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Multiple Modems in a System (for a multi-module Hotspot or Repeater system)
  • Changing the PID on a GMSK Modem running DUTCH*Star firmware
  • Configuring the G4KLX programs

The basic home-brew D-Star compatible simplex Hotspot or full-duplex repeater operating on one band or module is straight-forward.  This is a block diagram of a one-band repeater:

If you want your system to support more than one band or D-Star module, you will need to add another modem and another radio (or pair of radios if full-duplex).  The 2nd modem must be configured to have a different USB Product ID (PID).  Modems running DUTCH*Star firmware can have their PID easily changed from the default of hex 300.

Here's how:


What PID should I choose for the 2nd modem?

The default PID on DUTCH*Star firmware GMSK Modems is hex 300.  When you change the PID on your 2nd modem, you need to pick a PID that is supported by the driver files used by the DUTCH*Star utility programs.  The default files for NATools support 300 (GMSK Node Adapter), 301 (GMSK Node Adapter Delay, as used by the original Satoshi boards), 310 (GMSK DV Adapter), and 320, 322 and 324 (GMSK Node Adapter).  So you can choose 301, 310, 320, 322 and 324 without having to edit the NATools' driver .inf file.  While some of those devices are no longer being used, it is recommended your 2nd modem use 320 and any 3rd modem should use 322.  The following information refers to the 2nd board, but the same procedure will apply to the 3rd Modem, as long as you use a different PID, like 322.

Changing PID on 2nd board:

  1. Install the NATools Set PID tool:
    • Get the NATools Set PID tool from www.dutch-star.eu/software/ and save setpid.zip to a known directory
    • Extract the files to a known location
  2. To run this command-line program:
    • Open a command line window (used to be called a “DOS Box”) using the Run as administrator feature:
      • Windows icon at bottom left
      • All Programs > Accessories
      • Right-click on Command Prompt and select Run as admin
    • Change directory to where you saved the files extracted from the setpid.zip
    • Type nacfg to run it
    • Enter P (set usb device pid)
    • Enter the new pid (e.g. 320)
    • Program will change the modem’s PID, then fail.
  3. To prove it worked, rerun nacfg, passing in the new pid, by typing: nacfg –U 320
  4. You can then run NAWinCFG. Go to Tools > Options and change Device PID to 0320, then Close, then Close again. Start NAWinCFG again and it will find the 2nd board and allow you to configure the firmware settings. You’ll have to do all this again, changing PID back to 0300, if you want to change settings on your 1st board.
  5. You have to do the same thing if you want to use NAWinTEST on the 2nd board

Software Configuration changes
WinDV and ConDV are popular D-Star Hotspot programs, but they currently they support one modem.  The G4KLX programs and Freestar support more than one modem, allowing you to build a multi-band D-Star compatible repeater. This page documents how to change the G4KLX programs to support more than one band.

The single band G4KLX configuration using GMSK Modems is to run one copy of DStarRepeater and one copy of ircDDBGateway.  Like ConDV, these are available for both Windows and Linux. The information on this page applies regardless of which operating system is being used.

To add a second Modem and a set of radios on another band, you will need to run two copies of DStarRepeater. Read the Repeater manual (D-Star Repeater-ENG.pdf available from the pcrepeatercontroller Yahoo Group website in the Files section, Documentation folder). The key part is the section called The D-Star Repeater Configuration Program, where it explains how to create multiple instances of the configuration file. One of them will have the Modem tab set to GMSK Modem with the Configure box set to PID of 300, the other set to 320. Note also the port comments below.

ircDDBGateway config changes
On ircddbgateway, you will need to configure both Repeater1 and Repeater2. You’ll notice the Port default for Repeater1 is 2011 and for Repeater2 is 2012. You will need to make sure the 2nd config file for DStarRepeater also specifies port 2012. This allows ircDDBGateway to talk to both copies of DStarRepeater.

Launching the programs
On the Pi, you need to arrange things so at boot time, three programs will boot: ircddbgateway, dstarrepeater with a config parm specifying the 1st config file, and another copy of dstarrepeater with a config parm specifying the 2nd config file.

D-Star® is a registered trademark used for communication equipment (repeaters and transceivers) for amateur radio communications, and owned by Icom Incorporated.

Copyright © 2009-2017 James M. Moen. All rights reserved.