Two Rants and a Plea

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EA7KIR
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Joined: Tue Feb 09, 2021 3:38 pm

Two Rants and a Plea

Post by EA7KIR » Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:54 am

I can find lots of instructions telling how to download stuff to a Windows PC and how to connect this to that, etc, etc. But I can't find anything telling how most of this stuff works and what's going on. There is no general description of how a system might work. Not even simple things like what type of signals flow between each block. One can wade through GitHub, but not everything there is source. Trying to read in-between the lines is difficult. END OF 1st RANT.

I haven't followed the masses, so I don't have a Windows PC and I don't want one. But within the spirit of amateur radio is the willingness to share. So I'm surprised so many enthuse over F6DZP's proprietary MiniTiouner software - albeit free to use. It being closed source (including the serial command protocol flowing between the PC and tuner) prevents others from experimenting. In particular, it is preventing me from implementing an Apple macOS application which could communicate with the hardware in a way that pleases me. END OF 2nd RANT.

Maybe I just haven't searched hard enough. So, if anyone knows where to look, please let me know.
Michael EA7KIR

radiogareth
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Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by radiogareth » Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:07 am

And there you have it....its all FREE software written by volunteers and user notes can take up more time than writing it in the first place, so the developers use what they choose to, just as you have chosen to use a Mac.
I believe the flow of code from the NIM to the processor is propriety and the NIM manufacturer only released it under a non-disclosure agreement which may or may not involve fees or legal speak/involvement.
To quote Spock (if you can quote a fictional character) "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few".
Gareth

MW0RUD
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Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by MW0RUD » Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:57 am

I understand the frustration, I hit the steep technical learning curve at the beginning of 2020 and spent much time digging around on GitHub and reading all the things trying to catch up on everything everyone else had learned slowly over several years.

LongMynd is open source and runs on Linux and does all the hardware interfacing to the MiniTiouner hardware. I'm not aware of anyone who has tried to get it running on macOS however.

I also don't have Windows which is one of the reasons Ryde is designed to be able to be built and used without ever needing Windows.

As Gareth says, docs take time so there is a trade off between writing more detailed technical documentation and adding more features/fixing more bugs. The most technical Ryde documentation is the README on GitHub that is designed as an advanced user guide and fully explains all the config file and API options mostly aimed at integrators. If you have specific questions about the Ryde internals I'm happy to try and answer them or I can probably write something more general if enough people are interested.

Tim

G8GKQ
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Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by G8GKQ » Tue Apr 13, 2021 1:42 pm

Michael

We have tried to put all the Portsdown (DATV DVB-S, DVB-S2 and DVB-T Transmit) software on GitHub. All the LongMynd (and WinterHill) software for DVB-S and DVB-S2 receive is also on GitHub. Unfortunately, a Non-disclosure agreement prevents us publishing the DVB-T receive code to use with the Knucker Tuner.

It can all be found here: https://github.com/BritishAmateurTelevisionClub

As a lone developer supporting over 30,000 lines of code in the Portsdown project there is just not time for me to write developer's notes in addition to user's notes.

The LongMynd receive software will run on most Linux platforms. I would suggest that you start by trying to compile it for your Mac. It will output a transport stream that you can play using VLC.

Dave, G8GKQ

M0MOI
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Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by M0MOI » Thu Apr 15, 2021 1:26 pm

Couldn't agree more with your sentiments; I too prefer a Mac and see the Minitioune software as proprietary even if free. But the NDA lies in the past and we can do nothing about it.
You could try using LeanDVB software https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JDXxU_ieEg
I'm sure there's another piece of software which also does not use a NIM but I found it very fiddly to set up and have a strong suspicion it was Windaz based and possibly not open source either.

HTH Steve

M0MOI
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Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by M0MOI » Thu Apr 15, 2021 1:35 pm

Here's the other software decoder: Download Link: http://v.1337team.tk/dvb-s_gui_amsat.zip

EA7KIR
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Feb 09, 2021 3:38 pm

Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by EA7KIR » Wed Jul 07, 2021 11:21 am

I'm still around and haven' given up yet. I'm busy writing a Mac application that will remotely control and monitor everything from the comfort of my office/shack. The entire installation will be situated on the roof terrace of my apartment next to a disk. It's Oscar or nothing in this part of Spain!.

Having no practical knowledge whatsoever, I need to ask, What are the usable FEC values within each of the band segments?

For example, I think Wide can use 1/2, 2/3, 3/4, 4/5, 5/6, 6/7 and 7/8, but what about Narrow and VeryNarrow?

The client and server-side are pure Swift and NIO. The GUI is Swift-UI. Do reach out if you're interested.
Michael EA7KIR

G8GKQ
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Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by G8GKQ » Tue Jul 13, 2021 11:35 am

Michael

I think that you are getting confused between the QO-100 bandplan and transmission standards.

The acceptable FEC depends on the transmission standard. DVB-S QPSK, DVB-S2 QPSK, DVB-S2 8PSK, DVB-S2 16APSK and DVB-S2 32 APSK all have different acceptable FECs. I listed them in this BATC Wiki page: https://wiki.batc.org.uk/The_Effect_of_FEC. There are some open source ETSI documents (use Google) that provide much more detail.

There is a lot of information in past CQ-TVs https://batc.org.uk/cq-tv/cq-tv-archive/ about how a DVB-S/S2 signal is constructed and how it can be received. Start at the most recent issue and read the 80 issues since about 2001. I have had to do that research and much more to be able to write the Portsdown software. If I had written a summary instead (like you seem to be asking for) no software would have been written.

MiniTioune is the only component of our current DATV equipment suite that needs to be hosted on Windows. Personally, I do not use MiniTioune much - I sit here surrounded by Linux devices which I use to transmit and receive DATV.

Dave, G8GKQ

EA7KIR
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Feb 09, 2021 3:38 pm

Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by EA7KIR » Tue Jul 13, 2021 2:52 pm

G8GKQ wrote:
Tue Jul 13, 2021 11:35 am
Start at the most recent issue and read the 80 issues since about 2001.
Thank you Dave. I'd failed to notice the The Effect of FEC link.
Michael EA7KIR

rentspel
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Re: Two Rants and a Plea

Post by rentspel » Wed Aug 25, 2021 8:32 am

M0MOI wrote:
Thu Apr 15, 2021 1:35 pm
Here's the other software decoder: Download Link: http://v.1337team.tk/dvb-s_gui_amsat.zip
Great mate! Thank you for this one!!! :)
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