Wednesday, June 29, 2005

I have a preliminary serial to TCP bridge app. Here are some screenshots:

(click on the image for a full size version)

smallsamp

In the image above PowerSDR's TCP Listener is enabled to listen for connections on port 4444 as in the notes for June 28, 2005 below.

I have two pairs of vCOM ports enabled: The first pair is COM4 and COM5, the second pair is COM6 and COM7.

The Serial To TCP Bridge app connects the virtual com ports to TCP. The app connects to PowerSDR as a client on port 4444.

In the screenshot above HRD is set to connect to COM5. MixW is set to connect to COM7. In the Serial To TCP Bridge app above, COM4 and COM6 are set to bridge to TCP port 4444. Refer to the screenshot below:

bridge

The IP Address is the address of the computer where PowerSDR is running. It can be an IP address or a machine name (or "localhost").

The TCP Port Number must be the port that the PowerSDR TCP Server is listening to for connections (here 4444).

COM Port 1 is the virtual com port that you want to bridge to TCP in the first pair of ports you have installed. The Enable check box enables COM Port 1.

COM Port 2 is the virtual com port that you want to also bridge to TCP in the second pair of ports you have installed. If you have only one pair of ports installed then you should not enable the COM Port 2 selection. The Enable check box enables COM Port 2.

The Monitor check boxes determine whether commands can be sent from the virtual com port to the PowerSDR TCP Server or not. If checked, the virtual com port only receives from the TCP Server. Any commands sent to the com port in Monitor mode are not transmitted to the PowerSDR TCP Server. If unchecked the communication is both ways - any commands sent to that virtual port will be sent to the TCP Server. Using Monitor mode another radio can be slaved to PowerSDR.

The Connect button will attempt to connect to the PowerSDR TCP Server with the selected settings. The progress will be reported in the status window. If a successful connect is made the Serial To TCP Bridge form with minimize, otherwise it will report the error.

The Disconnect button will disconnect from the PowerSDR TCP Server. It also closes the Serial To TCP Bridge application.

Here is the source code diffs and the binaries (based on 1.3.12) to play with. You will have to copy the PowerSDR.exe binary over an existing installed PowerSDR 1.3.12.

Note that the N8VB Serial To TCP Bridge application has to be running on the same computer that HRD, MixW, etc... is running. With just the TCP CAT enabled in PowerSDR you do not have to have the virtual com ports installed on the PowerSDR machine (unless you are running all applications on the same computer).

Here is a diagram of how it is set up:

how it works

If you have only one pair of vCOM ports enabled then COM6 and COM7 above would not exist.

We can get more sophisticated in the monitoring setting by possibly filtering commands on the monitored port. It could be set up so that only query commands such as FA; or FB; can be transmitted to the PowerSDR TCP Server from the monitored port. Any set commands would be filtered out and not sent. We will have to explore these possibilites based on what users want to do with all of it.

Also, to use the bridge with a read hardware port we would need to put settings for the com ports on the bridge form. Right now it is hard coded in the software for 9600, 8, n, 1

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