DDUtil was designed to allow users to connect peripheral equipment and Radio Control Programs (RCP's) to the family of Flex Radios in order to complete the operator experience and have a degree of Station Control not previously possible.
Allow DDUtil to connect to the CAT port of PowerSDR (PSDR) and manage all CAT traffic to/from the radio, peripheral equipment and the various RCP's that may be connected.
This concept is difficult to put into practice because the radio can only talk to one device at a time. This is where DDUtil takes over and acts as message director and arbitrator for the collection of devices and software. DDUtil interleaves the messages and has controls built-in to remove redundant messages. This allows as much traffic to/from the radio as possible without bogging the whole system down.
For a graphic illustration of how DDUtil works see this Program Flow diagram.
--------------- All entities connected to the DDUtil/PSDR system require their own unique serial port(s). Hardware requires a real PC serial port and software requires a pair of virtual serial ports. No port can be opened by more than one program at a time.
The following is an example of how to interconnect DDUtil and various pieces of equipment and software (RCP's) to the radio (PSDR).
Virtual Serial Port Program
The first order of business is to obtain a virtual serial port program so pairs of virtual serial ports can be created and maintained. There are several programs available both free of charge and commercial, but I recommend VSP Manager as the best choice. I wrote it as a companion for DDUtil and there is no charge for it's use.
Connecting to PSDR
The connection from DDUtil to PSDR is constant and must be maintained for the system to function. One pair of virtual ports are required for this. Here is an example using the port pair COM30/COM31.
COM30 DDUtil CAT port (Ports tab/Serial Ports group/Radio CAT COM31 PSDR CAT port (Setup/CAT Control/CAT)
Connecting to a Radio Control Program (RCP)
Connecting to another software program such as MixW, HRD or many others can be accomplished by DDUtil as follows:
- Create a pair of virtual serial ports for each piece of software to be connected to DDUtil.
- Connect one end of the pair to DDUtil RCP1-6 CAT port.
- Connect the other end of the port pair to the software's CAT connection.
- Repeat the above procedure for each piece of software needed, up to a maximum of six (6).
- When finished the connections can look like this:
- DDUtil Radio CAT Com30 <--> Com31 PSDR Cat
- DDUtil RCP1 CAT Com10 <--> Com20 HRD CAT
- DDUtil RCP2 CAT Com11 <--> Com21 MixW CAT
- PTT key lines require another set of virtual ports to connect PSDR and the software package. DDUtil only handles the RS232 TX/RX communication. The following is an example of connecting a PTT line for MixW to key PowerSDR.
- PSDR PTT Com15 <--> Com25 MixW PTT
- CW key lines are handled the same way only connecting one end of a virtual port pair to the PSDR Keyer and the other end to MixW CW key line.
Note: See the following link for a more detailed discussion of how to setup Radio Control Programs with DDUtil.
Connection to a Passive Listener Device
The passive listener port in DDUtil is intended to allow frequency following devices like SteppIR antenna controllers, Tuners, Slave Radios and others to track the PSDR frequency and switch bands automatically. Here is an example connection using the PC hardware serial port COM1.
- Set DDUtil Passive Listener port (Pass Listen) to COM1.
- Set PL/Radio Comm (Slave Radio group) to the correct setting for your device.
- Make sure the interconnect cable is correct for your device. Please refer to this drawing (pg 2) for an example cable.
- The Follow SDR check box does not have to be checked unless you are using a CAT protocol other than Kenwood. Kenwood is the default.
Note: Passive listener devices are just that, Passive they DO NOT talk back to the radio (no exceptions). Some hardware requires a two-way connection and they won't work on this port. Consult the DDUtil Yahoo Group or see the Ports page for more information.