How can I prevent Podcatchers from going into an error state?

Podcatcher we receive for repairs often don’t include a description of what’s wrong with them, and sometimes returned players seem to work just fine. To give you a better understanding of the general meaning of the lights on the Podcatchers and the required action, we have made the Podcatcher LED Status sheet.  Combining that and the Podcatcher LED Error sheet you can determine whether or not a Podcatcher (in an error state) needs to be sent for repairs.

Although we always replace our Podcatchers (which are in an error state or need to be repaired) free of charge, we would like to prevent you from unnecessarily spending money on shipping costs.

To make optimal use of our system and prevent your Podcatchers from going into an error state it’s important to:

  • Place a Podcatcher back into the Dockingstation when returned after use, so it can charge again
  • Firmly push the Podcatcher into a slot when placing it back into the Dockingstation
  • Place all Podcatchers back into the Dockingstations at the end of the day, so they can charge and sync overnight
  • Always sync replacement Podcatchers (whether for missing or repaired players), because they do not hold the content yet
  • You can try syncing a Podcatcher with an error in a different slot to make sure the problem doesn’t lie in the Dockingstation slot
  • Make sure the Sync Console is up, running and connected to a wired internet connection 24/7

If the Podcatcher has been physically damaged, has a distorted sound or makes a rattling sound when shaken, it needs to be replaced. Hardware defects can’t be solved by syncing the player.

What to do when the audio tour isn’t working?

When the audio tour isn’t working, there are a few things you should check.


If a Podcatcher isn’t working as it should, we recommend reading this article instead. Most misbehaving Podcatchers can be brought back in line by synchronizing them.


If a Podcatcher seems to not respond to one or more IDentifiers, there’s a few things you can try. First you have to make sure if you hear a beep when pointing the Podcatcher at an IDentifier.

The Podcatcher beeps when pointed at the IDentifier, and either plays the “Invalid IDentifier Stop” content or no content at all:

    • 1. Make sure you activate a tour by pointing at a Start IDentifier before testing an Object IDentifier. And make sure the Stop you’re testing with is linked to the correct Tour. Read more about Start IDentifiers here.
    • 2. Check if the content is published and synced.
    • 3. Check if the code written on the back of the IDentifier matches the one linked in the TourEditor.
    • 4. Check if the Stop has audio content.
    • 5. Publish any unpublished changes in the Tour.
    • 6. Sync the content onto the Podcatchers again to be sure.

If that doesn’t work, it’s possible (though rare) that the code the IDentifier sends out is different from what’s printed on the sticker. You can check this by using the Podcatcher to read the code to you. Here you can read how to do that.

The Podcatcher does not beep when pointed at the IDentifier:
This is usually a sign that the battery in the IDentifier is empty. Try with a few different Podcatchers to confirm that this might be happening (and isn’t just the Podcatcher’s fault), then replace the battery. If that doesn’t work, the IDentifier can be sent for repairs.

We hope to be helpful enough with this Knowledge Base, but it’s entirely possible you have a question that isn’t listed anywhere. Should that happen, contact us. We’ll be glad to help you get back up and running with the system.

What do the blinking lights on the Podcatcher mean?


In general, if the Podcatcher’s green (middle) LED is blinking or lighting up continuously, that means it’s good to go. If the yellow (left) LED is blinking, the Podcatcher should be put in a Docking station and be synchronized. If the red (right) LED is blinking or lighting up continuously, something is wrong and the Podcatcher can’t be used; if a synchronization doesn’t fix it, you can send it for repairs.

In the manual you can read what the different lights mean.

Something went wrong during synchronization, how do I fix it?

Number of Docking Stations mismatch

The number of Docking Stations found during this synchronization does not match the number of configured Docking Stations for this Sync Console.

This report shows that during the last synchronization the number of docking stations found by the computer did not match the number of docking stations that it should have according to the server.

It’s possible a USB- or power cable isn’t connected properly.

  • Check all the cables and see it they are connected. The light on the Docking station should be green.
  • Check if the USB Hubs are still functioning. Try to use as few USB hubs as possible, and try to use the USB connections directly on the computer if possible. When you use USB hubs make sure the cables between the computer and USB hub are as short as possible. We advise you not to use the power adapter that comes with the USB Hubs.
  • Check if the FTDI operating program installation is installed.
  • If problems persist it can be helpful to use (or not use) a grounded electrical outlet.

If all of the above seems to be in order, you can try the following:

  1. Turn off the Sync computer / laptop.
  2. Remove the Podcatchers from the docking stations.
  3. Remove all USB connectors which are connected with the docking stations or USB hubs from the computer/laptop.
  4. Pull the plugs of the 5V adapters out of the outlet.
  5. The green light of the docking station will turn off, wait several minutes.
  6. Reconnect all the cables and place the Podcatchers back into the docking stations.

It can also be possible that the stated number of docking stations no longer matches the real number of docking stations present at your location. This can happen if you’ve ordered more Podcatcher for a temporary Tour for example. If that is the case, change the number of docks that should be connected in the Portal.

This Sync Console has never run a synchronization

As the message implies, the Sync Console has never run a synchronization before. You can manually start a synchronization from the Sync desktop application and/or on the Sync Console, or wait for the automatic daily synchronization to start.

Synchronization of this Sync Console took place more than x days ago

The last synchronization was some time ago ago. To help keep the Podcatcher working correctly, it is recommended to synchronize daily.

Possible causes:

  • The Sync Console is (or was) offline at the time the daily automatic synchronization was scheduled.
  • The internet connection is (or was) not functioning at the time the daily automatic synchronization was scheduled.
  • The Podcatcher Sync program is not running on the Sync Console.

The Sync Console indicates that it’s offline even though it isn’t

If the Sync computer shows as offline in the Sync, that means it can’t connect to our services. This can be caused by something as mundane as an internet cable being plugged out or your Site cutting power to the computer at night, or by something more complex.

To prevent or fix the most common causes of sync failure, make sure:

  • The computer is powered on at the time of syncing;
  • It’s connected to the internet (preferably wired);
  • It has the proper software installed;
  • The Podcatcher Sync application is running;
  • The hard drive isn’t completely full;
  • The computer isn’t stuck on the log-in screen to Windows.

If all of that is true and it still doesn’t want to sync, try rebooting the computer and then manually scheduling a synchronization with the sync application.

Another thing to try is to check whether the application’s settings file has been corrupted. The file is typically located on the C: drive, in Program Files, Guide ID, Podcatcher Sync, Data. Right-click the settings file and open it with Notepad. If it’s empty, close the file again and replace that file with the file inside this zip archive. After replacing the file, restart the Podcatcher Sync service and/or the computer.

Date and/or time on the computer seems to be incorrect

The date and/or time on the computer seems to be incorrect, check the date and/or time settings on the computer and make sure they are correct. After adjusting the time, you need to restart your computer for the changes to be applied properly.

The sync console seems to be online but could have stopped responding

There is communication between the Sync Console and the server, but it seems that the Sync Console is taking too long to finish a task. It’s possible you’ll have to restart the computer manually if it seems to be frozen.