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Boot time?


cybersnyder
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If Helix's screen reads "Rebuilding preset XXX..." it's going through all the presets and making sure they aren't affected by any under-the-hood improvements we do to models or the underlying architecture. It should only happen once per update, and then you're back to the normal boot time.

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As Duncann thought, I probably did restore from a backup from an earlier firmware version. But apparently that would cause the preset rebuilding sequence every time? I'm going to delete those old backups so I don't get caught by this again, I don't really need them. On the other hand, I can see how this could happen again - if I update the firmware tomorrow, my most recent backups would cause the same rebuilding if I were to load them.

 

I do understand the need to update presets when the data structure has changed, that gives you flexibility to add features. It's just the business of it doing it the next time I boot. At a minimum, I would suggest putting something in the manual about restarting after loading old presets to force a rebuild. But ideally, IMHO there must be a better solution.

 

Please understand, from my point of view, the Helix let me down on my gig! I had no way of knowing that simply loading an old preset in the afternoon would make the unit non-functional for five minutes that night. I was in a similar situation to the OP in that I had literally seconds to set up, plug in, and play, and I was expecting the normal ~20 second boot time. That was a very uncomfortable five minutes for me, leading a 12 piece band in front of 500 people.

 

And please also know that IMHO the Helix is one of the most elegantly designed, intuitive to use pieces of digital gear I've had the pleasure of using. It's so beautifully designed that a potentially disastrous quirk like this kinda stands out, and I hate that it's undermined my confidence in an otherwise rock-solid piece of gear that I depend on at every gig.

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17 hours ago, mdoolin said:

I probably did restore from a backup from an earlier firmware version. But apparently that would cause the preset rebuilding sequence every time?

 

Yes.... it rebuild the presets to begin with, but you restored old presets so the unit is back to square one. 

 

17 hours ago, mdoolin said:

But ideally, IMHO there must be a better solution.

 

I think the solution is quite elegant as it is. If you keep "up to date" backups for the current firmware, even an emergency restore at a gig would only result in a 20 second boot time (after the restore of course). 

 

17 hours ago, mdoolin said:

Please understand, from my point of view, the Helix let me down on my gig! 

 

17 hours ago, mdoolin said:

I hate that it's undermined my confidence in an otherwise rock-solid piece of gear that I depend on at every gig.

 

I fail to understand why this is the fault of the Helix? 

 

The problem is that you loaded old presets (before a gig no less).... If it were me I wouldn't be asking Line 6 for a new way to do it, I'd be kicking my own butt for not understanding how it worked, and/or for not having up to date backups. 

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Backups, by definition, are "old" - earlier states of the data. What made this backup not up to date was a subsequent firmware update, which is conceptually an unrelated event. I loaded the preset, everything worked perfectly. Until the next time I booted. How could I have known "how it works" - there's no mention in the documentation.

 

If this is how the system works, and Line 6 believes it to be the best solution, OK. Now I know.

 

Regarding the tone of your reply: your pride in the products you represent is laudable. Your arrogance is not.

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I have an idea about this... when you restore from a backup, Helix is able to run with the old presets, whether the versions match or not. The restore doesn't take as long as the rebuild, so maybe it's only rebuilding the current preset. Regardless, it is functional at that point, until you reboot. This whole problem would be avoided if Helix did the rebuild as part of the restore. It would make the restore take quite a bit longer, but it's already a couple of minutes, and it's not something people would do every day. Since the rebuild is going to happen anyway, why not do it up front?

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On 2/21/2016 at 11:54 AM, cybersnyder said:

I play at NFL games with very short setup times.  If I had to reset power or the plug was pulled anywhere along the line, 22 seconds is an eternity and I can't say "give me 15 seconds, almost there."  It's a fringe case, for sure.  

Gives us a break. Im pretty sure no one in the parking lot is going to care about the 15 seconds.

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Cybersnyder admits that his is a fringe case, but I would say it isn't quite so fringe. If you're a solo performer, maybe you do have the luxury of verbally entertaining the crowd while you deal with technical difficulties. But there are many professional performance situations where this just isn't acceptable. If you're a sideman, you need to be ready to play the very second the leader counts the tune off. There is no "give me 15 seconds". The first time that happens will probably be your last gig with that artist. I've never played an NFL game, but I would imagine that it's much like live TV, every second is worth big bucks. It seem to me that Cybersnyder is a professional who is stating the requirements of his working situation. We'd all best listen, we might learn something about the real world of working musicians.

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On 2/20/2016 at 7:26 PM, cybersnyder said:

Thanks!  Unfortunately, 22 seconds is way too long for what I need, so it's a non-starter.  Oh well, I'll keep looking.

 

 

 

Even my Marshall DSL takes around 15 seconds for the tubes to warm up enough to hit the standby switch. And peeing takes at least a minute these days. So why the OCD hurry?

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14 hours ago, mdoolin said:

Regarding the tone of your reply: your pride in the products you represent is laudable. Your arrogance is not.

 

Not my intent... if we were standing face to face I would say the same thing but you would realize my intent is to be helpful, not condescending. I apologize if it is coming across that way in the writing. 

 

I do wish this form had emoticons that worked :) 

 

12 hours ago, mdoolin said:

This whole problem would be avoided if Helix did the rebuild as part of the restore. It would make the restore take quite a bit longer, but it's already a couple of minutes, and it's not something people would do every day. Since the rebuild is going to happen anyway, why not do it up front?

 

You make a good point here! With a firmware update the Helix does an automatic reboot and rebuild.... yet with a restore it lets you use it and only rebuilds on the next start which may take a person off guard if they aren't expecting it.

 

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Codamedia, I apologize if I misread your tone. And thank you for your replies, and for your true intent to be helpful.

 

Regarding restoring from a backup right before a gig: what good is a backup, or a system, that you can't restore right when you need it? Now, I wouldn't do a firmware update right before a gig, any more than I'd update my recording software right before a session. Updates can contain new bugs, or changed features that don't work as expected. But a backup is a known good state of the data, and should be reliable at any time. And in the case of a catastrophic data loss right before a gig, restoring from a backup would save the day. But backups aren't just there to recover from catastrophe. Again, they are a known good state of the data, a saved version, which can be reverted to after experimenting to get back to an earlier version.

 

At least, that's how backups work on every other system I've ever used. I can adjust my expectation if this is how this particular system works, but IMHO I don't think I should have to. Not when there's a possible change to the system that would make it work like other systems do, so that nobody would ever be caught by this quirk again.

 

No engineer, or engineering team, can think of everything. That's why there are firmware updates. Again, I think Helix is a marvel of good design overall. But I stand by my assertion that this one behavior is counter-intuitive, inelegant, and outright dangerous. It is, in point of fact, a bug. I've proposed a fix for it (forcing the rebuild as part of restore), and I'd like to hear from Line 6 staff what they think about it. Digital_Igloo?

 

And, I'd like to keep the conversation open. There may be other, better solutions. But I don't think "that's just the way it is" is a good answer, and I'd be very surprised and disappointed if Line 6 had that attitude.

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