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Impinj's ItemTest Software Walk Through | Inventory & Tag Memory Showcases

Impinj's ItemTest Software Walk Through | Inventory & Tag Memory Showcases

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Introduction

Welcome to this video that will walk you through Impinj's ItemTest Software - specifically the Inventory & Tag Memory Showcases. ItemTest is Impinj's demo software that can be used with all Impinj RFID readers.

Video Transcript

Welcome to this video that will walk you through downloading, installing, and getting started with Impinj’s ItemTest Software. In order to ensure that your PC has all of the minimum system requirements for the ItemTest Software - checkout that information in the description below.

In Part 1 of this video we will cover:

  • Downloading & Installing ItemTest

Let’s jump in.

Part 1 - Downloading & Installing ItemTest

Before we navigate to the ItemTest Software files, it is strongly recommended that you uninstall any previous ItemTest 1.0 versions prior to downloading and using ItemTest 2.0 versions.

In order to download Impinj’s ItemTest Software - we will head over to our support website, support.atlasRFIDstore.com and click on the “Software and Firmware” box.

Then click on “Using Inventory Mode in ItemTest”.

As you can see, at the top of this article is a link to download the software via dropbox. Click on the link.

Different versions of ItemTest will be located in this dropbox folder. Click on the newest version of ItemTest available to you, which is easy to see if you change the icon structure to individual lines and look for the last updated file - now click on that newest version.

Now three zip files are available - click download, then click “direct download” so the files download onto your computer.

The files will automatically start downloading at the bottom of the screen, once they are finished, click on the arrow and click “show in folder”.

Then go ahead and extract your files - I’ll right click, hover over 7-zip, and extract them to a folder named the exact same thing.

Double click on the new folder.

Find the ItemTest Application icon, that is labeled “application” in the third column.

Impinj‘s ItemTest versions 2.6 and above do not have a lengthy setup wizard, instead, the software simply opens - which is called an unattended install. Double click on the application.

Additionally, versions 2.6 and above will not allow users to choose the destination to save the software, but once the software is installed, moving it to a different location is possible. A shortcut icon will automatically generate to your desktop as well.

In part two of the video, we will cover: 

  • Adding a Reader/Data Source
  • Explaining Showcases
  • Inventory Showcase
  • Tag Memory Showcase
  • Quick Settings Walkthrough

Part 2 - Inside ItemTest

When ItemTest opens, you will notice that version 2.6 and later have a new, sleek interface that is easy to use with more controls than ever before. I’m going to go ahead and connect my reader so that I can demonstrate reading RFID tags and walk through some of the new features.

Adding a Reader/Data Source

Today i’m using the new Impinj R700 - i’m going to quickly set that up now and get it connected.

My reader is up and running, in order to connect it to ItemTest, click the plus icon next to “Data Sources”.

One of the first things you will see next to “Add a Data Source” there is a magnifying glass icon.

Click on that icon to find readers via automatic discovery. A firewall menu may appear asking you to give permission to this software, click allow access. As you can see, my reader does appear via the automatic discovery.

However, If Automatic Discovery doesn’t work for you - don't worry, we will walk through the manual discovery below.

The first blank asks for your reader’s host name or IP address. I already have my reader’s user interface, or UI opened in my browser so i’m going to open that window,

Then locate, and simply copy my reader’s IP address.

Now i’ll paste that into the Host Name blank. As you can see, you can also give your reader a nickname in this version which is a really nice feature for a system with multiple devices. I’ll leave that option blank for now.

The last blank asks you the Data Source Interface, for the R700, this blank is very important because the R700 has two available interfaces The IoT interface and LLRP interface. The IoT interface can be used, if the HTTP and HTTPS configurations have been enabled via the reader’s Web UI, but this option has less functionality within ItemTest.

For more available options within ItemTest, ensure that you choose the LLRP Interface and that your reader is set to the LLRP interface as well. To check that, jump back to the reader’s UI and click the drop down under “reader interface”. Select the LLRP interface and click update underneath. Once the reader is set up on the correct interface, which mine was, jump back to ItemTest and click “Add Data Source”.

Your menu should then close and your reader’s IP address, hostname, or your selected reader nickname will appear in the far left column. As you can see, the software allows you to toggle your reader on and off which is convenient if you have several readers as Data Sources.

Explaining Showcases

If we look to our main menu on the far left, you can see that under “Showcases” we four options, and on screen I will show the readers that support each:

We have - Inventory, Location, Direction, and Tag Memory

As I said earlier - today we are using the Impinj R700 so I will walk through the Inventory and Tag Memory Showcases as well as the other options in the main menu column. Let's jump into the Inventory Showcase.

Inventory Showcase

Click on “Inventory” under Showcases and to get started reading tags, simply click the play icon. While we are reading tags, take a look at all the new columns available in this version -

  • EPC
  • TID
  • Read Count
  • Last Read From
  • First Seen
  • Last Seen
  • Time Since Last Seen
  • Last RSSI
  • RSSI Average
  • RSSI Maximum
  • RSSI Minimum
  • Antenna
  • Power
  • Phase Angle
  • Doppler Frequency

These columns are very detailed and provide extremely valuable information - the columns that are not populating right now are TID, Phase Angle, and Doppler Frequency. TID is currently not turned on, and Phase Angle and Doppler Frequency are only available on Gateway Readers like the xArray and xSpan.

I’ll go ahead and stop my reader for now so we can look at the Tag Memory Showcase.

Tag Memory Showcase

Instead of clicking directly on the Tag Memory option under Showcase, I’ve found that it’s much easier to right click on the tag’s EPC that you want to look at. I’ll right click on my first tag’s EPC, right click, and click “Tag Memory Access.”

As you can see, we have a few boxes on this page -

The EPC number box will always report the full EPC number.

The three dropdowns below are controls for reporting tag data in the boxes below “Tag Memory” right here.

The Memory Bank dropdown will allow you to switch to reading different memory banks.

The Word Count dropdown and Word Offset dropdown are a little bit more complex.

The Word Count dropdown specifies how many ‘words’ you would like the software to report from the tag’s specified memory bank.

A ‘word’ is simply a string of 4 hexadecimal characters.

If your tag’s EPC memory has 96 bits, it has 24 hexadecimal characters, which can then be divided by 4 to equal 6 words.

However, the Tag Memory Showcase - in ItemTest also reports a tag’s CRC-16 and 16-bit Protocol Control information prior to the EPC number. These are two control numbers which are each 4 hexadecimal characters in length, or two words.

To learn about what a CRC-16 and 16-bit Protocol Control are - click on the link on screen now.

Because ItemTest adds those two words, this tag has 8 words in total - so i’m going to change the dropdown to 8, and click read.

Now you will see the full EPC number - including the preceding CRC-16 and 16-bit Protocol Control, which are in these two boxes here.

The EPC begins with “3038” and ends in “7878” just like the full EPC number reported above.

If you would like to avoid seeing the CRC-16 and the 16-bit Protocol Control when viewing the EPC number - here’s where the word offset dropdown comes into play.

If we want to tell the reader not to read those first two words,

which are the CRC-16 and 16-bit Protocol Control, we can set the word offset dropdown to two.

Now, because we are telling the software to read the EPC memory, except for the first two words, our Word Count needs to decrease by the number of words we Offset. Essentially, right now we are telling the reader to read 8 words, but to start at word 3. If you do that, your Tag Memory boxes will fill with X’s because the reader wasn't able to find 8 words starting at word 3. So on the Word Count dropdown, set your Word Count to 6.

Now click Read, and you have your full EPC number in hex and - also in ASCII over on the right.

Remember, the Word Count and Word Offset dropdown also must be used when writing to an RFID tag.

Writing an RFID tag is also possible in this Showcase. For more information on Writing RFID Tags in ItemTest Software - checkout the link on screen now (Coming Soon!).

Quick Settings Walkthrough

Now we will jump down to “Settings” in our main menu - as you can see we have a few simple options here -

Updates - Updates is essentially a toggle bar that allows ItemTest to automatically check for updates upon opening.

Tag Logging is a feature that allows tag reads to be logged to a file as they are received. If you would like to keep a record of your tag reads, simply choose a destination and a file name prefix and toggle the “Generate Unique Tag Log” to the on position.

And finally, About, which is simply a direct link to the ItemTest user guide.

Next, we will look at Tags of Interest, if you click the plus icon next to the name, a file explorer window will open.

This feature is ideal for users that have specific tags that they want the reader to solely read, and ignore any background tag reads. You can read more about this unique feature in the User Guide.

Conclusion

That wraps up this tutorial - If you would like to learn about a specific feature in ItemTest, comment below and we can work on a quick video to walk you through it!

Thanks for tuning into this video about Downloading, Installing, and Using Impinj’s ItemTest Software Version 2.6 and above. Remember to like this video and subscribe to our channel for more videos just like this one!