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Author Topic: Where are the Windows contesting softwares?  (Read 1727 times)
WA9PIE
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« on: November 20, 2001, 11:30:39 PM »

Okay, I know there are a few out there that do contesting as a secondary function.  And I used a very nice Windows application from N3FJP this year for November Sweepstakes.

But I'm puzzled...

Why are we (as a whole and in general) holding on the the same DOS-based contesting programs year-after-year?

Like everyone else, I grew up in a DOS world.  It was fine in its day.  But JEEEZ, didn't DOS go the way of the Betamax?

I just want a Windows contesting software.  One that does just "contesting" well.  It needs to have some form of rig-control, telnet window, an ability to be networked (shared network database), and can do code or voice keying by way of the sound card (not some proprietary board that's really costly).

I know that may start a hail-storm of people telling me that Windows will crash... but if we can, let's generate some discussion about how we can move forward.

Mike, WA9PIE
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K0XM
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Posts: 7




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« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2001, 03:55:28 AM »

Well, I have the answer for you....Writelog.
It is truly a windows based program, and has all the capabilities you asked for. Check it out at http://www.writelog.com
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K1JN
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« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2001, 05:03:40 AM »

I'm also a long time user of Writelog. It is the standard in Windows contest programs. It does it all, and does it well. www.writelog.com

Another Windows contesting program with a rich feature set is N1MM Free Contest Logger. Note the word free! The program is in constant development and user feedback is encouraged. You can find it at: http://pages.cthome.net/n1mm/

73, Joe
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KB9WQJ
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« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2001, 09:39:17 AM »

I used Win-EQF this last weekend.  I admit I don't know about it's networking capabilities but it is supposed to do rig control.
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EI4HQ
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« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2002, 08:52:55 AM »

Quickie...(he who is too lazy to go and look up about WriteLog and hey seeing as how I'm here...)

Does WriteLog network for multi-multi ops? Whats the network latency like? This has always held back my club as there was Windows based stuff but it didn't network or if it did the network delays were insufferable during a seriously hot run.

Of course there is the added attraction of DOS based s/w that its very light on h/w requirements...
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N2MG
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« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2002, 12:22:07 PM »

Just spent a weekend at W2FU's new multi-multi (6 stations, 6 computers) and we used Writelog. It did *work* although I cannot say as I was overly impressed. We had many occasions where one or more stations were dropped from the network and other Windows-isms that required rebooting. Once rebooted, the logs seemed to re-synchronize automatically, although when the contest was over we noticed that there were slight disparities in the totals between the several PCs.

In my experience, there are fewer network crashes with multiple-linked CT machines. But when they did crash and restart, the logs would definitely NOT be re-synched.

All in all, my experience was neutral. Writelog is no more stable than CT in a MM environment. If I *had* to use a Windows program, I'd consider WL. But I still like DOS machines...

73 Mike N2MG
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KA9FOX
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« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2002, 02:39:09 AM »

Take a look at K9JY's personal web site, awesome collection of information about WriteLog.  http://www.k9jy.com
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W4BQF
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« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2002, 09:12:41 AM »

I think it's cute when folk's claim something is a standard, such as WriteLog. There is no 'standard' but there are some good Windows based contest programs available. As to why contesters stick with CT and TR, the word 'change' comes to mind.
I can't claim that YPlog (by VE6YP)is the 'best' or the 'standard' but I can tell you that you owe it to yourself to try it before you decide. For a good description, look at www.qsl.net/ok1rr web site. I've been using this software for about 2 years, running it under Win95, Win98, and now WinXP.
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N8VW
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Posts: 16




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« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2002, 11:15:45 AM »

What I don't get is why we support Windows has a base OS for software in general.  All I hear is __software_package_x worked great, but we had problems because of crashing.  

For me I'm using TLF this weekend in the WPX.  It doesn't have all the features of __software_package_x, but at least I'll know that it won't be crashing on me.
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AF4QZ
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Posts: 10




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« Reply #9 on: April 01, 2002, 05:20:50 PM »

LOGGER 7.09 by Bob Furzer, K4CY/9K2ZZ is the best by far....

www.qsl.net/kc4elo

Also get upgrade at that site too.

73 de Adam AF4QZ
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DL7IO
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Posts: 52




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« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2002, 12:47:27 AM »

UCXLog by DL7UCX is a Windows based contest & logbook software
http://www.funkstation.info/software
It is freeware, doesn't need any installation wizard with dozens of dll's but has all the functions you need to pay for of the other programs. In case of problems or wishes Bernd (DL7UCX@qsl.net) answers usually very fast.
Holger
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W8FN
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Posts: 6




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« Reply #11 on: August 15, 2002, 01:27:44 PM »

The reason for the longevity of DOS for contesting software is that it works. DOS allows the application to talk directly to hardware (serial and parallel ports, sound cards, etc.) using relatively simple programming techniques.

Event-driven OSs such as Windows depend on complex software drivers to talk to the hardware. If you don't have the right driver, no amount of clever programming (save writing a driver yourself) will let your code talk to hardware. Even with the best drivers, the precise timing needed for some applications simply can't be obtained under Windows. That's the reason you don't find sound card based Windows apps that can do Pactor; they can't do the precise scheduling required to make it work.

The total absence of serial ports in the latest generation of computer motherboards should give you an indication of how important talking to hardware is considered today. If there's no serial port there, who do you think is going to do the grunt work of writing a driver for one under the latest version of Windows? So when you "upgrade" to the latest Windows version, you find that your apps that used to talk to serial ports may or may not work, depending on whether the Microsofties retained the features of the driver your particular application depends on. Even parallel printer ports will probably disappear soon, as most printers now provide USB interfaces.

The NT-based Win2K and its derivatives are even worse. The NT architecture is specifically designed to prevent application calls directly to hardware. That's one of the reasons so many people are having trouble with things that used to work OK with Win98 when they "upgrade" to the newest versions.

If you want software that can talk to external hardware I would advise sticking with DOS-based apps first, or at least sticking with nothing later than Win98SE.
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