[CQ-Contest] Internet Cluster How To...

Bill Fisher - W4AN w4an at contesting.com
Tue Nov 4 09:47:31 EST 1997

There are many folks that wouuld like to use the internet cluster system 
during the contest and would like to integrate it with CT, NA, or TRLog.  
This message will attempt to educate you on how this can be accomplished.

First requirement is what is called a "SHELL".  This is simply a UNIX 
type login to your ISP.  Typically you connect to your ISP and negotiate 
a PPP session.  The ISP is "giving" you an IP address but you are not 
logging in to any of the their computer systems.  Most ISP's (us 
included) do not like to give shells to customers.  This invites hackers 
to mess up your system.  However, you may be able to get an ISP to change 
their mind if you tell them what you are trying to accomplish.  You need 
to assure them that you are not going to issue any commands on their 
computer.  The only command you need is 'telnet'.  You also need to tell 
them that a "telnet program" will not help you since you are using a DOS 
program with no cabability to talk through TCP/IP on the internet.

The second requirement is a modem.  Hook your modem up to your computer 
and tell your software that the "TNC" is hooked to the port the modem is 
using.  Bring up your packet window and type  'AT?'.  You should get a 
response like "OK".  Now you are ready.  

To connect to the internet cluster, bring up the packet window.  Type in 
ATDT###-#### (the number of your ISP).  Once connected you should get a 
LOGIN prompt.  Type your user name and password when prompted.  If you 
have a shell account you should get a prompt like: /home/bill$  Once you 
have the UNIX shell prompt you can telnet to the internet cluster of your 

Now type in 'telnet cluster.akorn.net'.  You will get a login prompt and 
password.  If the cluster is open, you will not need a password.  Once 
connected, you should see either 'DXC' or 'DX' as a menu choice.  Type 
whichever you see.  

You are now connected!  For the rest of the contest CT, NA, and TRLog 
will think you are connected through a TNC and not a modem.  

A few warnings...

1)  NA's packet talk window only supports CAPS.  This drives UNIX crazy.  
I'm talking with Dave now about fixing this problem.

2)  Hooking up two clusters on the same network may cause problems.  I 
know for sure it doesn't work with NA.  I'm not sure about CT or TRLog.

3)  If you do connect to two clusters, be careful you aren't sending 
spots out on two nodes.  Loops can occur which slow down the systems.

This is a quick message on how to do this... Most of this stuff is 2nd 
nature to me so if I have confused anyone, please advise and I will 


Bill, W4AN

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