Author Topic: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?  (Read 1054 times)

Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« on: June 07, 2018, 07:19:03 pm »
Any way to do this or am I going to have to dig out the despised Windows laptop?

fuaran

  • rothair gasta
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2018, 11:17:03 pm »
Maybe try an online converter tool. eg the version of GPS Babel at GPS Visualiser. You can set the output format to Garmin Points of Interest. http://www.gpsvisualizer.com/gpsbabel/

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2018, 11:28:59 pm »
Hi I use a Chromebook too  ;D I have had no problems loading GPX files onto the Garmin using a data cable. According to this guide http://www.garmin.com/en-GB/extras/ loading POIs is as simple as copying them to your Garmin's memory so have a crack at it!

NB: Make sure your cable is a data cable (i.e. the one provided with the Garmin). Many USB cables will only let you charge the device, and not permit transferring files.
Bikepacking bargain basement: reviews of high value kit great for the tourer, bikepacker and randonneur on a budget

https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=109048.msg2312359#msg2312359

Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2018, 07:56:10 am »
thanks folks.

I had the idea that you HAD to use the Garmin Loader thing as an auto tool of some sort and that you HAD TO do it as a single process, ie - collecting all your various POI sources together and then loading (meaning that any existing loaded POIs had to be removed, copied and put back in with whatever you were adding) them all together. Have done this in the past.

But will investigate and, for the benefit of other Chromebook users who may pass this way try to report back.

Chromebooks are great aren't they bludger :) - Have a 14inch one, longer term will probably get a smaller one for touring.

fuaran

  • rothair gasta
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2018, 08:46:06 am »
What model of Garmin? For the older models, you have to use the POI Loader, or equivalent.

But for most newer models  (ie anything that works as a USB mass storage device), you just have to copy the files to the correct place. And I think you can load multiple separate POI files, for different subjects etc.

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2018, 10:40:49 am »
Are POIs different from waypoints?

I've started using gpxeditor.co.uk to create files of waypoints, which I then copy over to the Garmin via USB cable - just copy the gpx file (saved from gpxeditor.co.uk) into the 'New Files' folder on the device and all the waypoints then appear under 'Locations' when you next start it up.

This is all very easy on my Edge 510. Don't know if it works the same on other Garmin devices.

In theory, you can edit the waypoints gpx file (in a text editor) to change the symbol that displays on your device (by adding the <sym> tag to each waypoint) but my 510 seems a bit temperamental in this respect - it seems to be pot luck whether it actually displays the symbol you want or some other random symbol. However, you can manually change the symbols on the device itself, but this is a laborious process, especially if you have lots of waypoints.

fuaran

  • rothair gasta
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2018, 11:34:38 am »
Are POIs different from waypoints?
Yes, they are a bit different. Though depends on the device as to how it uses them.
POI can be grouped into categories, so you can just go to find then "Pub", and it will list all of the nearest ones.
Also they use a different sort of memory from waypoints, so you can fit more of them on. ie most Garmins are limited to a few hundred waypoints, but you can have thousands of POI. And they can include more details for each POI, ie address and phone number, or a custom symbol.

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2018, 12:13:10 pm »
Yes, they are a bit different. Though depends on the device as to how it uses them.
POI can be grouped into categories, so you can just go to find then "Pub", and it will list all of the nearest ones.
Also they use a different sort of memory from waypoints, so you can fit more of them on. ie most Garmins are limited to a few hundred waypoints, but you can have thousands of POI. And they can include more details for each POI, ie address and phone number, or a custom symbol.

Gotcha. Just looked into it a bit more and it seems that POIs are not a supported feature on Edge devices.

What format are POI files? Presumably some sort of custom Garmin format rather than GPX? Or are they just waypoints with custom extensions?

Feanor

  • It's mostly downhill from here.
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2018, 01:36:03 pm »
What format are POI files? Presumably some sort of custom Garmin format rather than GPX? Or are they just waypoints with custom extensions?

They are .gpi files, and opening one in notepad++ it appears they are binary files, not plain text.
You can however see some plain text in there, amongst the binary stuff.

The POI loader can take waypoints in either GPX or CSV format, and spit out a .gpi file.

https://www8.garmin.com/products/poiloader/creating-custom-poi-files/

"Advanced users can create their own .csv and .gpx files that contain Custom POIs (points of interest) for use on compatible Garmin devices with MP3 players. Both .csv and .gpx files are loaded to the device using the Garmin POI Loader application. After processing the files, POI Loader uploads a single file called Poi.gpi to the device.

All POI-related files should be stored in 1 main directory on the computer. One level of sub-folders is allowed for organizing files and creating POI categories. The POI Loader combines all files in the main folder and its sub-folders to create 1 file. Each time POI Loader sends POIs to a device the existing Poi.gpi file is overwritten."

citoyen

  • Cat 6 Racer
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2018, 01:44:40 pm »
Ta!

Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2018, 03:44:12 pm »
What model of Garmin? For the older models, you have to use the POI Loader, or equivalent.

But for most newer models  (ie anything that works as a USB mass storage device), you just have to copy the files to the correct place. And I think you can load multiple separate POI files, for different subjects etc.
It's an etrex20 fuaran if this helps with your advice.
Thanks.

Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2018, 01:53:51 pm »
Hi I use a Chromebook too  ;D I have had no problems loading GPX files onto the Garmin using a data cable. According to this guide http://www.garmin.com/en-GB/extras/ loading POIs is as simple as copying them to your Garmin's memory so have a crack at it!

NB: Make sure your cable is a data cable (i.e. the one provided with the Garmin). Many USB cables will only let you charge the device, and not permit transferring files.

But have you loaded POIs, which use a Garmin-specific GPI file as I understand it?

 Loading GPX files is different and, yes, simple - you just copy them over using the Garmin as another drive.

Also, which Garmin do you use?

Feanor

  • It's mostly downhill from here.
Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2018, 02:37:24 pm »
If you already have them in .gpi format, then you can just drag-and-drop them onto the device same as you do with GPX.

To discover where to put them, look in the GarminDevice.xml file in the root directory of the device.
Here's a snippet from my Edge 800:

<DataType>
   <Name>CustomPOI</Name>
   <File>
      <Specification>
         <Identifier>GPI0.0</Identifier>
      </Specification>
      <Location>
         <Path>Garmin/POI</Path>
         <FileExtension>gpi</FileExtension>

So it's expecting to find gpi files in the /Garmin/POI folder.
On my device, this did not exist, but running the POI loader created it, and dumped the .gpi file in there as expected.

If you don't need to use the POI loader because you already have them in .gpi format, then just create the necessary directory by hand and dump it in there.

Re: Garmin POI loader on a Chromebook?
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2018, 04:00:55 pm »
Many thanks for your reply feanor.

I did try using gps visualizer to create a gpi file from a gpx file but must have screwed something up. I ended up with a list of things just called waypoint and a number and for some reason all of these things seemed to be several thousand miles south.*

I did establish that my Etrex20 seems to be able to accommodate more than one GPI file though.

So I dug the laptop out, momentary panic when I couldn't remember the pasword, ran POIloader, which is indeed very fast and smooth. Used a thumb drive to transfer the gpx/gpi files back and forth from chromebook to laptop and to Etrex.

I decided that in practice it might be best to just have a single file anyway - no great problem to download the GPXs again and it prompts me to make sure that I am using the most up to date files on a trip.

So thanks again to Ben T for this.

https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=95785.0

meaning I have the latest list including the rather nice sounding recently opened Whalebone in Downham Market (appears to have a nice garden) and the latest collection of Archies campsites for the UK.

So, for now, will still be resorting to the cranky windows laptop.

Thanks folks.

* this was the spoons - horreur!