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Overview of PageGate TAP2ASCII Interface Video Tutorial

Overview of PageGate TAP2ASCII Interface


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Overview of PageGate TAP2ASCII Interface Transcript for Video:
Welcome to the video tutorial on how to configure PageGate’s TAP2ASCII module. In this tutorial, we’ll be going over how to configure the TAP2ASCII module to receive TAP formatted messages by serial or modem.

TAP2ASCII is a companion module for GetTAP interface and unlocks the ability to monitor additional serial/RS232 ports or modems, up to as many as you need. Messages received by this module are output to a directory as a text file that is then read in by the GetASCII API. This module requires the GetASCII API to function.

The first step is to create a directory for the TAP to ASCII receiver.

This can be any folder accessible to PageGate, whether on the local hard drive or by UNC path to a network resource. However, if PageGate will need to reference a network resource, the services relevant to these processes will need permission to access it. For more specific information on this, please see the ‘Run Styles’ section of PageGate’s documentation.

I recommend creating a sub-directory of the PageGateData folder called TAP2ASCIIX where X is the number of the interface. By default, c:\PageGateData\TAP2ASCII1\

After you purchase the TAP2ASCII module, you’ll be sent a zip file containing the relevant files for the module and you’ll want to unzip the TAP to ASCII zip file in to the folder you just created. By default, c:\PageGateData\TAP2ASCII1\

Next, open TAP2ASCII.ini in your preferred text editor, like Notepad or Wordpad.

To give you a little more information, this .ini file controls the behavior of the TAP to ASCII receiver.

Change RunStyle=Application to RunStyle=Service

Change SwitchStyle=False to SwitchStyle=True
Set DataFolder= to the directory you created in step 1. By default, DataFolder=C:\PageGateData\TAP2ASCII1\

Set ComPort= to the serial or modem port that should be monitored.

Set ComSettings= to the communication parameters required. Values must be passed as baud rate,parity,databits,stopbits

For example, this string would use 9600 baud, no parity, 8 data bits and 1 stop bit:
ComSettings=9600,n,8,1

and this string would use 1200 baud, even parity, 7 data bits and 1 stop bit:
ComSettings=1200,e,7,1

Set InitString= to the word 'direct' for RS232/serial connections. Example, InitString=direct

Set InitString= to the appropriate AT command string to initialize your modem in 'answer' mode. For most modems, you can use ATS0=1 to configure the modem to answer after 1 ring. Example, InitString=ATS0=1

Save the .ini file and close notepad.

Next, open pininfo.txt in your preferred text editor, like Notepad or Wordpad.

This file tells TAP2ASCII what range of numbers can be accepted by the server as valid IDs. The format of the entries defined in this text file are:

"Starting PIN", "Ending PIN", "recipient type"

If you would like ID numbers in a range to be recognized as the recipient's name (not using ad-hoc, but using numeric recipient names in PageGate), use the text "PG_Recipient". For example, this would configure the IP TAP server to accept any 4 digit numerical ID as a recipient name:
"0001","9999", "PG_Recipient"

 

If you would like ID numbers in a range to be passed through PageGate as intact ID's to another source in an ad-hoc range, use the name of a Recipient in PageGate whose type is Ad-Hoc. For example, this would configure the IP TAP server to accept any 7 digit ID as a freeform value to pass to the ad-hoc recipient named adhoc1:
"0000001","9999999","adhoc1"

After declaring the appropriate ID ranges, save and close the file.

Now that we’ve configured the TAP2ASCII module to receive messages, we’ll need to create and start its Windows Service. To do that, run a command prompt with elevated permission. To do so, go to your start menu and search for the word ‘command’. When ‘Command Prompt’ comes up, right click on it and select ‘Run as Administrator’.

 Next, change directory to the TAP to ASCII receiver's program directory. By default, c:\PageGateData\TAP2ASCII1\

Type the following and hit enter:
TAP2ASCII1 /install

Now open the Services list in Windows and find the TAP 2 ASCII 1 service. Then right click on it and select ‘Start’.
 
The final step is to configure the GetASCII API to process the TAP to ASCII module’s messages.
 
In the PageGate Admin, go to Interfaces – GetASCII – Settings. If you already have a polling directory specified, you can skip this step. If you do not have a polling directory, we would recommend creating c:\PageGateData\ASCII\ and specifying that.

Next, go to Interfaces - GetASCII - Settings - Advanced Polling - Files.

Click Add.

Specify the following:
Recipient: *
From: Leave blank or specify a value
File(s): *.t2a
Path: Specify the output path of the TAP to ASCII receiver. By default, c:\PageGateData\TAP2ASCII1\
File Type: Standard

Click Apply, and then click Apply again.

At this point, the TAP2ASCII receiver is monitoring for your serial or modem messages and the GetASCII interface is configured to process the messages once they’re received.

This concludes the video tutorial on how to configure PageGate’s TAP2ASCII module.

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