Posts Tagged ‘Xastir’

Get crackalackin’

As Fall is here, it is time to put together a To Do list of everything I have been putting off all Summer and the beginning of the school year.

TM-D710A

I have four of these rigs and they need some TLC. I need to make sure they have the updated firmware on the main unit, TNC, and operating panel.

The latest versions:
TNC: 1.02 – May 2011
Operating Panel: 2.12 – Janurary 2015
Main unit: 2.10 – May 2011

For the benifit of emergency operations, I have been performing the modificiation to the TM-D710As to open the frequency range.

Standard frequency plan. I developed a spreadsheet of the repeaters in the greater Kansas City area, frequecies for FRS/GMRS, the Kansas City Airport (MCI), Sherman Army Airfield, and various national park frequency plans. This is the first step in standardizing the configuration across all four of the TM-D710As. I can additionally take the spreadsheet and use it for programming my HTs. This should allow for a memory channel standardization that will make my life easier.

Weather Station

The current Davis Vantage Pro2 I have installed on the roof needs maintenance. Wouldn’t it be nice to get the top of the line version?

For some time I have been talking about finding a weather station setup that will work with a linux-based computer. That quest continues. I have read about a piece of software called Meteo that is suppose to work with Xastir.

And if I can’t get Xastir to work with the Vantage Pro2… is there another comparable weather station that WILL work with Xastir? Life would be a lot easier without Windows.

HF Antenna for home

I need to string up the Carolina Windom I have had sitting on the shelf for the last few years. The G5RV that is up now is showing its age (not to mention one of the legs is drooping badly). Now that the leaves have fallen, I should be able to get the Windom up there without too many problems (… famous last words).

HF setup in the mobile

Time to get going. I have all the materials I need. What I don’t have is an installation plan… mainly for the Tarheel antenna. I can’t do a hitch mount because I need the hitch for pulling my travel trailer. Two possible options: (a) get a swinging gate for the back bumper where you could mount a spare tire and a water can or (b) find some way to afix a mount coming out behind the left rear tire.

First run with the Raspberry Pi

High demand!Like many others my little Pi turned up on the doorstep in a little cardboard box. As expected there wasn’t much in the box apart from a sort of ‘Welcome Note’ and directions for downloading the OS. Needless to say it took longer to download the OS than it did to write it to the SD card. So all connected up to the keyboard, mouse, screen and ethernet and away we go. Power on.

The first boot took a little while longer than expected but I expect it was creating bits and bobs all over the place. This was confirmed as subsequent boots to the command line, or rather to the login part of the command line took considerably less time. Login details are simple enough with the user name as Pi and the password as Raspberry. Something that you may want to change later on.

Once you’re into the command line it could seem a little confusing as to what to do next. Especially if you are used to a nice looking GUI with a mouse etc. Have no fear as a simple “startx” without the quotes fires up the window manager (LXDE – Lightweight desktop environment).

One thing I like to do is to run “sudo apt-get update” from the LX terminal just to make sure everything is up to date before we get started. The other thing that may be useful is to install synaptic package manager with “sudo apt-get install synaptic”. Again from the terminal window.

Time was running out for me at this point so I thought I’d have a quick look at Xastir (APRS application) to see if it would work. After a bit of a turned up face at the look of the interface I confirmed that it works as easily as it would on any platform. A bit of configuring and you’re away. I didn’t connect up the radio then as it’ll need a sound modem like the AGWPE for windows. That’ll be the next step.

One thing I hadn’t noticed is that there is no on board clock and the Pi get the time either by you setting it in the command line or through the ethernet. This could mean that if applications like WSPR can run on it then an external clock is going to be needed or a permanent connection to the ethernet.

So first impressions are done with and I have to say that it does struggle a bit if you ask it to do too much at once but that’s more to do with managing your own expectations but this is going to be a very interesting little gizmo to keep an eye on for ham radio

Show Notes #076

Introduction:

Announcements:

  • The Black Sparrow Media application for iPad, iPhone and iPod has been submitted to the iTunes store. It is just awaiting validation from Apple, which may take up to two weeks. We’ll let everyone know when it’s available.
  • Special Event Station W0S (Whiskey Zero Sierra) will be operating from the Titanic Branson Museum from April 13-15, 2012, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Titanic disaster. Russ, K5TUX, will be operating the station at some point.

Feedback:

  • Scott, AD7MI, asks for help linking APRS and his his Davis Vantage Pro2 weather station with Xastir. Our hosts suggest trying one or both of these:
    • Meteo – Davis weather station platform software for Linux. You can subscribe to the Meteo mailing list by sending a subscription request to [email protected] It has been several years since Meteo was updated, and is still not at version 1.0. You must download the .tar file from the web site as it does not appear in the distribution repositories.
    • wview- Cross-platform weather station software. It does need an internet connection if you are going to contribute information to various weather sites, such as:

      This program is under active development. Even if it requires a work-around to perform as you wish, it may be worth the trouble. If you’ve ever configured a Linksys router, the web interface of wview looks a lot like that. wview has a support site via Google Groups at http://groups.google.com/group/wview.

Let us know how you get on, Scott!

  • Paul, M0PGX, replied to our recent discussion of D-STAR and suggests trying the AllStar Link Network. Like EchoLink, it allows you to talk to other ham radio operators using just your computer and a microphone, including those operators running D-STAR.

    Russ signed up for the AllStarLink network; it’s very similar to joining EchoLink. AllStar uses the Asterisk VOIP system, and Jim, WB6NIL, is the author of the repeater link software. Russ had success using a Mac computer, but not with a Linux machine.

    Richard sees the biggest problem with EchoLink is that it only allows one connection per IP address, so you can’t have both a server and client at home. The EchoLink site only sees your IP address assigned by your ISP, which limits you to one connect from home. In this respect, AllStarLink appears to better in that it seems to allow multiple connections.

    AllStarLink is available in several combinations of Linux and Asterisk:

    • ACID – based on CentOS
    • Limey Linux – based on embedded Linux and bootable from a flash drive, and runs ONLY on several specific Mini-ITX motherboards.
    • Pickle – a specialized embedded Linux distro designed to operate on a BeagleBoard-xM (and DMK Engineering LOX board).

    Russ then provides an overview of setting up an AllStar Link client.

  • Back to Paul’s email, he suggests we use the term “digital mode” when we should say “protocol”, which brings us to…
  • Leif, KC8RWR, responded to Paul’s comment that D-STAR specifies a protocol, modulation mode, voice codec, etc. The modulation mode used is GMSK.

    Richard defends the use of “mode” as appropriate as the definition allows it to mean “a method or means of doing something”. For example, CW vs DFCW (dual-frequency CW), where DFCW uses frequency shifts to distinguish dots and dashes, rather than two different lengths of the same frequency, and spaces. Both are CW.

  • Leif, KC8RWR, also comments on the possibility that he’s been nitpicking, as well as the use of Q-signals in voice conversations.
  • Bill, KE5WMA, suggests that hobos migrate to New Orleans from Dallas this time of year because Dallas doesn’t have Mardi Gras!
  • We received a donation from Bill H. Thanks, Big Poppa! :)
  • Contact Info:

    Music:

    • To be added.

    Resonant Frequency Video Edition 1 (short Intro to Linux for Radio Operators)

    This is a short introduction to Linux for Amateur Radio Operators showing a few things that are available for Amateur Radio.

    LHS Show Notes #056

    Introduction:

    Announcements:

    • Hello to the new folks in the chat room.
    • The Mintcast podcast is either going to stop or will have new hosts after the next episode. If you’re interested in hosting a podcast, contact the folks over there.
    • Please spread the word about MAGNetcon, the Mid-America GNU/Linux Networkers Conference, to be held May 6-7, 2011 at the St. Louis Union Station Marriott. If you know anyone that might be a sponsor, exhibitor, or speaker, please let us know. Application forms are available on the web site.
    • Check out the new website for Resonant Frequency.
    • Also mentioned, the Going Linux podcast and Computer America, “America’s longest-running nationally syndicated radio talk show about computers.”

    Feedback:

    • Richard, KR4EY, writes about CW… wait, we did this one in Episode 52.
    • John, KC8DAX, weighs in on the Windows vs. Linux debate: there are hams that will buy a wire antenna and there are others that will build one. He thinks it’s the same thing with operating systems. Would you want a radio you couldn’t open? Our hosts discuss.
    • We received a donation from Charles to help send Linux in the Ham Shack to the 2011 Dayton Hamvention. Thank you, Charles!
    • Joe, K1RBY, recently discovered the podcast and is catching up, but is having a problem using gpodder to retrieve episodes. Yes, Joe, there is a bug in one of the WordPress plugins on the web site that contributed to the problem (see lhspodcast.info for a description of the problem.) It has been corrected.
    • John, K7JM, also had the problem with gpodder and sends his appreciation for the fix.
    • Richard, KJ4VGV, tells us that he is a new amateur radio operator since May and has published an article: Antenna Restrictions: Are They a Catastrophe Waiting to Happen? Good job, Richard!
    • James, N2ENN, comments about our episode 52 when we discussed Unity, and offers his thoughts on Wayland, Debian and Ubuntu. Our hosts discuss, and digress to a discussion of browsers, plugins, drivers, ALSA and PulseAudio on Debian vs. LinuxMint Debian Edition. They also commment on Bill Meara’s (of SolderSmoke fame) efforts to get WSPR running under WINE in Ubuntu.
    • Paul, KE5WMA, writes “PIC micro controllers are getting more popular in HAM projects. Any suggestions on programming software and boards?” Well, Paul, Linux does still support serial ports, but this may be a good topic for another show. You might find something useful in the many hits returned by a Google search on “Linux PIC programmer”.
    • B.B., KC5PIY, asks for help with getting Windows programs for programming radios, such as the Icom IC-2820H and IC-706 MkIIg, running under Linux. He’d also like an APRS client. Richard recommends UIView as an APRS client for Windows, and Xastir for Linux. Russ suggests that most of the radio programming applications will run under WINE in Linux. Also, check out CHIRP, free Linux software for programming a variety of D-STAR radios. You may also want to explore the D-RATS mailing list. It’s not likely you’ll be able to dual-boot Windows and Linux on that netbook, but you can install Ubuntu Linux using WUBI, which would allow you to run Linux within Windows, or install Linux to a USB flash drive using Pen Drive Linux.
    • Craig, KB5UEJ, writes about learning IPv6: “I went through the Hurricane Electric certification program and really learned lots about IPv6. I’m now running IPv6 on my home using HEs IPv6 tunnelbroker service. It’s no longer the big bad scary thing that it used to be.” Russ also talked about IPv6 on episode 6 of his QSK podcast.
    • Matt shares his thoughts about building “simple” projects from junk box parts and the similarity to running Linux.

    Contact Info:

    Music:

    • “Balboa” by Ness from the album Fiesta, courtesy of Jamendo.
    • “Crawling Back In” by Deathalizer from the album It Dwells Within, courtesy of Jamendo.

    LHS Episode #056: The Squeal of Feedback

    Hi, folks. Episode #054 of Linux in the Ham Shack is an all-feedback episode. We cover a lot of ground in this one, from how to run Linux using WUBI, via dual boot, from a flash drive and more. There’s a bit about PIC controllers, feed problems, sticks in the mud, a sprinkling of badgers and a whole lot more. Keep that feedback coming. We love it!

    73 de The LHS Guys

    LHS Episode #025: APRS and Xastir

    aprsRichard and I have been busy over the last couple of weeks. He spent a day at the Belton Hamfest near Waco, Texas on October 3rd. The weekend before that, I spent a few days in Columbus, Ohio at Ohio Linux Fest. This is our first episode back from those events. I have a few hours of audio I need to sift through, but I managed to get a couple of clips from my interviews and commentary from OLF included in the second segment of this episode of the podcast. Because I had a visit from my parents and my brother and sister-in-law from New Hampshire, I haven’t been able to get the podcast out in a timely manner. I suppose after 25 releases, I should probably stop apologizing for being late but I do like it when we release on time. Anyway, enjoy our interviews and Richard’s discourse on APRS and Xastir, and stay tuned for a lot of great audio from our live endeavors coming up in future episodes. Thanks for downloading, and have a great couple of weeks.


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