Topics

Commander with 2 Radios: Switching Radios Causes Band Switch in all WSJT Instances


Glenn Van Benschoten
 

I may be trying to do something that isn’t possible, or more likely I am missing something in my configuration/setup. I’ve spent quite a number of hours looking through documentation, help texts, Googling, etc (by the way, not wasted time as I’ve learned stuff I didn’t know). It’s time to reach out to this group who collectively know more than any of us individually.

 

P.S. I made an image save of my system before starting down this path, so my worst case scenario to get back to where I was before starting down this path is about a 30 minute image restore.

 

Scenario:

-          Two radio’s (IC746 and TS440s), each with their own separate antenna’s, configured in Commander via the Mult-Radio setup. The IC746 is CAT/CI-V controlled, the TS440s via the IC-10 serial to USB.

-          Two instances of WSJT-X and JTAlert running with their own .ini files by using –rigname= passed with the WSJT-X command at startup. Different UDP ports for each WSJT-X instance and both WSJT-X instances have the radio configured to use “DX Lab Suite Commander”

-          As far as I can tell in my testing so far, most everything seems to function properly (well almost, more in the problem description to follow)

-          When using say the IC746, and the WSJT-X/JTAlert instance associated with that radio decodes, transmits, logging, etc works just fine. The log entries show the proper information logged, grid, reports, etc and uploaded to LoTW on each contact.

Problem description:

-          Referring to my example above of Commander set to the IC746, (which is connected to my 6M antenna), when I look at the other WSJT-X/JTAlert instance that is associated with my TS440s (not the current radio selected in Commander, which by the way is connected to my 10M antenna), the frequency/band shown in WSJT-x says 6M and the JTAlert banner line shows 6M as the band even though the decodes and alerts shown are for the TS440s which is on 10m. That’s because each instance is tied to separate “sound cards”

-          If I switch radios in Commander, to the TS440s, then the reverse occurs – the WSJT-x/JTAlert instance associated with the TS440s properly show 10M, while the WSJT-X/JTAlert instance for the IC746 now show 10M, while decoding/alerting on 6M.

-          If I manually change the Band in the WSJT-X instance where the information is incorrect (not the one associated with the radio selected in Commander), then it causes the “commander selected radio” to change bands (ie if I was on 6m using the IC746 and changed the band of the TS440s WSJT-X instance to 10M, it causes a band change on the radio that is selected – the 746.

-          I also notice that the incorrect band info in WSDJ-X/JTAlert persists over termination/restart which I guess would be expected since that would be information saved?

-          So to my feeble brain, it would appear that  each WSJT-X instance is not somehow “tied” a specific radio. I read somewhere in the DXLabs wiki that there is a message format used with commander that specifies the radio to which that message is directed. So maybe something associated with that mechanism. My knowledge on this communication between WSJT-X and Commander is not very deep. I defer to the experts.

 

Guidance/advice please – I’m probably just “missing something” configuration-wise or this isn’t gonna work the way I envisioned.

 

N0VB

Glenn Van Benschoten

gtvanben@...

 


Dave AA6YQ
 

+ AA6YQ comments below

I may be trying to do something that isn't possible, or more likely I am missing something in my configuration/setup. I've spent
quite a number of hours looking through documentation, help texts, Googling, etc (by the way, not wasted time as I've learned stuff
I didn't know). It's time to reach out to this group who collectively know more than any of us individually.

P.S. I made an image save of my system before starting down this path, so my worst case scenario to get back to where I was before
starting down this path is about a 30 minute image restore.


Scenario:

- Two radio's (IC746 and TS440s), each with their own separate antenna's, configured in Commander via the Mult-Radio setup.
The IC746 is CAT/CI-V controlled, the TS440s via the IC-10 serial to USB.

- Two instances of WSJT-X and JTAlert running with their own .ini files by using -rigname= passed with the WSJT-X command
at startup. Different UDP ports for each WSJT-X instance and both WSJT-X instances have the radio configured to use "DX Lab Suite
Commander"


- As far as I can tell in my testing so far, most everything seems to function properly (well almost, more in the problem
description to follow)

- When using say the IC746, and the WSJT-X/JTAlert instance associated with that radio decodes, transmits, logging, etc
works just fine. The log entries show the proper information logged, grid, reports, etc and uploaded to LoTW on each contact.

Problem description:

- Referring to my example above of Commander set to the IC746, (which is connected to my 6M antenna), when I look at the
other WSJT-X/JTAlert instance that is associated with my TS440s (not the current radio selected in Commander, which by the way is
connected to my 10M antenna), the frequency/band shown in WSJT-x says 6M and the JTAlert banner line shows 6M as the band even
though the decodes and alerts shown are for the TS440s which is on 10m. That's because each instance is tied to separate "sound
cards"

+ Commander is exclusively controlling and reporting the state of the selected transceiver - your IC-746.

- If I switch radios in Commander, to the TS440s, then the reverse occurs - the WSJT-x/JTAlert instance associated with the
TS440s properly show 10M, while the WSJT-X/JTAlert instance for the IC746 now show 10M, while decoding/alerting on 6M.

+ Correct. Commander is nowexclusively controlling and reporting the state of the selected transceiver - your TS-440s.

- If I manually change the Band in the WSJT-X instance where the information is incorrect (not the one associated with the
radio selected in Commander), then it causes the "commander selected radio" to change bands (ie if I was on 6m using the IC746 and
changed the band of the TS440s WSJT-X instance to 10M, it causes a band change on the radio that is selected - the 746.

+ Correct.

- I also notice that the incorrect band info in WSDJ-X/JTAlert persists over termination/restart which I guess would be
expected since that would be information saved?

- So to my feeble brain, it would appear that each WSJT-X instance is not somehow "tied" a specific radio. I read
somewhere in the DXLabs wiki that there is a message format used with commander that specifies the radio to which that message is
directed.

+ The documentation says " If more than one instance of WSJT-X is running on the same computer, each instance on that computer must
have distinct IDs; this can be accomplished by specifying a unique rig name in a command line used to start WSJT-X." This does not
mean that multiple instances of WSJT-X can simultaneously control multiple active radios through a single instance of Commander.


So maybe something associated with that mechanism. My knowledge on this communication between WSJT-X and Commander is not very
deep. I defer to the experts.

Guidance/advice please - I'm probably just "missing something" configuration-wise or this isn't gonna work the way I envisioned.

+ When WSJT-X is configured to use Commander for transceiver control, it can track and control Commander's selected primary
transceiver. There is no support for simultaneously supporting a second primary transceiver with a single instance of Commander.

+ If you have Commander (controlling transceiver #1) and WSJT-X directly interoperating with SpotCollector on computer A, you can
host Commander (controlling transceiver #2) and WSJT-X on computer B, and configure WSJT-X to interoperate over a local area network
with SpotCollector on computer A; this configuration will support simultaneous K1JT mode operations on two transceivers.

+ In theory, you could host two instances of WSJT-X on the same computer, with one instance using Commander to control and track its
transceiver, and the other instance using another means of transceiver control. This is not a configuration I have tried,
documented, or support.

73,

Dave, AA6YQ


Glenn Van Benschoten
 

Thanks Dave, I had a feeling that I was attempting something that isn't
possible, now I understand more the "why not" thanks to your clear
explanation. I will say that I learned a lot more about Commander and
WSJT/JTAlert in the process, so not a total waste of time.

From what you know, would a solution like I'm envisioning be possible using
Slicemaster? Someone recommended I consider using that, but the source was
a Flex Radio owner (who doesn't run multiple radios, but does run multiple
WSJT's for multiple slices) and what little I read about Slicemaster gave me
the impression that it would not work with multiple radios and keep all that
stuff straight.

N0VB
Glenn Van Benschoten
gtvanben@...

-----Original Message-----
From: DXLab@groups.io [mailto:DXLab@groups.io] On Behalf Of Dave AA6YQ
Sent: Friday, June 19, 2020 7:12 PM
To: DXLab@groups.io
Subject: Re: [DXLab] Commander with 2 Radios: Switching Radios Causes Band
Switch in all WSJT Instances

+ AA6YQ comments below

I may be trying to do something that isn't possible, or more likely I am
missing something in my configuration/setup. I've spent
quite a number of hours looking through documentation, help texts, Googling,
etc (by the way, not wasted time as I've learned stuff
I didn't know). It's time to reach out to this group who collectively know
more than any of us individually.

P.S. I made an image save of my system before starting down this path, so my
worst case scenario to get back to where I was before
starting down this path is about a 30 minute image restore.


Scenario:

- Two radio's (IC746 and TS440s), each with their own separate
antenna's, configured in Commander via the Mult-Radio setup.
The IC746 is CAT/CI-V controlled, the TS440s via the IC-10 serial to USB.

- Two instances of WSJT-X and JTAlert running with their own .ini
files by using -rigname= passed with the WSJT-X command
at startup. Different UDP ports for each WSJT-X instance and both WSJT-X
instances have the radio configured to use "DX Lab Suite
Commander"


- As far as I can tell in my testing so far, most everything seems
to function properly (well almost, more in the problem
description to follow)

- When using say the IC746, and the WSJT-X/JTAlert instance
associated with that radio decodes, transmits, logging, etc
works just fine. The log entries show the proper information logged, grid,
reports, etc and uploaded to LoTW on each contact.

Problem description:

- Referring to my example above of Commander set to the IC746,
(which is connected to my 6M antenna), when I look at the
other WSJT-X/JTAlert instance that is associated with my TS440s (not the
current radio selected in Commander, which by the way is
connected to my 10M antenna), the frequency/band shown in WSJT-x says 6M and
the JTAlert banner line shows 6M as the band even
though the decodes and alerts shown are for the TS440s which is on 10m.
That's because each instance is tied to separate "sound
cards"

+ Commander is exclusively controlling and reporting the state of the
selected transceiver - your IC-746.

- If I switch radios in Commander, to the TS440s, then the reverse
occurs - the WSJT-x/JTAlert instance associated with the
TS440s properly show 10M, while the WSJT-X/JTAlert instance for the IC746
now show 10M, while decoding/alerting on 6M.

+ Correct. Commander is nowexclusively controlling and reporting the state
of the selected transceiver - your TS-440s.

- If I manually change the Band in the WSJT-X instance where the
information is incorrect (not the one associated with the
radio selected in Commander), then it causes the "commander selected radio"
to change bands (ie if I was on 6m using the IC746 and
changed the band of the TS440s WSJT-X instance to 10M, it causes a band
change on the radio that is selected - the 746.

+ Correct.

- I also notice that the incorrect band info in WSDJ-X/JTAlert
persists over termination/restart which I guess would be
expected since that would be information saved?

- So to my feeble brain, it would appear that each WSJT-X instance
is not somehow "tied" a specific radio. I read
somewhere in the DXLabs wiki that there is a message format used with
commander that specifies the radio to which that message is
directed.

+ The documentation says " If more than one instance of WSJT-X is running on
the same computer, each instance on that computer must
have distinct IDs; this can be accomplished by specifying a unique rig name
in a command line used to start WSJT-X." This does not
mean that multiple instances of WSJT-X can simultaneously control multiple
active radios through a single instance of Commander.


So maybe something associated with that mechanism. My knowledge on this
communication between WSJT-X and Commander is not very
deep. I defer to the experts.

Guidance/advice please - I'm probably just "missing something"
configuration-wise or this isn't gonna work the way I envisioned.

+ When WSJT-X is configured to use Commander for transceiver control, it can
track and control Commander's selected primary
transceiver. There is no support for simultaneously supporting a second
primary transceiver with a single instance of Commander.

+ If you have Commander (controlling transceiver #1) and WSJT-X directly
interoperating with SpotCollector on computer A, you can
host Commander (controlling transceiver #2) and WSJT-X on computer B, and
configure WSJT-X to interoperate over a local area network
with SpotCollector on computer A; this configuration will support
simultaneous K1JT mode operations on two transceivers.

+ In theory, you could host two instances of WSJT-X on the same computer,
with one instance using Commander to control and track its
transceiver, and the other instance using another means of transceiver
control. This is not a configuration I have tried,
documented, or support.

73,

Dave, AA6YQ


Dave AA6YQ
 

+ AA6YQ comments below

Thanks Dave, I had a feeling that I was attempting something that isn't possible, now I understand more the "why not" thanks to your
clear explanation. I will say that I learned a lot more about Commander and WSJT/JTAlert in the process, so not a total waste of
time.

From what you know, would a solution like I'm envisioning be possible using Slicemaster? Someone recommended I consider using that,
but the source was a Flex Radio owner (who doesn't run multiple radios, but does run multiple WSJT's for multiple slices) and what
little I read about Slicemaster gave me the impression that it would not work with multiple radios and keep all that stuff straight.


+ I don't know what Slicemaster does, Glenn.

+ My suggestion is to configure one instance of WSJT-X to use Commander to control your IC-746, and configure the second instance of
WSJT-X to directly control your TS-440S. If you decide to try this, please post your results here.

73,

Dave, AA6YQ


Glenn Van Benschoten
 

Dave, you must be reading my mind.. when I was first getting my TS440s
working on FT8 I had it successfully configured the way you suggested but
not on the same computer that I've been experimenting with both rigs tied to
Commander. I'll post the results of that approach.

Glenn Van Benschoten
gtvanben@...

-----Original Message-----
From: DXLab@groups.io [mailto:DXLab@groups.io] On Behalf Of Dave AA6YQ
Sent: Friday, June 19, 2020 8:40 PM
To: DXLab@groups.io
Subject: Re: [DXLab] Commander with 2 Radios: Switching Radios Causes Band
Switch in all WSJT Instances

+ AA6YQ comments below

Thanks Dave, I had a feeling that I was attempting something that isn't
possible, now I understand more the "why not" thanks to your
clear explanation. I will say that I learned a lot more about Commander and
WSJT/JTAlert in the process, so not a total waste of
time.

From what you know, would a solution like I'm envisioning be possible using
Slicemaster? Someone recommended I consider using that,
but the source was a Flex Radio owner (who doesn't run multiple radios, but
does run multiple WSJT's for multiple slices) and what
little I read about Slicemaster gave me the impression that it would not
work with multiple radios and keep all that stuff straight.


+ I don't know what Slicemaster does, Glenn.

+ My suggestion is to configure one instance of WSJT-X to use Commander to
control your IC-746, and configure the second instance of
WSJT-X to directly control your TS-440S. If you decide to try this, please
post your results here.

73,

Dave, AA6YQ