PropNetPSK is a PSK (Phase Shift Keying) program capable of receiving multiple signals (2 - 16) at one time for the exclusive use to decode a properly formatted PropNet ID signal. If you are looking for a Keyboard to Keyboard type of program, this will not fit your bill.
Sound Card: Select the sound card you wish to use from the list of available sound cards that have been detected on your machine. Make sure you have the cabling correct for you installation. Refer to the sound card documentation if you need help.
PTT COMM Port: Select the port that will key your radio. If you are using VOX then select none. It is highly recommended an interface unit such as the West Mountain RigBlaster or similar be used to properly isolate the computer from the radio.
Squelch Threshold: Set a value from 0 - 99. This value is applied to all selected channels. The level of a signal must overcome this threshold in order to print to the applicable channel. A good staring place is 15. You may need to vary this number depending on the amount of noise level in your area.
AFC Limit: Set a number between 0 - 1000 Hz. The Center frequency of the channel will be bounded by the +/- limit. Once a signal has been detected and locked on, this limit is used to maintain the lock. This selection must be a realistic number according to the number of channels you have selected and the spacing between those channels.
Channel Selection: Select an even number of channels you wish to track between 2 - 16. The more channels you select, the greater the resource load that is placed on the operating system. This program has been tested with 16 channels on a 233 Mhz computer, but the availability of other program use is doubtful.
Start Freq, Spacing, Search Range: These parameters are used to define the limits of each channel. Start Freq will be the center frequency of channel 1. Spacing will be the spacing in Hz between the center frequencies of each channel and Search Range is the limit, either side the center frequency, the channel will look for a signal. Unrealistic numbers in Search Range and AFC Limit will result in channel overlap
FFT Mode: In Root Mode the FFT data is the 4th root of the linear FFT output power. In Log Mode, the FFT data is 10log() of the FFT power and is the default mode.
FFT Max Scale: Max Scale is the FFT amplitude scaling factor. This is the maximum the FFT will return if the input is a full sinewave signal. In Log Mode this value is 0 - 100 and represent a range of 0 - 100dB. In Root mode this value is variable from 0 to 2500. The default value in Log Mode is 100 and the default value in Root mode is set for 500.
FFT Average: This is actually a FFT smoothing value from 1 - 10, 1 = no smoothing, 10 = maximum smoothing. Default is 1.
FFT Clipping: This value is only applicable in Log mode and is variable from 0 to 90 and provides a baseline clipping to the FFT data. Default is 1.
Station Configuration: Enter the appropriate information applicable to your station. To compute the grid square
from a latitude and longitude, double-click the grid square entry box. To calculate the PHG code, double-click the PHG entry box.
Enter a time in minutes for the TX interval. If your interval is 10, then you will transmit 6 time each hour. This interval should match
the interval in the PHG code. The value must be an integer value. If you enter a value of 0, this will disable all transmit
functions with the exception of Tune.
NOTE: The PHG configuration code MUST end with the '/' character. This is a variable length code and the '/' character is used to delimit the sequence from any successive text.
Display Button: Click the Display button to bring up the font dialog to select the font, pitch and style for the characters in each RX Buffer. Color is not selectable and is a function of which channel the RX Buffer is assigned.
Mail Settings: Enter the appropriate setting that will allow you to send mail. Select either SMTP or MAPI for the method to deliver the daily mail message. SMTP is the preferred method, but if you have difficulties with authentication, them select MAPI. If you are using this program on a computer that is not connected to the Internet, or you do not wish to send the daily mail message, then you must un-check the Mail Enable check box.
Map Symbol Persistence: Enter a time, in minutes, for map symbols to remain on the map screen. The default is 144 minutes, a little over two hours since the last time the station was heard.
When the program is first launched, all user setting are read and immediately applied and the sound card is initialized. If you decide to add or remove channels while the program is running, the program will be halted, and closed and you must restart the program for the new channel scheme to take effect.
WaterFall Display: The waterfall display has been rotated 90 degrees from the normal display in other PSK programs to allow better use of screen space. This display can be change to display a frequency spectrum display by double-clicking the display to toggle between the two.
RX Buffers: Each RX Buffer consists of a display area for incoming characters, an S-Meter with squelch threshold indication, a frequency readout and a check box to enable and disable the channel. To clear an individual channel of it content, double click the display area. To clear all RX Buffers, select Clear All (Shift + F12) from the Rx Buffer pull down menu.
Status Bar: The Status bar contains 4 panels displaying various messages to the user. The far left panel displays the version of the PSKCORE.DLL you are using. The current version as of this writing is version 1.19. The second panel displays various messages the program will generate informing the user of the status. The messages are normally informational. Any warning or failure type messages will be display with the usual failure type dialog box. The third panel will display the date and time in UTC format based on your time zone. The far fight panel will display the last catch that passed the CRC test. The data will be prefaced with a number identifying the channel which the data was received.
Date and Time: Date and time used in this software must be in 24 hour UTC format. The user is required to set their date and time properties for the operating system such that date and time is always displayed in 24 hour format. This is normally accomplished in the Windows Control Panel under Regional and Language Settings. Your local time zone must also be set correctly so the software can correctly compute the UTC conversion. This setting is locate in the Windows Control Panel under Date and Time Settings. It is recommended you run some sort of Internet Time Synchronization software to validate the (accuracy?????) of the computer and operating system clocks. If you are using XP, it has a built-in Time Synchronization package that will update the clocks on a weekly basis. Third party software to accomplish this on a more regular basis is readily available.
Program Termination: To close the program you must either select Exit from the File pull down menu or Close from
the system tray icon pop-up menu. Clicking the red X in the upper right corner of the main form will minimize the program and send it to the
system tray. Right clicking the tray icon will activate the pop-up menu.
NOTE: This is not the normal operation of the form close button. I have discovered that some version of windows are handing this incorrectly and as a result the program does not close properly leaving memory problem.
The remainder of the program functions are pretty much self explanatory. Each menu item has an associated short-cut key to allow keyboard activation of some functions.