Welcome to the W5AW D-RATS informs

This is where you will find the direct download link to the D-RATS software, tutorial information, and data logs from training classes that have been held for D-RATS for the West Texas Connection radio consortium. Questions in regards to the W5AW Big Spring Radio Club and its involvement in these exercises and responsibilities should be directed to Lloyd Duck [W5LND].

Suggested links and related items that should be included in this resource are welcome and encouraged.

W5AW 146.820 ~ BSARC
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First things first:
Click HERE for the official download location for the D-RATS software. You will find what looks like a directory structure. Navigate to the installer you want to use and download.

Or you can just click HERE for the Windows 3.3 installer that most people are looking for. If you want the 3.3 ZIP archive, click HERE.

Training sessions [log file archives and includes for download]:

<>> The following are abridged versions of the D-RATS log captured during training session that omit unecessary traffic while preserving the instructional content of the class. In each ZIP archive there is a text file and a word .docx document. The word document is contextually highlighted so you can quickly jump to pertinent information to review.

D-RATS training session 1 for Monday 02/13/17 ~ click HERE to download.

   ** "If you are running a 64-bit machine you will have to install a 64-bit 
      version of lzhuf_1.exe. I have attached a copy. Go to Program Files\D-Rats\libexec 
      folder and replace the 32-bit version with this the 64-bit version."
      Lew         Click HERE to download the ZIP archive.

D-RATS training session 2 for Thursday 02/16/17 ~ click HERE to download.

D-RATS training session 3 for Monday 02/20/17 ~ click HERE to download.

D-RATS training session 4 for Thursday 02/23/17 ~ click HERE to download.

   ** Note - the training 4 session has two includes that should not be
      overlooked. Both are referenced here for convenience:

      1] https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/d-rats_group/     Link HERE.
         Click on the File section. Look for the USA Map Overlay folder. You can find 
         additional overlays of other locations. When you get your overlays completed 
         post them here for the rest of us to see and maybe use some day.

      2] ...participate in other D-RATS nets. For a complete list compiled by Daryl, WX1DER 
         go to the AE5HE RATflector Repository and download the list. Click on FILES tab 
         then select W5ELP in the stations column and click on CONNECT. Then scroll down to 
         SELECTED D-RATS Nets.pdf and highlight it. Then click on DOWNLOAD. Don't forget to 
         DISCONNECT when your download is finished.        

<>> The first group of PDF files for getting started are also available for download. You can get each one individually, or all three in a ZIP archive. Please note that your browser may be set to OPEN the download link instead of dowloading. In that case you have to save the file from whatever PDF viewer you use by default.
  Configuring Email Homework PDF download HERE, or view HERE.

How to create a WL2K account PDF Download HERE, or view HERE.

        Session One Reminder PDF download HERE, or view HERE.

          Download the ZIP archive containing all three HERE.

*Further logs will be available for download upon class completion.
Important addendums are listed on the remainder of this page. Read below please.

! D-RATS Security Issues (a note from Lew):

Here is a message from Lew KB5HPT. The fourth and last lesson of this training is Thursday 23rd at 8 pm CST. We didnít hear from very many with problems so I hope everyone else is right on track.

The SMTP/POP protocols used by D-RATS are seldom if at all used anymore. It can not provide the higher security levels needed to protect your computers. Because D-RATS uses this out dated protocol we are forced to lower our security posture with Gmail making it more susceptible to be hacked. This is not acceptable standards so I will remove all references of email from these lesson plans including WL2K. D-RATS is no longer being supported by Dan Smith, KK7DS so this is the last version we will have. EVERYONE SHOULD GO INTO THEIR GMAIL ACCOUNTS AND SET THEIR SECURITY LEVELS BACK UP TO THE HIGH STANDARDS.

D-RATS still has many other valuable features that do work and so I would not recommend that it be removed from our EMCOMM toolboxes. El Paso County will continue to use D-RATS in it's local ARES SOP. You EC's can make your own decisions about that. Many D-Star Nets (El Paso D-Star Net included on the AE5HE RATflector) also runs D-RATS parallel to their voice nets and have live chat during the nets. Sometimes the chat lasts long after the voice net has ended. D-RATS works great on your local Broadband Hamnet (MESH) system. Just start the D-RATS Repeater on your MESH. Everyone can connect to it and everything operates as normal (except email).

As EMCOMM Operator's we have the Winlink 2000 System at our disposal. Any email should be passed by WL2K. The Texas ARES and RACES have declared that Winlink 2000 is the communications method of choice in the state. While we are on the Winlink subject. Later this year we are going to switch from WINMOR to ARDOP (Amateur Radio Digital Open Protocol). ARDOP is available now in the form of a chat program. ARDOP is much more robust, provides more bandwidth options and is much faster than WINMOR. It can be used on HF/UHF/VHF also. Join me on the air most any day or night on 14.066, 10.135, 7.045 or 3595 MHz. Listen for my beacon every 10 minutes and we can join together in chat. I am in ARQ mode, but we also have FEC mode that can be used. Once the switch is made I hope they still keep the chat feature updated. That will be up to the Winlink Development Team I suppose. For more information go to http://www.winlink.org/?page=1 . Contact me at http://[email protected] to arrange a schedule if you don't hear me on the band.

! Hello all, Settings for the ID-51 ~

Tonight is the last lesson. I understand some of you are having trouble with the email part. But like Lew's email you can just stop that or send me an email and we'll work out the problems. I will continue to use my D-Rats gmail account even with the low security settings. I created this account strictly for the D-Rats. And gmail does notify you when you login with a different device all the time. The decision is entirely up to you.

Here are the settings I used with my ID-51 anniversary radio for D-Rats. Note these settings will work for all ID-51 models.

I am using the OPC-2350LU cable.

             MENU>>FUNCTION>>DATA SPEED = 9600


In Device Manager I had to force the comm port to an unused number greater than 5. In my case I used comm port 9. I could not get the radio to key up using the comm port assigned below 5.

             Baud rate = 9600                                                                     
             Data = 8 bit
             Parity = none
             Stop = 1 bit
             Flow Control = ON/XOFF

! Add a serial port to D-RATS and it works.
Here are the settings I made for my 7100.

             Low Speed Data (D-RATS)

             1.    Use Supplied (radio) USB cable
             2.    Mode = DV
             3.    Set>>Connectors>USB2/Data1 Function>>GPS OUT = Off
             4.    Set>>GPS>>GPSTX Mode = Off
             5.    Set>>Connectors>>USB2/Data1 Function>>DV Data/GPS Out Baud = 9600
             6.    Set>>DV Set>>DV Data TX = Auto
             7.    Set>>Connectors>>USB2/Data1 Function>>USB2 Function = DV Data
             8.    In D-RATS add a port as follows:

                -  File>>Preferences>>Radio>>ADD
                -         Name: Give it a name
                -         Type: Serial
                -  Serial Port: Com X
                -         Port: 9000
                -     Password: leave blank. Click ADD then Click Save.

             9.    Configure the serial data communication software (Device Manager) as follows:  

                -               Port: The COM port number which is used by the  IC-7100 
                                      (may have to force the Comm port number to something 
                                      higher than 5.

                -          Baud rate: 9600 bps 
                                      (Set>Connectors>USB2/DATA1Function>DV Data/ GPS Out Baud)

                -               Data: 8 bit
                -             Parity: None
                -               Stop: 1 bit
                -       Flow control: Xon/Xoff

- end of D-RATS informs -