Kantronics Kam xl stops transmitting

I came across some interesting in the BPQ32 news group about a Kantronics TNC`s.
On 10 May 2018 I also posted about this on my website.

https://packet-radio.net/kantronics-kpc3-kiss-considered-harmful/

Ray N3HYM runs into the following problems.

  1. Replace an mfj tnc with a new kam xl dual port
  2. Dual port kam xl seems to stop transmitting after 2 days or less of use. Have to cycle the power button to get it back to transmitting . I do see bpq32 sending to the kam when the sta  light flashes.
  3. All cables have troids on them , power, serial, radio interface cable.
  4. Kam xl has been set to 19200 abaud rate to computer.
  5. Turned off all other transmitting equipment to try an eliminate rf getting into kam xl.
  6. Kam is exactly where mfj tnc was on the bench. Mfj tnc did not have any issues.
  7. Running Windows 7 with bpq32 and tnc’s in kiss mode.


Also Don N7HPX is running into this issue with the KPC3+

The issue you describe is nearly identical to the one I had for a while when using a Kantronics KPC3+ in KISS mode.
The fault problem I observed was consistent and repeatable.
While the TNC was in KISS mode and attached to a real serial port it would hang-up and not transmit.
This would seemly happen randomly, however, the observed external factor that most often caused it was receiving a faint packet burst that was just below the decode threshold.

You could hear the packet tones and the low signal level static. After the freeze-up and from the BPQ32 Terminal console, I could send a specific connect command to the KPC3+ and note that the STA light would flicker but it would never actually transmit as it normally would.
At that point I knew I was stuck, yet again, and needed to power cycle the TNC.

I would assume that the KAM XL and the KPC3+ probably have the same KISS software routines.

Matt Ackerman said…

I was working with Kantronics support on this issue and I seem to have solved it by shorting the RTS and CTS pins together within my serial cable. (PINS 4/5 on DB25 and PINS 7/8 on DB9)
I simply ran a jumper between the two. This appears to be an issue with how the APRS software and/or the AX.25 stack controls the RTS pin and shorting the RTS and CTS together prevents the software from holding the RTS pin low.
If the RTS pin is at low voltage the KPC3+ will start buffering and does not get caught back up.
I have been running mine for several weeks without showing this behavior again.
Before I made the change it would happen after about 12 hours.

Jean-Jacques ON7EQ has try the mod.

After applying the mod with RTS/CTS, both on TNC and PC side, now running systems one week completely in-sync !

So sure this is a mod to be considered!

By default, the KPC3+ is configured for software flow control. In particular, when operating as digipeater, it is very likely that in the datastream sent to the TNC, soon or later there are frames containing ‘flow control characters’ sent – what will start the buffering!

It is therefore essential to completely disable the software flow control, this can be done by giving following commands:

  • XFLOW OFF
  • START $00
  • STOP $00
  • TRF OFF
  • TXF OFF
  • CONO OFF
  • FLOW OFF
  • XON $00
  • XOFF $00



Winlink Gateway HB9AK

As Winlink Gateway i`m using HB9AK from Switzerland on dail 7.050Mhz. HB9AUR (Martin) is the Operator (SysOp) of HB9AK.
I have test the system of Martin with Winmor, Ardop, Robust 300/600. I have a old AEA DSP2232 modem that can make Pactor 1, but i have some issues to get things going.

HB9AK is a big boy with many possibilities. Here a small list.

Technical details of HB9AK (JN36PV, 650 m asl):

QRGs (dial frequency): 3’613.0, 7’050.0, 10’144.4(NB), 14’108.9, 18’114.4, 21’113.5 (NB: narrow band only). Use USB for all QRGs. Center frequency is 1.5 kHz higher than dial frequency.

TRX1 (40m): KENWOOD TS-590S, dipole(N/S); Modes WINMOR, PACTOR(1-4), Robust Packet Radio, ARDOP, VARA

TRX2 (30m): KENWOOD TS-590SG, dipole(N/S); Modes WINMOR(500), PACTOR(1-2), ARDOP

TRX3 (20m): KENWOOD TS-590SG, dipole(N/S) or LogPer; Modes WINMOR, PACTOR(1-4), Robust Packet Radio, ARDOP, VARA

TRX4 (80m/17m/15m): KENWOOD TS-590S, 80m dipole, 17/15m fan dipole; Modes WINMOR, PACTOR(1-4), Robust Packet Radio, ARDOP, VARA

Technical details of HB9AK-1 (JN47LI, 1130 m asl):

TRX5 (10m): ICOM IC-706, vertical dipole; Modes WINMOR, PACTOR(1-4), Robust Packet, ARDOP, VARA

TRX6 (2m): MOTOROLA GM340, X-50; Mode Packet Radio AFSK 1200 Bd, BPSK 1200 Bd, BPSK 2400 Bd, QPSK 2400 bps, QPSK 3600 bps

Technical details of HB9AK-14 (JN46FS, 3020 m asl):

TRX7 (10m): KENWOOD TS-480SAT, Inv-V; Modes PACTOR(1-4), Robust Packet, WINMOR, ARDOP, VARA

I have contacted Martin, and we have been talking for a while about anything and everything. I asked him about his configuration, he found it no problem to share it.

 Very nice system. 

ClusterHat….

New project.

https://clusterhat.com/

 

Bind ax25 interface to Direwolf

It can be easy to link an ax25 interface to Direwolf. This makes it possible to use RMSGateway, Uronode etc with Direwolf.
In this script Direwolf is started with the -p option. With the -p option a virtual tnc is created. /tmp/kisstnc.

With mkiss a kiss connection is made on the /tmp/kisstnc. With kissattach the PTY is connected to the ax25 interface.

Fist edit the file axports in /etc/ax25

Config the direwolf.conf file to set the right audio device and ptt port. Save file to /etc/ax25/direwolf.conf

Run the script

Let’s check if everything went well.

Try it out…

Now it’s possible to setup RMSGateway or Uronode of whatever you want.

Related NewsGroups

BPQ32
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/BPQ32/info
LinuxRMS RMSGateway
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/LinuxRMS/info
Direwolf Packet
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/direwolf_packet/info
Winmor
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/WINMOR/info
Ardop
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/ardop/info
Ardop
https://ardop.groups.io/g/main
Scs Tracker Modes
https://groups.io/g/SCS-Tracker-Modem
Digital Amateur Radio
https://groups.io/g/digital-amateur-radio
Digital Radio
https://digitalradio.groups.io/g/main
Vara Modem
https://groups.io/g/VARA-MODEM
RaspberryPi 4 Hamradio
https://groups.io/g/raspberrypi-4-hamradio
Network 105
https://groups.io/g/network105
T.A.R.P.N
https://groups.io/g/tarpn
Pactor and Packet Group
https://groups.io/g/pactor

AX25 Dual port TNC (kpc-9612)

Here is an ax25 script that I use to control the Dual port KPC-9612 with mkiss and kissattach.

 

OpenBCM fwd.bcm Example

========================================================================
Foward example to my Partner BBS PI8CDR.#DRE.NLD.EU
Forward to PI8CDR via telnet ip-address:3602
Sysop: Han – PI8CDR
A – forwarding all if any msg available to send
P – forwarding all with polling even if no msg availabe to send/rcv
. – no fwd operation
Hours 0000 – 2359
0 1 2
BBS 012345678901234567890123 Path
=========================================================================

=========================================================================
The first line of a forward section defines the partner mailbox name (callsign
without SSID), the forward timing (when do forward which mails) and the
connection path to the forward partner. After that, you can add as many lines as
you want to define the usermail and bulletin behaviour. All these additional
lines must have one space as first character in a line.

• “A” (All): All mails (usermail and bulletins) are forwarded.
• “U” (User): Only usermail are forwarded.
• “.”: Nothing is forwarded.
• “P” (Poll): All mails are forwarded (like “A”), and additionally at the
time defined in crontab.bcm (normally each 30 minutes) a forward connect
is being made to the forward partner, also if no mails are in the
forward queue to send. This makes sense, if the partner mailbox has
misconfigured the connect path and therefore can’t send its mails to
your BBS. It makes sense to do such a pool one time a day.
==========================================================================

==========================================================================
-b<bytes> maximum size of forward mails (e.g. > 10k)
-d (delayed) forward only at set times of crontab.bcm
-e send E/M files with 4 lines in 1 frame (e.g. DB0SAO)
-f send empty line before start forward (e.g. TCPIP/xNOS)
-i BoxBin mails are forwarded regardless of the capabilities of the receiving system (not useful in most cases)
-k no forward of autobin bulletins
-l no forward of autobin user mails
-m no forward of 7plus bulletins
-n no forward of 7plus user mails
-o entries are sorted by size (smallest at first)
-p suppress prompt after login (e.g. needed for DB0SAO)
-r send ONLY boards from fwd.bcm to forward partner
-s SID is send immediately of connected BBS
-t tracing active (if “fwdtrace 2” is set)
-u connection is closed immediately, without this parameter, forward is waiting for some time if new mails can be forwarded
============================================================================

============================================================================
Mailbox callsigns
============================================================================

Here a fwd.bcm example

 

OpenBCM H-Boxaddress / UserMail / Bulletin Mail.

In the beginning when I was configuring OpenBCM I already ran into an error message.

Now I was reading in the doc of OpenBCM and came across the following.

So the H-Boxaddress PI8LAP.#ZL.NLD.EURO is wrong. I have to use .EU
The designator of the different countries is specified by ISO 3166. The designator is three letters long. For Europe the following designators exists.

Sorry my USA friends, USA is a bit big. And I really do not know how the h-addresses are built up there. Maybe someone can tell me that.

UserMails.

Take your time to get your shit together (Just Kidding)

Bulletin Mail.

That was a lot of cutting and pasting. But I did that to get clear what is important.

OpenBCM start file and Systemd

FYI, In the top menu you can choose OpenBCM. This page contains all references to items about openBCM.

I have found a file to start OpenBCM. We will inplant this script and start using it.

We are going to create a user who does not have shell and no home directory. This makes it impossible to log in as this user. This gives a bit of security.

The above command creates a user “bcm” as a system user.

Copy the directory of bcm to /usr/local

Now we have to make the user “bcm” owner of the directory and files /usr/local/bcm

See if everything is in okay.

Now create the startfile.

Edit the startbcm file

Here is the start file.

Save the file, become owner, and set execute rights

Now it`s time for Systemd.

Go to the directory /etc/systemd/system and “sudo nano bcm.service”

Copy past

Save the file

Let ‘s check if the service is running.

I think we’re ready to rumble.

One last note.

In the start file you see the line.

Here, reference is made to /dev/tty3. I use the program “conspy” to watch on /dev/tty3 how the program runs.

To escape conspy hit “esc” a couple of times.