Reestablishment Utility a possibility?

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This morning I’m waiting for the speakers to start at a trade show, and have found I cannot remote into my main station.

Pretty certain what’s gone amiss, but it looks like I cannot correct the issues remotely.

Clever folks have been using remote access software and WiFi aware power switches to handle some of the issues. But none of that works if it isn’t implemented and up & running. In my case the station pc is not on, making remote access that bit more difficult.

Would it be possible to incorporate right in the Flex-6x00 ecosystem a reestablishment utility? A utility that an owner could access, provided they had the right credentials?

Security is a manageable issue - there are lots of techniques in use that could be considered.

The utility could be quite simple, perhaps including opportunities to:

Reboot the radio
Reconnect to smartlink
Force transmit inhibit
Read an error condition
Read radio operating status
Report information on other user(s) active

If the connectivity were worked out to add a secondary source of access beyond smartlink it would be even better.

Net benefit is I’d be making QSOs remote from Omaha rather than burning bandwidth thinking out loud about utilities.

73

Steve
K9ZW
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Posted 3 weeks ago

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Michael Walker, Employee

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Steve

This has been well discussed by FRS internally.    Let me comment on this from my past experience in a different (non-ham radio/FRS) market.  Yes, the market does need a plug and play design.

The question that we are not able to solve is what would the community pay for such a solution?  Can it be engineered, produced, supported (that is a big) and be profitable?  It would also have to be a hardware device, lan based and be able to handle internet security.

I know on my remote station, I can do most of that, such as:

  • Automatically reboot the Modem if no internet
  • Remote power cycle the 12DC power
  • Softpower down the 6600
  • AC power cycle the PC
  • Plus -- all the remote access things like accessing my PC next to the radio

One of the biggest challenges is post sales supportability, meaning if what happens ... if.   Some of the biggest expense is the tooling to make this a nice looking box/utility.

This has to be accounted for in the product design and life cycle.  

What would the market support for a retail price?

Mike va3mw

p.s.  I know some enterprising hams have posted some cost effective solutions.  Maybe someone wants to take the lead and market something as a garage industry.
(Edited)
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Steven Linley

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Mike, how are you rebootng your modem?
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Michael Walker, Employee

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You an buy an Digitial IO Loggers web switch and that will do it for you.  You can find them on Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Web-Power-Switch-Pro-Model/dp/B0765NCB2L/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=154047654....  If you are in the US, this is about the closest plug and play solution.  Lots of Hams use this.

However, they are  hugely expensive in Canada, so I use a Raspberry PI and a script that runs every 20 minutes to check.  I couldn't justify the $360 +HST Canadian cost.
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Station accessories in the 2-5% of total station investment tend to be easy acquisitions. Easier to justify and fund at that sort of level.

Capabilities vs cost become more an issue if costs become more significant.

73

Steve
K9ZW
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John - K3MA

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To expand on what Mike said.  You need to run a script on the Digital Loggers device that check for a ping on a internet address.  Something like Google and if it does not get a response then it reboot the specified plugs.  Usually the one with the Modem and Router.
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Steven Linley

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You can make your PC reboot when power is (removed and) Restored. This is an option in your Bios.
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W7KHZ

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Steve, its apparent that we won't get what we need. I have had to get USB controlled relay boards for the two radios we have and run a small app on external computers to reset/restart the radios, accessible via Teamviewer, to the remote on/off RCA jack. Its kind of pointless to try and control a device that is connected to the radio or Smartlink if the radio is lost in lala land. The "brute force" approach seems to work much better for now.
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Michael Walker, Employee

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Not to be lost in a reply, this is about the best solution available today:

https://www.amazon.com/Web-Power-Switch-Pro-Model/dp/B0765NCB2L/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=154047654...

Mike 
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Paul

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I use a GSM switch for my kill/restore/re-boot. Solutions based solely on the internet are not much use if your service is down.
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Tim - G7GFW / F4VQP

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Surely, if your service is down then everything will be down and anything connected to or dependent on the flow of data from the remote location, by whatever means will not work.

Just a thought....
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Paul

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Nope. You may be transmitting at the time that your internet goes down at either the server end or client end. If you are just relying on the internet your TX could stay transmitting indefinitely.

A GSM switch depends only on the mobile network so is completely independent of the internet. One call/text to the switch kills the power to the transceiver.

Yes, you could be unlucky enough for both the internet and the GSM network to fail simultaneously - but you should have set the TX timeout to a sensible value in the unlikely event that happened, shouldn't you? Mine is set to 8 mins - allows for medium length overs / discourages waffling - but not a catastrophe if both networks have failed.
(Edited)
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Michael Walker, Employee

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I have had  many internet failures while transmitting unfortunately.  Full HF power sometimes can have ill effects on the modem if you are not choked correctly.  Every time, the transmitter has stopped transmitting.  

Mike
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Paul

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I'm sure you can get lucky. However, I have had the reverse. I don't think our respective regulatory bodies would be content with us leaving this to chance. Hence my belt and braces aporoach - cost is minimal for the extra level of control. Single point of failure is not ideal.
(Edited)