VE7CC-1 CC Cluster

Located on Thornhill in Whonnock, B.C., Canada (Vancouver area) 49 11 N 122 30 W

Direct via 1200 baud packet radio 145.71 MHz

Transceiver


CC Cluster Software

On the Internet - Telnet to CC Cluster

Web Cluster



CC User

DX Cluster Client Program

Main

Click here to join CC User (AKA AR User)
Click to join the CC User Discussion Group

Notification

Notification




Configuration

Menu

Config


DX Display Format

Expanded Format

ar17


Classic Format

classic


Select Format

Which DX Display columns are active is determined by cluster type and if AR Cluster, whether the sysop has enabled AR17 data.


AR Cluster AR Cluster AR Cluster Spider Cluster Spider Cluster
       AR17 Disabled

AR17

No AR17

AR17 Classic

Spider AR17

Spider Classic


Bands

Bands

Use "Configuration>Bands" to select the bands you don't want to see. They will be completely gone!


Telnet Clusters

Clusters

Thanks to Jim AD1C we have a list of all available telnet clusters.


Colors

Color Selection

This example shows how to change the font color of 20 meters to red.

Step through the following items.

  • DX tab. (in main screen)
  • 20 meters. (in DX tab)
  • Configuration. (top left corner of main screen)
  • Colors. (in Configuration menu)
  • DX Font. (in Color Selection screen)
  • "Select Color". (in Color Selection screen)
  • Pick a color and press "OK". (in Color screen)
  • Select Apply. (in Color Selection screen)
  • Repeat for other bands.

Ports

Ports

Set for Telnet connection to node.

To use a TNC see TNC Setup Information

Set to allow both a Logging Program via local telnet and a Contest Program on comm 1 @ 9600 baud

Can be used as a "front end" for various logging programs. Pre-filters spots. Will auto reconnect to the node if the connection drops.

With the setup shown, the program is waiting for incoming connections from logging programs on port 7300. If the logging program is running in the same machine, use the local telnet loopback port (127.0.0.1 :7300). If the logging program is in a different machine, telnet to this machines IP address at port 7300. The number of logging program connections is unlimited. To enable or disable this feature, you need to go to "Configuration>Ports/Logging Program>Logging Program Connection>Telnet".



Reject Spots

Reject Spots

You can reject DX Spots by "DX" or "Spotter" Callsign, or by items in the "Comment" field. In the example shown, any DX Spot with "RTTY" in the comment field will be rejected.

Announcements will also be rejected for "Spotter" callsigns.


Set

Menu

set

  • Close Program Immediately. Don't ask for a confirmation.
  • Correct Filtering Errors - (DX Spider doesn't need this.)
  • DX Call Lookup. Click on a call on the DX Tab and get qrz.com information.
  • Enable Linking - Allows connection to two or more clusters.
  • Show Local Sunrise and Sunset.
  • Show LoTW. Put a "+" next to DX calls when the DX is a user of ARRL LoTW. Shows number of LoTW calls in the local database.
  • Auto Open Talk Window - Opens talk window if a talk messages arrives.
  • Auto Talk on Top - Opens talk window on top of other applications. Be very careful with this one. If you are running a contest program at the same time, it will lose focus and may stop what it is doing. If it is sending CW, it may simply stop!
  • Auto Reconnect - Automatically reconnect if the link fails.
  • Auto Show/Filters - Show filters when first connected.
  • Auto Start - Connect to node as soon as program starts.
  • Auto Get Missed Spots - Get the spots that you missed when you were not connected.
  • Debug Mode. Used to find problems with the program.

Not only can you reconnect if you get dropped, but you can also automatically pull in all the DX spots you missed.

Enable Linking

Allows a "Secondary" Cluster connection to supply DX spots to the "Primary" instance of the program.

How to use


Tab 1 - Settings

Settings

In this example the input ("raw") window shows 2 lines. To change the size of this window, click on the "up" or "down" arrows just above this window's scroll bar.

To maximize the raw window, click on the "square" to the left of these buttons.


Tab 2 - Country

Overview of Filtering

DX Cluster's can be set to filter the DX Spots sent to each user. Using this filtering, each user can customize what they see.

Filtering is done by the DX Cluster. You must press "Tell Cluster" for it to work!

To read your current settings

To change your settings

Note: - Continents are shown separately for display purposes only. For each filter type, you cannot set countries in one continent to pass and in another continent to reject. They all must be the same.


Country Filter - NA (North America)

filter

In this example, if you press "Tell Cluster", you will set DX Country of origination to pass "K" and "VE".

The numbers on the tabs refer to items that have not yet been viewed. There are 4 new WWV spots, 5 Announcements and 11 local users connected.



WAE Contest Special

WAE Setup

Now you are set to receive DX spots only for European stations. Just setup the bands and you are ready to go.




Tab 3 - State

State (& Province) Filter

state

CC Cluster AR Cluster DX Spider CC Cluster

CCC

AR17

DXS

            

CCC Time

There are some differences between the various clusters. CC Cluster has the most complete filtering. AR Cluster does not have filtering of the spotted state. DX Spider does not show weather.

Only CC Cluster can have different filters for each band.

Feature Availability

The features described above may not be available on your local cluster. It depends on how your local sysop has configured his system and if the latest updates have been installed.


In this example, if you press "Tell Cluster", you will set States of origination to pass "AZ, ID, MT, NV, OR, WA, WY, UT, SK, AB, BC".

You MUST set the countries of "K" and/or "VE" to PASS before selecting states and/or provinces!



Tab 4 - Bands

DxBM Filter Replacement

Frequencies

This replaces the "DX Band Mode" filter settings. The DXBM filter uses FREQUENCY to determine mode. When the DXBM is set to "pass" 40-CW, it really is set to pass the frequencies of 7000-7040. CW on 7050 is REJECTED. RTTY or SSB on 7035 is accepted. This filter shows you exactly what frequencies are used when you are setting reject or pass bands. The frequencies given are the default of AR Cluster. These are what are used by the VE7CC node. Other node sysops may have changed these default values. If in doubt, contact the sysop for the frequencies used by his node. These frequencies ranges are fixed and cannot be changed by users.



Get Missed Spots - AR Cluster Only (Not Needed for CC Cluster or DX Spider)

Get Missed Spots

AR Cluster needs an additional setup. The following refers to AR Cluster only.

A "SH/DX/100" will give you the last 100 spots. Unfortunately it gives you spots for ANY frequency. The "Missed Spots" filter tells the cluster what frequencies you want to see. You can edit these frequency ranges to get only the ones you want. Unfortunately when you specify frequencies, you will get spots from ALL spotters unless you also specify countries. If you select "Origin Cty", you will restrict the spots to the countries in your Origin Cty filter. If you select "Call", you will only see spots for the call selected.

These filter settings are used when you first connect to the node if you have "Enabled" checked or when you press "Get Spots ALL" in the DX display tab.

There is a limitation on the length of this command. If it is too long, an error will be generated by the node. To get around this, if possible, two or more bands are combined into one. For instance if you are passing 1800-2000 and 3500-4000, then these will be sent to the node as one group (1800-4000). If you change the 2000 to 1995, then it will be sent to the node in two groups (1800-1995 and 3500-4000).


Tab 5 - Locals

Users per Port

Sysop Display

The first 3 columns are 3 AGW radio ports, then telnet users, and finally node connections.

You will see this display if using DX Spider or if ARC and you have "Sysop" privileges. Otherwise, you see the display directly below.


Classic

Classic Display

Click on any call and see "User Information".

Shift + click on any call and you will go to www.qrz.com for their info.

Ctrl + click on any VE call and you will go to www.rac.ca for their info.

Alt + click on any call and it will be entered as the destination of a talk message. Better than "conference mode". You can enter several calls. The same talk message goes to all of them. In the example shown, W0DJC, N5IN-11, and K0SR will all receive the same message. Use the "up" and "down" arrows located in the top right corner to resize the talk window.

Command Buttons



User Information

User Info




Tab 6 - Dx

DX Spots

DX Spots

Spots are separated by band. The first column of numbers to the right of the bands are the number of spots that have not yet been viewed. The second column of numbers is the total number of spots per band. The 2 spots on 40 meters, below the line of "stars" are spots that are being viewed for the first time.




Tab 7 - WWV

WWV




Tab 8 - Login Msg

Login Message

Hypertext links are clickable.




Tab 9 - Ann

Announce

Announcements

Hypertext links are clickable.




Tab 10 - Wx

Weather

Weather Announcements




Tab 11 - Mail

Directory

Directory

Clicking on a mail message will bring it up in a window like the one below.



Mail Receive

Mail Rx

Hypertext links are clickable.




Test the Software

Test It

Which node should you connect to? Which nodes are faster? Are you missing DX by connecting to a certain node? Does the "Get Missed Spots" really work? If you want the answers, you might want to do these tests.

Start up CC User. Make sure you do not have "Configuration>Ports>Local Network>Telnet" enabled. Connect to a node of your choice. Start up another copy of CC User. Connect to another node of your choice but first change the SSID of your call in "Configuration>Local Info>" if the nodes can "see" each other. Make sure the filters are set identically. You probably want to turn them completely off for this test. You can start up as many copies as you want. Now overlap the windows as shown and watch the spots. If they are different you will soon see. Some nodes have only USA/VE or NA West Coast spots available, but the majority of them have world wide spots available. Note the relative times of arrival of the spots.

Now an additional test. Make sure you have "Configuration>Get Missed Spots" checked for all the connections. Disconnect any link, either by sending a "b" on the bottom line, or by pressing the "Disconnect" button at the top of the screen. If you have "Configuration>Auto Reconnect" checked, the ones disconnected by sending a "b" will reconnect in a minute or so. If you don't have the auto reconnect enabled you will have to manually connect by pressing the "Connect" button at the top of the screen. Now see if you really get the missed spots.

Now another test. Click the "Update" tab. Make sure you have "Keep Alives in Minutes" set to anything other than 0, which will disable them. I would suggest a setting of 5 minutes and "Rx". Press apply and go back to the DX display. Now unplug the Internet connection and go away for a while. Come back and plug it back in. If everything is working, you should get all the additional spots that went out while you were unplugged. (well the last 100 anyway)

Hopefully these tests will answer your questions, and help you to decide what to do.

What did I find out? In all the testing I have done, all the nodes have all the spots. All the spots arrive within a second or two most of the time. Occasionally one will take slightly longer. Which node is first with the spot varies from spot to spot. Which node is last varies from spot to spot. Two spots arriving at almost the same time may arrive in different order from different nodes.

The displays shown are using the new AR17 format with different bands set to different colors.




Installation of CC User

Read Me First

 

Install


Manual Update

If you cannot update by clicking the "Update Program" button, use the following manual method.


Revision History

 

This software is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind, whether expressed or implied. Use at your own risk.