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[aprssig] Voice Repeater Posits...

Stephen H. Smith wa8lmf2 at aol.com
Fri Dec 9 03:41:46 UTC 2005

mwrobertson at comcast.net wrote:

> A.J.
> I found it! I was over looking it in the help file. I had zeored it 
> out on the Lat/Lon but may think about it and reactivate it..  Thanks
> Robbie
> A.J. Farmer (AJ3U) wrote:
>> On 12/8/05, Stephen H. Smith <wa8lmf2 at aol.com> wrote:
>>> I can't speak for IRLP, but as the operator of  Echolink node 14400
>>> (which outputs on UHF RF), I CAN confirm that EchoLink DOES NOT
>>> communicate with the APRS-IS !
>> Are you running the latest version of EchoLink?  It does indeed have
>> this capability.  Two Echolink nodes in my area report their status to
>> the APRS-IS and I gate them out to RF from my IGATE.
>> -- 
>> A.J. Farmer, AJ3U
>> http://www.aj3u.com

If these other Echolink stations are getting into the APRS Internet 
System (IS), I suspect it's because some other igate is picking them up 
off RF.  

Wierdly, the "Check for software update" item in the Help pulldown on my 
system says "You have the latest version 1.9.891" but checking the 
Echolink website says Ver 1.9.892 is the most recent.    After 
downloading, installing and starting the latest, I checked the help 
system.   The paragraphs on APRS have not changed, the options are 
identical to my previous version.     

There is nothing  in the setup dialogs that provide for setting an APRS 
server IP address or port number.    Unless the Echolink website somehow 
automagically reformats it's list of user log-ins/status, and then 
forwards  them into the APRS IS system,  the only way I can see that 
Echolink node status reports will ever reach the IS is by being igated 
off RF.  

BTW, a paragraph in the "System Requirements" page of the help system 
says:  "Although EchoLink is believed to work with most TNCs, only the 
AEA PK-232 has been tested".    Arrgh!  Probably the least widely used 
TNC in APRS circles....  

Quoting the paragraphs in the help system for the 
just-downloaded-and-installed  Echolink Ver 1.9.892 with my added 
comments in <<<     >>> :

"The RF Info tab is used to provide information about your link which 
may be helpful to nearby stations trying to locate it. EchoLink includes 
an implementation of the Automatic Voice Reporting System (AVRS), which 
uses the APRS® network   [ Note that this says "APRS network"; not "APRS 
IS" -- presumably meaning the RF part of the APRS system.  SHS]  and 
protocols to disseminate real-time information about VoIP links such as 
EchoLink nodes. This feature was developed in collaboration with Bob 
Bruninga, WB4APR. The program also provides a mechanism for collecting 
and displaying this information on the Web, as an adjunct to APRS.

  <<< Note that this says "APRS network"; not "APRS IS" -- presumably 
meaning the RF part of the APRS system.  SHS >>>

If you wish to disseminate basic information about your simplex link, or 
the repeater to which your repeater link is connected, you can enter it 
here. By default, the information is transmitted to a central database 
on the Internet upon startup, and again each time a station connects or 
disconnects from your link. This information will be displayable and 
searchable on the EchoLink Web site.       <<< Not the APRS IS   SHS >>>

If a packet TNC is connected to your computer, and the APRS option is 
enabled, the same information will be sent periodically to local users 
using APRS. Mobile stations equipped with APRS often have alphanumeric 
displays which will show the location and status of your node, if they 
in range of your APRS transmission or a nearby digipeater. Future APRS 
software may include the ability to allow a mobile station to send a 
general query for local EchoLink activity.

The information fields on the RF Info Tab are defined by the AVRS spec 
as follows:

o    Lat:     Station latitude, in degrees and decimal minutes. For 
example, 41.1175 degrees is 41 degrees, 07.05 minutes. Be sure to 
indicate East or West.

o    Lon:     Station longitude, in degrees and decimal minutes. Be sure 
to indicate North or South.

o    Power (W):     Transmitter power, as measured at the feedpoint of 
the antenna.

o    HAAT (ft):     Antenna height above average terrain, in feet. Note 
that this is the height of the antenna above average ground, not the 
elevation above sea level.

o    Antenna gain (dB):     Antenna gain in the favored direction, 
rounded to the nearest decibel.

o    Directivity:     General direction, if any, in which signals are 
favored by the antenna.

o    Freq (MHz):     Frequency on which the link receives. If the link 
is to a repeater, this is the output frequency of the repeater.

o    PL (if any):     CTCSS frequency, if any, required to activate the 
link (or to activate the repeater to which the link is tuned).

If you do not wish to provide or disseminate any of this information, 
enter 00 00.00 for Lat and 000 00.00 for Lon.
Values for some of these items are limited to a small set of choices, 
due to the way the data is encoded in the AVRS specification.

The following options are also available:

*Report Status via APRS*:     If using a TNC to disseminate status 
information over APRS, check this box and confirm the settings below.
TNC Interface: *    Serial port to which the packet TNC is connected. 
EchoLink will access the TNC through this port at 9600 bps. Be sure this 
port is not already in use by another application.     However, if you 
are using the program UIView32, you can configure UIView32 to 
communicate directly with the TNC, and choose the UIView32 option to 
have EchoLink share the TNC with UIView32. The only limitation is that 
UIView32 cannot use the TNC in KISS mode.
Auto Initialize: *    Check this box to have EchoLink set the TNC 
parameters automatically at startup. If enabled, EchoLink will attempt 
to put the TNC into command mode, set the UNPROTO path, and then put the 
TNC into converse mode. Otherwise, EchoLink assumes that these steps 
have been performed manually before EchoLink is started.    <<Apparently 
using PK232 syntax only ..   SHS >>
Unproto Path: *    If Auto Initialize is enabled, choose one of the 
paths from this list. This affects the way outgoing packets are 
addressed, and whether they will be accepted and relayed by a 
digipeater. A common setting is RELAY.

*Include name(s) of connection stations in status*: If checked, EchoLink 
will include the callsign of the connected station when it sends a 
status report over the APRS network. Otherwise, the report only 
indicates that the link is in use.
Comment:  *   Enter up to 8 characters (letters, numbers, or spaces) 
which will be appended to the report. This information will appear along 
with the APRS status report, and is visible on the screen of some mobile 

For more information about the AVRS specification, please see 
APRS is a registered trademark of Bob Bruninga. "

Stephen H. Smith    wa8lmf (at) aol.com
EchoLink Node:      14400    [Think bottom of the 2M band]
Home Page:          http://wa8lmf.com

"APRS 101"  Explanation of APRS Path Selection & Digipeating

Updated APRS Symbol Chart

New/Updated "Rev G" APRS     http://webs.lanset.com/wa8lmf/aprs
Symbols Set for UI-View,
UIpoint and APRSplus:

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