Remote serial operation via VPN

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  • Updated 3 months ago
  • (Edited)
Have remote station operating with Flex 6700 through Elecraft KPA 500 and KAT 500 tuner into ZS6BKW inverted V up 45 feet. Great reception and reports. This station is 2 hours outside Houston at lake house (no HOA). Using SoftEther VPN via DSL. My main operating PC is in Houston and prefer to run it all over the VPN.

Remote Desktop is too slow and unusable. Running SmartSDR over the VPN is workable at 3 FPS and slower refresh of spectrum chart.

Seems like most integration still takes place via arcane serial ports...CAT, KPA and KAT utility programs, etc. So two main questions are:

1) Which strategy and tools work well for remote access to the serial ports over VPN and Ethernet bridge?

2) Are there any integrated remote station tools that make this easier and better than integrating all the discrete functional components?

I have found commercial serial over Ethernet software ($300) and lots of incomplete remote station software tools but not yet seeing a complete picture that makes sense.

Any experienced pointers greatly appreciated.

Rick
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Rick - W5FCX

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Posted 2 years ago

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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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Hi Rick,

When I've had to do that, I used netcat on Linux/Unix, such as on a raspberry Pi or another PC running Linux with a serial port card or maybe even a Linux VM on the Windows machine. Not sure what there is in Windows. 
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Paul

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Hi Rick,

I use Virtual Serial Port Emulator (VSPE) from Eterlogic over a Softether VPN.

http://www.eterlogic.com/Products.VSP...

You can define serial port over IP servers & clients for any of your "arcane" utilities. The 32 bit Windows version is free and they charge a one-off $25 for the 64 bit version. I use it for FTdx5000/RFSpace SDR CAT & an LP100A power/swr telemetry on a Windows 7 shack computer. It has been very robust over many years. Hope this helps.

Ps. I have no connection with Eterlogic.
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Rick - W5FCX

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Perfect.  Thank you!
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Rick - W5FCX

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The Eterlogic VPSE worked perfectly!

On the remote PC, created a TCP Server assigned to each COM port with a unique TCP port per COM port, then on the client side added a COM port Connector, which creates a virtual COM port, then assigned that virtual COM port to a TCP Client that binds the local virtual COM port to the remote COM port.

Now COM ports are fun again :)

Thanks!
Rick
W5FCX
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Paul

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Glad you're finding it useful Rick. You may already do this but I have a batch file in Windows startup folder which runs the applications to start my remote station. In particular you can automatically start VSPE with your saved configuration file and run it minimised. Saves a lot of mouse clicking.

Cheers, Paul
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James Skala

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Rick, Paul,
Hello from KY name is James
I'm trying to get this VSPE working and cant figure it out.
Any pointer will be great.
Trying to remote my SPE 1.3k
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Rick - W5FCX

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On the radio side, define a TCP addressable COM port in VSPE, then on local side add a COM port and connect to remote VSPE TCP port. SPE will acccess the local VSPE port, which is redirected via TCP.
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EA4GLI - 8P9EH - Salvador

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(Edited)
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Jhon Perker

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operating outstation is not an easy thing, you told Flex 6700 through Elecraft KPA 500 and KAT 500 tuner into ZS6BKW to be in the process, but I think that this is not done with your process, I suggest you to go  Microsoft Edge Support for help, they told you the service which will you need.
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Kari Gustafsson SM0HRP, Elmer

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Hi, it all depends on your available DSL bandwidth. I have been remote Dx-ing for 5 years starting with DSL and 500 kbit/s. Latency is most vital and should be < 80 ms. Perhaps this is of now concern for you. Most serial services are OK. Remote rig is very reliable propably the most used solution world wide. Why? Reliable and it integrates compressed audio with two serial channels and if you run CW feedbacks the audio to local PC.
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Rick - W5FCX

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Paul,

Here are my VSPE config files for your examination and/or use:

http://wikisend.com/download/856358/VSPE.zip

In this folder you will find "Local" (where my SmartSDR runs on local PC) VSPE config file and screenshot of how it looks in VSPE UI, along with "Remote" (where my Flex radio and VSPE server runs) config and screenshots.

Let me know if you still have questions.
(Edited)
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Mark WS7M

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Just to put this info in one place:

It appears the RS-232 solution above is a good one.

If you need USB then I suggest www.virtualhere.com.  This is server/client software that allows USB ports to be forwarded and used over the LAN or WAN (internet).

I use VirtualHere server on a cheap Raspberry Pi running Linux.  I plug my USB cable from my SPE amp into the Raspberry Pi.

I exposed a custom virtual here port through my router.

On remote computers I run the VirtualHere client, after selecting the server/device the USB device will appear as if connected directly to my remote PC.  This allows me to run the SPE USB Terminal software on remote computers both on the LAN and WAN.