Archive for the 'Updates' Category

G-Raster Update – Roll back to Version 6.2

Several people have reported issues with the GeoPDF converter in version 6.3, so I’m retracting version 6.3 and rolling back to 6.2; let me know if this is a problem for you. If you get a message stating that the “Program may not have installed correctly” (common in Windows 7/8″), go ahead and select the option to reinstall with the recommended settings.

If you try to register the program and run into difficulties, please download and run the following program to update the eSellerate files:

eSellerate_updater: Click here to download.

While these updated files are in the install package, for some reason they don’t always show up correctly.

Program history:

6.2 – 7/22/2013
Download Site 1

– Rolled back official release to version 6.2.

6.3 – 9/25/2014 RETRACTED

– Removed limitations on GeoPDF export and KMZ image overlay import for unregistered version.

– Updated GDAL library to Version 1.11

– Modified GeoPDF Tool so that it now works better with newer USGS GeoPDF topographic map files.

– Default GeoPDF conversion now does not include aerial imagery as the underlying layer in newer USGS GeoPDF topographic maps, making the topographic map look more like the old-school versions, and easier to read on a Garmin. There is a checkbox that lets you add that back in again if you want. This has no effect on other kinds of GeoPDF files.

– Fixed minor bug in Chop/Crop/Shrink Tool that would occasionally make some maps slightly larger than the target 100-megapixel size.

– Eliminated one of the two OZI file import functions; doesn’t really work, and the remaining one now seems to work with all files.

6.2 – 7/22/2013
Download Site 1

– G-Raster uses the GDAL library, which in turn relies on a number of programs and DLLs; it creates a temporary PATH to the directory which contains these DLLs, which disappears when the program doesn’t need them. This is good programming practice. However, I’ve been getting more and more reports of people having DLL error messages when they run G-Raster; this is always due to programs which install a permanent PATH command in Windows startup files to their particular DLL versions, which are often not compatible with G-Raster (or other programs for that matter). Version 6.2 works around these issues, at the cost of a slightly larger install program (about 57 MB, vs 51 MB before). Hopefully, this will fix all the issues

– Took this opportunity to update the GDAL library to version 1.10.0.

6.1 – 3/19/2013

Download Site 1

– Added check for non-ASCII characters in filenames and paths, most often seen in non-English-speaking countries (especially the Scandinavian ones); this would cause the program to freeze up. Just delete or change the non-standard character, and all will be fine.

6.0 – 2/18/2013
Download Site 1

– Minor tweak to handle slightly non-standard format of KMZ files generated by ArcMap. If you don’t use that program, no need to upgrade.

5.9 – 1/1/2013

– Fixed issues with Chop/Crop/Shrink tool, where files of a certain size were not being processed correctly. An uncommon problem, but now hopefully fixed.

– Fixed problem in main program with files that were slightly larger than 100 megapixels, but were not getting resized properly. Not an ideal solution, but this is also a rare problem occurring with just a few files (in fact, nobody reported this as a problem, I just stumbled across it myself on an oddly-shaped image file).

– Went back to the previous file cleanup routines; the newer ones were causing more problems than they fixed.

– Modified program layout again (slightly) to work better with system font settings from 100% to 150%. 100% looks best, but 125% and 150% are fully functional, and look OK. Anything greater than 150% font size will not be supported.

– Current install program will now always have the same filename, G-Raster_install.exe; this saves me from having to change every download link when I update the install program, and also eliminates the need to upload the program to antvirus services every time for checking. Links to 1-2 previous versions will be kept below, and named with the version number.

– Only one download link from now on, a direct download link to the G-Raster site; this should be faster and easier for everyone.

5.8 – 12/21/2012

– Modified program layout to work with system font settings from 100% to 150%. 100% looks best, but 125% and 150% are fully functional, and look OK. Anything greater than 150% font size will not be supported.

– Fixed minor bug in chop/crop/shrink tool, where cropped and shrunk images were still slightly too large for processing in main G-Raster program.

– Modified Big KMZ Creator program slightly to hopefully deal with some minor file cleanup issues.

5.7 – 11/27/2012

– Modified file/directory cleanup to reduce likelihood of problems.

– Added “Big KMZ Creator” tool that converts input images to a KMZ file with a single large image, untiled. This is by request, for users of the Android Custom Maps application, which can use such KMZ files with a single large image directly, but not tiled images. Interface is pretty much the same as that for the main G-Raster program, with the deletion of a few unneeded displays/controls, so you should find it easy to use.

5.6 – 10/14/2012

– Added Plate Carree output mode option to Chop/Crop/Shrink tool.

– Added “Border-Free” output mode option to Chop/Crop/Shrink tool.

5.5 – 10/13/2012

– Fixed stupid bugs in Shrink + Chop and Crop + Chop options of Chop/Crop/Shrink Tool. Gotta be more careful. HT to Matt for letting me know.

– Added experimental support to OziExplorer OZF2 and OZFX3 formats; see help file for more details. Only have limited testing data so far, and would appreciate feedback. I expect that most OZF2 files will work fine, but many OZFX3 files are likely to be problematical due to format changes.

5.4 – 10/7/2012

– Fixed bug in Chop/Crop/Shrink tool that caused some images to lose the last segment.

– Fixed bug in Chop/Crop/Shrink tool that caused complete failure for images between 400 and 500 megapixels in size.

– Eliminated checkbox option for keeping work file in Chop/Crop/Shrink tool (for processing with multiple options). Work file is now automatically kept until you load another image file in, or until you exit the tool.

– Added two new options to Chop/Crop/Shrink tool, mainly of interest for Montana owners working with image files larger than 500 megapixels in size. The Montana can handle up to 500 one-megapixel image tiles, which in turn can be generated from 5 100-megapixel images. “Crop+Chop” crops a larger image down to 500 megapixels, then chops it into 5 100-megapixels sub-images that can be processed in G-Raster. “Shrink+Chop” resizes the larger image down to 500 megapixels, then also chops it into 5 100-megapixels that can be processed in G-Raster.

5.3 – 10/4/2012

– Help file updated.

5.2 – 9/23/2012

– Workaround for minor GDAL library quirk; only affected very large image files in the Chop/Crop/Shrink Tool.

5.1 – 8/29/2012

– Minor bug fix.

5.0 – 8/25/2012

– Added new Chop/Crop/Shrink Tool to deal with image files larger than 100 megapixels.

– Added better check for images that are > 100 megapixels.

– Metadata check improved.

– Fixed bugs with image cropping that caused dropouts at the borders of images.

– Fixed bug that caused rotation angle to be reset upon rescaling of KMZ file images.

– Minor bug fixes and tweaks.

– Removed “support” for IMG files, as these don’t seem to work well at all.

– Fixed check for “problematic” GeoPDF files; program will now give correct error message instead of doing nothing at all.

– Updated the help file.

4.9 – 4/22/2012

– First time the program is run, a pop-up reminds people that there are full instructions for using the program available in the help file, along with useful tips. If version 4.8 runs fine for you, no reason to download this, as there are no other functional differences between versions 4.8 and 4.9.

4.8 – 4/15/2012

– GDAL library updated to version 1.9.

– Ozi Map input (Option 2) updated. This should now work for far more coordinate systems than before, including many that don’t work with Option 1, and some that did work with Option 1 before but not Option 2. For the latter case, I recommend using Option 2, as you should get better image quality in many cases.

– Fixed minor bug in Ozi Map (Option 2) so that for cases where the graphic image doesn’t have the same name as the .map file, it should still load in properly.

4.7 – 3/10/2012

– Removes “fix” for files on network drives added in version 4.5, as this was an issue for a small number of people. To get around this, just copy the file you want to process from your network drive onto a local drive.

– Updated help file.

4.6 – 2/24/2012

– Corrects minor syntax error in drawOrder tag.

– Adds link for DDS USGS Topo MapFinder page to Raster Data Sources menu. This is a handy site for identifying the USGS topo map that covers a particular area, and downloading the GeoTiff file directly for use in G-Raster.

4.5 – 12/31/2011

– The one you’ve all been asking for: Added new option for “border-free” overlays from georeferenced files (registered users only). Gets rid of the annoying black borders on the edges of overlays. But please read the help file for more info on this option, including its limitations.

– Program should now work better with files based on external hard drives, and network drives that have been mapped to a system letter drive.

– Program now does a better job of handling non-standard KMZ image overlay input files created by other programs.

– Program now checks KMZ overlay input files to make sure they have an embedded image file, and gives you a better error message if they don’t.

– Removed links to USGS Seamless Server website, and info about it from the help file. Unfortunately, the USGS has discontinued support of the Seamless Server for topographic maps and aerial imagery, which is a real shame.

– Added new tutorial section to help file on using the free program USAPhotoMaps to create seamless topo maps that G-Raster can then convert to Garmin-compatible format.

– Updated list of compatible Garmin units.

– Updated help file to include info about new features, minor updates/corrections. In particular, see the OziExplorer Files section for a work-around that will let you use OziExplorer files in the OZF2/OZF3 format with G-Raster.

4.4 – 7/31/2011

– Plugged one major memory leak.

– Fixed one bug that in rare situations created an infinite loop.

– Fixed default draw priority level.

Added test routine on first startup to check for proper system configuration for certain program operations. This is primarily intended for first-time installations, but will also run for unregistered users as well after this update. If you’ve been using the unregistered version of the program without problems, you’ll have the option of skipping this test, and will never see the test window again. Test only takes a few seconds to run.  Removed this test – it wasn’t working correctly.

– Updated help file.

– Updated FreeImage library.

4.3 – 6/23/2011

– Added GeoPDF to GeoTiff conversion to unregistered version, but with a size limitation of 2000 x 2000 pixels; images that exceed these limits are cropped down to this size. Registering the program removes these restrictions.

4.2 – 4/26/2011

– Improved handling of MRSID files with world files.

– Improved geo metadata checks.

– Added debug log file creation for troubleshooting.

4.1 – 4/25/2011

– Fixed issue with some MRSID files not being reprojected properly.

– Worldfile now created during GeoPDF to GeoTiff conversion.

– Fixed bug that resulted in deletion of GTF metadata file in certain operations.

4.0 – 3/20/2011

– New GeoPDF Tool can convert GeoPDFs, including the next-generation USGS 1:24K topographic maps, to the GeoTiff format required by G-Raster and other GPS/GIS programs. Registered version only.

– 1:24K USGS topographic map input option modified to “de-collar” both NAD27 and NAD83 topo files; the latter are created by the GeoPDF tool.

– Option to automatically create a GeoTiff version of non-GeoTiff files, like MRSID, BSB, OziExplorer, or graphic images with worldfiles. Registered version only.

– GDAL library updated to version 1.8.

– Default rescale algorithm changed to Lanczos3. While it’s marginally slower than the previous Bicubic, the results are so much better that it’s worth the extra time.

– ECW support added; this is experimental, so be sure to check any Custom Maps created with this.

– Draw priority default set to “Below Vector”; this makes more sense, as you’ll now always have the option to display vector data on top of a custom map, or turn it off by turning the vector map display off. The previous default, “On Top”, meant that there was no way to show vector data on top of the Custom Map.

– Link added to “Raster Imagery Sources” on menu for the USGS Map Store, the main source for next-gen topographic maps in GeoPDF format.

– Massive review/rewrite of help file, adding information about new features and updating older sections.

– Random bug fixes.

3.7 – 1/14/2011

– Fixed bug in map cropping tool that kept it from working with GeoTiffs created during the Ozi map file import process.

3.6 – 1/10/2011

– Fixed original Ozi map import option to better check for proper georeferencing.

– Added second import option for Ozi map files (Opt 2) that works with some map files that don’t work with the original import option (now called Opt 1).

3.5 – 1/7/2011

– Added experimental support for OziExplorer-calibrated files (.map with an accompanying JPG/BMP/GIF/TIF graphic file). OZF2 and OZFX3 files are not yet supported. Be sure to read the help file for instructions and issues with these kind of files. Don’t be surprised if your file doesn’t load – not all coordinate systems appear to work correctly. I’m working on an alternate approach that should work for some of these problematical files; check back soon.

3.4 – 8/22/2010

– Fixed KMZ import so that it works with KMZ overlays from the GPS Visualizer site.

– Checks for (and rejects) network links.

– Fixes name entry so that the cursor doesn’t keep jumping to the start of the name.

– Added alert sounds after image processing is done, and after KMZ file is created.

– USGS topo map cropping significantly improved.

3.3 – 6/13/2010

– Minor tweak to improve memory use.

3.2 – 6/12/2010

– Fixed bug that caused program to go into infinite loop with small images.

3.1 – 6/8/2010

– Fixed issue with file metadata check.

– In some cases, an image file may pass all metadata checks, and still not have all necessary metadata for conversion to geographic coordinates. G-Raster will now monitor the conversion process, let you know if it failed, and offer suggestions. This is somewhat better than the previous approach, which was for the program to freeze up completely :).

3.0 – 4/30/2010

– New map cropping tool for selecting a sub-area of a larger map; useful for removing map borders and white space. Registered version only.

– New metadata tool that extracts full metadata from a GeoTiff, and allows you to embed it back into a Tiff file later on. Useful if you want to modify or enhance a GeoTiff file in a graphics editor, as most of them do not keep the metadata intact. With this tool, you can extract the metadata, modify the image, save it as a Tiff, then embed the metadata back into the Tiff file to turn it into a GeoTiff.

– MRSID files now accepted as input for UTM and EPSG files.

– Updated with latest FreeImage library files.

– Fixed minor bug in metadata check that kept BSB files from processing correctly.

– Minor cleanup issue after errors fixed.

2.9 – 3/2/2010

– GDAL coordinate transformation library upgraded to latest version.

2.8 – 2/20/2010

– Fixed bug for users in countries that use the comma “,” instead of the period “.” as the decimal point indicator. In some cases, the tile size would be set lower than needed, resulting in more tiles than necessary. If you live in a country that uses the “.” as the decimal point indicator, this is an optional update, as this bug doesn’t affect you.

2.7 – 2/10/2010

– Modified layout slightly so that it will fit completely on a screen with a 768-pixel height.

2.6 – 2/4/2010

– New input file format: USGS 1:24K topographic maps in DRG GeoTiff format. G-Raster will automatically “de-collar” these files, removing the outer white space so that only the map area is shown; this reduces the total tile count for these files significantly, and lets you load in multiple maps without white space from one overlapping the other.

– Auto rescale function improved; it now better handles small images (which were being rescaled too much) and large images (which weren’t being rescaled enough).

– Fixes bug that kept KMZ overlay input files from working if the program were installed on a drive other than the root drive.

– Better removal of spaces and non-alphanumeric characters from overlay names; Garmin units sometimes have problems with filenames that don’t consist of just the letters A-Z and numbers 0-9.

– Fixed minor bug that kept program from recognizing some GeoTiff files.

2.5 – 1/24/2010

– UTM zone now automatically determined for USAPhotoMaps Big JPEG files.

– TIFF files opened as Type 1 now checked to make sure they are valid GeoTiffs. If they aren’t, the program will offer advice on what to do (e.g. if there’s a world file, it will suggest opening the file as a Type 4 or Type 5 file).

– Better cleanup of work files.

2.4 – 1/12/2010

– Program sometimes didn’t correctly clean up temporary files, causing occasional problems with KMZ file input.

– Fixed bug with UTM zone reset on new file selection that caused program to crash.

– Add EPSG code reset when new file is added.

– Fixes resizing problem for large maps with less than 100 million pixels, but which require more than the maximum of 100 tiles.

2.3 – 1/8/2010

– Fixed a rounding issue that caused image re-sizing to fail for some images with small pixel units.

2.2 – 1/7/2010

– Fixed a stupid bug that made the program incorrectly reject all KMZ overlay input files as having more than one overlay image.

2.1 – 1/6/2010

– Fixed issue that caused problems with some black and white imagery.

2.0 – 1/4/2010

– Auto Scale feature added; rescales image automatically for reduction of number of tiles required with minimal impact on image quality.

– Added PNG graphic format to image file types supported for UTM and EPSG input.

– Added additional worldfile extensions supported: .wld, .tifw, .bmpw, .gifw, .jpgw. These are uncommon worldfile extensions, but do pop up from time to time.

– Update check (on Help menu) now goes directly to a short update web page, not the main program page. No more scrolling down to the bottom to find out what the current version is.

– Added images and more text in Help file to section on creating image overlays in Google Earth.

– Added info to Tips and Tricks section in Help file.

– Added option to create GPX waypoint in the center of the map. Loading this waypoint into your GPS can simplify the job of displaying the newly-created map overlay; just select the waypoint and choose “Show On Map”.

– Reduced initial nag screen delay time to 15 seconds from 30 seconds, and added a countdown timer on the form.

– Added major section on coordinate systems, projections, and datums to Help file.

– Install program now adds shortcuts to the Start Menu, including one for the Help file.

– Fixed format check on UTM Zone; now removes all non-integer characters automatically.

– Alternate executable that fixes occasional program layout issues, mainly in Windows XP.

1.9 – 12/26/2009

– Fixed bug that made meter/pixel display as zero for KMZ files and files reprojected to cylindrical; also now displays the correct Max Zoom Level for these files.

– Added tool text tips to some controls; info pops up if you leave the cursor on top of an active control

– Added section to help file about Menu options

1.8 – 12/20/2009

– Added option to use cylindrical projection (Plate Carree) instead of Mercator for overlay imagery. For maps covering small areas, it’s best to leave this unchecked, as it does degrade image quality slightly as well as increasing the number of tiles required. For maps covering larger areas (> 50 miles or so on a side), the cylindrical projection may give you more accurate results. For very large maps (hundreds of miles on a side), you must use this or get a map that’s progressively less accurate as you move from the center to the edge. See the appropriate help file section for more info.

1.7 – 12/17/2009

– Size of text label boxes modified so that all text is visible on all systems. On some systems, the font size was set so that the descriptive text ran outside the text boxes.

– Overlay checked to make sure that it doesn’t use the “LatLonQuad” tag for calibration, as it isn’t currently supported by G-Raster. See the section on creating KMZ overlays for more info. I hope to add support for that in the future.

– You now get a “Processing image – please wait” sign in the graphic display section while the map image is being processed; when processing is done, it disappears, and the center section of the map image is loaded into the graphic display.

– The caution about rescaling taking a few seconds now appears in red, and also reminds you that the “Create KMZ File” button will be re-enabled when rescaling is done.

– Added a bit to the USGS Seamless Server tutorial about using Google Earth to set bounds for the imagery to be downloaded.

1.6 – 12/10/2009

– Rotated KMZ overlays now supported. It’s still a good idea to start with a map that has North pointing upwards, though.

– In previous versions, KMZ files were created using the decimal point symbol appropriate for the country of use. For the US, that’s the “.”, but for much of the rest of the world it’s the “,” symbol. KMZ files created with the “.” can be opened and used in any country, but those created with the “,” won’t open in countries with “.” as the decimal point. G-Raster now creates all KMZ files using the “.” symbol for the decimal point.

– Some bugs introduced when KMZ overlay support was added are now fixed.

– The locations of the temporary work directories has been modified to fix some issues. These directories are deleted automatically after the KMZ overlay is created.

– Minor changes to help file; added Program History section.

1.5 – 11/29/2009

– Adds support for KMZ overlay files. Size limit in the unregistered version is 1500 pixels max N/S or E/W; the registered version supports overlays up to 100 megapixels in size (e.g. 10,000 x 10,000 pixels). Rotation not supported in this version, but is supported starting with version 1.6.

– Fixes a bug with selecting the rescaling algorithm.

– Warns you if the rescaling fails, and resets scaling to 1.0.

– Help button and help option from menu now open help file directly (previously only available in the registered version)

– Garmin units apparently have problems with filenames that have non-alphanumeric characters in them. G-Raster now strips those out automatically.

1.4 – 11/21/2009

– Since Garmin has removed the “beta” tag from the firmware update that supports custom raster maps, I’ve removed the initial warning pop-up that cautions you about the beta status of the firmware update.

1.3 –  11/09/2009

– Now gives the option of either rescaling or cropping imagery that is too large for Garmin units to handle

– Selectable resizing algorithm

– Adjust JPG compression with slider instead of entering numbers in box

– Real-time image preview; see the effects of rescaling an image or changing JPG compression

1.2 – 10/26/09

Added zoom level data.

1.1 – 10/23/09

Fixed a problem that caused program crashes on older systems.

Name of graphic file is now the default overlay name.

1.0 – 10/16/2009

Initial release.