HamNotes by Jim
Install and Configure DVAR Hot Spot
DVAR was written by Mark McGregor, KB9KHM. It's easy to install and
use, and is very stable. It was the first hotspot client program for GMSK
Node Adapters. It's primary purpose is to support D-Plus linking of your
hotspot to repeaters or reflectors, however, since many XRF reflectors support
the DPlus protocol, DVAR can be used to link to most XRF reflectors also.
That is explained below.
This page assumes you have installed and configured your Modem using Steps 1
through 4 at
http://www.k6jm.com/hs-setup.htm. This is, in effect, Step 5
(installing Hotspot software).
Here's how to install and configure DVAR Hot Spot:
Fill in Node Callsign, Band Module and
Gateway Auth Callsign. If you want other DVAR Hotspots (and in
some cases, possibly DV Dongles or DVAPs) to be able to connect, the Band
Module should be A, B or C.
- If you
want to allow other DVAR HotSpots or DV Dongles to link directly to your
HotSpot, update your router/firewall so port 20001 UDP will allow
incoming connections and port forward to the PC running DVAR Hot Spot.
useful to have a copy of D-Star Hot Spot documentation from
- Download the DVAR Hot Spot software from one of two places:
- Log onto the Yahoo Group gmsk_dv_node and go to Files section.
Download the latest version from the D-STAR Hot Spot folder.
- If you are not a subscriber to the
above Yahoo Group, get version 2.61from
DVAR Hot Spot.
Auth Callsign, there are two common approaches, but this is entirely up to
you as long as whatever you use is a registered terminal:
- Simply use your callsign without a trailing letter or Band Module.
This is easiest.
- Use a registered terminal with a
trailing N for simplex hotspots or R for full duplex repeaters. As always for
D-Star, the Band Module letter goes into the 8th position, so use the proper
number of spaces.
For this configuration, ensure the
following are checked:
want other DVAR Hotspots (and at some point perhaps DV Dongles and DVAPs) to be able to
connect to your Hotspot, do the following:
- Simplex Node
- Transmit Mode: Enable GMSK Node Adapter
- Receive Mode: GMSK Node Adapter
sure to open up your
firewall's port 20001 UDP to allow
- Configure the router to port forward 20001 to the PC running DVAR Hot
- Configure DVAR's Callsign Server Settings window to select the alternate
Max Inbound Connections > 0 in Linking Settings.
the Configure button. This window lets you configure
repeaters or reflectors you can have your DVAR Hot Spot connect to.
The drop-down listbox for Select Repeater should soon populate with
DPlus-connectable repeaters and reflectors. If this doesn't
happen, your Gateway Auth Callsign (with A, B or C) may not be
registered, or may not have yet populated throughout the network.
This can take up to 24 hours.
select Edit/Callsign Server.
You may choose "DUTCH*Star NLroot",
but if you experience problems with REF reflectors, an alternative is
the FREE STAR callsign server. Click here for how to configure to
After selecting your preferred
callsign server, click Save. Then select Edit/Linking
Inbound Connections to something great than 0 and the other boxes as
appropriate. Click Save.
each one and create up to ten of these Quick Tune settings. On the
main window, test by clicking one of these and click Connect. This is
what the Hot Spot looks like in normal operation.
Typically you'll have your favorite repeater or reflector saved in Quick
Tune Slot #1, and your Hotspot will automatically connect to that when
you start up. You'll also be able to unlink and link with standard
DPlus commands from your DStar radio, but it is convenient to also be
able to do those things from the PC.
That's it! Enjoy your hotspot.
Linking to XRF Reflectors
Although DVAR was written to link only to DPlus reflectors, it turns out most
DExtra reflectors (those named XRFxxx) also support the DPlus protocol. So
most likely, you will be able to use DVAR to access XRF reflectors:
- Right-click on the following link and choose "Save link as" or equivalent on
latest list of XRF reflectors and their internet addresses
- Save the DExtra_Hosts.txt file in a folder where you can find it
- Different versions of Windows allow or don't allow users to modify the
folder where DVAR is installed. Start by trying the following, and if
it fails, use the other technique below:
- Copy the downloaded DExtra_Hosts.txt file to where DVAR Hot Spot was
installed. For most 32 bit Windows systems, that is c:/Program
Files/DVAR Hot Spot/. For most 64 bit WIndows systems, that is
c:/Program Files (x86)/DVAR Hot Spot/.
- Rename ExtraGateways.txt to something else, e.g.
- Rename DExtra_Hosts.txt to ExtraGateways.txt
- For users whose Windows installation does not allow them to modify where
DVAR is installed, do the following:
- See the Note at the bottom of this page
-- it shows how to run the Notepad text editor as Administrator
- Use Notepad to copy the contents of DExtra_Hosts.txt into
ExtraGateways.txt, then save the file
- When you next run DVAR's Configure, you will see the drop-down list
includes the XRF reflectors.
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