[aprssig] The Current Meaning of WIDEn-N (incorrect)

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Mon May 19 12:47:19 CDT 2014

With apologies…, unfortunately the below information is wrong.

Ø  Today, effectively the first "n" of WIDEn-N now indicates whether or not
a home fill-in digi can potentially be used for the first relay hop of a
multi-hop path.

While that may be an “effective interpretation” of what people observe, it
is not correct.

> If the first "n" is a "1", then *EITHER* a home fill-in digi --OR-- a
high-level true wide can handle the hop.
> If the first "n" is other than "1", then ONLY a true wide will respond to
and handle the hop.

Simply not true.  The first “n” is the original N hop when the packet was
initiated.  The exception (which causes all this confusion) is the  special
“WIDE2-1” which is simply a cheating way to get ONE HOP without keying up
all surrounding fill-in WIDE1-1 digis.  For example, if I want to transmit
a one-hop packet, but I don’t want to bring up my neighbors WIDE1-1 digi,
and the one that might be in a neighboring car (heaven forbid), I would use
the single hop path of WIDE2-1.  Which has always been a special case of a
WIDEn-N packet only intended to go one hop and without bringing up all the
old-fill-in-digis that can only operate on “WIDE1-1”.

> Today the *total* number of digipeater relay hops requested by the user
is the sum of the first N of the first clause (normally "1") and the first
N of the second clause (typically "2"), minus any "pre-decrementing"
indicated by the second "N" of a clause initially being smaller than the
first.  I.e.

Simply not true.

Ø  This is why WIDE1-1 is completely discouraged in the greater Los Angeles

Should not be so.

Ø  The basin is completely rimmed with mountain-top "super-wides" that can
hear and digipeat everyone everywhere on a single hop, without the help of
home stations. The recommended path is "WIDE2-2" only which the local digis
completely consume in a single hop.  When you travel out of the greater LA
area (i.e. over the Tejon or Cajon passes or beyond SBA on the 101), you
"automagically" start getting two hops from mountain tops that process
"WIDE2-2" normally; i.e. as two hops.

In SoCal and anywhere else where the Aloha circle is entirely contained
within a single hop, it is the responsibility of the digi owners to
implement 1-hop enforcement so that all mobiles don’t have to change their
paths depending on where they dirve!

This is completely covered on the bible web page:
http://aprs.org/fix14439.html as fix #12 and there is a link specifically
to the 2005 fix that was supposed to be implemented in SoCal.

> It's not a matter of "high-level" vs "low-level" paths.   Digipeaters
don't determine the path; they only respond to what the USER sets into
their radio or TNC.

This is true.

Bob, Wb4APR
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