Pass Control - - Update for current satellites and frequencies, stop pass if it was started late or ends earlier than (start + duration) would predict, layout changes for DDE string, only save & restore form location, not size.
    MD5 signature: D8CB0763B64F6ED50B6664D7DD0248F8
  • SatSignal - V6.0.1.568 -  Restore some missing items from the Overlay options dialog, faster start-up (no need to Run as Admin when entering the licence key).
    MD5 signature: CC977C478D92B97D290909478ED64606
  • Sentinel2 to JPEG - V1.4.1.30 -  Right-click on image to invoke Options dialog.  Experimental features: accept two .TIF files for drag-and-drop or command-line, accept Landsat-7 data (blue file name - must end B1.TIF, green file name - must end B2.TIF, red file name - must end B3.TIF, file names must start "LE07" or be 8011 (W) x 6911 (H) images).
    MD5 signature: 765951FF1807A734D37EAA3BE002DAB4
  • SGP4 component 370 beta - V3.6.0.35 - Improved pass prediction for MEO satellites.
    MD5 signature: E24EB39A552574AFC7E05B7B2056078C
  • Solar Outage SNR (for BDADataEx and solar outage periods) - Experimental programs to record and plot SNR values from BDADataEx during the forthcoming solar outage periods.  Set the expected earliest outage start (minus 5 minutes, say) and the latest expected finish (plus 5 minutes).  Check the Device 1 box to add "1" to the SignalEx.exe command.  Add control of sampling interval, default 5 seconds.  Error message if SignalEx.exe is not found.  Accept more log file formats, including one with UNIX time after the SNR.
    The plotting program takes a filename wildcard as its parameter, choice of smoothing, display value under cursor, text and graphical display of actual maximum SNR reduction date and time, accept one predicted maximum time in the log file and display it.  Sample plots included.
    MD5 signature: 8D90FC6E601F42A3F4DA40CF5367960B
  • SweepGen - V3.8.1.40 - Allow for slow sweep up to 3600 seconds (you can edit directly in the seconds count box, you will get warning about number of steps), remove initial set of RHS-trigger, UI enhancements.
    MD5 signature: E6F87F2C20DBCFD1230AF4C2F63854F6
  • Sea-Ice & SST Viewer - V1.5.5.72 - Update for mixed DMI/NOR sea-ice data.
    MD5 signature: A1B271AD2CC2C0FECA91BEB2F6F42500
  • WXtrack - Add experimental TCP tracker output on port 8009, up to 5 clients, visible across local network, may trigger firewall request, registered version required. Ignore stale Kepler data in nasabare files, correct right-click on View|Ephemeris|Timeline, improved pass prediction for MEO satellites.
    MD5 signature: AB5CCF0CFAAE03F4D85323398EFCCE1F

If you wish, you can register for free, automatic e-mail notifications from the Watch That Page service when this page is updated.  This is convenient as you won't need to keep checking my Web site to see what new beta versions are available.  Click the button below to register for update notification.  You may need to register with WatchThatPage first.

I recommend Fred van den Bosch's software DownloadPrograms - which will help to keep an eye on the version numbers and updates for you!  Sadly this is now discontinued.  If anyone can update a copy that would be appreciated.


Copyright © David Taylor, Edinburgh   Last modified: 2023 May 10 at 15:44