Maestro and VPN Setup ?

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Can anyone tell me 'exactly' how to setup my Maestro/Flex 6500 for remote use in Florida this winter and I'm not expecting Flex to have Version 2.0 of Smart SDR ready before we leave in late December.

We will be leaving my Flex 6500 radio home with no computer operating but using a remote power-on (WEMO) for the radio. 

Does anyone have a "How to Setup Flex Maestro via VPN for Dummies" procedure? 

Which VPN company do you recommend ?

I have an TPLINK Archer C7 router at home. 

I have read a number of comments on the forums about VPN's but nothing that I could find that is a "start to finish using the Maestro".

We have high speed Internet here at home and as well in Florida (Comcast). 

73
Bill
VA3QB
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Bill / VA3QB

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Posted 3 years ago

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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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(Edited)
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John W9KXQ

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Tim,
The problem with Steve's videos is the lack of a crib sheet for his steps and he indicated that he had a video coming that  would show us Mac users how to set up and use the softether bridge.  Again, a pdf of his on screen notes would be helpful.  I have set up the home server but have had no luck in getting connected to it.

Thanks, however for re-posting the video links.

John
W9KXQ
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K6OZY, Elmer

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Hi John, I will try to build a good companion guide to help everyone.
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John W9KXQ

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Thanks Chris, W9NJM & I spoke with you at Dayton and both of us are looking forward to your help.  We are in the same "going to be gone this winter" boat with Bill VA3QB.
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Excellent Chris.

No level of detail is too small to cover, as like many of us I don't get regular opportunity to do all these neat things often enough to "have the feel" or know my way around without guidance.

Thank you and 73

Steve K9ZW

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Arnie

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You can try contacting Steve (K6OZY) directly. He was very helpful to me in getting this going. Mine has been online continuously since July and works great.
73 de Arnie W8DU
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K6OZY, Elmer

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My name is Chris, and yes I would love to help you get your flex working remotely until 2.0 is out. Contact me offline.
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Arnie

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Oops...sorry about the name Chris. 
Tnx again....73 de Arnie W8DU
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Ric KV1W

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posts by k6ozy


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Bill / VA3QB

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The video's that Tim show use a / two Raspberry Pi's to set up a VPN.  Is there any other way to do it with out them? 

73
Bill
VA3QB
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K6OZY, Elmer

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Yes you can use two PCs to do the same thing.
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Bill / VA3QB

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Chris, I will contact you over the weekend about how to set it up. Thnx
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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The R-Pis are a lot cheaper and more convenient that a Windows PC for remote use.
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Bill / VA3QB

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I'll price them out ...  Thanks Tim
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Bill / VA3QB

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Chris, which R-Pi's do you recommend ?

Bill 
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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I'm working on automating this with a script and some other stuff... just have to try out a few things in the test lab in the next couple of weeks including wifi options. This is not a guarantee mind you, so don't wait for my solution. But if it's a pleasant surprise I am not ruling that out. :)
(Edited)
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Ernest - W4EG

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Hello Ria,
I've been following this post and your script. I'm curious how close are you to posting your home server endpoint?
Thanks
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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Soon I hope. Things have been super busy here with the holidays and my increased workload at my day job. 
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Tim VE6SH

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Thanks Ria. Those darned day jobs spoil all the fun!
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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We had a sudden departure of one of my team members so my workload is now added to his until we fill the position. Also messes up my holidays. :(
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Tim VE6SH

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I can relate!
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Lasse Moell

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Would a VPN get round issues when the IP provider uses NAT and/or blocks ports?? I know Teamviewer somehow makes through firewalls that are supposed to a be tight (don't ask :) ) I would love to use a mobile phone as access point but it seems to  be very restricted to open ports.
/Lasse SM5GLC
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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Yes and no. If the ISP where the server (radio) is located is behind ISP NAT and you can't port forward then you're out of luck. However if the client is behind NAT then it should work.

Teamviewer works by using an intermediary, I believe so there are only outgoing connections initiated from each side.
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Bill / VA3QB

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Well 2 months ago I asked how to setup my Maestro/Flex 6500 for remote use in Florida this winter.

Over the last month I purchased 2 Raspberry Pi's. One a Pi 3  and the other a Pi 2.

I followed the video links that Tim had posted.  Many thanks to Chris K6OZY for some excellent work.  I got mine working. Took a lot of time and rewinding the video over and over to get it correct. Even starting over a couple of times. 

I have the Maestro  setup at a friends place for the past week. He is testing it for bugs etc. and it has worked flawlessly.

I would recommend going this route if you need remote access to your Flex 6x00 from a remote location.

On a side note I have access to my entire network remotely as well.

Now if Version 1.10 of Smart SDR can access my antenna rotor the world will be perfect.

Bring on Florida !! 


73
Bill Reid
VA3QB 
(Edited)
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Tim VE6SH

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Bill

I am curious which model of PI 3 did you buy? I am considering one of the kits on Amazon.

73

Tim VE6SH
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Bill / VA3QB

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Tim 

I used a Raspberry Pi 2 (Got from a hamfest) for the home VPN server and a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B (Purchased from Amazon.ca) as the VPN remote unit connected to the Maestro.  

73
Bill Reid
VA3QB
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Tim VE6SH

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Tnx

73

Tim
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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The pi 3 is good for this but the built in wifi is very poor as the built in antenna is a small pcb trace. In tests more than a few meters from the router the pi begins to cut back link speed because of lower snr. As a workaround you can use an external wifi dongle and disable the internal wifi or add a u.fl connector to the board, a coax pig tail and an external gain antenna for much better range. The pi 3 has a space labeled J3 for the connector on the board. You do void your warranty in this case but it's a $35 item so I'm not too worried. Besides, I wear my "i void warranties" shirt a lot. :)

If you're buying a kit I recommend the viaboot kits. It comes with the case, psu, heat sink, preloaded SD card (NOOBS), Ethernet and hdmi cables.
(Edited)
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mikeatthebeach .

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Also, noticed that a HDMI 3.5inch screen is now available can now mount onto of the Pi

http://www.ebay.com/itm/3-5-Raspberry-Pi-LCD-HDMI-USB-Touch-Screen-Display-Audio-for-Pi-2-Pi-3-Model-B-/351913962824?

First Time I have seen a HDMI Screen this small for Raspberry Pi 3 and with a Touch Screen in HDMI Format as well !

Just came out Nov 11, 2016 as a new Miniature HDMI screen for the Pi

Also this seller has new Clear Plastic Cases $5 available for the Pi 3 and 3.5inch 
HDMI Touch Screen which just came out 

73 Mike
(Edited)
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mikeatthebeach .

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Link for my Wireless Dual Band Dongle used on Pi 3 great range
http://www.ebay.com/itm/222222977471?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

73 Mike
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Tim VE6SH

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Many thanks to all. I will have fun over the next few weeks getting this to work! I ordered a pi 3 kit from Amazon so hopefully will arrive this week.

73

Tim VE6SH
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Bill / VA3QB

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Tim

What do you plan to use at the other end?  I had to use two Raspberry Pi units. 

73
Bill
VA3QB
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Tim VE6SH

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I plan to use Pis at both ends and the Maestro for remote.. I ordered a Pi 3 from Amazon and after viewing K6OZY's excellent videos I realize what I purchased is overkill (touchscreen etc). So I will return and have ordered two basic Pi 3 kits. Do you know if K6OZY has written instructions or a script for the setup. The videos are great, but I tend to like having a cheat sheet in front of me!

73

Tim VE6SH

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Arnie

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If you are using a computer or tablet on the vacation end, then you don't need a pi on that end. Windows, IOS and Android all have built-in VPN clients that work pretty well. I have not used the Android one, but have used the Windows 10 and IOS VPN clients and they work great to connect to my VPN server running on a Pi2 at home.
73 de Arnie W8DU
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Arnie

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Oops...I just realized that Bill said he was using the Maestro at the distant end, so I presume that means he is not planning on having a computer. So never mind my previous comment. I was thinking about my use where I use a computer running SSDR in Windows 10 or an iPad running IOS and their respective built-in VPN clients. Sorry for any confusion engendered by my previous comment.
73 de Arnie W8DU
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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The pi with the touch screen is actually a good idea since you can use it to sign into hotel wifi etc
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Tim VE6SH

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Thanks Arnie and Ria. Will let you know how it goes.
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Bill / VA3QB

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Tim if you watch the video ... Chris has a cheat sheet right in the video on the right of the screen.
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Bill / VA3QB

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Arnie , is it possible to put a switch at the "Vacation" end and plugin both the Maestro and a laptop into the Rasp. Pi , so I could share the VPN connection ??

Bill 
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Arnie

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Bill:
Sounds like you want the 'vacation' Pi3 to act as a router and I am not sure if Softether client supports that on the pi. If it does not, just pick up a cheap router that has wifi and connect the Pi3 ethernet to the cheap router WAN port. You would have to set the WAN port on the router to a static IP address that matches the ethernet IP address of the Pi3. Then you could connect any number of devices to the router, either via ethernet cable or wifi, such as your Maestro, your computer, your smartphone etc.
It sounds more complicated than it is.
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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Bill, you can absolutely put a switch at the "vacation" pi endpoint. The way the vpn works is that it runs in bridge mode and establishes a vpn bridge to your home network. 

I would discourage the use of the router behind the Pi because that would add NAT which would not work with the broadcast protocol. 
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Bill / VA3QB

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Thanks Ria

Another question for you. I have a friend who lives in a Condo and has no access to a radio. He has been testing my Maestro with the Rasp. Pi  3  as a VPN for last few weeks. He can't afford a Maestro. 
What if he bought another Rasp. Pi 3 and we set it up with the same program and use Smart SDR on a laptop. Could he login to my Rasp. Pi 2 VPN server at my residence at the same time I have one logged in while in Florida? or would one have to be turned off before the other is turn on etc ?  Only one would be logged into the Flex 6500 at a time. Just concerned that if he left the Rasp Pi running that I would not be able to get into the VPN. 

73
Bill
VA3QB
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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No problem

I think you can set the RP3 to accept multiple simultaneous logins

If so, then SmarSDR has a tool to allow you to kick off the other user
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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By default it can accept multiple logins. The only constraint would be CPU and RAM for the encryption (VPN uses encryption) but the pi barely breaks a sweat. 
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Bill / VA3QB

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So the Rasp Pi 2 that is at home connected to the home router can accept a second Rasp Pi 3 connection from a second location?   I just need to be sure before my friend orders a Rasp. Pi 3.....  Do I need to edit the programing on the Home Rasp Pi 2 VPN Server ?

Bill 
(Edited)
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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Yes that is correct. 
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kjave63@yahoo.com

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Ria, 
I have a DVMega I assembled , and I was able to upload some basic image, but that is as far as I have gotten.  
I own a Window 10 laptop/tablet thing as well as a Macbook Pro and an IPAD.   I also own a Maestro , and my main interest is WAN with my Maestro for when I travel in order to operate my home 6700 base station.   I am a bit tired of waiting for SmartSdr version 2.0 (since I bought my 6700 and Maestro preorder at Dayton 2015!)   
Can you be of help in the best/easiest way for me to accomplish my task, given I am very ignorant of most things computer.
Keith 
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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I'm not sure what you're using DVmega for but you don't need it for the vpn.

For the server (home) endpoint use my script to set it up.

For the remote (maestro) end you can follow Chris K6OZY's video and it will show you how to. I have a test script to do it for the maestro end but I have a few bugs to shake out of it.
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kjave63@yahoo.com

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My comment shows you how ignorant I am of this subject. I am mostly interested in setting my maestro up for remote wifi operation and I will google the call sign you recommended. As far as "your script", I am even unsure how to implement that.
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Tim VE6SH

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I too am a computer neophyte, but surprised myself in being able to set up a Pi after following the K6OZY videos (although I am sure Ria's script will make it easier). I was surprised how relatively straightforward it is!

73

Tim VE6SH

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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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The VPN setup is via the GUI which is very straightforward. 
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Norm - W7CK

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I set up a VPN between my laptop and my home network a few months ago and I've successfully used it to access my Flex while traveling.

I am one of those who uses DDUtil.  I have it running on my home computer which has USB to serial cables going to my KAT500 and KPA500.  DDUtil works great.  It also has a built in Ham Radio Deluxe emulator which is a nice feature. 

When I operate remote, I can run the Flex across the VPN but I still have to use TeamViewer to connect to my home PC desktop in order to use DDUtil.

Have any of you gotten DDUtil to work on a remote by using any of the Remote USB over Ethernet servers?  I'd love to not have to use TeamViewer just to access DDUtil for KAT500 and KPA500 control.
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WA6FXT Mike

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Norm,

I'm not sure if SoftVNC can do it; but, I setup an OpenVPN server / router in 'bridge' mode, with the help of a friend, and use a laptop as my DDUTIL controller and use the windows Bridge in Win7 and Win10 between the OpenVPN and the Maestro. Works out great to control all of my Shack hardware with DDUTIL and the laptop is used for all of the digital modes.

Maestro controls my 6700 and the laptop for rotor, linear , SteppIR and remote power control via DDUTIL.

Mike
(Edited)
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Howard

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I have a VPN set up in my asus router (openvpn) it works fine using my IPAD with smartsdr however I'm trying to get my Maestro to work from 300 miles away before the next 3 days and wonder if theres a fast fix? Is there any hidden VPN config in the maestro ..I've been waiting too long for Flex to make this all work .Any help will be appreciated VE2AED@GMAIL.com
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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Not at the moment, at least not until 2.0.

You can use a raspberry pi and set up a LAN to LAN vpn and that will work. You can even do that with a windows PC.
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WA6FXT Mike

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Yes, I use DDUTIL on my laptop, when remote and the desktop, when local. Both connect to my 4port Ethernet to RS232 device.

Mike