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[nos-bbs] NOS and Airmail

Jay Nugent jjn at nuge.com
Mon Mar 17 20:40:09 UTC 2008

Greetings Maiko (et al),
   Additional information.  It appears the WinLink folks don't want to
'share' the B2F protocol specification publicly any longer.  Go figure?  
I can find no definition of the spec on their website.

   Well, Archive.Org and the "wayback machine" to the rescue.  The
complete B2F protocol spec is here:


   And along with the LZW spec, noted below, we *should* have everything 
we need.   Hope this helps!

      --- Jay Nugent  WB8TKL
           o Chair, ARRL Michigan Section "Digital Radio Group" (DRG)
           o Michgan AMPRnet IP Address Coordinator

On Fri, 14 Mar 2008, Jay Nugent wrote:

> Greetings Maiko,
> On Fri, 14 Mar 2008, Maiko Langelaar (ve4klm) wrote:
> > 
> > > received from the WL2K was "use B2F - goodbye"
> > 
> > Understood.
> > 
> > I was actually given the spec for B2F by one of the WinLink people
> > quite some time ago and started doing some stuff, but I got stuck,
> > and frankly a bit disinterested too. The spec was not complete, so
> > that was a big part of it, ie: the compression part wasn't there.
> > 
> > Just recently I was given another contact regarding the spec, so
> > maybe I'll try again and see what info I can get.
>    The compression used by B2F is 'LZW' and is documented here:
>       http://marknelson.us/1989/10/01/lzw-data-compression
>    But LZW *was* already coded into JNOS years ago.  We used LZW to
> compress our links between nodes when doing hourly mail-forwarding.  
> Greatly reduced the time needed to send 'bulk' data.  However, I don't 
> know how many 'bits' of compression the WL2k folks utilize.
> > > It'll be incentive for us/me to both finally get B2F working and to
> > > work with the multitude of other NOS/AX25 based modes.
> > 
> > Agreed. Forcing the B2F is a very good incentive if the NOS community
> > wants the ability to integrate their NOS based systems into the WinLink
> > and Airmail systems out there.
> > 
> > That keeps the *dinosaur* alive a bit longer I suppose :-)
> > 
> > BUT, how many NOSers out there are really interested ???
>    The Michigan AMPRnet (which is now up to 19 Hamgates and a couple dozen
> home JNOS stations) *was* planning to deploy the "TelPac" support you had
> written into JNOS to all of our nodes during this Winter (upgrade from
> JNOS2.0a to your latest release).  But since WL2K changed their network,
> those plans fell by the wayside.
>    So we (Michigan) would *definitely* be interested in seeing full B2F
> protocol support coded into JNOS :)
>    As always Maiko, "he who codes - rules!"  And if we must ship you a
> case of your favorite beer to keep you at the keyboard, we will do it!!!
> ;-)
>    Keep up the great work!
>       --- Jay Nugent  WB8TKL
>           o ARRL Michigan Section "Digital Radio Group" (DRG)
>             [www.MI-DRG.org]
>           o Michgan AMPRnet IP Address Coordinator

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