Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: Prev 1 2 [3] 4 5 6 7 8 Next   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Consider Linux  (Read 21923 times)
N5INP
Member

Posts: 757




Ignore
« Reply #30 on: March 19, 2014, 04:59:39 PM »

Like I said in the other thread about XP - it's not the windows applications that will get you but the hardware drivers that will get you in Linux. It's just not a favorable environment to try to get various ham radio hardware to work in.
Logged

K5TED
Member

Posts: 699




Ignore
« Reply #31 on: March 19, 2014, 06:17:46 PM »

Many of you complain that Linux does not support the programs you currently use.  Let's look at this claim in three parts.

Firstly, Linux has a different set of programs that may look and work a bit differently, but support most of the activities that you do with your Windows software.  Logging, rig control, I/Q panadapter, SDR, and so forth are all well supported with mature programs that have existed (for some packages) for up to two decades.  Configuration is a bit different but device interfaces are generally more reliable with Linux.

Secondly, Linux supports a software package called Wine.  Wine allows you to run your Windows programs in Linux with a very minimal one-time setup procedure that looks and works identically to the Windows installer itself.  It is compatible with the vast majority of Windows software at this point.

Thirdly, Linux supports several virtualization packages like VirtualBox or VMWare.  These programs essentially create a PC inside your PC, which takes advantage of the hardware virtualization support of most relatively current Intel processors to run any OS you'd like at full speed, in a window.  These virtualization packages also support checkpointing your OS's virtualized drives, so that you can take a snapshot of the entire virtual computer and roll back any changes whenever you wish.  If you get a virus, or your virtual hard drive is erased somehow, you can roll back any changes with a single click.

Of course, you can always stay on the endless Windows upgrade treadmill, where your software will likely quit working anyway, but the beauty of Linux is that security patches are available for most system components indefinitely, and if they are not, you have the source code so you can always do it yourself or hire somebody to patch it.

There's a Linux distribution that you can burn to a CD and run directly off your CD-ROM drive without installing to your hard drive called Andy's Ham Radio Linux, that is custom tailored to ham radio and includes tons of useful nice amateur radio related software installed by default.  Before you just write off Linux because it doesn't support a particular software package that you happen to enjoy, give it a fair shake.  It's a more stable and long-term supported OS than Microsoft makes.

My Windows software hasn't "quit working" yet. Examples are MMSSTV, the DXLabs suite, HRD, and other really old stuff that continue to live on from XP thru Win8.1

Why would I want to run Wine when I can run Win?

I wrote off Linux for my shack desktop years ago when it became apparent it is a work in progress,though stable, but consistently painful to implement, always requiring some level of rationalization and complacency.

Linux is great for web servers and some appliances in my shack. It's not a primary OS for the gamut of applications I use most often.

More power to the experimenters and fiddlers who might eventually make Linux the go to ham shack OS.

"At this point, though, driver support is better than Windows for most devices"

Which devices? All my sound cards, digi interfaces and CAT capable rigs run fine on Windows.

I keep Puppy with FLDigi in my toolbox just in case....

While your software may be supported well under Windows 8, there have been many issues with older software not working with Windows 8 properly.  Also, while you may be lucky in your choice of hardware and drivers may be available for Windows 8, many pieces of perfectly functional hardware are no longer supported by the manufacturer and drivers are not available.

It's good that your setup works for you, but others may not be able to upgrade to Windows 8 without buying new hardware or software simply to get them back to where they are today with Windows XP.

And there's no guarantee that switching to Linux will cure these issues.

I'm not running anything special, hardware wise, and daresay my choice pf ham software likely includes some of the most widely used applications in the hobby.

There's a reason Linux has continued to lag Windows success in the desktop environment, just like Ford Explorers beat kit car sales hands down.

Universal appeal and useability is not problem.
Logged
N1UKX
Member

Posts: 38




Ignore
« Reply #32 on: March 20, 2014, 02:59:40 AM »

  Another non computer geek question: In lieu of using a burnable disc it was previously mentioned that a memory stick may possibly be used, if so, once Linux is down loaded into the computer then transferred to the memory stick does this take place of the disc  "burning" so you can directly suck back off the memory stick to replace the XP OS? If so,  is there any special type memory stick to be used? Thanks
You'll still have to burn the .ISO file to the memory stick. 
Get at least an 8 gig stick.
Boot off the stick and and Linux will run.  You can then see if you're going to be comfortable with Linux or not. 
I suggest getting the Linux-Mint-Mate. 
Google it and read the manual on that site to get a feel for it...  LL
Logged
KB5JOF
Member

Posts: 38




Ignore
« Reply #33 on: March 20, 2014, 08:03:44 AM »

Does anyone have an application for JT65 that will run under Linux? 
KB5JOF
Joe
Logged
W0BTU
Member

Posts: 1579


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #34 on: March 20, 2014, 08:18:56 AM »

Yes, wsjt is available for Linux on Joe Taylor's main site. It will do JT65 and the newer, superior JT9 mode.

I've only used it for RX. It's a great piece of software.
Logged

K3DCW
Member

Posts: 182




Ignore
« Reply #35 on: March 20, 2014, 09:07:58 AM »

Does anyone have an application for JT65 that will run under Linux? 
KB5JOF
Joe

Yes, WSJT-X is the current development version of WSJT which is the origin of JT65 (not JT65-HF, as is commonly believed) and which started on Linux.  WSJT-X is available in most major distributions and can be built of nearly all. 

Simply google WSJT K1JT and you'll be good to go. 

73

Dave
K3DCW
Logged
K0JEG
Member

Posts: 639




Ignore
« Reply #36 on: March 22, 2014, 08:39:28 AM »

Like I said in the other thread about XP - it's not the windows applications that will get you but the hardware drivers that will get you in Linux. It's just not a favorable environment to try to get various ham radio hardware to work in.

Such as? There's very little hardware that won't work in modern linux distros. Yes, there are lots of "binary blob" device drivers and most Linux purists resist them, but if you just want to use it, there's very little general hardware that won't work.

As for ham-specific hardware such as radios and other common devices, there's the HAMLIB library, which is still actively developed and supported. Yes, the developer community might not anticipate the latest and greatest hardware, but I personally have had "drivers" developed by the community (for a telescope mount used as an az/el rotator) and the software works incredibly well, and even if you don't find your specific radio listed there's usually something that will work well enough. And, if you really want to, since it's all fairly well documented you can roll your own device driver and contribute to the project.

One more thing: If you are a remote operator, Linux out of the box will easily allow for remote operation. That same HAMLIB library (running as a daemon, a background program similar to a TSR from back in the DOS days) can operate devices remotely by just entering an IP address (or hostname if you use DDNS) and port number. With a little effort you can get remote sound using JACK. This isn't a remote desktop solution, you're running a program locally while a small remote machine handles shack control. I've experimented with using a Raspberry Pi as the remote machine and it does work very well. But even if you don't want to get that elaborate, there are lots of remote desktop options for Linux, most for free, that do a great job.
Logged
K0JEG
Member

Posts: 639




Ignore
« Reply #37 on: March 22, 2014, 10:34:14 AM »

I think the biggest hurdle to overcome moving to Linux is having to learn a new way of doing things. I've found there are people who use computers as tools, and people who just like to use computers.

I fall into the second camp, so I saw moving to Linux (and later the nearly identical Mac OS) as a fun learning experience. It doesn't hurt that once I started poking around I found Linux to be compatible with the way I think (and I think many hams, if they were able/willing to take the time would come to the same conclusion). I've run Windows from version 3.1 to 98 and XP, gone through NT 3.51 and 4.0, and even had an Amiga and a Mac or two along the way. That doesn't even cover mobile devices, like the Windows CE, Symbian and (yes, it runs Linux) Nokia N800 handheld computers. I ran Linux in the early 2000's and found it not ready for prime time, but interesting (that's when I jumped over to the NT side). When Microsoft over promised and under delivered on Vista (remember the "revolutionary" file system WinFS?), and Intel's mainstreaming of 64 bit processors (which MS still won't support by default, although most end users don't care), I started to give Linux a fresh look.

I think the biggest change has been the rise of the search engine. If you have a problem, it's likely that someone else has had a similar problem and a simple search will lead you to the solution. Again, something I enjoy doing (or at least don't get all that frustrated by), and once I fix it, the solution goes into the tool box. It also becomes fairly easy to transfer those skills on to other platforms, like Mac OS and Android, since they are *nix based. Not to mention the new "hacker" PCs like the Raspberry Pi.

Don't get me wrong, there's really not a lot of fiddling needed with Linux. Once things are set up they tend to stay set up. 99% of the time I use my computers in much the same way everyone else does. However, I think I am willing to tolerate a lot more crap than most people (like setting up maps on Xastir. ...Why must it always be such a painful experience?), but once it's done, it just works.

If you're in the "other camp" seeing a computer as nothing but a tool to accomplish a task, and you've been using Windows to accomplish that task, I can see why you would not want to change. You know where the tools are on the workbench, the handles have worn down where your hands have held them over the years. You know the tool's features and limitations and have adapted your way of working to the tool. And why get rid of something that still works just fine? To you, it didn't matter what the OS is, or what it did, just that you had a task you wanted to accomplish with as little fanfare as possible. You might have used Windows at work, or your Elmer uses program X and so you just went along (early on, if Elmers had Apples the ham community might look very different today, just look at the world of audio and video production, where the Mac reigns supreme).

At work I fall into this camp. I have to get something done. The company provides me tools in the form of Windows/Office to accomplish that task. When Microsoft upgraded Office and introduced the "ribbon" UI it took me the better part of a morning to figure out how to print a document, because they moved the print icon to a spot that (now that I've used it for a while) sort of makes sense, but was in a completely different and non-ovbious location. I often find myself longing for my "home" toolkit, but because the entire corporate computing culture is based on the tools in use, I either make the best of it or leave. There's a lot of similarities between the work culture and ham radio culture when it comes to computing, although for different reasons. At work a platform or application is decided on by a leader for a variety of reasons (often times conflicting with employees' goals). In a hobby perhaps it is more of a consensus, but in the case of ham radio what is recommended is what is chosen. Luckily the world of ham radio doesn't depend on proprietary formats or systems so developers can use whatever platform suits them. In fact, the community tends to shun proprietary or closed systems whenever possible.

Of course software companies don't want to maintain the old way. They don't make money fixing bugs on 20 year old software, in fact they lose money. So force an upgrade now and again and end-of-life the old stuff. That in of itself is just fine, but you have to keep your employees productive too. Hiring a bunch of top-level designers and programmers to fix bugs is no way to run a company (and of course your competition keeps advancing), so you have to do something, even though your user base resists change in any way, because the majority of users are using tools to accomplish a task, not play with computers. And it isn't just commercial software. Google "Ubuntu Unity UI" and you'll see vitriol spewed in quantity. Heck, even a minor change like Gnome 3.0 angered the community enough to generate pages of complaints. The nice thing about Linux is that it's fairly simple to go backward if you wish, but again, it still requires effort that just keeping what you have does not.
Logged
N5INP
Member

Posts: 757




Ignore
« Reply #38 on: March 23, 2014, 05:58:43 AM »

Notice the qualifier used - "general"

Yes, there are lots of "binary blob" device drivers and most Linux purists resist them, but if you just want to use it, there's very little general hardware that won't work.

Please define "general hardware".

And please tell us if a DVB USB SDR dongle is "general hardware"

Thanks.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2014, 06:02:56 AM by N5INP » Logged

K0JEG
Member

Posts: 639




Ignore
« Reply #39 on: March 23, 2014, 09:55:13 AM »

Notice the qualifier used - "general"

Yes, there are lots of "binary blob" device drivers and most Linux purists resist them, but if you just want to use it, there's very little general hardware that won't work.

Please define "general hardware".

And please tell us if a DVB USB SDR dongle is "general hardware"

Thanks.

You're joking, right? Much of the early (and current) development of DVB SDRS was done on Linux machines. There are tons of blog posts about setting up SDRs on USB DVB sticks. A quick select/search with google of your "DVB USB SDR Linux" returned about 27K pages, many with simple copy/paste instructions showing on the first page of results.

General hardware, in my mind, is what you get when you buy a modern machine. Video (HDMI, etc), sound, USB3.0, GigE network, SD card readers. When it comes to USB devices, everything from UPSs and printers (although some very low end printers might not be supported, the CUPS printing system is full of surprises), to my Kenwood TH-d72 and Icom IC-9100 which both worked out of the box.
Logged
AE5YJ
Member

Posts: 12




Ignore
« Reply #40 on: March 24, 2014, 05:50:42 AM »

If you want to try Linux but not commit, then I recommend a live boot usb running Kali linux. It is designed for cyber security professionals, but is ham radio friendly. In fact, there is even an application tab specifically for Ham radio. In it you will find several sdr programs, CHIRP, and RTL dongle plug and play compatibility.

http://www.hamradioscience.com/gnu-radio-the-easy-way/

and if you don't like it, just remove the stick and reboot. I love it so much I am going to dual boot it with win 7. These distributions have come a long way, I first experimented with live boot cd's back in 2004, and didn't care for them. This Kali distro had no problem loading drivers for every aspect of my laptop and had full functionality. I was impressed.

regards,
Andy
AE5YJ
Logged
KD8QOI
Member

Posts: 11




Ignore
« Reply #41 on: March 24, 2014, 02:00:31 PM »

I run linux all the time. I am currently running fedora and they have a wide range of ham radio add-ons
Logged
W4KYR
Member

Posts: 480




Ignore
« Reply #42 on: March 24, 2014, 04:01:31 PM »

I run linux all the time. I am currently running fedora and they have a wide range of ham radio add-ons

For the benefit of others.

Could you explain which version of Fedora you are using.

What are the specs on your computer?

Were there were any issues with installing it and did you encounter any driver issues?

What radios if any are you using with it?

Are you using a SignaLink USB, Rigblaster, computer sound card for your digital communications?

What advantages do you note using Fedora over other Linux distributions?

How long have you been using Linux and/or Fedora?

What ham radio related programs does Fedora have and how well do they work?

What modes do you use with this set up and well do they work?

I think these questions and your answers could guide those looking for alternatives to XP.
Thanks in advance

.
Logged

Still using Windows XP Pro.
VA2PBJ
Member

Posts: 162




Ignore
« Reply #43 on: March 24, 2014, 10:46:11 PM »

I don't understand why some people feel the 'need' to disrupt perfectly function users and put them on Linux. 'just because' has never been a good enough reason for me.

People should choose their computer by the choice of software and hardware they want to use. If it isn't easy, it likely wont get used. Most people are their own IT support and there is a lot to be said by sticking with what you know.

I am a programmer / IT person since 1982. I am certified in Windows, Citrix, Solaris and Linux. I have been using apple products from the time they looked like a ripped off a KIM-1 (that would be an APPLE 1 without a case). When I come home, I don't want to fix stuff (unless it's a camera or a radio). I want to turn it on and go....

So if XP works, us it. I still run W2K on a machine. Just because Linux is there doesn't mean I have to or should use it.
Logged

7 3 Peter VA2PBJ
W4KYR
Member

Posts: 480




Ignore
« Reply #44 on: March 25, 2014, 05:15:39 AM »


So if XP works, us it. I still run W2K on a machine. Just because Linux is there doesn't mean I have to or should use it.


I agree, unless there are concerns that using an XP computer on the internet months after the support is gone could lead to security issues. Eventually it comes down to a choice between tossing a perfectly functioning computer out to the curb or finding another OS to run on it in order to continue to use it on the internet. By changing the OS to another operating system such as Linux (or ANY other modern operating system). It is possible to use computer on the internet for a few years more.

The answer to all this would be if some outside company offered support and security updates for XP (after Microsoft stops supporting it). However I doubt Microsoft would ever allow that to happen even if the company offers Microsoft a cut of the profits because it could affect sales of Microsoft's newer OS.

Microsoft could have released a "Legacy OS" in 2007 that could have replaced XP and yet still run on XP machines, and still be functionally up to date. They saw the hand writing on the wall again with the Vista debacle after and they knew 2014 was still off in the distance then and missed yet another opportunity to release a "Legacy OS" to run on those millions of XP computers at home and in the corporate world. Microsoft sells operating systems not computers so if they went this route, it would have been more money for Microsoft. What does MSFT care? They don't sell computers.

But I think the reason why none of that came about was because Microsoft didn't want to piss off the computer manufacturers. Because then if consumers just upgraded the software without buying the computers. It really would not affect Microsoft, but the manufacturers.. They would have felt that Microsoft was screwing them over. I guess after the Windows 8 debacle, some companies might feel that MSFT screwed them over anyway....But I am getting off topic...


If the computer is going to be offline and used for other tasks then keep whatever OS that is on it whether it is XP or Windows 2000 (which is one of Microsoft's better Operating Systems). I have some functional Windows 98 laptops which will be used for packet radio.

There are hobbyists keeping older machines alive running OS/2, Commodore, DOS, Win 3.11, NT 4.0, 95 and 98. Then there are those who keep the older machines alive in order to run 'classic' games and programs on Dos, Win 3.11, 95 and 98 machines.

As hams, we generally don't throw out radios that are considered obsolete and still functional. There is no reason to toss out a perfectly good running computer just because some software company decides to no longer support it.





 
Logged

Still using Windows XP Pro.
Pages: Prev 1 2 [3] 4 5 6 7 8 Next   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!