SSDR v1.3.8 and CAT issues with external applications

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  • Updated 5 years ago
  • (Edited)
Hardware background:
Flex 6300

Homebrew PC:
GIGABYTE GA-F2A58M-HD2 MATX mobo
AMD A8-660K
8 GB DDR3 of RAM
Nvidia GT 730 graphics card

Interesting bug last night...and I'm not sure where the issue lies...

I'm running HRD 6.2.8.330, and WSJT-X (wsjtx-1.4.0-rc2-win32.exe) with a Flex 6300. No issues, despite WSJT-X being beta. HRD connects to SmartSDR via SmartSDR CAT, and then WSJT-X talks with HRD. All is FB.

Let's get adventurous. I went to give DDUtil a shot, as it offers better customization between external programs, CW skimmer...and I was also contemplating CommCat for remote opps. So last night I gave DDUtil a whirl. Followed the instruction to a T, and had no issues using HRD logbook with DDUtil's HRD TCP/IP server. WSJT-X did not play well with sharing virtual ports created in SmartSDR via DDUtil (using the TS-2000 method described in other threads). 

Ok, no problem, it was worth a shot, but just not quite there for my particular setup yet. So, I uninstall DDUtil and fire up the full HRD suite to get back to the way things were. 

I go into SSDR CAT and delete all the additional shared virtual COM ports created for DDUtil, reboot, and start up all of the software. HRD's control application is super laggy. I mean super super laggy. Click for a band change in HRD, takes over 15 seconds to complete the request. Scrolling with the mouse to change frequency within HRD yields the same results. WSJT-X's attempts to change bands or trip the PTT using the Tune button is just as laggy, and would actually cause the actual radio (not SSDR) to completely hang, and not reply to a power button push to shut down. A hard power cycle was required. I've never had this problem before. 

Device manager shows no COM port conflicts. I uninstall/reinstall WSJT-X. No dice. I uninstall/reinstall HRD. No dice again. I then uninstall/reinstall SmartSDR. No dice. 

Now, I'm panicking, staying up until 3 am to figure this out. Is this an HRD problem? A SmartSDR CAT problem? I just don't know. 

I go over to SmartSDR, which is running one panadapter and one slice, sitting on 7.076. I open up a second slice on the same panadapter, and BAM. Everything works FB. CAT communication between HRD and SSDR is back to the way it should be, near instantaneous. The second I removed the B slice, the problem came back immediately. 

It's a bug, just don't know where the root problem lies. First, I figured I would report it, and second, I'd love any input you all may have into the issue. 
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Rob Fissel

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Posted 5 years ago

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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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MiniDeluxe 2.1 -WSJT-X 1.3 - JTAlertX 2.6.0 - DM780 - HRDLog work.
If you want a working WSJT system, don't use DDUtil or the HRD main program.
I can only recommend MiniDeluxe, as it seems not to be as well known as DDUtil:
https://github.com/krisp/MiniDeluxe/wiki
(Edited)
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Rob Fissel

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Thanks, Alex. So you're thinking that this is most likely an HRD issue and not a SSDR CAT issue I'm assuming? Additionally, are you using this with SSDR or PSDR? I only see references on github and wiki saying it's a CAT program fro PSDR. 

I'll give MiniDeluxe a shot!
(Edited)
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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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Hi Rob, nice to meet you here ;-)

Yes, you are right. I have quit a bit of experience with HamRadioDeLuxe as
I have used it since the first versions were published by HB9DRV.
Now I am using version 6 published by HRD LLC. 

The problem is the main CAT program of HRD. It doubles SmartSDR
and uses a lot of CPU power. Hence MiniDeluxe, which is just a HRD server.
All programs like WSJT, DM780, HRDLog and so on just use this server
(See the screenshots)

73, Alex DH2ID





(Edited)
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Rob Fissel

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Alex, 

MiniDeluxe is really working well for me. Thanks for the suggestion. 

73 - Rob
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Rob Fissel

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Alex, 

Thanks much for the screenshots and the SSDR confirmation. I will give this a shot soon.

I'm waiting for a backup 120GB SSD to arrive so I can mirror my drives, as both a secondary backup solution, as well as a test platform to be able to go in and screw around without messing up anything on my main hard drive. After the frustration with DDUtil, I am going to wait until that drive is in place and working, and will then give MiniDelux a go. 

73,

Rob
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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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Ok, Rob, vy good idea with the SSD. I use SSD's by Samsung in my Toughbook CF-52 and my ThinkPad X-60. Both have seen some years of wear and tear but the
SSD's gave them new life! The Toghbook is now booting faster than my i7 VAIO
with a conventional HDD and runs both SmartSDR and PowerSDR (not at the
same time, though :-))
Hope your system runs, 73 from Karlsruhe in southwest Germany where spring
comes s l o w l y... Alex
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Rob Fissel

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SSD's are the only way to go - been running SSD's exclusively for boot drives for about 4 years now. There's just no comparison!

Spring is slowly creeping in here to the northeast US. It's been a pretty brutal winter!
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N7AIG

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FWIW... I have had no end of subtle problems emanating from Eltima drivers for virtual COM ports. Things like slow acting ports, hangs on reads, sometimes even Blue Screens. I ended up removing all traces of Eltima drivers and replaced with FabulaTech drivers from England. So far much better, but I did have one instance of a hang in a two week period. But that's far better than one every 20 minutes or so, which is what I had with Eltima.

73 de Dave, N7AIG

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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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Interesting, Dave. I have quite a lot of Eltima ports on my main notebook,
which runs SmartSDR and also the microHAM interface for my TS-2000X.
microHAM uses Eltima virtual port drivers. I don't know if I can replace them with
other drivers.
Did you buy the FabulaTech virtual port software?
73,
Alex DH2ID
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Alex - DH2ID, Elmer

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I bought VSPE for PowerSDR and my Flex-3000, which creates virtual serial ports
and splitters. These ports are really "virtual" as my Fujitsu serial port viewer program
can't see them.... What's great about VSPE splitters is, that you can run as many
programs as you like on just one splitted port:

http://www.eterlogic.com/Products.VSPE.html

73,
Alex DH2ID
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N7AIG

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Yep, I had Eltima drivers running for years, and then after installing an Icom virtual port driver I started having severe problems. So was it the Icom driver? or the Eltima drivers?

My Blue Screens showed problems down in the Eltima drivers. No doubt the Icom multiport driver exacerbated whatever caused the problem. And yes, I had to purchase the FabulaTech drivers. But afterward, except for one instance of a hung read, I have experienced no more problems.

Why?? I suspect it all has to do with methods of copy protection and back doors inserted for adware. Who knows? I just wish they would all stop that nonsense. And why are we paying extra for a fundamental component of a deficient OS, instead of complaining loudly (like here) toward Microsoft?? (SHEESH!!.... :-)

[ aside... the problem with splitters is that the protocol is blind to originator / receiver, so all responses to a query from one client get echoed back to all clients. The protocol is really just too lame to handle this situation properly. In contrast, think about how Ethernet implements communications.]

73 de Dave, N7AIG
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N7AIG

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Interesting about the Eterlogic drivers not showing up in the device manager. That's exactly how the Icom multiport driver behaves.

It is in there as a lone multiport serial driver, but it can instantiate any number of COM ports for itself, and these never show up in any probe tools as COM ports. Maybe Icom licensed the Eterlogic drivers?, in which case, if you are running them alongside Eltima drivers, you may be in for some nasty surprises...


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Jay / NO5J

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I knew I'd seen the name somewhere. 

This FabulaTech?
(Edited)
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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Yes, we use the FabulaTech virtual serial port driver for SmartSDR CAT.