[WriteLog] Anyone using WinVNC or PC Anywhere with WriteLog?

Don Melcher don@hfradio.com
Sun, 10 Mar 2002 19:47:21 -0800


Funny you should mention this. The answer is yes - as others have
indicated - although NOT on a contest basis. Why stop at RTTY?

Actually - it works quite well. I have used PC Anywhere, but am currently
using a service gotomypc ( www.gotomypc.com ). A friend sent me the info on
WinVNC last week but I have not tried it (and I use "goto" at work and have
already paid for a years service).

I started using PCanywhere several years ago in the KD6UO station that was
located in Alameda, CA - it appeared in QST several years back (14.4
dial-up, Win 3.1 on 486s with 16 MB ram - whew!).

I changed to gotomypc as it does not require ANY special software to be
installed on the control computer - it runs in a browser -at least IE5.

I have audio linked using Microsoft Netmeeting (that DOES have to be on the
control PC). I had the opportunity to be away from the station a few weeks
ago and had set up a schedule with Brad Wyatt, K6WR, who wrote the article
in QST last year (it was that article that spurred my interest again).

If I had not known Brad was coming through my station, I would have NEVER
guessed - the transmit audio was fantastic. The is about a 1/3 second
latency - takes a bit getting used to - but livable.

RX audio is OK - certainly not as good as the dial-up or isdn connection we
were using at KD6UO - but acceptable - and this is all over the net. I was
in my hotel room in New Jersey in January listening to the local
(California) net on 75 meters over the net.

He is using a DIAL-UP connection at his end. I am on a 40O/150 ADSL
connection here at the station. His control response is a bit sluggish - but
usable for casual operation. But DSL to DSL - it works VERY well with very
little control delay.

All this (with PC Anywhere, and I believe WinVNC) will also work inside a
LAN - so I can sit on the couch in front of the fire with a laptop on a
wireless network and operate the station.

So basically - here is how I set up the "off-the-shelf" remote station over

Icom 746 transceiver (NOT the ideal contest radio - but not bat with IRC
filters) - Icom has a control program for that radio that emulates the front
panel, including PTT - put the cursor over a knob - left mouse button -
control "turns" CCW (down) - right button - CW (up) - most all analog
controls are available. Buttons are toggles - click on/of - including PTT.

The beauty about Icom is that it will tell everything else where to go - if
you are using the Icom amps, tuners, antenna switch - again off the shelf
solutions (though some are discontinued at this point). There are other
ways, but I already OWN this stuff - including a brand new PW1 that is still
in the box.

Writelog handles the CW keying for CW - Icom will allow control from 2
devices, ant I successfully did that at the KD6UO station with CT, but WL
causes problems when trying that and so I unfortunately have WL ALSO
controlling the radio - would be nice if WL could use the 746 control
program as an add-on module (hint hint).

I was using WL for the rotor, but WL does not tell you where the antenna
IS - also - I don't think you can send it to a heading without entering a
prefix (maybe I am wrong on this - but with CT, you type in a numerical
value on the command line, and press a key stroke, and the antenna goes to
that heading).

But I had a program that was written by a contract programmer for the KD6UO
and a couple of other clients that controls the HyGain, Yaesu and M2
rotors - sort of looks like a DCU1 control box on the screen - has a great
circle map that is downloaded from the net under the heading pointer. Drag
the pointer where you want to go and click the start button. There are also
8 presets, or you can simply type a heading into a window. The program
had/has some bugs - but Bob Arnold, N2JEU is helping me with those. I would
NOT recommend the DCU1, however - that is what I have - It ONLY can be
configure for a North STOP (DUMB) and the control interface does not dell
you where the antenna is or if it is turning (DUMBER!). I have been told
that the board from Idiom Press has neither of these problems. (My program
also has a "wedge" that is a different color then the "target bearing"
pointer that does represent the antenna turning - we had to "fake" it with
the DCU-1. The width of the wedge is adjustable to represent the 3 db
beamwidth of the antenna).

I have a second soundcard for the "host" PC and hope to get the WL voice
keyer, as well as PSK31 working (I wish someone could explain to me HOW the
tuning indicator in WL works - I CAN'T seem to figure it out).

So ALL it took in hardware was 2 cables in addition to the CW and control
interface - only one had to be constructed - that was the TX audio input to
the ACCY jack on the back at a fixed level. I took RX audio out the earphone
jack as I found it beneficial to be able to vary the AF gain control as
opposed to a fixed level.

The other issue was I do not have a static IP at the host end. Using another
service - www.tzo.com - I was able to overcome that. It would also work for
WinVNC, I would imagine. There is a program running on the host that tells
tzo.com what the current IP address is. Tzo provides a virtual domain -
xxx.tzo.com - so that the host can be "found" with programs like Netmeeting.



Message: 11
From: "Don Hill AA5AU" <aa5au@bellsouth.net>
To: "WriteLog Reflector" <Writelog@contesting.com>
Date: Sat, 9 Mar 2002 23:38:32 -0600

Subject: [WriteLog] Anyone using WinVNC or PC Anywhere with WriteLog?

I can imagine myself working RTTY on my home station from
my PC at work using WriteLog.

I installed WinVNC this evening and it appears to work very well
for allowing my PC to be accessed and ran over the Internet through
my router (using ADSL) from another PC connected to the Internet.

I was able to run WriteLog and key my radio from the remote PC
connected to the Internet.

All this is very interesting to me.  I just can't figure out how I'm going
to tune the radio and what indicator to use for RTTY.  The MMTTY
indicator does not update but the green signal bar works.  I haven't tried
the WinRTTY indicator yet.  I don't use my a scroll mouse and not sure
it will work either.  Before I put a lot of time into this project, is
out there doing this yet?

Or am I blazing a new frontier?

73, Don AA5AU