I’ve owned my Raspberry Pi for a while now.  I purchased it around the time they were first introduced (early 2012).  Not having a lot of knowledge in the Linux OS, the most I ever really did with it was set it up and play around with it.  However, my reason for purchasing the RPI was to some how use it for amateur radio purposes. 

As I have mentioned before on my blog, I also own a D-STAR Digital Access Point Dongle (DVAP).  I purchased it in 2011 and had been using it connected to an older Windows XP machine.  I wrote a “first look” post as well as one where I was experimenting on the DVAP range away from my QTH.   However, in following my own advice given in my podcast, The Practical Amateur Radio Podcast episode 64 about the Microsoft Windows XP End of Life, I decided it was time to explore how the DVAP might be used with the Raspberry Pi.

In most situations, Google truly is your friend.  Just doing a simple Google search for DVAP and Raspberry Pi led me to more information than I had time to read.  However, the very first search result happened to provide all the information I needed to setup my Raspberry Pi to work with my DVAP dongle.  Special thanks to Bill, AB4BJ who had blogged about his experience in setting up his Pi for DVAP purposes. 

If you have a Raspberry Pi, a DVAP Dongle and a D-STAR radio sitting around your ham shack, it’s very easy to set it all up just as I have done.  In the below picture, I have my ICOM ID92-AD, the DVAP Dongle and the Raspberry Pi setup.  Once configured, the Raspberry Pi will function stand-alone (without keyboard, mouse and monitor).  I can access the RPI via VNC from my iPad if needed. 

2013-11-24 13.39.52

Raspberry Pi running Debian Linux and the DVAPNODE and IRCDDB software.  DVAP is connected to REF001A in Aurora, Illinois.  Screenshot from iPad VNC session.


For now, my setup will remain in my ham shack.  I know many build this setup for mobile/portable use.  At the present time I do not have wireless capabilities for the RPI.  I also want to see just how stable this setup is before making any additional changes.   I was pleased to wake up this morning and find the RPI was still running and the OS was stable.  Time will tell…

Until next time…

73 de KDØBIK

Jerry Taylor, KD0BIK, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Colorado, USA. He is the host of the Practical Amateur Radio Podcast. Contact him at [email protected].

3 Responses to “DVAP + Pi”

  • Randy K7AGE:

    I built up the same setup following Tommy’s segment from AmateurLogic. It all worked fine.

    But, I would like to use it with VNC to my iPad, that is ok. The problem I was having was to configure the Pi to a new wifi network or to my iPhone hotspot. For the VNC to connect to the Pi, I need to know the Pi’s IP address, which may change depending on the wifi that it connects to. I don’t know if the Pi’s wifi will automatically connect to known wifi? Then, how to configure the Pi’s wifi when you can’t connect the VNC. Seemed to be chicken and egg problem.

    So, I have a old netbook, which has display and keyboard. I plan on using the netbook when I need to take the DVAP portable. At home, I currently have the DVAP connected to a separate pc that I use for Echolink. My other idea was to use the Pi at home for the DVAP, due to its low power. But since I leave the Echolink pc on all the time, the Pi really isn’t needed.

    Then on another AmateurLogic show, Tommy showed using the Pi as a file server. That may make the most sense in the long run.


  • Randy K4LJA:

    Nice — but for some of us old timers, who are still trying to learn, could you also tell us what the abbreviations mean — instead of just printing RPI via VNC and so on. Thanks much —

    Randy K4LJA

  • Randy K4LJA:

    Jerry — that was sort of a knee jerk reaction on my part. I think the RPI must mean the small computer. I’m trying to learn. Thanks for helping. I enjoy your blogs… and am looking for an excuse to purchase a Raspberry Pi. Again — thanks — Randy K4LJA

Leave a Comment

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter
News, Opinion, Giveaways & More!

Join over 7,000 subscribers!
We never share your e-mail address.

Also available via RSS feed, Twitter, and Facebook.

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

We never share your e-mail address.

Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on AmateurRadio.com!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!

  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor

Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: