GPIB Issues

I’ve been trying to interface with GPIB instruments but struggling a lot with GPIB adapters. Hopefully this can be useful to someone else trying to automate old instruments.

I started out with a Agilent 82357B USB → GPIB adapter. I was able to get my power meter to respond to a GPIB query once but never again. After fighting with linux-gpib configuration on and off for a few months, I got fed up and got an Agilent E5810A Ethernet → GPIB adapter. Despite authentication issues on the university network, I had no problems communicating with my power meter no more than an hour after power everything on.

I’m using PyVISA with the pyvisa-py backend. I’ve now begun writing python device drivers to simplify usage of the meter.

import visa
rm = visa.ResourceManager('py')

ip = '169.254.58.10'
gpib_addr = 13
inst = rm.open_resource(f'TCPIP::{ip}::gpib0,{gpib_addr}::INSTR')

The IP address 169.254.58.10 is the default IP if no DHCP server is found.

Brendan Haines

A concurrent BS/MS student at the University of Colorado at Boulder studying Electrical and Computer Engineering.