Remote Footswitch - How to (LAN/ VPN solution)

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  • Updated 3 months ago
First, I want to thank Al, K0VM for this solution.  He provided it just as I needed it.

I operate remotely 99% of the time, however, when I don't have my Maestro handy, I still want my foot switch.  

At the moment, CAT is not supported on SmartLink, but if you are using a VPN or on a local LAN this will work.

Using CAT and SSDR, it is very simple to make a remote footswitch.

Take any RS232/USB adapter that is recognized by windows.  Check in Control Panel to make sure you can see it.  In  my case, it was Com80 (I need to clean up some ports :) ).

Now, with that running, head over to CAT and Create a New PTT entry.

  • Serial Port - Existing - this means you are using a physically installed port on your computer (RS232/USB adapter)
  • CAT COM: - the same port you set up above
  • RTS is selected
  • Polarity - Active Low

Lastly, you need to know make up an adapter for your foot switch (or hand switch).  

Take the 2 wires from the switch and solder them to Pin 7 and Pin 8.  Polarity does not matter.   These are the RTS and CTS lines.  In the Modem world, we used these for data flow control.

If you can't solder, these are a quick solution.

There you go.  Now, when you push the footswitch, the radio will go into TX while running SSDR remote from the radio.

Again, thanks to Al for the idea.

Mike va3mw
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Mike va3mw

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Posted 1 year ago

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Photo of WX7Y


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CAT does work through SmartLink. 
DAX doesn't work!


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Mike va3mw

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Thanks!  I stand corrected.  I should have know that.  :)  
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John - WA7UAR

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Just documenting that DAX now does work through SmartLink after its recent update (also xDax and xCat work too on the Mac side of things)
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Marc Lalonde

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This is also a solution  ,i use it trough  SoftEther VPN   ,this way DAX work for my USB mike

Marc  VE2PN
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I have run into the same problem using my USB mic. I’m not sure what type of cables to use for the above mentioned fix. Do I need another RS-232 type plug to plug into the end of the USB to serial adapter? I’m assuming that this plug then goes into the accessory plug on the back of the flex. In the documentation it says that pins 7 and 8 are both grounded. I’m quite confused. Any step-by-step help would be appreciated.

Thank you, Richard W6RIG
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Michael Walker, Employee

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You need a USB/RS232 cable to plug into your laptop.  The foot switch would connect to this device.  

No hardware plugs into the radio as this is for remote operating and you  use our CAT control to send the PTT command to the radio.

Have a look at the instructions above for the step by step layout.


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Thank you.