How to Fix Error 175
At Shearwater, we believe in eating our own dog food. By that I mean that we as engineers are responsible for supporting the products that we design and create. That way, we close the gap between the consumer and the designer. It results in better products, better service, and a better understanding of what our customers want. We also take personal pride in ensuring that our products are as useful and as easy to understand as possible.
The most common technical problem people experience is Error 175. This is when the Shearwater Desktop is unable to find your dive computer. This is a devilish problem because there are many reasons why this occurs:
- The model and hardware version of the dive computer.
- The make/model of the desktop or laptop.
- Whether the computer has built in Bluetooth or not.
- Whether the computer has been recently updated or not.
- The list goes on…
Because of all these possible variables, there is no straightforward answer.
In a situation like the one above, it is tempting for a programmer to make the program spit out a long and complicated error code, as this is easier for a programmer to decipher and use. However, most people are not programmers and would find this to be overly complicated and frustrating. Finding the balance between being informative and understood is one of the many challenges of this job.
Keeping in mind that most people reading these error codes are not programmers, we have the error message displayed with a brief explanation of the problem in plain English. The hope with the error message is that it will help users understand, and then fix their problem, but there is a key flaw in this plan: we only display what the problem is, not the solution!
I now realize that without a solution, it will be pretty difficult for someone to fix their problem. With this in mind, we will be redesigning the way the Shearwater Desktop handles errors. If it is a simple fix, the program will lay out the steps to solve the problem. However, in more complex situations where the user will likely need support, the error screen will contain a link to our support page and how best to contact us. This new system will be more efficient as it will give those with simple problems the necessary tools to fix them, as well as not wasting the time of those whose problems are best handled by our support team.
So what does error #175 really mean?
When you try to connect to your Petrel, Shearwater Desktop looks for the signal that your Petrel emanates. If it fails to find that signal, the result is error #175.
So what can you do?
Although it’s true that every situation is different, here are some quick troubleshooting tips that may help:
- Make sure that your dive computer is showing the Bluetooth countdown.
- If you have an older Petrel, make sure the battery you are using is fresh.
- Keep Shearwater Desktop, and your operating system, up to date.