LookoutDirect FAQs
(Last Update: 07-Apr-2010, LookoutDirect FAQ0017)

LookoutDirect FAQ0001
Q: PC has no NICs, the launch server is locking up.
A: Disable all COMs and Ethernet in ds400.ini file to figure out what is conflicting.

LookoutDirect FAQ0002
Q: During installation get "Error 1327: Invalid Drive F:"
A: This error comes from the Windows Installer that National Instruments is using. The description of the fix for this is on the NI website:


LookoutDirect FAQ0003
Q: Will Lookout with Direct Logic Plus work on Win95?
A: Lookout Direct Plus was not designed to work on Win95. If you get it to work that is good, but if it doesn't work, there is not much help we can offer.

LookoutDirect FAQ0004
Q: Having trouble getting Ethernet link to work in Lookout with Direct Logic Plus.
A: Here are some common errors and their solutions:

  1. "Transport protocol error"
  1. Locks up and/or gives you "CSMAIN.EXE error"
  1. "Error opening connection to Ethernet device"

LookoutDirect FAQ0005
Q: Can't get my Lookout Direct project to talk to a newer CPU (e.g. DL06, DL260).
A: Normally, to get Lookout Direct to talk to the newer CPUs you must have the v4.0 CommServer. However, there are ways around this as you will see below:

LookoutDirect FAQ0006 (see also DL Plus FAQ0003; DirectSOFT FAQ0135)
Q: My DL Plus and Lookout Direct do not support the DL06, DL250-1 nor the DL260 CPUs. If, however, I install DirectSOFT v4.0 (which supports these CPUs) will my DL Plus and Lookout Direct now be able to talk to them?
A: Here are the general "rules:"


LookoutDirect FAQ0007 (see also DL Plus FAQ0004)
Q: The DL Plus drivers will not show up; or gettting "CBX file missing."
A: A .CBX file is a driver for Lookout. DL Plus installs one called DSCOMM.CBX or DSCOMM4.CBX. Try this:

  1. Close Lookout.
  2. Search for and delete the LOOKOUT.DAT file. This file contains a list of all .CBX drivers for Lookout. But if Lookout starts without this file, then it goes out looking for all the .CBX files and then rebuilds the LOOKOUT.DAT file.
  3. Restart Lookout.

LookoutDirect FAQ0008
Q: When starting up Lookout I get a "Lookout.EXE" crash.
A: Host Engineering provides the drivers that allow the Lookout software to talk to the Direct Logic PLCs via what we call a CommServer. Therefore if Lookout is crashing due to our portion of the software it is easy to prove.

LookoutDirect FAQ0009 (see also DL Plus FAQ0005)
Q: When DL Plus installs, what changes/additions does it make to NI Lookout?
A: DL Plus adds the following:

(1)  CommServer - This adds the ability to communicate with DL PLCs.
(2)  ElementServer - This adds the ability to understand the element types of the DL PLCs.
(3)  DSCOMM*.CBX driver objects.
(4)  METER*.CBX objects.
(5)  Some additional Industrial Graphics

LookoutDirect FAQ0010
Q: When installing Lookout Direct, what is the password?
A: When the install procedure asks for the password, it really wants your Product Key.

LookoutDirect FAQ0011 (see also DL Plus FAQ0006)
Q: Will DL Plus work in NI Lookout v6.0?
A: DL Plus was written as a driver for NI Lookout v4.5, so this is unknown. National Instruments may be able to tell you for sure. But we have had customers upgrade their NI Lookout to v6.02 and this seems to fix problems with DL Plus driver.

LookoutDirect FAQ0012 (see also DL Plus FAQ0007)
Q: Will the newer USB key that comes with Lookout Direct work the same as the older parallel-port hardware key?
A: Yes. The older parallel-port hardware keys are being phased-out in favor of the newer USB keys, and the newer keys are functionally equivalent to the old parallel-port ones.

LookoutDirect FAQ0013 (see also DL-Plus FAQ0008; DirectSOFT FAQ0220)
Q: Trying to run LookoutDirect, DirectSOFT and DL-Plus, and getting "Hostxx.DLL could not be found" error.
A: This is probably due to incompatible CommServer (Csmain.EXE) versions and Hostxx.DLL versions. The Hostxx.DLL is our extension of Microsoft Foundation Class Library (MFCxx.DLL) and is used by most of our software products. Hostxx.DLL is located in the DirectSOFTxx\Bin folder and is shared by DirectSOFT programming, LookoutDirect and DL-Plus.

When any of the above applications are started, they load their version of the CommServer (Csmain.EXE). If another of the above applications is then started, it does not reload its version of the CommServer, but tries to use the one already running. This could result in incompatibilities if caution is not taken as to the order in which the applications are started up. In other words, if you run an app that uses an earlier version of Csmain.EXE, and then load one that uses a later version of Csmain.EXE, the latter app may try to use more advanced functions that the former Csmain.EXE cannot perform.

Thus if you are going to run multiple versions, you should run the latest one first.

Furthermore, the latest versions of DL-Plus and LookoutDirect can be downloaded from our website and you can use your older v4.x keycode to install them.

LookoutDirect FAQ0014 (see also ECOM FAQ0042; DirectSOFT FAQ0048; DL Plus FAQ0009; DNLoader FAQ0010; DSData FAQ0005; EZ Ethernet FAQ0008; HA-TADP FAQ0002; NetEdit FAQ0005; SDK FAQ0020)
Q: Why doesn't the ECOM use subnet mask or gateway address like the ECOM100?
A: Since the ECOM doesn't do "master"-type communications, it doesn't use the subnet mask or gateway address. Whatever talks to the ECOM will be using IPX or UDP/IP, and the ECOM simply swaps the destination and source addresses in the telegram and responds in this way, not "caring" about the subnet or gateway. However, the ECOM100 acts more like a conventional TCP/IP device. The ECOM100 has the capability to be a master and has a full-blown TCP stack inside. Thus, if it is to transmit to an IP address not on its subnet, it will, of course, transmit to its configured gateway address instead.

LookoutDirect FAQ0015 (see also CTRIO FAQ0045; DirectSOFT FAQ0132; DL Plus FAQ0010; DNLoader FAQ0011; DS Data FAQ0102; EBC FAQ0083; ECOM FAQ0084; EDRV FAQ0084; ERM FAQ0058; EZ Ethernet FAQ0010; General FAQ0004; HA-TADP FAQ0008; NetEdit FAQ0037; PBC FAQ0014; PSCM FAQ0003; SDK FAQ0022; SERIO FAQ0004; WinPLC FAQ0038)
Q: What is the export classification of your products (e.g. ECCN)
A: None of our products have an ECCN. Automation Direct sells our products and they export EAR99 NLR (No License Required). ECCN is Export Controlled Classification Number and none of our products are controlled.

LookoutDirect FAQ0016
19-Mar-2010 (see also DirectSOFT FAQ0010)
Q: In DirectSOFT under Add Link get double listings (two COM1's, two COM2's, two Ethernets, two DL250s, etc.).
A: One of 4 things has probably happened:

The bottom line is that you have multiple copies of the Devasync.DLL and Devether.DLL files and you only need one. To fix search your hard drive and delete all copies of these two files except the ones in the DirectSOFT installation folder, BIN folder (e.g. c:\DirectSOFT5\Bin).

LookoutDirect FAQ0017
Q: Which versions of LookoutDirect work with which versions of Windows?
A: See chart below:

Comm Server
Windows Operating Systems
Win3.11 Win95 Win98 WinME WinNT4 Win2K WinXP WinXP64 WinVista WinVista64 Win7(32) Win7(64)
v3.8.13 v3.0   (1)     (2) (2)
v3.8.16 v3.0   (1)     (2) (2)
v4.51.18 v3.0   (1)     (2) (2)
v4.51.18 v4.0   (1)     (2) (2)
v4.51.19 v4.0   (1)     (2) (2)
v4.51.19 v5.1   (1)     (2) (2)
v4.51.19 v5.2   (1)     (2) (2)
v4.51.19 v5.3   (1)     (2) (2)

(1) -
Have not tested officially but probably will work.
(2) - Have not tested officially, but probably will work if WinXP VirtualMachine is used.