No More Floppy Drives For This Agilent Scope


When [kiwih] picked up an Agilent 54621A scope, he was amused that it had a floppy disk. At one time, it was high-tech to make use of a disk to switch scope information to your pc. In the present day, not a lot. Nevertheless, on the again was a serial port. Absolutely it was doable to learn information from there. It’s, and what outcomes is a pleasant walkthrough of discovering the port’s information and interfacing with it utilizing Python.

Usually, you’d use the included BenchLinkXL software program to seize information from the port, however that software program is so previous it will not run beneath Home windows 10 or Wine. Looking didn’t flip up a lot on the serial port, however it did find a handbook for the same Agilent scope. That handbook wasn’t too useful because it assumed you had been connecting through a LAN or USB. Nevertheless, it did make reference to an older mannequin that was additionally comparable and that was the important thing to discovering a handbook that did clarify the serial port protocol.

The command set appears to be like suspiciously like SCPI — Customary Instructions for Programmable Devices — which is a layer on prime of the GPIB protocol. Many scopes converse that language, in order that’s not stunning. That additionally means in case you are within the temper to speak with an SCPI scope, you may discover the code helpful, even should you don’t use a serial port or have this actual Agilent mannequin.

SCPI has quite a lot of makes use of. For instance, attempt speaking to your scope. A budget Rigol and comparable scopes often have SCPI and you’ll management and browse them utilizing the identical type of strategies.

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