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With no direct internet connection how does one upgrade license?

Dawg Fan
Dawg Fan Member
edited September 2019 in SmartSDR for Windows
I have wireless internet here at my home.  I do not want to run a 100 foot cable to the location of the router to connect to the flex.  The computer connected to the radio has wireless. How do I complete license process?  BTW- I own two 6600M radios and can't even locate a tech support number on your website, why isn't it listed under contact tab?  All i see is sales???
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Answers

  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    Assuming the WiFI connected PC is windows, turn on Internet Connection Sharing. Share the WiFi connection with the wired port. If your Flex is set for DHCP it should get an IP address and your PC becomes a router.

    http://www.countrymilewifi.com/how-to-share-computers-wifi-with-ethernet-devices.aspx

  • M Murdock
    M Murdock Member
    edited September 2019
    Hi 

    There are a few options.   

    The helpdesk link is in the top right of the main page where it says Support.   That link takes you to this point:  https://helpdesk.flexradio.com/hc/en-us/

    The radio must be connected to the internet to complete its licensing.   We have had customers run a cable to their modem, turn on the radio, wait 10 minutes and the licensing is complete.  You only need to connect the radio to the Internet.

    Another option is to turn on Internet Connection Sharing on your PC assuming the radio is LAN cabled to your PC and the PC is wireless.  This is a Windows feature and it seems to work about 50% of the time.  ICS is documented with Microsoft.

    We do sell a Wireless Network Bridge adapter in our store if you wish to give it a try.  http://cart.flexradio.com/FlexRadio-Wi-Fi-Network-Bridge_p_1146.html.  Once you configure this device, you connect the radio LAN cable to it and the Radio will then have access to your WiFi.  But, be aware, WiFi is not a reliable LAN connection method due to Latency issues on the WiFi Lan.

    I hope that helps you out.
  • Dawg Fan
    Dawg Fan Member
    edited September 2019
    Danny - thanks - your input worked superbly...Not sure why Flex support wants to make this so complicated....simply use your suggestion for windows machines...

  • Jon_KF2E
    Jon_KF2E Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    "WiFi is not a reliable LAN connection method due to Latency issues on the WiFi Lan."

    Mike, this is simply not true. A well designed WiFi network will introduce very little latency. It will certainly have less latency than a cellular network which can also work fine as a network connection. A wired connection is always best, but don't rule out WiFi as unreliable.

    Jon
  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    I'm glad it helped.

    With the radio not being connected directly to your LAN (immediately behind your router) you are limited to local shack operation; no SmartLink, etc. That may be by choice or your only option due to circumstance. If you can find a way to run Ethernet or fiber to your shack someday it will open up a whole new way of doing things with Flex (and negate the licensing access issue).

    Good luck!
  • WK2Y
    WK2Y Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    I have been using a WiFi connection from my PC for several years with my 6500. Latency and reliability have not been an issue.  The one idiosyncrasy I have encountered is that  to connect to the rig, I must first disconnect my PC from the internet, then power up the 6500 and then immediately reconnect the internet on the PC.  Odd, but it works every time.  If I don't do it, then SmartSDR won't see the rig.  

    I should mention I just upgraded to 3.1.7 and haven tested to see if I still need to do follow that procedure  Regardless, I wonder if that adapter might eliminate the need to go through these steps?

    73
    Bob, WK2Y


  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    Bob, your 6500 is wired Ethernet on your LAN and your PC is WiFi on the same LAN?
  • WK2Y
    WK2Y Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    My 6500 is Ethernet wired to my PC and my PC is WiFi.  In my network status, it shows "Network Bridge Private network" and honestly. it's been so long, I can't remember how we got the bridge set up in the first place.  I only have one LAN at home so everything has to be connected to it.

  • Erika - KØDD
    Erika - KØDD Member ✭✭✭
    edited September 2019
    If you desire providing yourself a LOW interference low loss and FAST "wired connection to your router..."  Pick up a couple Fiber optic transmitters and whatever length of fiber cable to pull.  That stuff HAS to be cheaper than it was 20 years ago when our guys were installing between buildings and up to 300 feet across warehouses...  We had several fiber runs at my last office pulled underground between two buildings..  Those runs were only 150 feet but the connections were always solid... Each cable had multiple fiber pairs...  With Cat-x cable for the radio and computer for the shack there's still the potential for extremely strong common mode RF overload if there's a lot of RF around the house and shack...  You sure can't hang ferrite on twisted pair Cat 5 or Cat 6 cables...  I have my Modem and wifi router in my dining room on the shelf of the hutch...  When I licensed my radio...  To get it on fast I pulled a 25' cat 5 over to the back of the router and plugged in...  Having the workstation on 5ghz... and the radio wired...  There were occasions the network WOULD drop packets and I'd see one yellow on the SSDR... before returning to all green. Unacceptable...  I pulled a pair of Cat 6's to both and now the network latency is 1ms instead of 3ms and I've dropped 3 packets in a million.  If I don't turn the radio off today, those three dropped will be all the higher it gets.  Eventually everything will be fiber here...  Erika DD
  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin
    edited September 2019
    Hi Jon

    In most cases, yes, but I am going to share some findings I have done on consumer WiFi (I have a career with this exact area when I worked for a company here in Toronto that did WiFi for consumer and commercial environments).  If running a full Cisco or Meru (bought by Fortinet  system, WiFi can be almost LAN esk.  But, those systems come with an 'air traffic controller'.

    The issue today is with stream on consumer-grade equipment.  MIMO helps but it doesn't solve the streaming performance.  Then, you need to leave bandwidth for your neighbour since he don't know how much of the ether he is consuming yet the RFC does require it.

    For our customer base, will over 90% (if not higher) only know 1 thing about WiFi and that is to turn it on and it should work.  After all, that is what the manufacturers want you to believe.  Those that dig under the covers of how the technology works will quickly understand how to improve it.  It is easy to get it to work.  It is hard to make it work well.  WiFi is sort of plug and play and that is why we call it a party line.  

    If you search in this community, you can see all the studies I did on consumer WiFi and how adding streams caused it to fail.  

    This is why we always recommend making using a LAN connection a priority and WiFi as plan B.  The Internet providers want you to use 100% WiFi since it is easy for them and when your performance degrades, they can blame WiFi congestion and walk away from it.   My ISP at the location where my remote is packaged with the EERO's system as it works so well to improve WiFi.

    If WiFi works for you, awesome.  In my Urban environment, and I know what I am doing, my iPad fails to stream movies after dinner due to RF congestion and it isn't an ISP issue at all.  My Apple TV works perfectly, but it is hard wired, exactly for that reason.

    I hope that helps explain my perspective.

    73


  • WK2Y
    WK2Y Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    I have no experience with it, but I have seen talk here of CAT 7 and fiber optic CAT 7.  I will be looking into that when I get a round tuit when I fully retire.

    73, Bob
    WK2Y
  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    CAT7 is still twisted pair Ethernet cable. Fiber is a different animal. If you're going to run just one cable from the router to the shack, fiber is the better long term solution. You'll need a router and switches (or just a pair of media converters) to take the GBICs (fiber interface module) at each end. It's not rocket surgery once you figure out how it works. When you're ready, ping me if you like.
  • WK2Y
    WK2Y Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    Thanks for the offer.  Would do it today, but work is such a viscous trap. ;-)
    Thanks again.
  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin
    edited September 2019
     Danny, I have limited experience with Fibre (as in, someone else always did it).  Can you comment what what type of GBIC's go with what type of fibre?  It would help with my eBay shopping.  :)
  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    It's not really about the fiber and GBIC combination, per sé.

    You can get OM3 or OM4 fiber with LC connectors on both ends. For example...
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07FDD7JJK/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    The tricky part is getting GBICs that will work with whatever switches you have. The GBIC+Switch affinity is what makes it all work with just about any fiber between them.

    Most people don't have Enterprise class Ethernet switches laying around with SFP (1GB) or SFP+ (10GbE) ports in them. So I would recommend getting 1 GbE media converters like this one... 
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MRO3UVJ/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o09_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    These tend to work with a lot more GBIC manufacturers, HP, HPE, Intel, Dell, Finisar, etc. If on the other hand you buy an HP or HPE switch, they may not like a non-HP GBIC. Buy generic and it is open to other GBIC manufacturers.

    When it comes to GBICs for 1GbE Ethernet look for "1000Base-SX Compatible" multi-mode.
    https://www.amazon.com/Transceiver-Multimode-1000Base-SX-Compatible-GLC-SX-MMD/dp/B07B47SSHH/ref=sr_1_5?keywords=1000Base-SX+Compatible&qid=1569255639&s=electronics&sr=1-5

    That's the whole thing for under $150 USD

  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin
    edited September 2019
    Awesome.. thanks .  I know just the place to try it out.
  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    In my situation, I do have an Enterprise class switch in the rack, but not at any endpoints in the house, like in the shack. So I am using the same media converter as above to convert back to UTP. Then it connects with a short jumper to a GbE switch for the PC, Flex, Smart TV, AllStar repeater... you get the idea.
  • Dawg Fan
    Dawg Fan Member
    edited September 2019
    I have no desire for remote use of radio...lightening here too often and too bad to keep rigs hooked up...
  • Michael N3LI
    Michael N3LI Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    I run wire with Ferrites to my 6600, but SSDR to my laptop and the Maestro are both running wireless. 

    Is it possible that routers are being hit with RFI that masks as a wireless problem?


  • David Kowell
    David Kowell Member
    edited September 2019
    my local wireless co. is stopping service next month so I went and got hughes  sat internet service for life of me I cant get  it to work with flex 6400 m and 6300   when I hook up lan cables to hughes router    will someone please HELP! tnx k2cka
  • David-N5PSM
    David-N5PSM Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    I use hughes net.   You need a business account with a fixed IP address for SmartLink to work. (That is my experience so far)
  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    He hasn't said anything about SmartLink. It sounds like he can't even get his radio to work whilst inside the house connected to the Hughes router.
  • David Kowell
    David Kowell Member
    edited September 2019
    radio s wont connect  6400m or my 6300  wont connect even if I plug lan cable from radio to pc
  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    Oops. I reread your comment.
  • K5CG
    K5CG Danny Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    The only reason I can think why you can't connect to the radio if it is connected directly to the PC is that one of them is set to DHCP and the other is set to Static IP. Check your PC Ethernet and IP settings and see if it is DHCP or static.
    I think if you do a factory reset on the radio it will revert to DHCP.
  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin
    edited September 2019
    Just an update to all those helping out.

    A lot of our customers do not have much (if any) network experience, so if you are trying to help out, you may need to provide some basics first.

    There is one other way to extend your LAN without having to pull CAT cable across your house.  I have tested these and they seem to work reasonably well.  

    There are devices called PowerLine and I have tested the ones from TP-Link.  https://www.amazon.com/TP-Link-AV600-Powerline-Ethernet-Adapter/dp/B00AWRUICG/ref=sr_1_3  TP-Link AV600 Powerline Ethernet Adapter - Plug&Play, Power Saving, Nano Powerline Adapter(Tl-PA4010 Kit).  These are about $35.

    Essentially, you plug one in the Wall (not a power ****) near your Modem and connect a LAN cable from one box to the Modem.  Then, you plug the other end in near your radio (again, not a power ****) and the LAN cable to the radio.  The setup is pretty simple and they usually work right out of the box.   Power Bars and Power Strips seems to **** their communications.

    There is some concern about HF  noise, from these, but I have yet to hear it on the ones I have tested.  If you do hear some HF noise or birdies then just unplug it when you don't need it.

    It looks like this.  

    image

    M


  • WK2Y
    WK2Y Member ✭✭
    edited September 2019
    Out of curiosity, I went out and got one of these "travel router" Wireless Network Bridge adapters to try out.  The good news is that it does connect my 6500 to my wireless network.  The bad news is that the oddity where I have to power down the router, turn on the rig and then immediately power up the travel router in order to connect is present with the travel router just like it is when I bridge through my PC. 
    Someone once explained  to me why that happens , but I don't remember what the explanation was. 
    Networking is a strange beast.
    73, Bob
    WK2Y
  • Dawg Fan
    Dawg Fan Member
    edited September 2019
    Shared connection no longer working today when I fired up the two computers their respective 6600Ms....worked fine to register license...now no internet connection indicated on both radios...Troubleshooting windows program in progress.  I am no windows expert and I spend days a year trying to keep the flex's running....its getting old for me.  Even with the M like the full experience with the software.
  • John KB4DU
    John KB4DU Member ✭✭✭
    edited September 2019
    Based on previous conversations here, I installed a pair of the TP-Link power wiring adapters, so my network is as above with a switch at the shack end. I had been contemplating pulling some Ethernet cables to reconfigure the local network, but these allowed me to avoid all that.. They work well, and no noise in any of the ham bands.

  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin
    edited September 2019
    Dawg

    I think we need to look at your network configuration and see if there isn't a better way to do it.  (Do you have it described somewhere here in summary?).    Can you actually draw a picture for us showing what is running where and the model number of all the hardware involved?   I can't wrap my head around this.

    There must be a better way to lay this out since I always have a few radios going (for work) on a basic home network design and I don't seem to lose connections to the radios.  The only problem I have is that SWR Plotter and SliceMaster often pick up the wrong radio since there can be up to 3 devices on the same network.

    Just sketch it out on paper and take a picture of the topology and post it here.  That might help shed some light.

    Mike





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