One of these is not like the other

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  • Updated 2 years ago
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Lets see ... One of these is not like the other ....

SSDR for Windows .... really?  But wait, the Signature series is based on Linux! 6400M, 6400, 6600, 6600M internal computer Linux not Windows!

Remote apps ... Hmmm ... ios for ipad, iPhone ... again apple based = Linux.

Why no SSDR for Macbooks, Imacs, etc. All Linux based.

Very little virus worries with Linux, Apple either.

The Os's dont get broken with every update since its a solid OS.

Don't understand why SSDR is for windows only, if anything it should be for Apple only!

Maybe that's why the hdmi issue is not resolved yet with the M series, there must not be a lot of Linux developers working at flex compared to Windows stuff.

Just thinking outloud wishing I could run SSDR on my MacBook pro or Imac!

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Wayne

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  • times are changing toward linux ... and apple ...

Posted 2 years ago

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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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You have options for Mac. DogparkSDR is one. There is also xSDR6000 but it’s not really stable yet.

Ria
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Bob Craig, K8RC

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You are also perpetuating a myth about the invulnerability of the unix derivatives.  
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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I wouldn't call it a myth necessarily. 
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Bob Gerzoff, WK2Y

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It's all about the numbers.  Windows currently has about 4x the installed base of Apple. I don't know how much Linux has. I'd be curious to see how that works out among hams.

Bob
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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In the server world, exposed on the Internet, Linux reigns supreme. 
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Michael Coslo

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Once a person is used to the differences, Linux is nice and stable. Which is why so many servers run it. 

The numbers game doesn't sway me - If that were the case, there would be no Dogpark. 

Here is what I consider the real problem. Windows 10 is a disaster IMO and updates break systems.  for that reason I recommended against a signature series radio for my club - which is about as weird a situation as you could find. My favorite radios in the world, but a "do not buy" for a club radio - at least with System 10. I leave 'em scratching their heads during those discussions.

Fortunately Flex has come out with radios with internal computers, which are a lot less vulnerable, so I'm in the process of recommending one for my club.
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Ted VE3TRQ

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Slight correction - although they are both Unix-based, MacOS is NOT Linux under the hood. It is FreeBSD-based (and in some ways NetBSD), with many changes, especially in configuration and GUI. This is one of the reasons I have always preferred MacOS - the underlying Unix heritage. That said, I really dislike the ongoing "IOSification" of MacOS - it is becoming more and more like the iPad and iPhone. Dumbed down (to the end-user) and more opaque release to release.

My rant.

Ted VE3TRQ
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Bob Gerzoff, WK2Y

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Your rant is my education.  So vent away!
Thanks.
Bob WK2Y
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George Molnar, KF2T, Elmer

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Also note that the server OS and the client OS do not need to be the same. In fact, there may be benefits to having different a OS that supports one platform better than another, or has better user agreements, terms and conditions, licensing costs, etc.
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Robert Lonn

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WHAT HDMI Issue?????
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Wayne

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Do you work for flex? Hi Hi, please don't get me started ....
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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The HDMI issue has been addressed in the next release of SmartSDR for WINDOWS ;-)
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James Whiteway

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I've almost got used to it. But, don't take the fix out!
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Michael Walker, Employee

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You can think of it this way.  FRS is in the business of making and selling radios.  If you want to sell a product, you want to hit your biggest market share.  If you don't sell radios, then aren't in business.  Just basic economics.

89% of the world runs on Windows - that makes it the biggest market share and where you want to focus your sales if you want to sell hardware/software.
8% is on MacOS even today

Taking it a bit further, just about all Ham applications run on Windows and a few on other OSs, but not many.  Most MAC based Hams still run Windows when they need to.  Again, Windows is the stronghold.  

Virus wise?  Nothing is immune.  You can have RansomWare hit any OS.   However, the story is the same  for the bad guys.  They spend their time writing software where they get the biggest bang for the buck.  You 89% windows users.  If you are concerned, run a Chromebook for surfing/email etc and don't have your Windows device connected to the internet.  That is the ONLY 100% sure fire protection that will work.  It just isn't practical in todays world.

A lot of the current Ham market is now Plug and Play, so they want to turn it on and have it work as they got in the hobby to talk on the air.  Believe it or not, that is about 80% of todays active hams.

If you want a Mac Client, this one is awesome and the client support is 2nd to none.  https://dogparksoftware.com/dogparkSDR.html

I hope that explains some of the economics of manufacturing.

Mike
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Just by the very nature of the kernel in Linux it is very difficult to place any melware in Linux. nothing can run without the user knowing about it. Unlike windows were it is mostly an open door. When Windows is attacked, it looks after problems later when they are found. In Linux they simply can't set up and run from the get go.
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W8QB

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To Mike Walker: We all understand that for the general public, Windows has dominant market share, but consider that a consumer purchasing a new Flex transceiver is investing between $1,999-$7499; this arguably is far beyond the reach of the "general public."  Someone investing this amount of cash is precisely the type individual who is more apt to invest in a $2,000 computer running OSx, rather than an inexpensive PC.  It is therefore reasonable to speculate that the percentage of Flex users running a Mac--instead of a PC--is considerably higher than the percentage of the general public running OSx.
Like many hams, I am comfortable building PCs from off the shelf components; but for stability and efficiency, OSx is the superior solution, in my opinion.  I suspect the identical sentiment is held by a considerable number of Flex customers, not a tiny minority.  It would seem shortsighted for Flex not to develop an OEM version of SSDR for the Mac; it should not be necessary to pay license fees to third party developers to run SSDR on the Mac, and without the nuisance of running Windows within a virtual machine.
(Edited)
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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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Most ham software is in Windows - N1MM, N3FJP, HRD, Log4OM, DXLabSuite, etc. Mac is a ham niche and an oddity in the ham world. It makes total sense for Flex to develop in Windows because then everything else would work together.
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Michael Coslo

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I've always thought that in matters of computing, people seem to have a one size must fit all approach. Since most computer  users are on Windows, than it's Windows and Windows only. If auto makers used that rationale, there would only be Toyota Corollas, because that's the biggest selling car in the world. 

The problem such as it is, is that SSDR will not be usd on the overwheliming majority of that 89 percent of computers - ever. A lot of those computers are used by businesses running Microsoft Office apps, a lot are owned by Grandma and Grandpa. A lot are used in grocery stores. and Point of Sale stations. Suddenly that overwhelming majority of Windows machines is shrinking, percentage wise.

Then of course, there is the Windows 10 update issue. Which is why until Flex came out with the new radios, I recommended against buying my favorite radio - a Signature series radio, since our club's network is On Windows 10 computers. I keep a Windows 7 computer at home because it is more reliable than my W10 one.

Regardless, this one has been hashed out many times before, os I don't want to belabor Flex for their decision, just a gentle nudge that there is more involved than Installed user base. 

Like the time I had to purchase a high speed scanner, and one company had a good candidate. But they didn't make one that would work with OSX. I asked them why, and they told me about the vast majority of computers being Windows. So I bought a difference scanner that was compatible with both Windows and OSX. 

Not really complaining - just a differential analysis. And I'd surely pay for SSDR for Mac or Linux.  Over and above the Windows SSDR that comes with the radios already. Already paid for DogPark. 
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Ken - NM9P

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Perhaps a few hams will put their money into a $4,000 rig AND a $2,000 computer to play it, but I think not the majority of flex users.    

The concept of the Flex-6000 is that as a "radio server" it can be accessed by relatively lightweight client computers.  Since all of the "heavy lifting" is done inside the rig itself, the shack computer doesn't need to be a powerhouse. 

My i5 computer, which cost me under $400 is chugging away just fine running SSDR/Win.  I also run it from my iPhone, iPad, the computer in my office across town, and my laptop in the other room, whenever I desire to do so.  If I needed to provide top-end computers at every additional site just to run SSDR, I would be priced out of the game.  And so would would most hams....even most of the technically savy Flex-users.

I would rather save my money for a good amp and/or to upgrade my antenna system than buy another new computer.  I already have six.

Ken - NM9P
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Anyone ever heard the phrase, Hams are cheap? 
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W8QB

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If all hams were cheap, then nobody would buy a superb Flex radio; the "oddity" is when folks spring for a Flex, but not for a computer of comparably high quality.
(Edited)
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Michael Coslo

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Just as a comparison, my regular computers are an i5 iMac running bootcamp and W7, and an i5 HP envy laptop. Both pretty good computers. I wanted a cehap computer to take to breakfast with me, and my better half bought me an Insignia combo tablet/laptop. I think it was $149.00. On a whim I tried SSDR on it. Darned if it didn't run my radio just fine, chugging along at 25 fps. 

But your argument is correct, we should use a decent performing computer with our radios. 
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Mark WS7M

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Wayne... email me when you get a chance:  ws7m@arrl.net
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Wayne

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Done
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Craig Williams

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I like Windows because with all the upgrades it keeps my mind sharp trying to figure out how to fix it. I think 10 is the best windows yet but do not see why they need to do a major update every 6 months. In 1986 I started a computer consulting company. There was no Information technology back then. People used to ask me why I did not support Apple PC's. Well, I said, Apple IOS never breaks, how can I make a living fixing something that never breakes?
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Robert Lonn

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My iPhone, my wife’s iPhone and both our iPads require a shut down and restart every 3-4 weeks to stabilize them!! My new Lenovo Windows 10 dedicated to the ham station has been up and running now for about 5 weeks with no problems! It already had one major upgrade about 3 weeks ago, all radio programs including HRD continue to operate flawlessly! I will get my 6600M on Wednesday so we will see if the good trend continues!
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Michael Coslo

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Do you think there is something those of us who have had problems are doing wrong?

Weird - the only time the wife and I shut our iPhones down is when an update needs a reboot. 
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Robert Lonn

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Depends on the apps you are running! I have company email on my company iPhone and mail and Skype meetings begin to get slow or not loading right so the reboot solves the problem! I have several astronomy programs that control my Meade telescope and sometimes they won’t connect by Bluetooth! After the restart all is good!!
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AA0KM

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Mike - VE3CKO, Elmer

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I get the subject but this bush has been beaten many times already.  Michael Walker hit it on the mark, plain and simple economics. Some people already think Flex is not concentrating enough resources to make SmartSDR better. Just think of all the negativity we would be reading here, if Flex were to divert resources so create a version for Linux and/or Apple. Again, this has been discussed many times in this community. So I will again quote Mr. Spock: "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few."
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Martin Ewing AA6E

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I don't know for sure, but I wouldn't be surprised if the large majority of SSDR lines of code and man-hours are in the radio, not the PC/Maestro. The radio has Linux and FPGA, probably nothing windows specific. We're "only" discussing the PC client here. The existence of alternative clients for MacOS/iOS shows something. Adding one more for Linux shouldn't be any harder. (Non-trivial of course!) Getting FRS to *support* one might be the hard part.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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There has been a couple comments and questions asked today that Flex has not responded on, hmmm,,,they must be really busy, somethings up!!
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Really?

How do you figure?

These same questions (and respective answers) periodically reappear. 

Unless something has changed, the SmartSDR for Windows code had dependencies not easily available in the Linux world, and the flavors of Linux plus the usual "roll your own build" scenario made it a complex (read - expensive in manpower resources) option. 

The Mac/iOS world has viable options, and a couple development projects.  Personally for casual operating SmartSDR for iOS works well for me. 

The Window's choice is hardly my favorite (I tend to gravitate towards Mac's but have several professional and several personal systems running - mostly because in the end I am results orientated rather than method fixated) but the discussion of why Windows for SmartsSDR for the Flex-6000 series has gone on for years. 

Actually the Windows (then XP) vs Mac, vs Linux debate started well before the first radios went out for testing (my older 6700 is #11, so have been there).  FRS to gain access to the libraries and the installed equipment base they felt best presented their product went Windows.  Their call.

It is useful to request FRS to consider adding features and capabilities, though less useful to expect those requests to change a successful product line so deeply.

Ditto on why there isn't much in viable Android software for the Flex-6000 - the ROI and some technical limits seem offsetting.

BTW Martin seems correct that real heavy lifting is in the code that lives in the radio itself.  Would seem that would make additional client platforms easier, but it just doesn't seem to have worked out that way.  Maybe that .NET Framework and some of the other Windows quirks are reasonably emulated in Mac/iOS, but harder to implement and control in the Linux world?

73

Steve

K9ZW

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James Whiteway

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Linux comes in many flavors. Other than a 3rd party developer building a native Linux version of SSDR, I don't see how it would be cost effective for FRS to write and maintain, a Linux version of SSDR alongside the Windows version. Plus, most, but not all, Linux users, seem to expect software written for Linux, to be freeware. Or, just really cheap.
James
WD5GWY
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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Official Response
There are a lot of answers here, but let me consolidate.

1.) There is an OS X client; dogparkSDR.  https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/w10-1803-update-4-30-18
Don writes great software and his support is excellent too.  There is no need for FlexRadio to reinvent what has already been invented.

2.) There isn't a usable Linux client after all this time because no one or group has actually written one.  There have been some efforts, but they start out with enthusiasm and then interest dies out. You'd think with all the Linux open-source advocates, that there would be a usable Linux client by now, but sadly, there isn't. 

3.) FlexRadio provides a Windows client because it is the correct business decision for the company.  If we had a team of 50 programmers, there might be a Linux client, but the ham radio market share of those who exclusively use Linux is really small and it can take tens of thousands of developer hours to produce a client, so for us, there isn't a positive return on investment - the NRE cost is too high.  And then there is the cost of support for those who dabble in Linux but are not proficient, and that is a legitimate business concern too.  

4.) And the HDMI issue reported on some M models has been fixed and will be in the next release of SmartSDR.

I think that about sums it up.

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