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Why would my 6400M be contacting Microsoft?

From my firewall logs:


----------------- is one of the computers in the radio.

whois shows me that belongs to Microsoft

I don't operate remotely.

I don't use Skype for anything

I don't use any external software to control the radio. Only the controls on the front panel.


  • Erika - KØDD
    Erika - KØDD Member ✭✭✭

    Microsoft owns Skype. At this point even though I didn't use any remote ops with my radio. If you can follow the trail of one of my posts from early In The month due to my cellphone changing technical words to simple ones... I explained the issues of when I first came up on my 6500 and version 3.1.7 things updated quickly from there, but flex says to keep setup quick. Just turn on port forwarding on you router, get your multiflex, smartlink password setup. And at first I logged in like that. Bad idea considering I my router was like an open brothel door with rights lights on. Its a nice router, but it was just learning how to tighten it up...

    At first I was using wifi on the radio or computer due to only one 25 ft cables. So that even added different issues too. Now hard wired. I had used the routers factory default time server and all of europe was watching ntp packets in and out and got my ip address. There were guys all over the world trying to hack my smartlink password and get to the radio. I had guys get in on my separate phone Skype and database server.. looking for gaming comm ports, all number imaginable.

    The other posts tried to explain what I did. Started over no flexlink user. Only direct to the radio. Locked down the router tight. Only 12ips, only tcp/ip version 4. As there were tunneling attempts on v6.

    I could have gone all assigned its, but used dhcp with Mac address filtering and a tight band of addresses 12 of them assigned to my tvs pcs phones and radio. I still get ip spoofs occasionally as guys usually start at 100, or down from. 254. But I limit my lan to far less than 255 addresses. That ntp server? Changed to a normally less used usa gubberment one. By ip address so no dns lookup via name. Lock that router down. I spent 20 years in networking, and wifi routers becoming popular in the last few years of my business and increased Hacking and low security for fast startup. Causes people some of these databreaches. In my first two months while still just getting going on the 6k flex from a 1500... there was a **** of a learning curve. And getting things up quick had the whole world having their way with my network. Tight it all up. Sub menus on the advanced setup on your own router and very little on wifi with a wild 36 character password with total randomization. Takes a hunk of paper every time I add something new has pretty much cleaned things up. Only open ports you need no port forwarding.

    Have fun afterwards, and enjoy your new found love of checking router logs..

    Good luck you'll get to know you router intimately. You'll still need to guess you way around the thing... keep config backups, and pay attention to the logs and router updates. Netgear no longer does updates for my router only 5 years into it, you desire performance, but stay clear of gaming routers... unless you game.

    Erika DD

  • Erika - KØDD
    Erika - KØDD Member ✭✭✭

    This last one still has so many changed words im disgusted Samsung and their smartphone auto correct makes me sound stupider than I already am. I oppoligize for not daring to edit my masterpiece and correcting the and you and other words I had to argue with the phone five times to get to stick. What I think of this rona **** I've been laid up for almost 8 weeks and fought my way down stairs down my 18 step staircase on my **** yesterday with my crutches to a windows update 🙃 sorry some of my stuff is hard to read. Craig works all day and has been doing everything here for almost two months. Erika DD

  • I have a commercial grade gigabit router / firewall that is locked down pretty tight. "Shieldsup" finds no ports that will respond to anything from the outside. I am as invisible as I can be. All my computers (12) have wifi turned off. They all have shielded Cat6E cables and get to the world via two 8 port gigabit switches.

    My router rule set is pretty extensive. I caught my iMac and my M1 mac mini trying to send out onto the wan to IP addresses beginning with 192.168. They did this under Big Sur and again under Monterey. BTW Apple did not respond when I tried to find out why OS-X would do this.

    I am just curious why one of the computers inside my Flex 6400M tried to connect to a Microsoft IP address. The Flex is cabled directly to one of the Ethernet ports on the router. To use my radio I don't login to anything.

  • Mike-VA3MW
    Mike-VA3MW Administrator, FlexRadio Employee, Community Manager, Super Elmer, Moderator admin
    edited February 2022

    This is normal operation and it has to do with Windows in the M model and Maestro to contact Microsoft to ensure .NET is up to date which is critical to the operation of both models.

  • Bob K8RC
    Bob K8RC Member ✭✭✭

    A simpler answer might be that the tablet in Maestros & "M" model radios is running a version of Windows.

    It might be nothing more than your front panel checking for updates.

  • The radio has two IP addresses. One is listed at "Front Panel" and one as "Radio".

    Is the front panel IP the Microsoft computer?

    The one that tried to contact Microsoft is the one listed in the network menu as "Radio".

  • Trucker
    Trucker Member ✭✭✭


    Unless something has changed, I was told by Steve Hicks several years ago that the version of Windows in the M model radios and the Maestro used a locked down version of Windows and does not" phone home" to Microsoft. And that the only way they can be updated is if Flex Radio includes it in an update that Flex Radio is distributing. That is why some updates take longer than others. Unless. Something has changed, that FRS has not told anyone about, I would expect that behavior would still be the same. Personally, I don't want my radio's front panel taking an update without it being part of an intentional update by Flex Radio.



  • The radio tells me it is running SW version I don't want my radio talking directly to Microsoft either. I would like any software updates to come from Flex.

    My belief, and I might be wrong, is that there are two computers in the radio. One runs a custom version of Windows and runs the display. The other runs Linux and runs the rest of the radio. One of them tries to talk to Microsoft. I like to know for sure which is which. And I want to know why it is trying to talk to Microsoft.

    I'd really like it if there was more information about how the internals all work. Perhaps in a separate manual.

  • Trucker
    Trucker Member ✭✭✭
    edited February 2022

    You are not wrong. The M model radios run a customized version of Linux, as do the non M models, and the front panel, which is a Dell tablet ( same as in the Maestro ) that runs an embedded version of Windows, that is supposed to not be able to connect to Microsoft's Windows Update servers. ( similar to industrial versions of Windows ) The tablet communicates with the radio's Linux server software thru an internal LAN connection. The radios ( all of the 6000 Series ) will check for updates from Flex Radio if connected to a network with internet access on startup. ( SmartSDR does this too ) But, none of them that I have used, refuse to work without an internet connection. That is one of the reasons I bought the 6600M. Works completely stand alone or networked. Best of both worlds.

    Maybe, what is being seen is the radio checking for an update from Flex Radio, not Microsoft. It's even possible that Flex Radio is using Microsoft's Cloud Servers to distribute updates. I have never heard who hosts their update services.



  • Trucker,

    Thank you. Is all the information about the internal stucture of the radio documented some place? I'd like to hear from Flex letting me know exactly who (Flex or Microsoft) is doing what when I see my radio going to a Microsoft IP address.

  • Trucker
    Trucker Member ✭✭✭


    Look in the Documents section of Flex Radio's website. There are several documents there that describe the signal flow in the 6000 series radios. Plus, you can do a Google search and find several YouTube videos of various presentations given by Flex engineers and even from Gerald Youngblood, describing how the 6000 series function. There are some very interesting explanations given in the presentations.

    Also, do a search here on the Community for similar discussions and explanations of the functioning of the 6000 radios.



  • James,

    Thank you. Since I got the Flex after retirement and a move to a place where I could have decent antennas for the first time since I got my license I have spent most of my time operating. And it has been a delight and difficult to tear myself away from. I have not explored all the resources you mentioned. Thank You again.

    Steve NG0G

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