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eHam Forums => Computers And Software => Topic started by: WX2S on July 08, 2012, 10:23:36 AM



Title: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: WX2S on July 08, 2012, 10:23:36 AM
Hi, all,

I'm going to put a toe in the water by naming some features that I'd like in logging software:

  • Receiver interface, so that it can capture freq and mode.
  • Support for DXing.
  • Support for contesting.
  • Support for awards.
  • Support for electronic QSOs.
  • Setup and installation that doesn't require a Ph.D. in computer scence. (I have one, but I use it on the job all day and it's tired when I come home.)  ;D

Any helpful advice appreciated!

Thanks,
- WX2S (ex-KF2IO)



Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: AA6YQ on July 09, 2012, 01:00:49 AM
Hi, all,

I'm going to put a toe in the water by naming some features that I'd like in logging software:

  • Receiver interface, so that it can capture freq and mode.
  • Support for DXing.
  • Support for contesting.
  • Support for awards.
  • Support for electronic QSOs.
  • Setup and installation that doesn't require a Ph.D. in computer scence. (I have one, but I use it on the job all day and it's tired when I come home.)  ;D

Any helpful advice appreciated!


The free-ware DXLab Suite (http://www.dxlabsuite.com) satisfies 5 of your 6 requirements: its contesting support is limited to what's needed for DXers to participate in contests (exchanges, Cabrillo generation), and so omits realtime scoring. For more information, see

What Makes DXLab Different? (http://www.dxlabsuite.com/differentiators.htm) and Getting Started with DXLab (http://www.dxlabsuite.com/dxlabwiki/GettingStarted)

    73,

         Dave, AA6YQ



Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K8AC on July 09, 2012, 11:36:34 AM
While some logging programs offer support for both everyday logging (that means DXing for me) and contest logging, I find that a separate contest logging program is more suited to that task.  Lucky for us all, the best of both are free and well supported.  I'm talking about N1MM Logger for contesting and the DXLab Suite for everything else.  Contest logs can be easily exported from N1MM after a contest and imported into DXLab.  From an awards standpoint, I've found DXLab to be the best at tracking DXCC and WAZ.  Some other popular logging programs use a constantly changing DXCC database (maintained by an outside party) that resulted in my DXCC totals changing slightly each time the database was updated.  I think that's a wrong-headed approach - the logging program should NEVER change your logged information and certainly shouldn't do it without your knowledge or permission. 

Both N1MM and DXLab are on the complex side, but the simpler programs just don't get the job done.  I'd go back to using paper before I'd use some of the other popular programs (which I've used at length and rejected).  I've rarely, if ever, had any problems resulting from updating the DXLab suite.  I've often had problems with N1MM after a major update and not having used the product for some time.  Now, I always test the new N1MM version a week before a contest so I can get all my problems (and often they're just MY problems) resolved before the contest. 

73, Floyd - K8AC


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: WX2S on July 10, 2012, 01:09:04 AM
Thanks, Floyd and Dave! I think I'll try DXlab first, learn it, and when I've got that down, take up N1MM. For the next couple of days, though, I'm stuck by a cheezy USB to serial adapter that won't stay on my rig.  >:(

73, -Steve (WX2S.)


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: W5DQ on July 10, 2012, 10:24:52 AM
While some logging programs offer support for both everyday logging (that means DXing for me) and contest logging, I find that a separate contest logging program is more suited to that task.  Lucky for us all, the best of both are free and well supported.  I'm talking about N1MM Logger for contesting and the DXLab Suite for everything else.  Contest logs can be easily exported from N1MM after a contest and imported into DXLab.  From an awards standpoint, I've found DXLab to be the best at tracking DXCC and WAZ.  Some other popular logging programs use a constantly changing DXCC database (maintained by an outside party) that resulted in my DXCC totals changing slightly each time the database was updated.  I think that's a wrong-headed approach - the logging program should NEVER change your logged information and certainly shouldn't do it without your knowledge or permission. 

Both N1MM and DXLab are on the complex side, but the simpler programs just don't get the job done.  I'd go back to using paper before I'd use some of the other popular programs (which I've used at length and rejected).  I've rarely, if ever, had any problems resulting from updating the DXLab suite.  I've often had problems with N1MM after a major update and not having used the product for some time.  Now, I always test the new N1MM version a week before a contest so I can get all my problems (and often they're just MY problems) resolved before the contest. 

73, Floyd - K8AC

Floyd,

Take a look at the N1MM to DXLab DXKeeper bridge software (available from the DXLab website). It allows real-time data transport from N1MM to DXKeeper DURING the contest so post-contest transfer is not required. I use this feature and believe me, it is a real gem not to have to manually do the process. Once the contest is over, I simply click on the 'QSL' tab on DXkeeper, select 'LOTW' as the method to QSL and click 'Add Requested' to the QSL queue. After the software collects up all the requested QSO's to QSL (i.e. the contest entries) click the 'UPLOAD' button and off they go to Newington and the LOTW server. No muss, no fuss, no errors, no problems. Easy as falling down and fast too. From the contest's last QSO to all QSO uploaded to LOTW server, usually under 2 minutes which includes upload time.

N1MM and DXLab Suite .... a winning combination!!

Gene W5DQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 11, 2012, 11:08:15 AM
Any helpful advice appreciated!

Different strokes for different folks. Every ham is different. Personally I dislike DX Lab but love N1MM.

I say try them all before making a decision. Most loggers have a free trial, use the trials and make your own decision on what is best for you. Hams like AA6YQ are more than a little biased.

Disclosure: I use Commcat and N1MM and I have tried every free trial logger available.

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: W5DQ on July 11, 2012, 11:17:39 AM
Any helpful advice appreciated!

Different strokes for different folks. Every ham is different. Personally I dislike DX Lab but love N1MM.

I say try them all before making a decision. Most loggers have a free trial, use the trials and make your own decision on what is best for you. Hams like AA6YQ are more than a little biased.

Disclosure: I use Commcat and N1MM and I have tried every free trial logger available.

Stan K9IUQ

When you write a logging program that functions as well as DXLAB Suite does, I'm sure you'll be more than a little biased too. Dave AA6YQ has created a excellent ham station operating environment that is not only robust and powerful but also easy to use. Sure it requires the user to learn a little but nothing is free ..... except DXLAB Suite's cost!!!

Since it appears you're the 'expert ???' here, why haven't you written up a detail analysis of EVERY logger you've tried and passed that on to the ham community. I know myself, like many here, is waiting with bated breath to read your UNBIASED collection of synopsis'.

Gene W5DQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 11, 2012, 01:09:07 PM

When you write a logging program that functions as well as DXLAB Suite does, I'm sure you'll be more than a little biased too. Dave AA6YQ has created a excellent ham station operating environment that is not only robust and powerful but also easy to use. Sure it requires the user to learn a little but nothing is free ..... except DXLAB Suite's cost!!!

Since it appears you're the 'expert ???' here, why haven't you written up a detail analysis of EVERY logger you've tried and passed that on to the ham community. I know myself, like many here, is waiting with bated breath to read your UNBIASED collection of synopsis'.

Gene W5DQ

Chill out Gene and take a deep breath. I never said I was an expert, I merely said I had tried all the loggers with trials. In fact over the last 5 years I have tried many of them more than once. I have written several logger reviews, go read them in the eham review section.

What part of "Different strokes for different folks. Every ham is different." do you have a problem with? Logger trials are great way of finding what logger is best for you. Much better than relying on someone else's opinion.

I agree with you the AA6YQ DX Labs programs are excellent, easy to use it is not. DX Labs is not for me. I have tried it many times over the years and wanted to like it since it is free. Alas it is definitely not for me. There are way too many programs and windows to keep track of. The steep learning curve does not help. Many hams like DX Labs. FB, I do not like it. Sorry you find that so offensive.

As far as AA6YQ's bias, it is natural. He does promote DX Labs at every opportunity here on eham and elsewhere. Since it is free I have no problem with that. I do believe he should disclose his affiliation with DX Labs whenever he promotes the program.

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: W5DQ on July 11, 2012, 01:59:13 PM

Chill out Gene and take a deep breath. I never said I was an expert, I merely said I had tried all the loggers with trials. In fact over the last 5 years I have tried many of them more than once. I have written several logger reviews, go read them in the eham review section.


I am chilled as I can be in 115 degree temps here in the desert. As far as your reviews, I have read a few of them.

Quote

What part of "Different strokes for different folks. Every ham is different." do you have a problem with? Logger trials are great way of finding what logger is best for you. Much better than relying on someone else's opinion.


None of it. In fact I agree with you.

Quote

I agree with you the AA6YQ DX Labs programs are excellent, easy to use it is not. DX Labs is not for me. I have tried it many times over the years and wanted to like it since it is free. Alas it is definitely not for me. There are way too many programs and windows to keep track of. The steep learning curve does not help. Many hams like DX Labs. FB, I do not like it. Sorry you find that so offensive.


Not offensive to me if you don't like it. Like you said to each his own. But in an UNBIASED review of ANYTHING, the reviewer doesn't take pot shots at the creator of the item under review like you did with your EMPHASIZED statement ".... Hams like AA6YQ are more than a little biased. ". That is basically what I was calling you on. That and your statement of having tested EVERY logger out there???? That's a lot of time in the reviewer's chair, testing, analyzing and recording data and results (if it is done correctly). I just was curious if you had tested them ALL, I would have thought you might be inclined to share your wealth of gained knowledge on them with the rest of us. I know I would love to see a compendium of test results of ALL the logging software available. The trove of info would almost be priceless. As far as a learning curve, anything that is beyond, 'enter a call and press return' is going to have a learning curve. The more complex and powerful the software application's user interface is, the more steep of a learning curve it will possess. I, personally, have had little to no problem in learning Dave's software. I find it very intuitive and possessing a very streamlined user interface. I too have 'played' with many of the logging s/w packages available and some of them aren't worth the time and effort it takes to install them. I won't name names as that would open a big can of worms but if you want to compare notes on testing logging apps, I'm good in QRZ.COM.

"... There are way too many programs and windows to keep track of...." Huh? You can minimize most of the windows and not even have to mess with them as they do their tricks in the background.Or not even run them if you don't want or need them.

I run them all at once on 2 monitors and usually only have DXkeeper (the log) and Spotcollector (the DX cluster) up and visible. I pop up the other windows when I need to see or use them and then minimize them out of the way. Sounds like the main problem with your dislike of DXLab Suite is the fact that you haven't really gotten in there and learned how it works properly or you would would see the folly in that statement. As to your COMMCAT program, never heard of it nor ever used it. It may well be the Holy Grail of Logging Software but I personally don't need nothing but DXLab Suite as it does everything I could ask for and I have spent several years using it and understand most (if not all) of the user interface well enough to know what to expect it to do and what it can't do. I find myself rarely ever accessing the manual or on-line help anymore.

Quote

As far as AA6YQ's bias, it is natural. He does promote DX Labs at every opportunity here on eham and elsewhere. Since it is free I have no problem with that.

Stan K9IUQ

I find discussing things with Dave to be very educational and in my opinion, he's a pleasure to talk to. Like you said  "Different strokes for different folks. Every ham is different."

We can continue this debate about software on a professional level if you'd like but I have said my peace about it and do not want to squabble about it more. And I'm sure the forum monitors would like us not to either .....

BTW I do software development and testing professionally and have for almost 30 years so I 've learned a thing or two about good software design in that time ;) And in my book, DXLab Suite is tops in its class ... said as unbiased as I can be as a satisfied user :)

73 and hope to work you sometime,

Gene W5DQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 11, 2012, 05:49:21 PM
BTW I do software development and testing professionally and have for almost 30 years so I 've learned a thing or two about good software design in that time ;)
Gene W5DQ

I am just the average every day (ham) software customer. I have found that after using computers and software since 1978, software designers rarely know what a paying customer really wants. They program what they like and what they think the customer will buy ...

When it comes to free software, usually (but not always) it is worth what you pay for it...  ;)

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 11, 2012, 06:04:36 PM
your statement of having tested EVERY logger out there???? That's a lot of time in the reviewer's chair, testing, analyzing and recording data and results (if it is done correctly). I just was curious if you had tested them ALL,

 As to your COMMCAT program, never heard of it nor ever used it.

Yep. Tried all of them. I am retired with plenty of ham time. I have used/tested every logger out there with a free trial. I did this only to find the logger which is best suited for my type of operation, not to impress you or anyone else.

Never heard of Commcat? You remind me of a old proverb my Mother used to tell me about the Fly in the Mustard Jar. This Fly had lived in the Mustard Jar his whole life. He thought Mustard was great - until one day he got out and flew into the Sugar bowl. The Fly then could not understand why he had thought Mustard was so great....  :D :D :D

Hams need to try different loggers. Otherwise they end up like the Fly in the Mustard Jar.

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: AA6YQ on July 11, 2012, 10:18:49 PM

As far as AA6YQ's bias, it is natural. He does promote DX Labs at every opportunity here on eham and elsewhere. Since it is free I have no problem with that. I do believe he should disclose his affiliation with DX Labs whenever he promotes the program.


None of my "promotion" includes denigration of competitive products, claims of capabilities that don't actually exist, or promises of capabilities to yet come (aka vaporware). I simply enumerate the relevant capabilities present in publicly released components of the DXLab Suite. There is thus no reason to append "by the way, I wrote it", which to me would feel like bragging.

     73,

         Dave, AA6YQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: AA6YQ on July 11, 2012, 10:41:32 PM

I am just the average every day (ham) software customer. I have found that after using computers and software since 1978, software designers rarely know what a paying customer really wants. They program what they like and what they think the customer will buy ...


The development of DXLab is user-driven:

1. The architecture consists of loosely-coupled (but automatically inter-operating) applications; this permits any application to be enhanced without impact on its peers.

2. The development process is iterative, permitting new application releases to be developed, tested, and released within hours (in response to a defect report or a compelling enhancement suggestion).

3. The Launcher permits any user to download and install a newly-released DXLab application within a few minutes (with typical internet bandwidth)

4. More than 3700 DXLab users participate in the now 12-year old DXLab Yahoo group, effectively serving as Product Managers who report defects in functionality and documentation, highlight usability issues, suggest enhancements, and critique new releases.

5. Because correcting reported defects is the highest priority, the cumulative defect backlog across all DXLab applications is typically 0 or 1; as a result, the 3700+ Product Managers mostly focus on product improvement, rather than on haranguing the developer to correct long-standing defects.

There may be applications designed by developers wearing blinders, but DXLab is not one of them.


When it comes to free software, usually (but not always) it is worth what you pay for it...  ;)


So Linux, Java, Eclipse, Ruby on Rails, Git, Malwarebytes, Picasa, Flickr, Facebook, and Google Docs are worthless? Your generalization is nonsense.

You're sounding more and more like a shill, Stan.

   73,

        Dave, AA6YQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 12, 2012, 04:36:37 AM
You're sounding more and more like a shill, Stan.

When a (new) ham asks for advice concerning a logger, who gives the better advice? A developer promoting his product? Or an everyday ham telling the (new) ham to try them all?  :D

Sorry Dave, I believe you are the shill for DX Labs, especially since you do it constantly.
DX Labs is popular, free is always attractive to cheap hams.

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: AA6YQ on July 13, 2012, 12:15:56 AM
You're sounding more and more like a shill, Stan.

When a (new) ham asks for advice concerning a logger, who gives the better advice? A developer promoting his product? Or an everyday ham telling the (new) ham to try them all?  :D

"Try them all" is fine advice. However, your claim that "When it comes to free software, usually (but not always) it is worth what you pay for it..." is blatantly false, as the list of high-quality free software posted earlier demonstrates. So much for your objectivity...

Sorry Dave, I believe you are the shill for DX Labs, especially since you do it constantly.

It's not possible to shill for a free product.

DX Labs is popular, free is always attractive to cheap hams.

Once again, your lack of objectivity is on display - along with your disdain for those who consider frugality a virtue or a necessity. DXLab is is popular because
  • - it offers lots of valuable functionality, but lets the user choose the subset he or she finds useful
  • - reported defects are typically repaired within 24 hours, and the backlog of reported but uncorrected defects across the entire Suite is usually 0
  • - it interoperates with many other popular applications, e.g. MultiPSK, DM780, MixW, FLDigi, CW Skimmer, CWGet, MMTTY, MMVARI, MMSSTV, JT65-HF, DX Atlas, SDR Radio, SpectraVue, BobCAT, NaP3, PowerSDR-IF, N1MM, etc.
  • - it frequently incorporates user-suggested enhancements

     73,

          Dave, AA6YQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 13, 2012, 04:47:48 AM

Once again, your lack of objectivity is on display
          Dave, AA6YQ

WOW, you got a real nice long advertisement for DX Labs in that post. I am perhaps as objective as you.  ;)

Start charging $$$ for DX Labs and find out how popular it really is. Just ask the HRD folks about that.  ;D

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: KI4PCB on July 13, 2012, 07:39:51 AM
I Downloaded and installed RadioComm and get two errors when attempting to start the application. 

Failed to create OLE Communications Control
Failed to create Empty Document

Has anyone received these errors and overcome them?


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: W5DQ on July 13, 2012, 10:45:37 AM
I Downloaded and installed RadioComm and get two errors when attempting to start the application. 

Failed to create OLE Communications Control
Failed to create Empty Document

Has anyone received these errors and overcome them?

Why don't you ask Stan K9IUQ since he appears to be the resident 'expert' on logging software  ???


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: W5DQ on July 13, 2012, 10:55:50 AM
You're sounding more and more like a shill, Stan.

When a (new) ham asks for advice concerning a logger, who gives the better advice? A developer promoting his product? Or an everyday ham telling the (new) ham to try them all?  :D

"Try them all" is fine advice. However, your claim that "When it comes to free software, usually (but not always) it is worth what you pay for it..." is blatantly false, as the list of high-quality free software posted earlier demonstrates. So much for your objectivity...

Sorry Dave, I believe you are the shill for DX Labs, especially since you do it constantly.

It's not possible to shill for a free product.

DX Labs is popular, free is always attractive to cheap hams.

Once again, your lack of objectivity is on display - along with your disdain for those who consider frugality a virtue or a necessity. DXLab is is popular because
  • - it offers lots of valuable functionality, but lets the user choose the subset he or she finds useful
  • - reported defects are typically repaired within 24 hours, and the backlog of reported but uncorrected defects across the entire Suite is usually 0
  • - it interoperates with many other popular applications, e.g. MultiPSK, DM780, MixW, FLDigi, CW Skimmer, CWGet, MMTTY, MMVARI, MMSSTV, JT65-HF, DX Atlas, SDR Radio, SpectraVue, BobCAT, NaP3, PowerSDR-IF, N1MM, etc.
  • - it frequently incorporates user-suggested enhancements

     73,

          Dave, AA6YQ

Dave,

Give up trying to convince Stan he's in the minority here. If he wants to think that the higher the price point on software makes it a better product, so be it. I'm sure those that 'sell' software love having Stan work for them on here. It appears his problem is he doesn't want to take the time to learn anything because he apparently can't do it because the learning curve is just too steep for him. Too bad for him.

For the rest of us who have taken the time to learn about software and can use your's and others with no problem, free or not, I say to all you developers "Keep up the excellent work".

Gene W5DQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 13, 2012, 12:47:53 PM
Give up trying to convince Stan he's in the minority here.

Yes give it up. My opinion is different than yours. You really need to ask yourself why that bothers you so much.....

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: AA6YQ on July 13, 2012, 02:11:02 PM
Give up trying to convince Stan he's in the minority here.

Yes give it up. My opinion is different than yours. You really need to ask yourself why that bothers you so much.....


Everyone it entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts. Your claim that free software is usually not of high quality is false. Community-driven software development processes usually produce software of excellent quality -- both in terms of fitness for use and freedom from defects.

And in response to your earlier barb, DXLab will always be free.


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 13, 2012, 06:46:34 PM

Everyone it entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts. Your claim that free software is usually not of high quality is false. Community-driven software development processes usually produce software of excellent quality -- both in terms of fitness for use and freedom from defects.

And in response to your earlier barb, DXLab will always be free.

You and your DX Lab fans continue to spin my words. I never said free software is not high quality. Go back and reread my words and then quote me if you wish but stop spinning my posts. You are starting to sound like a whining politician.  :D

If you are honest you will see I have NEVER degraded your DX Labs. I have NEVER said it was poor or not quality software. My words are all here, go read my review on DX Labs in the review section.

I have said all hams need to try different loggers. DX Labs is not for everyone, personally I do not like it for many reasons. This is not to say it does not fit other ham needs. Dx Labs just does not fit my idea of a logger that works for my style of hamming..

Please stop attacking me and spinning my words. It makes you look very petty. Promoting Dx Labs every time someone asks a question about logging does nothing for your image either. Do you see any other software developers here doing that?

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: KB1NXE on July 13, 2012, 07:44:32 PM
Dave, AA6YQ, notwithstanding, and I will freely admit his software does what you seek, there is also HRD.  Currently free ( up to, but not including version6.X)

It includes a suite of software to provide rig control, logging, digital modes, rotor control, DX Spider support, propagation reports, LoTW and eQSL upload and downloads, contest logging, award tracking, and many other features.

To be honest, I prefer the User Interface of HRD as it's more graphic than Dx Lab, but the choice is your's.



Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: AA6YQ on July 13, 2012, 09:28:31 PM

Everyone it entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts. Your claim that free software is usually not of high quality is false. Community-driven software development processes usually produce software of excellent quality -- both in terms of fitness for use and freedom from defects.

And in response to your earlier barb, DXLab will always be free.

You and your DX Lab fans continue to spin my words. I never said free software is not high quality. Go back and reread my words and then quote me if you wish but stop spinning my posts. You are starting to sound like a whining politician.


Your exact words were "When it comes to free software, usually (but not always) it is worth what you pay for it..." (my emphasis). This statement is false. As I have demonstrated with examples, community-driven software development usually produces applications of high quality.

Promoting Dx Labs every time someone asks a question about logging does nothing for your image either.

When someone asks "what logging software applications can do X?", where X is something DXLab can do, I will respond every time.

Do you see any other software developers here doing that?

Other software developers allow reported defects to go uncorrected for months or years.I won't emulate that behavior either.

     73,

          Dave, AA6YQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 14, 2012, 04:50:57 AM
To be honest, I prefer the User Interface of HRD as it's more graphic than Dx Lab, but the choice is your's.

HRD is also my first choice for a free everyday logger. The interface is slick and graphical and fairly easy to figure out. It has been around for a long time and is very popular. HRD is soon to be not free software.

DX Labs interface on the other hand is confusing. In order to get the same benefit of other loggers you must run many different programs. This populates your screen with many windows. DX Labs has always given me the feeling of a Swiss army knife - - A Swiss Army Knife that you need a manual to use.  ;D  It tries to do too much in too many different programs. It really needs an unified User interface overhaul.

For contesting N1MM logger is hard to beat. It also is free and updated frequently.

There are several loggers that cost $$$ that have more features and better interfaces than DX Labs or HRD. Use the free trials to find out which works for you.

Stan K9IUQ



Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: W5DQ on July 16, 2012, 11:54:43 AM
To be honest, I prefer the User Interface of HRD as it's more graphic than Dx Lab, but the choice is your's.

HRD is also my first choice for a free everyday logger. The interface is slick and graphical and fairly easy to figure out. It has been around for a long time and is very popular. HRD is soon to be not free software.

DX Labs interface on the other hand is confusing. In order to get the same benefit of other loggers you must run many different programs. This populates your screen with many windows. DX Labs has always given me the feeling of a Swiss army knife - - A Swiss Army Knife that you need a manual to use.  ;D  It tries to do too much in too many different programs. It really needs an unified User interface overhaul.

For contesting N1MM logger is hard to beat. It also is free and updated frequently.

There are several loggers that cost $$$ that have more features and better interfaces than DX Labs or HRD. Use the free trials to find out which works for you.

Stan K9IUQ



Stan,

I understand where one might find DX Labs confusing but for many hams who do like and use DX Lab, my observation are exactly opposite of yours. Not to start a DX Lab vs HRD flame war and I'm sure HRD is a fine program once you learn it, personally I find it to be a mass of confusion. It clutters up my senses and is like trying to speed read the book and watch the movie at the same time. I don't want EVERYTHING thrown in my face at one time. I want to use what I need and move on. Just like I don't take out all the tools out of my toolbox just to use a screwdriver.

I find DXLab to be a natural smooth progression of effort where I can bring the item of need into focus, be it the logbook or the DX cluster, and move it out of the way by maximizing and minimizing windows. I, for one, don't like alot of flash and colors of a overdone graphical user interface and I get just enough colors and graphics to be useful and provide needed information without the 'entertainment' value when I use DX Lab.

I understand your dislike of DX Lab but I feel it is more driven by your dislike of Dave because he won't bend to your way of thinking and he promotes his product in open forums. There is nothing wrong with Dave's promoting DX Lab. Other vendors do it too but you seem to have singled Dave out for persecution. I can't see where Dave's promoting of DX Lab has any determental effect on your use of whatever you choose to use as a logger and really can't understand the assaults you throw at Dave every chance your get. So why don't you just agree to disagree with Dave and let it ride. I'm sure I'll draw the wrath of Stan for this posting but I really get tired of seeing you lower yourself everytime Dave posts something.

To the moderator: I'd suggest this thread be locked so we all can give it a rest and Stan can move on to provide 'helpful hints' to others here on eHAM.



Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: K9IUQ on July 16, 2012, 01:37:38 PM
we all can give it a rest

I thought the subject was done but you continue to defend DX LAB and go on and on and on.

1. No one cares you dislike HRD
2. No one cares I dislike DX LAbs.
3. I do not dislike Dave, indeed I respect him as a programmer who gives freely of his time.

Give it a rest W5DQ, dang it is just software.........

Stan K9IUQ


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: STAYVERTICAL on July 16, 2012, 03:25:40 PM
Wow!
There are so many antlers laying in this forest it's hard to walk through it.

I think that DXlab is great, and so was HRD.
I will reserve my opinion as to whether making HRD payware has improved it or otherwise, until I see the final for-pay product.

The factor which defines the quality of software, both free and paid, is the passion of its developers.
DXlabs has a passionate and committed group of enthusiasts, with a democratic and effective development protocol.
This is what makes it good.

Similarly, Linux in its early days, was a great bit of software - but where is it today when the fire has dimmed?
It is essentially now a Euro-buro attempt to harm Microsoft and used as a free embedded OS for gadgets.

Software dies because no one uses it anymore, not because it is necessarily bad.
Enthusiastic users mean life - disgruntled users mean death - end of story.

73 - Rob


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: N0NB on July 17, 2012, 06:17:22 AM
Quote from:  link=topic=84051.msg608731#msg608731 date=1342477540
Similarly, Linux in its early days, was a great bit of software - but where is it today when the fire has dimmed?

Was?  Today's versions are even better than ever as evidenced by the frequent kernel updates.  The "fire has dimmed"?  Where?  Development continues at a break-neck pace.  The difference is that the development model which was new and novel is now mature and accepted by many projects outside the Linux kernel proper so it's no longer news.  Also the development of Git eased the duties of Linus to an extent that the development process is no longer news.

Quote
It is essentially now a Euro-buro attempt to harm Microsoft and used as a free embedded OS for gadgets.

Really?  Most Linux kernel developers couldn't care less what the EU is doing.  They spend their time fixing bugs and writing code.  Nor do most distributions care what the EU is doing.

That there hasn't been a sweeping conversion to desktop Linux has more to do with the inertia of a massive installed base and the choice of people to stick with what's familiar than most any other reason.  I will say that the UI churn of recent years has done little to promote desktop Linux.

Quote
Software dies because no one uses it anymore, not because it is necessarily bad.
Enthusiastic users mean life - disgruntled users mean death - end of story.

It also dies when the underlying system goes away such as all the fantastic DOS programs we once used or when the author of the software stops improving it for whatever reason.  There are always bugs to fix or changes in dependencies that need to be tracked.  Once that input ceases, it's all over.  Here is where open source software has an advantage, it can be picked up, dusted off, fixed and its development carried on at some future date by someone completely unrelated to the original author(s).  And, yes, that has happened.



Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: N4OGW on July 17, 2012, 07:14:08 AM


Similarly, Linux in its early days, was a great bit of software - but where is it today when the fire has dimmed?
It is essentially now a Euro-buro attempt to harm Microsoft and used as a free embedded OS for gadgets.



One area where Linux has total dominance is high performance computing. Take a look at
 https://www.xsede.org/high-performance-computing for example and count the number of
systems running Windows 7 :)

Tor
N4OGW


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: STAYVERTICAL on July 17, 2012, 02:55:22 PM
I understand the passion of Linux users, and am not by any means antagonistic towards this OS.
In fact my history is that, for 10 years, I was national support for SunOS/Solaris/AIX and Linux for a very large multinational computer company.
I grew up with the Linux story and 4 and 8 bit microcomputers and saw MUCCPM go the way of the Dodo.

However, an OS is just a vehicle for applications, and these are what make a platform a success or failure.
For developers and those rebels who want to make a statement about the domination of Microsoft, sure go with Linux.
But your universe of applications will be smaller, and like that horrible OpenOffice, clunky and slow as treacle.

As for Linux being used in high performance computing, well UNIX and variants have been used there for decades.
Being just a UNIX clone anyway, it is perfect for being configured into arrays, clouds, and so on.
But so what?
Its use in data centers is natural, but even here it has been declining in popularity, primarily due to the use of low cost intel processors.
As the number of UNIX savvy people decline, the trend is moving inexorably towards Microsoft there as well.

I have paid my dues in the world of Linux, but rose colored glasses do not compliment me, so I choose not to wear them.

73 - Rob







Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: N0NB on July 18, 2012, 06:21:45 AM
Rob, I and many others could go on and on about the litany of issues and aggravations we've had with Windows over the years.  I would rather be constructive than destructive in my commentary so I refrain from doing so.

I encourage those interested to give a Linux distribution a try.  There are many advantages it provides not the least of which are the generous licensing terms of most software found in the typical distribution.  Also, little, if any, of the software provided by distributions will spy on its users or "phone home".  For some of us, that is a big deal.

Regardless, I respond in the hopes that your commentary won't dissuade interested persons from try Linux (or one of the BSDs) if they're of a mind to do so.


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: STAYVERTICAL on July 18, 2012, 10:48:36 PM
I would never discourage anyone interested in computers from investigating Linux.
Linux  is the ideal platform for someone to truly learn how operating systems and the hardware interact.
The configurability of Linux, which is a hallmark of UNIX systems means no limits to your ability to learn a modern operating system.

Microsoft windows is generally a consumer oriented operating system with the GUI being its primary interface.
It has Server versions of course, but again they are GUI based, and made for easy broad based configuration control.
Microsoft hides its complexity from naive users, who are the mainstay of its market share, which is as it should be.
I could not imagine my parents trying to configure the network control files - they have trouble enough with a mouse.

One (possibly inaccurate) programming analogy is JAVA versus C.
Java will put you in a straightjacket and stop you from making simple syntax errors - a nanny state type of language - i.e. Windows.
C will let you type in what you want (within reason), even if it makes no sense, assuming you are smart enough to know what you want - i.e. Linux/UNIX.

The well known bell shaped curve applies as equally to computer users as it does to many other things in nature.
The number of users of Linux will always be smaller than Windows, because Linux needs time and effort to learn.
The many attempts of using X to emulate windows are fine, but why try to make Linux into Windows?
The allure of Linux is that it takes effort to learn, like CW in ham radio.

Once learned, Linux skills will put you into a smaller group of computer enthusiasts who really understand computers.
This goal is not mass-market, and so Linux will never be mass-market - but that is what makes it great.

In some ways Linux is like ham radio.
Many people would probably not understand why we learn how radio's work, bounce signals off the ionosphere, and use ancient modes like CW.
Most people just want to press call on their cell-phone, and just can't see why we take the hard route (in their minds).

The reason of course, is learning for its own sake, and a personal voyage of discovery.

73 - Rob.


Title: RE: Logging + rig interface software
Post by: N0NB on July 19, 2012, 04:22:43 AM
Thanks, Rob, excellent followup.

I have written on more than one occasion that we on the Linux side were wrong in our advocacy in the past by asserting, "...just like Windows."  I have now taken the track of explaining that Linux is its own system and has its own way of doing things. 

People looking for a bug-for-bug replacement for MS Windows need to look elsewhere.  ReactOS (http://www.reactos.org/en/index.html) is one such project with that as its goal but may not be suitable for general use as of yet.  It would be interesting to see how it would run N1MM, for example, for those so inclined.  So far I only tried it in a VM which is far from ideal.

Your comment on the relationship of C to Unix is apt.  I had tried to understand C for many years, but it wasn't until I became comfortable with Linux that C began to make sense to me.  Go figure.

I see common aspects between the Linux and amateur radio communities.  In fact, someone else in the Linux community recently pointed back at amateur radio as the original geek community.  Heh!  Part of my interest in both communities is helping to bridge the gap between them in some small way.