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Old 13-06-2011, 10:37   #1
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Any Experience with Winmor for Winlink?

Reading about winmor as the cheap-skate solution for getting email over ssb... Has anybody tried this? Any reviews outside of the high-tech amateur radio community? Thnx! Arjan
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Old 13-06-2011, 10:55   #2
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It works fine, but is limited by the number of RMS stations that support it. This makes it harder to count on making a connection than with Pactor. Setup is also a bit more involved.

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Old 04-07-2011, 15:43   #3
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Re: Any experience with winmor for winlink?

I have been tinkering with Winmor on my fixed base Ham setup to see how it might work and made my first Winmor/Winlink email connection this morning. Was a very satisfying experience. For the benefit of others, here is how I set up the configuration:

Computer is an HP minitower with an nine pin Com port so that made connecting to ICom 746Pro transceiver fairly straightforward. Connection is made through a voltage converting cable in this case purchased from Personal Database Solutions in Auburn GA. I think the cable was around $25. Runs from COM1 to the CI-V RCA jack in the back of the Icom to transmit control instructions.

Next piece of gear needed is a Tigertronics Signalink-USB external sound card. Winlink's website www.winlink.org makes it clear that getting good transmission quality is a lot easier if you have full control over the audio levels coming out of the computer and driving the transmitter. SignalinkUSB is around $100 but very well built and supported.

Icom runs into a simple wire dipole that works best on 20 meters which is fine because that seems to be the best band for daytime propagation these days anyway. Lightning arrestor and a 4:1 balun were the most expensive parts of the antenna.

Icom must be placed in USB DATA mode or there will be NO AUDIO at the ACC-1 jack that the Signalink plugs into. Found this out the hard way.

Once I found all the various configuration screens and setup menus between RMS Express (the email client) and Winmor (the software equivalent of the very expensive Pactor Modem which I am resisting investing in), it was time to find an open Winlink channel and send my first email. My first attempt on 40 meters didn't work. Quickly shifting to 20 meters, to my amazement, my four work test message went through in about 120 seconds and the software disconnected! Holy email, Batman!

I was a little nervous when the email didn't show up in my terrestrial inbox but I had a feeling it might take a while to the first email to propagate through the Winlink system. Around 60 minutes after disconnecting, there is was.

The only question I have is with respect to speed. I know Winmor is not going to be able to keep up with Pactor 3 or even Pactor 2 for that matter but the maximum throughput recorded by the software during my transmission displayed at 406 bytes/MINUTE. That's pretty slow.

Anyone have real world experience with a well connected Winmor system who can tell me what I should be able to see in terms of speed?

Also happy to share any other configuration questions people might have. CF is a terrific resource and I've gotten a lot of helpful info here.

73
Mark Salisbury
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Old 04-07-2011, 17:45   #4
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Re: Any experience with winmor for winlink?

Other than correcting a few typos ("work"="word" etc), the only thing I would definitely add is that for actual mobile maritime USING A LAPTOP, a significant configuration change will be running a USB Com port emulator since laptops don't have COM ports. I think there are several choices and a knowledgeable friend recommends www.digi.com/products/usb/edgeport.jsp#overview

Connecting to any particular transceiver will of course require some customization.....

73
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Old 05-07-2011, 02:53   #5
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Re: Any experience with winmor for winlink?

Here's the link to the source for my Icom control interface cable. There are some USB to RCA cables that might work w/ a laptop but I'd be concerned that the Winmor software might not "see" the transceiver if it's not on a Com port.

Personal Database Applications -- Amateur Radio Interfaces
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Old 05-07-2011, 05:30   #6
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I have obtained speeds of up to 4000 bps with Winmor, but with few stations available full time, it is harder to find one that will give a solid high speed connection under whatever propagation conditions exist at the time.
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Old 05-07-2011, 11:21   #7
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Re: Any experience with winmor for winlink?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mjsalisb View Post
Here's the link to the source for my Icom control interface cable. There are some USB to RCA cables that might work w/ a laptop but I'd be concerned that the Winmor software might not "see" the transceiver if it's not on a Com port.

Personal Database Applications -- Amateur Radio Interfaces

Since WINMOR was designed with emergency communications in mind (for MARS and other amateur radio-supported em-comms), it has to support laptops, since that's what's used in the field. I'd be surprised if the system didn't support virtual USB-based COM port drivers.

Now that I think about it, it's probably not the WINMOR software that needs to support a virtual COM port, but the client radio e-mail application itself. AFAIK, RMS Express, PACLink, and AirMail all work with virtual COM ports
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Old 15-07-2011, 08:59   #8
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Re: Any Experience with Winmor for Winlink?

I've used Winmor on and off now for about two years, mostly to practice for EMCOMM stuff.

I have however set up both my HF rig and the VHF system (amateur radio side) to be able to connect out and grab email, as well as telnet (the default when in range of a connectable wifi system).

I'll be using it from the Bahamas this fall sometime, if everything works out. If it doesn't work out, at least I can still use my netbook via wifi to get email.

I am using a "Tigertronics" Signalink USB device as my external sound device and can plug it into the HF, and either my laptop or netbook. Using several different programs to run it - any that work with Winmor of course.

So far, it works well.
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Old 01-09-2017, 01:46   #9
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Re: Any Experience with Winmor for Winlink?

Hi all! Have ylou heard any news about Winmor Android app? Or Linux.. I'm trying to avoid Windows because everything else is running on android. Linux at home ;-)..
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Old 01-09-2017, 03:33   #10
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Re: Any Experience with Winmor for Winlink?

I am running Winmor on a Windows 10 tablet connected to a SEA-235 radio. It works OK. The servers can get busy at the best times of day but it sends and receives short emails just fine. Tiny weather files as well.

My radio was not supported by Winlink express, so I wrote a short Python script to translate Winlink Icom commands to Seabus commands (you just need the initialization string and the set frequency commands). Any radio can be supported via this method (pm me if you want the script).

I believe a boat should have at least one Windows PC, be it a cheap tablet. Most HF apps are Windows based, there is an excellent (somewhat outdated but very powerful) Raytech app for Windows that allows weather routing and radar repeat for Raymarine electronics and typing with a keyboard is much faster.
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Old 01-09-2017, 08:48   #11
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Re: Any Experience with Winmor for Winlink?

I have used it for several years. Windows 10, Icom 802, Signalink sound card. I use it in the Bahamas and Caribbean. It is slow. I get speeds anywhere from 200-1400bps. Although slow, I'm not in a a rush, and the Winlink stations generally allow plenty of time. I get grib files and email. I thought about a pactor 4, but the cost doesn't make sense for me. In most places, there is a cell signal (I use Google Project Fi), so no need for HF. Thus I use HF only when underway.
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Old 01-09-2017, 19:30   #12
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Re: Any Experience with Winmor for Winlink?

There is also a Yahoo group at:

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/WINMOR/info
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