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02-28-2013, 12:37 PM   #1
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Problem Installing Pentax Remote Assistant

Hi

I have a

K20D
Dell Laptop running Win 7

I have just come across Pentax Remote Assistant and wish to install it on my computer after the initial screen after clicking Run and the initial language selection installer it states:

Place the provided CD-Rom into the CD_Rom drive on your PC and click next.

I click next and get the message

Unable to find the Valid Pentax Digital Camera Utility. Click back.....

But I dont have any "provided" CD-ROM. I have downloaded the software from the Web.

I have installed Pentax Digital Camera Utility 4.35 (that was struggle)

I thought then that Remote Assistant would install but no.

Can anybody help? (I have tried PK_tether it does not work). From what I have read elsewhere there is no point in getting hold of another K20D with the CD because it not originally come with PDCU 4.

The implementation of this is so micky mouse for what is an essential piece of software for a pro or semi pro or where the photos being taken are for professional purposes that horror of horrors I am thinking of going over to Cannon or Nikon.

Pentax should simply make good useable tethering software available as a stand alone download rather than users having to go through this sort of shenanigans. Ahhh...

02-28-2013, 01:46 PM   #2
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I read over on the UK Pentax forum about how to 'trick' a PC into loading Pentax software in the absence of the original CD. The post was in the last month or so and I think to do with PDCU.

Sounds a similar problem to yours. Worth a look/search.

http://www.pentaxuser.co.uk

Last edited by JohnX; 03-01-2013 at 09:44 AM.
02-28-2013, 02:26 PM   #3
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Are you installing as the Administrator? This was a problem long ago, as it would not work if installed under a normal user account.
But with Windows 7, you may also need to run in compatibility mode as Windows XP or such.
Dunno really know, but install as Admin should be a good place to start.


FYI, the fact that was a requirement, not checked, will give you some idea how poor their software is/was. I guess they assume everyone has admin rights. (idiots!)
Software was pure trash, regardless..
03-01-2013, 03:04 AM   #4
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Thanks Johnx but could not find a reference to my problem but the was a lot of posts!

Amoringello thanks for the suggestion. Yes running in admin mode but will try your idea of running in compatibility mode and report back.

Started looking at Nikon D3 last night and realising that all I need for what I do is a 24mm lens and something like a 24 to 80 zoom, while I would have to spend a a fair amount of money It is not too much and i would get a more professional camera with more professional support and professional software, more orientated to what I need.

No I am not a pro but I use the camera for my business when I can't get a pro or it is not worth it so the results need to be professional and while have learnt that "a workman should never blame his tools', having the right tools can make the job so much easier.

I don't blame Pentax , they are probably not aiming at me or the real professional (the pros I have seen use only four makes Canon, Nikon, Hasselblad and Leica) but if they are going to offer something then make it worth offering!

I have also written to Pentax UK so their response will be interesting.

Thanks for your help.

03-01-2013, 03:31 AM   #5
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PK_Tether needs .NET Framework 3.5 (or higher) installed in order to work. In the comments section of the PK_Tether blog there are several users that use it on Windows 7. It will not recognize your camera without the memory card installed.
03-01-2013, 04:13 AM   #6
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QuoteQuote:
No I am not a pro but I use the camera for my business when I can't get a pro or it is not worth it so the results need to be professional and while have learnt that "a workman should never blame his tools', having the right tools can make the job so much easier.
Well, when your tool crashes when you click on a button and when your tool causes your camera to lock up and requires removal of the batteries to fix, I would not hold the workman responsible.... unless that workman keeps trying to use the same tool with the same results over and over again. A few tries in a row, and reading reports of similar "tool" behavior from other users and I am going to blame the tool. :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) There is NO WAY I am going to risk locking up my camera and risk losing images in front of a customer. :-(

Anyway, do you need all of the tethering options that the software is trying to offer?
Could you get away with Eye-Fi wireless card, (or now Transcend and a few other brands that now offer in-card WiFi)?
These cards only allow transfer of photos from the camera to a PC/Tablet/Phone, and do not allow control of the camera itself.
But for my work, and likely for most photographers, that is the only tethering feature needed to begin with, so those might be the perfect option.

Otherwise, as other suggest, you might try PK-Tether. It is an individual's attempt to make something work for nearly all models of Pentax DSLR. You may find it more stable than Pentax's software even though PK-Tether is
03-01-2013, 06:33 AM   #7
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Tried pk tether but could not get it to work. For me what I want is to see the images as I shoot them without having to shoot then transfe to pc then re-shoot. The remote control is nt important. But isn't the transfer from eyefi card to ipad very slow?

When you say

Well, when your tool crashes when you click on a button and when your tool causes your camera to lock up and requires removal of the batteries to fix, I would not hold the workman responsible....

Are you talking about pktether or the Pentax software?

Thanks for all the replies everyone.
03-01-2013, 07:07 AM   #8
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Definitely talking about the Pentax software. :-)
I have not used PK Tether enough to say if it is truly good or not.


For your use, you're probably pretty much stuck with true tethering... or perhaps HDMI out. Does the K20 have HDMI out?
Also assuming you can find a device that allows HDMI "in". (most PCs do not since of course the ONLY reason anyone would want HDMI-In on a PC is to pirate movies... Blaargh!!)
Anyway, I've used some monitor devices, and some can be quite expensive -- or very low quality. But they still allow better direct viewing of what you are about to photograph, than looking at the viewfinder or rear LCD.


And yes... WiFi xfer form the card is a bit slow. I shoot using RAW+, keeping RAW on card and xfer only a 6MB JPG over wifi. Those JPGs take about five seconds to transfer to the PC. This is perfectly adequate for my uses when showing the client, etc... but if you need live-view on your PC or faster xfer of full sized or raw images, then WiFi cards are probably not going to make you happy. :-(

03-01-2013, 10:32 AM   #9
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PK_Tether says not to use it in film or Liveview mode as doing so can lock up the camera and/or software.

Since I only have a K10D I don't know if Remote Assist will display the Liveview on your computer. Canon's will when tethered, I don't know about Pentax if that's what you're trying to do. Otherwise PK_Tether can save the images to your PC, not your SD card.
03-01-2013, 12:30 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the help. For now I am stuck with copy to computer view and re-shoot as I am shooting Monday but probably going to ebay the Pentax and lenses and then get a D800 or D3x or D3S. Costly but will probably last a life time.
03-01-2013, 02:07 PM   #11
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Yep. Pentax has some good gear, but you gotta use the right equipment for the job.
If Pentax can't produce the equipment that matches your needs you gotta move on.

More than the equipment, as the K5 and lenses are superb for what I do, support is important.
Sadly Pentax support and related service companies (actually only one service company in the US) have about pushed me to dump my entire load and go with another brand.
Be careful what you wish for... Nikon is getting a really bad reputation for service lately. It is sounding almost as bad as Pentax service.


But I rely on weather proofing and high ISO shooting a lot, and so far there is not another DSLR out there that so greatly out-matches what the K5 line offers at any price point to make the switch worthwhile for me yet. (about $15K-25K to get my most commonly used equipment replaced) I might even go with a used D3s, but the D4 is a disappointment.


Regardless, and quite honestly it doesn't sound like tethering is going to help you much.
Although I am probably mis-understanding your workflow.
If you are simply previewing your shot before taking an actual photo, the screen preview via tethering is going to suck and not be a very true representation of the shot that will result.
I'd say you are better off shooting, transferring to the PC and viewing each shot. Whether that be via tethering or WiFi capable card.
The only real benefit of tethering over WiFi card is control of camera settings, and slightly faster xfer rate.
If you just need previews, shoot RAW+JPG and set the JPG to a lower resolution for quick viewing and slight zoom capability, like 6MP.
Unless you're machine-gunning your shoots, the xfer rate is not unreasonable.... plus you don't trip over cords! :-) :-) :-)


Anyway, I fully understand the desire to switch. (once something meets my needs, I'm dumping Pentax)
Just make sure the grass is truly greener on the other side before you jump in.
03-02-2013, 03:16 AM   #12
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@amoringello Thanks for the advice. I will give the Eyefi card a whirl and see how that works out. My costs are nothing like yours (perhaps $4.5k) but I don't want to spend money if I don't need to. My main reason for tethering is when I shoot interiors. Tethering enables me to check composition and that everything (the hang of a curtain is OK for example) so maybe the eyefi card will be OK.

Thanks for the advice.
03-02-2013, 12:39 PM   #13
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Ok it looks like you may be able to just copy the Remote Assistant programs and support files to your drive and run it without installing it. You can download a zip file of the programs here:

http://tinyurl.com/a5hsovk

Failing that I copied the contents of the 3.x CD-ROM here:
http://tinyurl.com/s-sw55

Try putting those in a folder and running the setup.exe to install the camera utilities. If that doesn't work try putting the files on a flashdrive begining at the root and set the label of the drive to "S-SW55". If that fails you can burn a CD-ROM (setup.exe etc goes in the root) with the label S-SW55. There's a extras folder in there that has the 3.5 updates (you need a drive labeled "S-SW74" in order for them to install). After you install the camera utilities Remote Assistant should install. You don't need to install the updates and you can uninstall the utilities after installing Remote Assistant.

I'll leave these files up for a few days and then delete them.

This thread will be of use to you if you haven't seen it already. You can take a flashdrive and change the volume label to "S-SW55","S-SW75", or "S-SW90" (depending on the version) in order to install the software and updates.
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/photography-articles/36984-how-install-pp...installed.html
01-13-2014, 09:10 PM   #14
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I tried using Remote Assistant 3.51 (RA3.51) with the PENTAX K10D from a standard user account and from an administrator account on Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit computer and so far, it only works from the administrator account. So, I suggest log-in on to the administrator account, install RA3.51 on it, restart the computer, log-in to the same administrator account, turn on the K camera you have, be sure it’s set to PC for data transfer, connect the cable to your K camera only first, be sure that the K10D is still power on and connect it to the computer. Last, start RA3.51 and test it with a test shot from the program and a small interval test of 3 shots, one every 30-45 seconds. I did it and it works OK. I’m not sure if it can work on 64-bit versions of Windows.
Regarding PK Tether, it works in either a user account or an administrator account on a Windows Vista 32-bit computer.
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