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Reviews Categories | Ham Software - Logging | ARRL - Logbook of the World - LoTW Help


Reviews Summary for ARRL - Logbook of the World - LoTW
ARRL - Logbook of the World - LoTW Reviews: 533 Average rating: 3.3/5 MSRP: $00.00
Description: LoTW ... is a repository of log records submitted by users from around the world. When both participants in a QSO submit matching QSO records to LoTW, the result is a QSL that can be used for ARRL award credit.
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.arrl.org/lotw/
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<— Page 5 of 54 —>

K1OYQ Rating: 1/5 Mar 31, 2014 16:30 Send this review to a friend
Still Too Slow  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have not changed my opinion of LOTW. It continues to have many problems and runs far too slow for a "World Class" online log program. I hear the defenders out there that think it is the greatest thing since canned beer, but the ARRL has taken far too long to address the problems. More committees aren't going to solve the issues it has. They should have jumped on this well over a year ago and they are just now looking for full time programmers - duh! I'm loosing patients with it. eQSL still works faster and more reliable and costs less as does Clublog. Why half the time I can't even log onto the thing. UNSATISFACTORY!!!

K1OYQ
 
K6CRC Rating: 3/5 Feb 20, 2014 20:23 Send this review to a friend
Getting there  Time owned: more than 12 months
ARRL seems to be addressing the problems. TQSL 2.0 for Mac is light years ahead of the previous version. Good work. Website is still clumsy to use in my opinion.

My issue has alway been that the ARRL wants to be the voice of Ham Radio and on the 'cutting edge', yet their most visible product, LoTW, is a mess. You can do Facebook, Twitter, etc all day, but if the most visible product is 10 years behind the times, you will not be seen as a leading edge organization.

Glad to see that the are finally budgeting to fix the system. Take all the money being used to 'save' UHF bands that no one cares about and use if to fix the most visible system, LoTW

Next step is to do an outreach to DXpeditions. Consider financial incentives to get all of them to use LoTW. Since they cannot make money off of LoTW, vs ClubLog, ARRL needs to get creative.
 
AB4D Rating: 3/5 Feb 19, 2014 18:38 Send this review to a friend
Works FB, but....  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
The below is based on my experience using LOTW and interfacing it with Ham Radio Deluxe. Unlike some others, I had no problem registering for LOTW and obtaining a call sign certificate from the ARRL. That process worked as expected for me. If you have an issue obtaining a certificate, the ARRL indicates that you can ask for assistance by email or phone at, lotw-help@arrl.org or 860-594-0295.

In review, some of the instructions to help get LOTW up and running can be confusing and lead to frustration. I spent about an hour trying to figure it all out and uploading my log. Some of the issues I faced was trying to determine the correct syntax for naming and setting up "locations" for each of the places I had operated from in the past 20 years. The instructions indicate the proper file name for each location is "Your call - Location" such as "XX1XX - Brighton". Rather, locations are stored under the Station Locations tab in TQSL, as an extension file attached to a master file named with your call. Therefore, each location is just given a name such as "Brighton" or "New Baltimore", with no call sign included in the name for that file.

Once each location has been named and defined in TQSL, the correct name to input on the LOTW upload form is just the location name such as "Brighton", leaving off any call, inconsistent with instructions I have read.

The available instructions are inconsistent with what actually happens in the program. As another example, the instructions shows the existence of a pop up box that should appear when you cursor the box on the upload form for the location. However, no pop up box appeared for me. Rather, I had to manually type in the name of the location into the upload form.

In retrospect, it's rather simple to get it working, but the instructions are so problematic, it caused me to spent a lot of time fudging around trying to set up everything "in the dark". An accurate step by step set of instructions would go a long way to help folks get this working and promote participation.

I believe LOTW is a grand concept, but it is failing to adequately support the ARRL award programs because too many amateurs are experiencing issues trying to make it work. Once someone can get over the hurdle of the initial setup, it works really well. I uploaded 807 QSO's in about 10 minutes and got immediate confirmation of 72 countries towards my DXCC.

However, I was disappointed that more of my contacts were not confirmed. Out of the 807 QSO's I uploaded, only 237 are confirmed. IMO, stats given by the LOTW page as of today suggests there is serious lack of participation in LOTW by hams, showing only 63,816 registered users. I have many other contacts from countries I've worked and need for DXCC, but are not confirm because others are not using LOTW. The ARRL needs to improve the instructions for this program and promote participation.


 
W1XWX Rating: 4/5 Jan 11, 2014 17:12 Send this review to a friend
Works fine version 2.x  Time owned: more than 12 months
Seems to work fine and easier to use in version 2.x.

However a bit disappointed that many hams do not log on LOTW. Personally I log everyone on QRZ, Eqsl, and LOTW; along with sending a real QSL card if I receive one. Only takes aq few minutes to do this.

Version 2 is much easier to use than previous versions.

W1XWX
 
WO8USA Rating: 3/5 Jan 10, 2014 16:33 Send this review to a friend
Improved, great if you can get past install!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I am updating my review, and have pasted my previous review of Feb 3 2012 afterwards.

I previoulsy gave LoTW a 0 (zero).

Last night (1/9/13) I upgraded to the newest LoTW version on my main computer, backed up my certificates/etc, and went to a new, clean computer. I downloaded the newest version of LoTW, and installed my backed-up certificates. NO PROBLEM, surprise! This was easy!

I now give it LoTW 3+ based largely on my experience of last night.

I finally got LoTW installed last summer, it took about an hour and was extremely difficult, more difficult than any software install I've done. But I finally got it working and really enjoy it now. The entire install process needs streamlined. I appreciate the new instructions they have, but it would be good to have them in one book, not 2 pages per PDF file. If you can get past the install its great.

---------------
ORIGINAL REVIEW FEB 3, 2012 WO8USA: enitled "Amateur"
This is the worst review I have ever written here but feel I must...

This is my second try to use LOTW, spaced a few years apart. I finally decided that I needed to go soft copy with the recent postage rate hike and the annoucement of having CQ awards integrated. I got the instructions, watched the ARRL video/presentation, wrote it all out, etc. I do a lot with PCs home and work and figured these reviews must be overboard and my last expereince was certainly just "beta testing"....LoTW install failed on several counts. I would be willing to pay a small fee to order for the software to have an actual interface to install the mess. I use other much more secure stuff with PHI/certs and they do not work like this.

Anyway----I'll just keep using hardcopy and eQSL until the ARRL gets their act together on this. For something which is supposedly SO important (integrity of QSLs? seems like Ft Know compared to how hard copy QSL exhanges come about), seems like the software could be a lot more pro-like.

I'm out of LoTW until they figure our how to do it right. This software would be out-of-business with reviews like these. Outsource it to HRD and get it right!
 
K0SCO Rating: 0/5 Jan 5, 2014 10:26 Send this review to a friend
Gave up  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Tried a couple of different logging programs and made sure everything was up to date, but still could not upload to LoTW. More trouble than it's worth.
 
K0KL Rating: 1/5 Dec 20, 2013 18:18 Send this review to a friend
Awfully Poor  Time owned: more than 12 months
I had no problem with LOTW and N3FJP program software working together. The new version of LOTW does not work for me. Last call to ARRL, though attempt to be partially helpful, was told "that's the logging program's problem". N3FJP does not have an easy way to get help.
As far as I'm concerned this whole thing stinks! No one to help, always blame the other guy.
I know I'm an analog guy lost in a digital world but this thing is useless without help!

HUMBUG I say!
 
N2LJ Rating: 5/5 Nov 25, 2013 10:07 Send this review to a friend
New TQSL makes for a better experience!  Time owned: more than 12 months
The recent release of TQSL 2.0 improves the LOTW experience for those of us who don't have LOTW upload built right into our log software.

Instead of two applications, and a separate upload with your web browser, everything can now be handled in TQSL 2.0. Sign & upload in one easy step. Certificates (requests and loads) are now handled by the same program that does the signing & uploading.

I tried one of the "release candidates" on my Mac for a while, and it was definitely "not ready for prime time". But the final product runs smoothly. I was able to sign & upload an ADIF from Sweepstakes with no trouble at all.

It would be nice if it had a more "Mac-like" front end, but that's a small quibble for an otherwise well-functioning product.

Now, if only everyone who says they use LOTW on their QRZ (or other) page actually uploaded to it...
 
KC2TKD Rating: 0/5 Nov 8, 2013 10:03 Send this review to a friend
Difficult to set up and use  Time owned: more than 12 months
LOTW worked until I renewed my callsign certificate last year. Since then every time I attempt to use the program I get nothing but error messages. I even downloaded a different logging program to no avail. Norm, at the ARRL informed me of a problem with the end date on the certificate, which should have been left blank so I cancelled that one and downloaded another. Same problems. I will no longer put any time into LOTW. I found previously that only 15% of QSO's would get confirmed anyway. I do not recommend this for anyone as it is not a stand alone log program and only a means for contact verification
 
K6CRC Rating: 3/5 Oct 18, 2013 21:46 Send this review to a friend
Getting there  Time owned: more than 12 months
Up from my last bad rating. Downloaded and started using TQSL 2.0 beta for Mac. Works well. Renewed Cert with no problem. Last time, took several hours, half dozen emails and two phone calls to ARRL. I assume they are/will address the other issues noted in the many comments here. A progress report would be nice...

How about an aggressive marketing of LoTW to DX and Expedition sites? Several recent DXpeditions are not using LoTW.
 
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