Alternative software for Mac users
Please note: The Davis 6520 Weatherlink for Mac software does not implement all the features present in the Weatherlink for Windows version. The Windows version outsells the Mac version by a considerable margin and therefore traditionally Davis has focused its development effort on the Windows version.So please do not assume that all features in the Windows version are present in the Mac version – they are not. If some software feature is especially important to you for use with a Mac then this needs to be checked against the Mac feature-list before buying and setting up the Mac version.
The USB logger in the 6520 Weatherlink for Mac is (and always has been) identical to the logger in the 6510USB Weatherlink for Windows pack and so can be cabled to any computer type (whether PC or Mac or anything else) that is running compatible software. The 6520 Weatherlink for Mac pack is likely to disappear from sale as such given that its software is obsolete, but the USB logger from a Weatherlink for Windows pack can be used directly in a Mac provided some other Mac-compatible weather station software is installed.
Weatherlink for Mac v6.0.3
Davis released a new downloadable update for WL for Mac to v6.0.3 in July 2015 which can be found at www.davisnet.com/support/weather/downloads/software_sftwr.asp . This version adds support for subscription-based uploads to weatherlink.com as well as a couple of bugfixes and may also include the latest USB driver. It’s recommended that you update to v6.0.3 before trying any further troubleshooting.
Limitations of Weatherlink for Mac
Be aware that while Weatherlink for Mac is good basic software, it lacks a number of features present in Weatherlink for Windows, in particular:
- Cannot log data from solar and UV sensors;
- Cannot log data for soil moisture or leaf wetness sensors;
- Not compatible with add-on modules such as Email/Phone Alert or Ag/Turf Management module;
- Cannot download data from weatherlink.com (ie Web Download mode is not available);
The assumption should be that v6.0.3 is an update only and that a previous version should have been installed from a WL for Mac CD before attempting the update.
Weatherlink for Mac will not run after installation
Apple introduce updates for the OSX operating system at regular intervals and it’s not uncommon to find that some aspect of the Weatherlink for Mac configuration needs tweaking before the WL software will run. There are three issues in particular that may cause problems with more recent versions of OSX:
Weatherlink for Mac must run as a 32-bit program. If your version of OSX is defaulting to running programs in 64-bit mode then when you try to start WL you may see a java.lang.UnsatisfiedLinkError error or some similar Java error. The fix is to set the WL application manually to run in 32-bit mode as follows (you should only need to do this once):
- Look at your Desktop/Finder Screen.
- Open your Applications Folder.
- Open your Macintosh OSX Weatherlink Folder.
- Find, and select (click on once), the weatherlink, or, the weatherlink.app file.
- With weatherlink, or the weatherlink.app file selected, click the ‘More Info’ button in the preview pane or do a Get Info command (from under the File Menu) – the exact steps will vary with the version of OSX in use, but the objective is to display a dialogue that allows 32-bit operation to be selected.
- Put a check mark in the box marked “Open in 32-bit mode”. Then close the More Info/Get Info box.
- Now try to launch the weatherlink application.
Updated USB driver needed
An updated USB driver may be needed for recent versions of OSX to allow communication with the USB logger. If the Weatherlink for Mac program can be launched but there is a communication error to the logger then the chances are that a driver update is needed.
There are two sources of this driver, the Davis support website and then the website of the manufacturers of the USB chip inside the logger, which is SiLabs. The version available from Davis will have been checked by Davis for correct operation with Weatherlink, but the most recent driver versions will naturally be available from SiLabs. We suggest that you first try the version from Davis; and then if this fails to work try the SiLabs website. Download links are as follows:
- Davis – toolbox.davisnet.com/downloads/ (Drivers section)
- SiLabs – www.silabs.com/products/mcu/Pages/USBtoUARTBridgeVCPDrivers.aspx (Be sure to select the Mac OSX version for download)
NB On the SiLabs site the driver is referred to as: ‘CP210x USB to UART Bridge VCP Driver’
WL for Mac with OS X version Yosemite 10.10.3 and later
WL for Mac is apparently written in Java; and Java programs require that a compatible version of the Java language runtime is already installed. The latest version of Java is automatically installed along with versions and updates of Mac OS X. One potential cause of problems with Java programs like WL for Mac is therefore that a new Mac computer or an existing one on which OS X has been updated is offering a Java version that is no longer compatible with WL. Specifically, WL requires v6 of Java SE and will not run with v7 which will have been installed as part of Yosemite and later OS X versions
Fortunately, the Java Legacy v6 can be installed alongside the newer Java v7, as explained by this Apple KB topic . Downloading and installing v6 will often fix the problem on newer Mac OS X installations
For the record, WL for Mac should definitely run correctly under eg Yosemite, El Capitan, Sierra, High Sierra etc if the OSX environment allows 32-bit applications to run at all (which is not the case for Catalina and later) and is correctly configured. But the fix may require looking at any of the three issues listed above and, in some cases, potentially all three may need attention.