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Twente WebSDR
Controlling CATSync with CSVUserlistBrowser
Starting with version 4.17 CSVUserlistBrowser can control the WebSDR browser CATSync by OM Oscar, DJØMY, as an external rig via Omnirig. CATSync is a specially developped stand-alone web browser which can control WebSDRs based on the Twente and Kiwi technology. It is capable of HTML 5 audio streaming which makes the use of Java for Twente style WebSDRs obsolete. The full version can be obtained here for a moderate fee: CATSync
For communication with Omnirig a virtual COM port pair of a so called COM port emulator is required. See Preface.
  1. Install the full version of CATSync (can be obtained for a moderate fee).
  2. Install, if not yet done, a virtual COM port emulator and create a virtual COM port pair there. Please read the hints on the Preface page.
    Important note: Unfortunately it has turned out that Omnirig does not work with VSPE! Only com0com and K5FR VSP Manager provided a reliable communication between Omnirig and CatSync.
  3. Install, if not yet done, Omnirig (freeware).
  4. In CATSync under "Settings" select an Omnirig rig "TS-480" and assign one of the COM ports of the virtual COM port pair (e. g. COM9). To obtain smooth tuning set the poll interval to 100 ms.
  5. In CSVUserlistBrowser.exe under "Options, Settings, COM" specify the "partner" of this port, e. e. COM8. The baud rate normally does not play a role in virtual COM ports. But it is not wrong to choose the same one as in the Omnirig setup. Click "Apply COM port settings". (Let me once again stress that you should never choose the option "emulate baud rate" in virtual COM ports.)
  6. To make tuning and tracking available in CSVUserlistBrowser you have to check "Sync" and "Click + Tune" in CATSync. Load a WebSDR in CATSync via the URL input field or the favourites.
  7. In CSVUserlistBrowser now activate the menu item "External, CATSync". CSVUserlistBrowser starts to simulate a Kenwood TS-480 receiver, and CATSync should immediately show "Status On-line" on top left.
CATSync Setup
In the "External" menu of CSVUserlistBrowser you can now select what should happen.
  1. Deactivate ... temporarily, control external rig only overrides controlling the main RX and sends all commands only to CATSync. At the left bottom of CSVUserlistBrowser a red dot appears to indicate that the main RX is deactivated now. This way you can control CATSync without having the main receiver switched on.
  2. Set mode of external rig when tuning activates the transfer of the mode when tuning from the list. Please note that setting modes is limited by the capabilities of Omnirig.
  3. External rig follows ... tuning from userlist Both main RX and CATSync are tuned simultaneously by CSVUserlistBrowser.
  4. ... follows external rig in track mode The main receiver follows tuning in CATSync. CSVUserlistBrowser must be set to "Track ¶". Only the frequency is transferred.
Here e. g. a POWERSDR-CSVUserlistBrowser directly tracks a Kiwi-SDR in CATSync. The main RX (PowerSDR) is deactivated (red dot left bottom):
CATSync Tracking
Please also consider the following hints:
  1. Make sure that the COM ports used for data exchange with Omnirig are free and not occupied by another application.
  2. Please note that tracking may not immediately work when selected right after start for the first time. The frequency cannot be retrieved from CATSync on demand. CATSync itself must signal that the frequency has changed. To make this happen simply change the frequency once on the WebSDR in CATSync. Sometimes switching between two different modes in the WebSDR also triggers communication.
  3. The limitation of modes in Omnirig can lead to strange effects when using less common modes. Example: When you click AMN in a Kiwi, CATSync falls back to AM inside the Omnirig loop. You have to click AMN once more to activate it. The same is true for CWN/CW or AMsync/AM in Twente SDRs.
  4. CATSync cannot tune 1 Hz and 5 Hz steps. Please keep this in mind when using the Tuning helper.
  5. When tuning quickly with the +/- buttons and keyboard shortcuts of the WebSDR the yellow trapezium on the dial jumps back and forth. This is due to the polling intervall of Omnirig. CATSync receives the confirmation from CSVUserlistBrowser (resp. the receiver) not before the next polling period and in the meantime sets back the WebSDR to the old frequency. There is no solution for this at the moment. I recommend to use the buttons and keyboard shortcuts of Tuning helper in CSVUserlistBrowser for tuning.
  6. As it unfortunately has turned out the virtual COM port emulator VSPE does not work with Omnirig. The reason is unclear. com0com and K5FR VSPM worked without problems for Omnirig and CATSync in the test environment.
Last updated: Tuesday, March 09, 2021
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