Tethering while writing to flash card

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Tethering while writing to flash card

Postby jeffj on Mon Mar 14, 2011 9:57 pm

I can't find where your site (FAQ, Forums, etc.) specifically answers this question point blank. So here goes...

Does your product allow for a tethered camera to continue writing to the flash card, while it copies the images to some other storage (like a laptop hard drive)?

We have a business purpose that REQUIRES the images to be saved to the flash card. Each image is absolutely vital. We can't afford to lose images because a USB cable becomes disconnected, or a laptop has to be rebooted. We can't allow any software or SDK to interfere with the image being saved to the flash card.

But we need some software that will make copies of images from the card, while the Camera continues shooting.

Our primary choice of cameras is the Nikon D300. And, depending on what we're shooting, we may shoot 2 to 5 images per second for 2 to 3 hours, without interruption.
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Re: Tethering while writing to flash card

Postby Axel on Tue Mar 15, 2011 12:56 pm

Yes, the camera always writes the images to the flashcard when tethered with FastPictureViewer Pro, so your pictures are safely stored on the card no matter what happens to the laptop or to the cable (or wireless) connection.

The only remark is that we recommend using Windows Vista or Windows 7 for tethering, for better performances. While the tethering function works very well on Windows XP too, the connection time on this older version of Windows is proportional to the number of pictures already stored on the card. This is because the mechanism used on XP was initially created for printing pictures and the operating system enumerates the device's content at connection time. If the card already has several hundred pictures on it, the connection time on Windows XP can be slow - perhaps 20-30 sec depending on various factors - and any pictures taken during that time, while always stored to the camera's memory card, will not be transferred automatically to the PC.

Windows Vista introduced a modern mechanism to connect to digital cameras and all kinds of portable devices and the connection time is constant (less than 1 sec), independently of the number of images already on the device, so you can turn camera on and off in the middle of a session without having to think about the tethered connection.

FastPictureViewer Professional does not use any manufacturer or 3rd party software or SDK to implement the tethering function, only the PTP protocol (which is an international standard, see ISO 15740), so it works equally well and perfectly reliably on 64-bit versions of Windows Vista and Windows 7 too. The camera side is implemented by Nikon in the camera firmware so what happens on the PC side has no effect on the camera's ability to record the picture on its memory card.

As a side note, if data safety and integrity is paramount to your application, you may want to consider a Nikon camera with dual memory card slots: those cameras have firmware options to backup images to the second card automatically, so this gives you an additional layer of protection you against data loss due to memory card failures.

RELATED: Tethering with FastPictureViewer Professional tutorial.
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