The AE9RB Ham Shack

General discussion and support for the Peaberry SDR V2.

The AE9RB Ham Shack

Postby AE9RB » Thu Mar 05, 2015 9:31 pm

I finally got rid of my last Windows XP install that was my shack computer. The machine was upgraded to Windows 7 with a fresh format of the hard drive. This gave me an opportunity to make a list of all the ham software I installed. It also got rid of an unsupported operating system that was bound to be hijacked into a botnet eventually.

Documenting every single step of the setup would take too long and I don't expect everyone wants my exact configuration. Learning how to get ham software talking to each other on your own is valuable since you can use that knowledge to do new and interesting things. So I present this list mainly as an overview of the software interactions that I find useful. Nothing here is new and unique so an internet search will probably get you any answers if you get stuck on setup.

Windows 7 Ultimate - Remote Desktop enabled so I can operate from my Mac. This is useful even connecting from another Windows machine. You never have to worry about CPU load if you like to surf the web or watch videos while you operate. Note that the Home versions of Windows 7 don't have a Remote Desktop server.

Meinberg NTP 4.2.8 - This ensures the real-time clock in the computer is always very accurate. K1JT modes pretty much require this. It's also nice to log accurate times. My computer would normally drift a whole minute over a week with the built-in Windows time sync. With a proper NTP client like this I'm never more than a few milliseconds off.

Trusted QSL 2.0.3 - For ARRL's Logbook of the World.

HDSDR 2.60 - Visualization optimized for RDP and fixed "LO<->Tune offset". This is the "radio" for the many apps that don't do SDR directly. You might prefer PowerSDR-IQ instead.

com0com 2.2.2 - A virtual serial port so apps can control HDSDR.

VAC 4.14 - Virtual Audio Cables to connect HDSDR to apps. Two cables are configured which I have renamed "RX" and "TX" to avoid confusion when setting up a new app.

DXLab suite (everything) - Commander is connected to HDSDR on the virtual serial port. Any app that supports Commander is configured to do so instead of connecting directly to HDSDR. This allows easier logging since DXKeeper has access to the frequency and mode. This massive collection also includes propagation tools, a spot collector, call database lookup, PSK and RTTY operating software, and much more.

WSJT-X v1.3 r3673 - For JT65/JT9. Had problems with the beta versions of 1.4/1.5 sometimes not decoding. No problems with 1.3 though.

JTAlert 2.6.0 - This connects WSJT-X with DXLab suite. Automatically logs to DXKeeper, tracks award progress, etc. I especially like that it can beep at the end of every minute so I don't zone out and miss things.

WSPR-X v0.8 r3058 - I leave this running, but not transmitting, when I'm not operating. You might prefer a skimmer for CW or PSK. I have literally kept a Peaberry SDR working continuously for years.

Skype - Connected to the virtual audio cables so you can operate voice or monitor HDSDR remotely. Make a second account dedicated for your radio. Any other VoIP software should work for this too.

And finally... on the Mac I have a script that copies the DXKeeper log database and Trusted QSL certificates. A simple double click when I'm done operating and everything important is copied to the Mac, which is configured to backup locally and remotely.
73 David AE9RB
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Location: Portland, Oregon, USA (CN85ql)

Re: The AE9RB Ham Shack

Postby N2TOH » Fri Mar 27, 2015 6:34 pm

I like the concept of running a skimmer when the station is not in use, is there software that will run on an ARM based system to keep the power consumption down?
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Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 12:55 pm

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