Navigator Meteor DFE quick start guide
Revision 13, 18 July 2023
Navigator DFE for Meteor is a Digital Front End that supports printhead drive electronics from Meteor Inkjet and incorporates the Meteor Print Engine SDK. This procedure covers installation and basic configuration of a Navigator Meteor DFE system.
- PC with supplied Meteor SDK version installed. If this is a new installation:
- Run the SDK installer and choose to install the 64-bit version of the SDK. This may involve downloading and installing some .Net frameworks, restarting the PC, and running the SDK installer again.
- (Optional step.) Run Monitor.exe and select the required Meteor configuration profile for the device (you may need to install or create this .cfg file separately). Quit Monitor.exe.
- Do not "Host" the print engine SDK with a Meteor application. The DFE will host it.
- Navigator DFE Installer
- LDK key to enable the Harlequin RIP.
- Navigator dongle to enable the workflow software.
- Start the Navigator Meteor DFE installer, NavigatorHHRInstaller.exe.
- Enter the LDK key to enable the HHR RIP when prompted. (Upgrade installations only: leave the LDK field blank and the system will continue to use your existing license).
- Accept the default path of C:\Navigator. (Upgrade installations only: modify the default 'C:\Navigator' path to a new name (such as c:\NavigatorNew), so that the new version of the software will be installed into a different location than the existing version, allowing you to copy the configuration files across.)
- Accept the default 'Navigator' path presented by the Start Menu->Program Folder selection dialog. (Upgrade installations only: The new shortcuts will replace the old ones. So even in that case, accept the default recommendation)
- Make sure the Navigator workflow dongle is plugged into a USB port.
- The installation application creates the correct device. So Step 4 should be unnecessary. It is included to aid in trouble shooting or manual problem recovery.
- Start Navigator Server
- In the Server, Go to Server Setup → Administrator Login...; leave the password blank.
- Open the Server Setup → Manage Devices dialog.
- Create a “Meteor DFE” System Device in the Navigator Server app at the Manage Devices dialog.
- Not the legacy devices TTP Meteor or Meteor. The only correct one is Meteor DFE.
- In the ‘Manage Devices’ dialog for the Meteor DFE Device, press ‘Advanced’ to open the Advanced Configuration dialog:
- Use the ‘+’ and ‘-‘ buttons to append and remove color channels to match those on the press.
- The ‘-‘ button removes the currently selected color channel and renumbers the following ones to close the gap.
- The ‘+’ button appends a new color channel at the end of the list.
- Select the required resolution scaling, and adjust the checkboxes for scaling and media direction as necessary. If you don’t know what resolution scaling is, you likely don’t need that. Set it to 1. It’s used for things like doubling the resolution for a white underlay color.
- Click Ok. In the Manage Devices dialog check that the PC you are using is selected as the Spooler Host PC. Start the thread, and Apply.
- Start the DFE client. You can use the shortcut on the desktop or under the Start Menu.
- The DFE with 3 jobs in the queue and 1 job beginning to print:
If you cannot get the DFE to start, check the Web Server inside the server. See the note on Web services at the end of this document.
- Click the gear button on the DFE page, upper right to get to more configuration options.
The left column contains status information and information about what configuration is available in your Meteor Configuration file.
The middle column and the lower right corner contain important configuration options for a Meteor equipped printer. For more information about how to configure this area, please refer to this documentation.
Briefly, Product Detect Signal needs to be either Internal or External. In the screen capture above, Internal mode is toggled off so the system is in External Product Detect mode.
If you set it to Internal mode, then Additional Page Gap becomes an available setting.
In either case you can decide when to start printing with Enable at Buffered Page Count. This determines how many pages are buffered up before you begin.
Chained Jobs, minimum page count required is discussed in detail here: https://help.xitron.com/a/solutions/articles/1000291543
Configuration File is the active Meteor Configuration File. In the picture above, taken while the system was printing, you can see that this selection is inactive (grayed out). You can not change Meteor Configuration files while the system is processing jobs. Once jobs are finished processing, you can change this to any config file you have at c:\Navigator\Navigator\Config\Meteor Configs. See below.
Demonstration Mode is a special mode that uses custom Meteor test rigs. It stops the DFE from checking for printheads before coming online. A production system should have this mode turned off. Then we will query the Meteor PCC card for printhead availability before allowing the DFE to come online.
Hidden away under the Advanced area is a basic configuration of the PCC and printheads. Click the lock. Password is xitron. Unless your vendor changed it.
The number of Meteor PCC cards and the number of printheads per PCC are configured here.
CONFIGURATION (ONLY IF UPGRADING AN EXISTING INSTALLATION)
- Copy the configuration databases from the old version to the new version, overwriting any existing ones. These databases are in the 'Navigator' subfolder, with names starting 'Xiflow' and ending '.xml' and 'backup.xml'.
- Copy the following files from the Navigator\Config\RenderConfig folder of the old version to the new version, overwriting any which exist in the new version:
- Color Management\ColorSetups.JSON
- Merge the ICC profiles from the Navigator\Config\Renderconfig\ICC Profiles folder of the old version into the new version, i.e. retain any ICC profiles which have been added into the existing version.
- Start Navigator Server and Client.
- In Navigator Server, Server Setup, log in as Administrator. In Server Setup→Manage Devices, edit your existing Meteor DFE Device, add/remove color definitions to match the press.
- Open NCE; it is important to do this using the shortcut to the index page in User Resources\Xitron Shortcuts. The index page will obtain the details of the Meteor System Device, so any new Tone Curves or Manual Calibrations you make will match the color channels of the press.
- Open the Manual Calibration tab in NCE and press the checkmark button to save. This will update the calibrations for use with this version of Navigator Meteor.
Check your installation
- Submit a PDF job to the DFE, choose “Queue” and see that it shows up in the DFE client. If the PC is connected to printer hardware, release the job and check that it is printed. If the PC is not connected to printer hardware and properly initialized, the system will be offline.
- To create Render Configs with your own configuration choices, use the Navigator Configurations Editor, which can be launched from the Start menu subfolder for this installation.
NOTE on web services
Navigator DFE client runs in a browser application such as Google Chrome. Navigator Configuration Editor is also a web browser application. Part of Navigator Server is the necessary web server to run those applications.
If you cannot launch the DFE or the Navigator Configurations Editor, please check that the Web Server is running: in the Server, Server Setup → Server Settings..., select Configure Web Server...