[pskmail] Re: Aw: any need of servers?

  • From: "Josh Housey" <dmarc-noreply@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> (Redacted sender "kg9bo@xxxxxxxxx" for DMARC)
  • To: "pskmail@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <pskmail@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 14 Aug 2014 16:32:20 -0700


I will echo Rein's comments about US activity and it is "extremely" minimal. 
Recently, a client station N2TIF from Buffalo NY has been using the server on 
30m with fairly good success. That actually has been it. I had one attempt from 
a "5" on 20m and that has been it. It's been a while since I've seen that much 

One major think I like about PSKMail is the "multitude of modes" that are 
available. This makes it flexible for operation based on propagation, station 
equipment, etc.  That is my selling point for it and works decently good with 
my "mediocre" station setup. I am using a vertical vs horizontal (where I 
figure most are using with these bands and on up) and not being very high.. I 
welcome the use of modes to still get out...   Also, its  features use on Linux 
is another positive point.

I have a Icom IC-7200 (built in sound card) which just works beautifully for 
this purpose. It is putting out only 30 watts. The antenna here is a Jetstream 
multi-band vertical only at 25ft. I use verticals quite simply because of the 
little space available to erect wire antennas. This is a problem with 40, 60, 
and 80. 

I have actually the ability to use multiple frequencies,  but only operating 
two at the present time. 

30m is 10.146.500 (+1500 audio frequency) and 20m is 14.109.500 (+1500) or 
14.111Mhz (center). It is good to have two to rotate (especially 20m for 
contests) and will move it to 17 if required. The radio makes it extremely 
ideal to accomplish the task. 

There use to be several other servers (Texas, BC Canada, North Carolina) 
primarily on 30m but it looks like they all have gone QRT. You might pick up 
KB1NCJ in Tampa, FL on 20m. He's the only on there besides me and operation 
seems to be "off" and "on". 

I look forward to hearing you and that being probably on nights... I should be 
easy to catch because server "transmits" a little more frequently (1,2,3,4) 
every 10 minutes between 30 and 20m. It also uses "more" sensitive but slower 
MFSK/THOR modes. It should probably explain my the EU stations hear me rather 
"frequently"... The only reason I do this to "drum" activity because I think 
the defaults modes/time aren't enough to attract any PSKMail activity.  I will 
easily decrease it when activity starts to increase...

Josh, AB9FT

 From: Rein Couperus <rein@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: pskmail@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Sent: Thursday, August 14, 2014 5:18 AM
Subject: [pskmail] Aw: any need of servers?

Hi Mark,
unfortunately there is not much activity on pskmail yet in USA, so any effort
from your side would be appreciated. You can see what is going on at
http://pskmail.org/web/pskmailusers.php .
You can see there that coverage in your area is minimal at the moment.
Like WINlink, PSKmail is a global system, and we have seen yachts in the middle 
the Pacific contacting servers in the US. New activities normally start from a
local activity group like a club station...
In EU most of the activity is on 10.148 MHz. We have chosen 30m as the main 
band because
it is a WARC band without contests, and 10.148 is just below the HF packet APRS
frequencies. Propagation on 20m may be better some times of the day, but
frequencies on 20m suffer a lot from QRM. We sometimes receive USA beacons in 
at this time of the solar cycle I reguraly see beacons from AB9FT in the 
morning hours.
Servers with a multiband antenna can scan up to 5 different bands (1 
Servers normally beacon 1x during the first 5 minutes of the hour, sometimes 
on the half hour.  This gives a fair idea for the clients which server would be 
best for traffic.
If you are able to help approving the system you are welcome. Software is open
source, and we are steadily improving... We have a software repository 
In case you need help, pse holler....
Rein PA0R

My name is Mark, AF5ES. I've been looking at and playing around with
this project for a while and really appreciate its direction and use case. I
played around with the server software last night and got it going
easily on a gentoo systems. My question to the folks here is: how is
coverage and usage doing?

I have a modest setup of a 72' windam antenna up at just 16ft. It's able
to do 20m quite effectively, however its performance drops off
significantly at lower frequencies. I'm located in northern New Mexico,

If a need is still there, what would a recommended frequency be? Would I
be stomping on any other servers? What kinds of beacon settings work
best? I'm pretty good with server development and many of the issues
I've seen on the mailing list so far -- I may be able to help with those
things as well.

Thanks for your time.
-mark AF5ES

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