Any progress report of v 1.4?

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  • Updated 5 years ago
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Could anyone report the progress/status of v1.4, like alpha tests completed and about to be launch by the end of Nov.?  
Gerald's announcement implies that FRS will release v1.4 in the end of November, and it is about a week to the month end.  Although I do not insist to the implied due date, I would be very happy if any of the progress report and rough launch schedule becoming available at this point of time.

73 de JI1BNU
Ken Yamada
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Takeshi Yamada

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Posted 5 years ago

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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Like all cakes in the oven...

It will come out of the oven when it is done!
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Takeshi Yamada

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Gnerally, oven has a small window to peek inside.  And it is fun to see the progress...
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Stan - VA7NF

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He got you on that one.
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Marc Lalonde

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whit all that time cake will came out the oven like ash ;-)

honestly i have hope to have see it for last week before end of mont
but see it no yet ready ..
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Ned K1NJ

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       Seems like reasonable request.  It's "about a month" now.  A "Basic 1.4", as on the
published roadmap, with "remote inside LAN", and basic FM, would be great, with the
additional features to follow in December.
   Too much cake at one time sometimes not good for you.

Ned,  K1NJ
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Takeshi Yamada

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I have no intention to fire up the non-productive discussion.  
However, I have no means to know about the progress of the work other than "FRS Insider" at the other end of the earth.  
And I would expect FRS to issue "The Insider News" periodically so that we can know the progress.  I am not intending to yell at the delay of the work, neither hasten the shipment.  I just want to be connected.

73 de JI1BNU
Ken Yamada 
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Alan - KA4B

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Dudley stated on the net yesterday that they are working on a few final details and it should be soon.
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Takeshi Yamada

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Thank you Alan for updating.
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Jon - KF2E

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I too would really like to hear from Flex about how things are going. I'm starting to get concerned that things aren't going well. It's time for Gerald or Steve to reassure me again;)

Jon...kf2e
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Bill -VA3WTB

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I may be wrong, but I think they have a few things up their sleeves that will surprise.
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Ned K1NJ

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   Just speculation, but I'm encouraged that Dudley uses the word "details" and not "problems".
Also I'm encouraged that there has been no end of February "Insider".  With any luck the next
"Insider " will accompany the 1.4 release and it will be soon.  Coming out with an "Insider"
followed in a few days by the release wouldn't make much as much sense as their being
concurrent.

Ned,  K1NJ
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Takeshi Yamada

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I speculated the same and expected to have Insider at the day 1st of March which did not happen, though.   Also, I support your (and my) speculation because Steve explained about AGC-T with fairly long explanations that implies me he was released from the hard part of v1.4 release.
Don't take this serious it is just my speculation.  And it is fun to speculate.
Thank you FRS for giving me another fun!!
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William Hemmingsen

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I was hoping 1.4 would be out prior to the ARRL DX International.  Would have been nice to not be confined to the shack.  Oh well hopefully soon.
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Steve - N5AC, VP Engineering / CTO

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Official Response
v1.4 is going well.  We made a lot of internal changes to improve performance and to support LAN remote.  There is always fallout from making these level of changes and so we've been working to make sure everything works well before a release.  We issued another Alpha on Friday and it is looking good with only a few remaining issues.  Sorry I can't give you a date -- all I can say is "soon."
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Ken - NM9P

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Thanks for the update, Steve.  It helps reduce the anxiety!

Will the performance improvements be "noticeable" to the average operator, or are they primarily "under the hood" and CPU load reductions? Tease us a little, if you have time...!
 
I am already aware of the massive reduction in data throughput brought by the change in audio codec, etc.  Really looking forward to LAN Remote.  I am now looking for a good Bluetooth or other wireless headset for that purpose.  Also looking forward to FM and some of the other improvements.

Thanks for the hard work.

Ken - NM9P
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Mike - N1MD

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It is always good to "hear" from you, Steve!

I feel like I am 5 years old again waiting for Santa to deliver that special v1.4 present!

I live in New England and last night I thought I heard Santa and the Sleigh land on my roof to deliver 1.4!

No joy. It was only the ice dams causing my roof to buckle.

But what fun it will be when 1.4 gets loaded!

Mike N1MD
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Steve - N5AC, VP Engineering / CTO

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Ken, at the possible cost of oversharing gory details here's the scoop.  We have over 40 threads that run in the main radio processor to handle everything the radio has to do.  We made some alterations to the Linux kernel and the software to ensure that events are more carefully scheduled avoiding conflicts and ensuring the most important tasks are always done first.  This included an implementation of priority-based preemptive multitasking, a multi-level locking structure using Pthread rwlocks and mutexes and movement of some algorithms from the processor to the FPGA where it made sense.  All of these things make the radio run cleaner and more efficiently and will be noticeable during normal operation I would say.  All of these changes were implemented and tested across all of the FLEX-6000 line.

On top of this, the SmartSDR client was worked over from a performance standpoint and a number of major enhancements in performance were made.  A lot of these changes had to do with how we handle memory on the PC.  Microsoft tends to hide a lot of this from programmers, which is generally good.  With a high performance program that is expected to draw and communicate a lot of data, we really have to try a number of things and see where we can get the underlying language runtime (CLR) and the OS to do what works best.  The results have been fantastic.  I've seen a number of "marginal" computers go from having difficulty to performing very well in the transition to the new code.  This will help everyone that runs SmartSDR.

As you mention, we did implement a standard audio codec to transport audio between the PC and radio that has excellent performance, excellent audio quality and good self-healing for situations where there is some packet loss.  This codec is expensive in terms of CPU usage, but the results are really amazing.  I literally cannot tell that a codec or any compression is involved.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Steve, sounds like there is nothing to it..lol
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W5XZ - dan

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WOW ! sounds great !  thanks for the details, steve
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Pat - WH6HI

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Thanks Ken for the detailed update and please keep them coming.  I thank you and the rest of the engineering staff for working on these issues.  Flex is truly a great radio system and with time and persistence will continue show the way to remarkable performance. 
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Norm - W7CK

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Thanks for the update Steve.  Just hearing from you folks means a lot to all of us folks out here trying out best to patiently wait for v1.4.   Having no news was getting to be just a bit tough for us!  Thanks again and I for one really appreciate the effort all of you at Flex are putting into blazing this new trail through the SDR forest! 
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Ken - NM9P

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Love those gory details, Steve!  Thanks.  Just enough sugar to make the medicine (waiting) go down!  With all that, it is easier to understand any delays.  Sounds like almost a complete rewrite of a lot of the code.... Then you get to do it all again for V.2.0!  ha ha!

Ken - NM9P
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Peter K1PGV, Elmer

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Don't you just hate it when destabilizing code changes cause regressions!  Sigh.  It's the way of the world.

Better to bite the bullet and get them all fixed the right way, as opposed to succumbing to pressure and shipping something with a bunch of work-arounds.  That just leads to problems later.

Please.  Take the time and fix stuff at the root cause now. When 1.4 is great, everyone will be happy and start waiting for 1.5!
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Carl K5HK

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Serve no wine before it's time...
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Richard McClelland, AA5S

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How about a new hardware platform that covers 125 khz to 450 mhz inclusive.  Surely, that would be something Steve can do as an extra lunch-time project.
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WA6FXT Mike

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Steve,
Maybe next time somebody says "Let's run it on Linux", you'll remember the term RTOS. (HIHI)

Thanks, for the details. Some of us love to hear how things are going, even if it isn't smoothly.

Mike
(Edited)
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Tony Hateley

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donnt hold your breath
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Steve W6SDM

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The upside of waiting for 1.4 is that we don't have to listen to people complaining about the release of 1.5... yet.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Good one Steve, Maybe the will not suggest a release date on that one, or any others..
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DrTeeth

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I hope the lack of discussion of release dates will not mean FRS clamming up on info like they have with 1.4; in particular we were told that FreeDV and the Waveform API were out officially, then rumours that they were in again. Then a few weeks ago there was one bug to be squashed and then more a few weeks later. The flow of info should be consistent during a dev period - keeping to a regular period (monthly/bi-monthly) would be best even if there is not much to say.
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Jay / NO5J

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So this is what happens when you let the the users run the company, The Company fails, right along with the users ideas. Maybe letting the smart people run things the smart way can produce smarter SmartSDR. I'd rather download that, than TypicalSDR
or EarlySDR or DeadlineSDR or BrokenSDR.

73, Jay - NO5J
(Edited)
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Jon - KF2E

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Please Jay, let's not equate loyal users wanting to have an idea what the plans are with the lunatics running the asylum.

Jon...kf2e
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Jay / NO5J

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Lunatics?, What Lunatics? We don't need no stinkin Lunatics!. The loyal users, with reading abilities, got their answer with ...


Official Response





v1.4 is going well.  We made a lot of internal changes to improve performance and to support LAN remote.  There is always fallout from making these level of changes and so we've been working to make sure everything works well before a release.  We issued another Alpha on Friday and it is looking good with only a few remaining issues.  Sorry I can't give you a date -- all I can say is "soon."

But others are stuck on WHEN?.

While they wait, maybe the answer will have time to sink in.

Why continue to beat the deceased horsey? It's been asked and answered numerous times since October. The question's haven't changed, to reflect the current valid "Official" answer of SOON.

73, Jay - NO5J


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Jon - KF2E

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Jay, you should really read the whole thread and understand what is being discussed.

Everyone understands where we are with 1.4.

We are just hoping that the current difficulties doesn't mean we will never have a roadmap with some sort of schedule for the future. I think that is what Guy was saying and I know it is what I meant.
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Jay / NO5J

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Jon 
I guess you missed the 251 posts and replies, a month ago in ...
https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/smartsdr-v1-4-update-posted
and Gerald's reply with 
 
  1. We are the only company in ham radio with a public software road map.  We do this as a courtesy to you.  I expect that we will continue to communicate our directional road map from time to time but without specific dates. 

in ...
https://getsatisfaction.com/flexradio/topics/ok-i-have-seen-the-alpha-release-of-1-4j

3 weeks ago.

For me that signaled that, a directional road map without specific dates, has been suggested as part of the future method of operation for flexradio, by Gerald K5SDR. he's the boss, so he can change his mind, which is probably less likely, the longer the whining continues. 
 
Users have a right to know what is going on at the offices of Flexradio Systems,
The "FlexInsider" was and is a great way to deliver the news, we get news when there is news to give.   

The current news, on the status of the next release was posted by Steve, N5AC, yesterday, long before I posted anything to this discussion. I quoted that in my last post. This thread of posts has been around for 3 months. 
 
Takeshi reopened it 2 days ago asking why we haven't received a new FlexInsider, got his reply 2 days ago, seemed happy with the reply 2 days ago, and then you tail ended into, what might have been a completed conversation. Since then, the amount of replies have doubled. you've whinged a bit about 7 mo's of delay, and your suspicions "people would be speculating the long delay meant Flex was going under", and your concern that you just hate to see us never given a roadmap again because 1.4 was a bear. 

(there ought to be a way to <FUD>highlight/blockquote</FUD>)


You failed to see that  in my first comment in the thread, meant to convey my happiness, or possibly just to indicate humor "for Guy thats humour I suppose"


Was this a shout or a scream?
Everyone understands where we are with 1.4.
It never the less was quite BOLD of you. 

That's my book report on the @18 posts in this thread. hopefully I've fulfilled your request to really read the whole thread and understand what is being discussed.

I've got a request for you too Jon, really read and understand the 251 posts you must have missed from the first link in this post, then really read and understand all 18  posts in the second link. You may have missed that one too, The second link started soon after, the first one was locked. Can you detect a change of attitude in the second? Without understanding both, are you that positive you truly understand what everyone knows and understands? If you had read and understood both threads you might not have felt any need to tail end into this one. I regret, I didn't notify you when I had read and understood the entire thread, prior to you being forced to suggest that I should. Also, pretty BOLD of you to assume you needed too.  (thats 3 Clowns) also meant to suggest humor(humour)

It does ye little good to argue with clowns, they enjoy argument above all other forms of expression, and they will grin at ye throughout. And never climb ye into the backseat of they're car, lest ye escape out the other side, also resembling a clown.

73, Jay - NO5J


 
(Edited)
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Mike Hoing

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We beat them for speaking. We beat them for not speaking. I would keep my mouth shut if I were them it's much easier.

Mike
N9DFD
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John n0snx

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I'm with you Mike.... No way can they please everyone....  They are stuck in the danged if they do and danged if they don't perpetual circle.    FRS has repeatedly stated it will be released when its done .....   it is as simple as... If it isn't released it's not done... all the complaining in the world is not going to speed things up.... always asking for updates about how its going and getting the same educated reply "we are working on it" time after time... It's programing and it takes time to make changes and then fix what the new changes caused somewhere else... It will be released when it's done ...period.
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Jon - KF2E

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I guess what it really comes down to is their confidence in meeting a schedule. In the past they had done pretty well, grunting out an update roughly every three months. 1.4 seems to have upset the apple cart and is now going on seven months since the release of 1.3. It's obvious that 1.4 turned out to be much more than they had thought. Hopefully it is nearing completion. Once it is released, it would be nice to get back to a regular schedule of releases. Perhaps they need to be a little less aggressive in what they try to accomplish in each release.

I think the community will be much more harmonious with regular updates instead of regular excuses why the big update is late.

Jon...kf2e
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John n0snx

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Are you kidding me....Less aggressive!!!!   Excuses!!!!  You are joking right... surely you are...
(Edited)
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Steve W6SDM

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I think Flex Radio's tactics are sound.  If you don't publish a schedule, you can't be orally castigated for not meeting it.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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It is not just like that Jon. The remote they have added has been very complicated, and much of the code had to be re worked, this is the most complicated update so far. Remember they are also learning as they move foreword, finding out new things. They are in uncharted waters. If they had never ever mentioned when they had hoped to finish 1.4 then they would have never been late, would they?
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Jon - KF2E

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Bill, it's just like that. Everyone knows remote was demanding and that it created other issues. Yes, it's uncharted waters...but all of the previous uncharted updates managed to get out on a schedule. Steve and Gerald have already said that remote LAN turned into a way bigger project that it was planned to be.

If they had never said anything, people would be speculating the long delay meant Flex was going under. Instead we are all just waiting...mostly patiently.

I've read all of the updates and am fine that 1.4 comes when it is ready. I just hate to see us never given a roadmap again because 1.4 was a bear.

Jon...kf2e
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Norm - W7CK

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I agree.  I appreciate the huge undertaking and effort the folks at Flex have put into this project.  I'm as impatient as the next guy, but I am sincerely hoping the grumbling isn't going to put a halt to future roadmap notices.  Shoot, so they didn't meet their projected goal on time.  At least we know what the goal is, what obstacles they are up against and approximately where they are in the development process.  That in itself has been a real privilege. I love seeing the roadmap.  Shoot, most of us probably have our own roadmaps and I know I don't meet all of my goals on time!  I still have a roadmap though!
(Edited)
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Robbie - KI4TTZ

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Well I just got notified that I'm due for my PEN update on the 6700, which means we are guaranteed v1.4 will be released while my radio is in Texas for repairs over the next few weeks. ;-) (it's a joke people). Me and Murphys law are like this --> <--.