As we've been mentioning in our support forums for
months now, as of July 5th, 2006 the National
Weather Service has stopped providing radar images
in the GIF format using the older style radar
displays. This follows the NWS changes on their
websites, done earlier this year to migrate all
publicly available NWS radar imagery to RIDGE GIS
type radar imagery.
The NWS made public several announcements ( read
here ) of their
older style radar imagery discontinuance, as we
have on our support forums.
This means that versions 2.x of StormPredator are
no longer able to receive site specific radar
imagery, although the forecast, warning maps,
national and regional satellite and radar
functions of StormPredator versions 2.x will
continue to operate.
If you are a registered owner of any version of
StormPredator prior to version 3.00, you will be
affected by this NWS data migration to the new
format. If you've
purchased StormPredator after March 1st,
2006 the upgrade is free. Simply use
contact form in
our tech support to send us your name, serial
number, and/or invoice number if you have it.
We'll check the purchase record and email a new
serial number to you.
low cost upgrade to version 3.x of the program
is available for $19.99 for a download and $24.99
for a CD ROM for purchasers of the program prior
to March 1st 2006.
Why are we charging
for this upgrade?
It is important to note that we have
never charged for an upgrade since StormPredator was
released on 10/1/03, and there have been many
feature upgrades since then that we have offered
free to our loyal user base. However, this version
3.0 is essentially an entirely new program. It uses
different radar data, has many more displayable
products, has improved accuracy, and many new and
exciting features not possible in previous versions.
SP 3 represents months and thousands of hours worth
or work. And this is just not to the program itself.
All the skins had to be redone, all the basemaps had
to be reworked, plus dozens of other adjustments had
to be made.
So while we know that paying for
an upgrade is not something everybody wants to do,
we felt the sheer volume of work and new features on
Version 3 justified the upgrade charge.
features are in SP3?
There are many new features that
make this program even better, a complete list is
What's new in version 3 and why would I
Its a whole new program, with dozens of features that
could not be done in version 2.x See a list
here The biggest features: more
radar products, warnings overlay, GIS accuracy in plotting storm positions and
ETA, plus 3D terrain mapping.
Is there anything
else that we get with Version 3? This
feature has been removed.
All version 3.0 and higher owners get
our upcoming lightning imagery (see
sample2 ) free of charge. This will update
lighting strike imagery overlaid on the radar map every time a
radar image is updated (about every 5 minutes) and will allow
for looping of lightning images for the past two hours. Users
will be required to register for a free FTP account with our
Why can't you
offer a free patch to keep the older version I own
We would have preferred to do that,
since our history had been to provide ongoing
improvements to the program. But the change forced
by the NWS migration to RIDGE was not just a
simple image or URL change, it was an entirely new
method of retrieving and assembling and displaying
radar images. Everything was different, the
coordinate system, the image format, radar site
basemaps, the change
from a single layer to multiple layers, the change
form a single composited image to one that is
assembled from parts, the image
aspect ratio, the color table schemes, the product types
and many more things. Such a broad scope of
changes to the image data made it impossible to
simply issue a patch to keep the older version
Can I try out
Version 3 without upgrading right away?
Absolutely. You can download the
trial version which will operate for up to 15 days
and try it out.
Will I be able
to run it on my PC? I'm running Windows 98.
Unfortunately, we couldn't keep
supporting Windows 98 and still do all the things
needed for this new enhanced version of the
program. Microsoft itself no longer supports
Windows 98, and has recently dropped sales of
Windows 2000 as well. SP Version 3.x will run on
Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows Media Center
Will I need a faster PC to run
version 3 of StormPredator?
Possibly. It depends on the machine
you are running now. RAM is a big factor, as SP3
uses much more RAM than previous version 2.x to
accommodate all of the layers of maps and radar
data. If you are running less than 256 MB of RAM,
chances are SP3 will run slower or not at all. We
recommend a minimum of 512 MB of RAM and a Pentium
4 @ 2 GHz or faster PC to run SP3, along with a
video card capable of DirectX9.