|Subject:||RE: [WriteLog] Open Letter to Wayne - Networking|
|From:||"Steve Gorecki" <firstname.lastname@example.org>|
|Date:||Tue, 29 Jun 2004 10:03:28 -0400|
I've been reading the replies on the reflector and would like to clarify,
agree and disagree with some of them.|
Windows 98 as "magic answer": (partially agree...)
While true, if all of us run W98 or W98SE on our network machines, we will not have any problems (or a lot less networking problems). At least none that are visible. We actually had 2 W98 machines and one Xp in or FD setup (3A ON), and being a network type of guy, I monitored the network to see the W98 machines re-syncing often. This is both good and bad. Good that it did it automatically, bad that our RF was probably causing this. However, since W98 has no security, this is not an issue at all. It can re-sync until the cows come home...
However, if you stick in a W2k or XP machine, the story changes. Re-connection with DDE is spotty at best, usually does not work automatically (even with the proper WL setup instructions). This is because W98 just does not have the right "information" that the newer systems need. If "W98 only" is the best option for you, then your don't have any issues for now.
Stay with older Technology: (disagree)
My suggestion to improve on the networking is just as valid as saying "improve support for serial keyers" instead of using LPT ports (though we can still get them working in XP....for now). The point is that eventually we won't even have serial ports on laptops anymore, just those darn USB ports. Technology is changing fast, and though we can't keep up with all of it, some things just have to be updated once in a while. Some of you out there solve technology problems by staying with DOS, or W98. If you are happy with your solution, then that is good. However, there are some people that have to move on to other O/S and hardware, whether they want to or not. Thus the problems. So, please don't criticize some of us for having to have to move on for other reasons...
FD RF is the problem: (disagree)
Please don't blame RF for the networking problems. The two are not really related. While RF can cause a machine to lose a network connection, it can also cause crashes, bad keying (even with a W5XD keyer..I've seen that) and a host of other problems. Some O/S can recover (like W98 only to W98), but recovering every 2 minutes from a RF hickup just gives credit to WL for good recovery code, not good networking code. Fixing the RF problem is the final solution in this case. Rebooting a XP machine in an RF-free environment will still give the same networking problems with W98 (or whatever the mix....) The issue in this discussion is networking improvements. All RF is doing here is "enhancing" an existing problem, making it more pronounced.
Make all the machines (PC running same O/S) the same: (mostly disagree)
In our club, we have limited resources, and for FD we just gather whatever laptops we can muster from our members and configure what we can to get WL going. We are not a contesting club/station by any means, we are just trying to enjoy our hobby like most of the rest. FD is our only real annual event. That is why we, like many others end up with a mix of machines. We do what we can, and don't have the options of getting all the machines configured with the same O/S or hardware.
Just IP addressing is not best: (partially agree)
As for using just IP code, again that is a suggestion to get a start on finding a solution. Sure, we could still use Netbios for now, but I was trying to find a quick way of getting this group thinking about this issue. While plain IP addressing will work, I'm sure there are other strategies that will work also. Getting around security however will remain a big problem in the newer O/S. For home use, using a range of IP addresses in WL "Register" option would still work, even for those with DHCP. Fixed addresses also enable the possibility of Internet connections between WL machines, for example those in club stations. Fixed IP addresses also eliminate authentication problems in general, which is the main source of WL networking problems. To keep everyone happy, why not give the WL users a choice within WL menus, use the older DDE networking, or use fixed IP networking. (may be more work for Wayne though....). Let the person doing the networking then pick what is best for their environment...
Anyway, I'm glad I've stirred up some interest in this topic. Wayne has a lot on his plate, but improvements to WL will obviously be focused on what his users want. Let's hope we see something on this down the road...
I still think WL is a very good piece of programming code. I just want to see it get better.
Thanks for all the comments, and thank you Wayne for replying to me.
Steve Gorecki PEng. VE3CWJ (since 1971) IT Senior Technical Services Analyst - Process Systems
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