I spent the past winter going out on most clear nights and taking groups of shots. However, I spent a lot of time aligning my camera and changing from target to target basically required re-aligning the entire setup. My goal for this summer is to put together a system that can auto-align and take shots without requiring me to constantly fiddle with the controls.

Software that fits this goal already exists, such as kstars. However, my camera (a Lumix G7) can only be remotely controlled through a proprietary WiFi interface instead of the USB interface that most software supports. I managed to find a GitHub repo that converts the WiFi interface to the ASCOM format supported by most software. However, my camera's firmware no longer supports the interface as implemented by the repo.

I did have some success at getting gphoto to connect to the camera and I will need to do more exploring to see how much control I would have over the camera.
My mount connects over USB and its interface is well-defined so regardless of the final implementation, I'm not worried about controlling it.

I envision taking two routes for this project:
1) I create a library that connects to the camera and that can interface with kstars
2) I develop my own program that controls the mount and camera while also managing alignment and pointing.

Project 2 sounds like more fun and I'm going to try going down that route for now.
Project 2 definitely sounds like more fun, although a lot more work. Is there a path to do (1) first, then create your own program that can use the same API that kstars uses?
Turns out I needed to take neither route! I took advantage of a cloudy night to experiment with different software and I found the magic combination. I ended up using my Windows laptop I had lying around since it appears most of the solutions for my specific hardware assume the user is running on Windows. As I grow more comfortable with this software stack, I'll probably look at porting it over to a Raspberry Pi so I can take longer imaging sessions. I'll post on the astrophotography thread with results once there's a night with clearer skies.

Software used:

- APT (The astrophotography software, not the Debian utility) controls the camera and the mount.
The camera is controlled by the Lumix ASCOM driver I linked above.
My mount is controlled by iOptron's ASCOM driver..
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