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OVERVIEW

The Backcountry Access (BCA) Tracker3 is the first avalanche transceiver that allows the end user to update firmware on the unit directly, using a personal computer (with Windows) and the Tracker3 Utility software. There is no additional hardware needed and the unit does not need to be updated by a dealer or service center.

SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS

The Tracker3 utility requires the following:

  • Windows 7, Windows 8 or Windows 10 PC with an available USB port;
  • Mini-B USB cable;
  • BCA Tracker3 avalanche transceiver;
  • Internet connection.

INSTALLATION

The first step is to connect your Tracker3 to the USB port using the Mini-B USB cable. Your computer will recognize the connected device and download the needed drivers. Depending on your internet provider, this can take up to eight minutes. When the necessary drivers are installed, Windows will prompt you that your device is ready to use. In case Windows is not configured to automatically download the drivers, you will be required to approve the installation of the driver files.

The downloaded software installer will install the Tracker3 Utility software on the selected folder. If you would like a shortcut on your desktop, check the box during the installation process and it will be created automatically. After installation, the Tracker3 Utility is ready to use.

UTILITY FUNCTIONS

  1. Turn on your Tracker3 and ensure that there is at least 40 percent battery life remaining. Turn the Tracker3 back to the off position.
  2. Connect the Tracker3 to your computer with the Mini-B USB cable. The USB port on the Tracker3 is inside the battery door.
  3. Run the Tracker3 Utility by double clicking the icon on your screen.
  4. You should now see the main program window with a “Ready” message.
  • Tracker3 Battery CompartmentTracker3 Battery Compartment

  • Tracker3 Software Update Utility Screenshot
    Tracker3 Software Update Utility Screenshot

The main window of the utility contains a button for each feature plus a status box.

Each time you run a feature, turn the Tracker to OFF, then to TRANSMIT.

To use the Current Version and Self-Test features, the unit must have version 3.3 firmware installed.

UPGRADE FIRMWARE

To upgrade the firmware on your Tracker3:

  1. Turn your Tracker3 OFF.
  2. Press the “Upgrade Firmware” button on the Tracker3 Utility.
  3. A message will appear asking you to turn the Tracker3 from the OFF position to the TRANSMIT position. This action must be taken while the progress bar is active.
  4. While the firmware is being updated, the progress as a percent will be displayed in the status box and a single dot will be displayed on the Tracker3. Do not disconnect or turn off the Tracker3 during the update process. The update process takes about one minute to complete.
  5. If the update is successful, “Firmware Upgraded Successfully” will be displayed in the status box. The Tracker3 will then reboot and enter transmit mode.

The version of firmware to be loaded is dependent on the version of the Tracker3 Utility software. Before updating your Tracker3, always obtain the latest version of the Tracker3 Utility from BCA.

CURRENT VERSION

The Current Version feature allows you to retrieve a transceiver’s serial number and current firmware version number. To check the serial number and firmware version:

  1. Turn your Tracker3 OFF.
  2. Press the “Current Version” button on the Tracker3 Utility.
  3. A message will appear asking you to turn the Tracker3 from the OFF position to the TRANSMIT position. This action must be taken while the progress bar is active.
  4. The transceiver will enter a diagnostic mode and the results will be displayed in the status window of the utility. The process takes about 15 seconds to complete.

SELF-TEST

Self-Test mode performs a set of diagnostics on the transceiver and displays the results as a text file. To perform the self-test:

  1. Turn your Tracker3 OFF.
  2. Press the “Self-Test” button on the Tracker3 Utility.
  3. A message will appear asking you to turn the Tracker3 from the OFF position to the TRANSMIT position. This action must be taken while the progress bar is active.
  4. The transceiver will enter the self-test mode. The self-test process takes about 30 seconds to complete.
  5. When self-test is complete, a dialog box appears prompting you for the filename and location where you would like to save the test results.
  6. Test results can be reviewed from the saved txt file.

BCA-t3-report-photo-940x402

DISCLAIMER: Self-Test is no substitute for field testing: you must still perform regular trailhead tests. Self-Test includes a limited set of diagnostics which does not include all electronic functions. It does not test any mechanical functions.