LHS Show Notes #051


Ubuntu 10.10 - Maverick Meerkat

Russ upgraded from 10.04 to 10.10, which isn't particularly easy. as 10.04 is the long-term-support (LTS) version, but 10.10 isn't.

There is a command line command to upgrade:


which will work, but you must first make a change in the Ubuntu software center. Click Edit -> Software Sources -> Updates tab. At the bottom of the Updates tab, there are three options for the release upgrade: Never, Long-term Support Only, and Normal Releases. You must select "Normal Releases". Russ then issued the do-release-upgrade command. Once the downloads were complete, the upgrade just took about 45 minutes. A reboot is necessary due to the newer kernel.

The desktop background is a bit different, but otherwise it looks and runs much the same as 10.04. Russ had some performance issues with 10.04 on some of his machines. He thinks 10.10 runs much better.

Summary of changes

  • GNOME updated to current 2.32 version.
  • Gnome desktop manager (gdm) version 3. Russ thinks it looks more like OS-X.
  • Evolution updated to version 2.30. Russ thinks they should drop Evolution entirely. There would be room for GIMP if Evolution were deleted.
  • Shotwell replaces F-Spot as the default photo manager. F-Spot replaced GIMP in a previous release due to space issues, and now Shotwell replaces that. Isn't this kind of silly?
  • Gwibber updated to use Twitter's new authentication scheme.

Kubuntu changes:

  • More updates to KDE.
  • Updates to Qt, and KDE (4.5.1).
  • Switched to PulseAudio. Russ says: BOOOOO!, because he's unhappy with all audio systems on Linux.

Ubuntu Server changes:

  • Eucalyptus updated for cloud computing environments.

Kernel update:

  • 2.6.35-22.33 Based on upstream stable kernel.
  • Support for i586 and older processors, and i686 processors without the conditional move opcode (CMOV), has been dropped. Bad news for older machines.

WSPR was highlighted in the November, 2010 issue of QST.

  • What is WSPR? From the WSPR Users Guide:WSPR (pronounced "whisper") stands for “Weak Signal Propagation Reporter.” The WSPR software is designed for probing potential radio propagation paths using low-power beacon-like transmissions. WSPR signals convey a callsign, Maidenhead grid locator, and power level using a compressed data format with strong forward error correction and narrow-band 4-FSK modulation. The protocol is effective at signal-to-noise ratios as low as –28 dB in a 2500 Hz bandwidth. Receiving stations with internet access may automatically upload reception reports to a central database. The WSPRnet web site https://wsprnet.org/drupal/ provides a simple user interface for querying the database, a mapping facility, and many other features.
  • Developed by Joe Taylor, K1JT.
  • System Requirements:
  • SSB receiver or transceiver and antenna.
  • Computer running the Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, or OS X operating system.
  • 1.5 GHz or faster CPU and at least 100 MB of available RAM.
  • Monitor with at least 800 x 600 resolution.
  • Sound card supported by your operating system and capable of 48 kHz sample rate.
  • If you will transmit as well as receive, an interface using a serial port to key your PTT line or a serial cable for CAT control. Linux and FreeBSD versions can also use a parallel port for PTT. Alternatively, you can use VOX control.
  • Audio connection(s) between receiver/transceiver and sound card.
  • A means for synchronizing your computer clock to UTC.

Richard's setup:

  • Yaesu FT-897D Transceiver.
  • G5RV Antenna.
  • Rascal GLX sound card interface.
  • Ubuntu 9.10.
  • 3 gigs of memory and an Intel 3.0 Ghz CPU.
  • Onboard sound card.


  • Richard downloaded what looked like the .deb package from the web site.
  • He used Gdebi to unpack and install it, but could not get it to stay running. Every time he tried to do anything it crashed.
  • After reading the Linux installation instructions from the user guide, he attempted to install it in the manner described:
  • Download the appropriate file from https://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/K1JT/wspr.html, place it in your home directory, and run the following commands in a terminal
$ sudo dpkg --instdir=. -i wspr_2.00r1714_i386.deb
$ cd WSPR
$ ./wspr
  • This resulted in a program that would receive after some fooling around with the sound card, but no rig control, and no transmit.
  • As a last resort, Richard downloaded the Windows version and loaded it under Wine, which gave him rig control, transmit, and receive, without much of a problem.
  • It did leave him with a few minor annoyances: he has to start it from the file manager with "Open with Wine" from the directory ".wine/Drive_c/Program Files/WSPR". The menu bar at the top was only partially functional, but he thinks it has to do with his USB mouse, as keyboard control works fine.
  • Richard was heard in Argentina on 40m running 5 watts and reported on the wsprnet site.
  • WSPRNet website
  • WSPR net offers a wide variety of information on the network in real time.
  • Page of stations currently active on WSPR.
  • Map of stations that can be filtered by callsign and/or band.
  • Offers dicussion forums for Q and A, setting up schedules, and general WSPR discussion.


If you'd like to help the podcast, please consider making a donation. It's easy! Just a click on the Donate button on the web site. Every dollar helps. Or purchase some LHS merchandise at the SHOP! link on Web site. Check out the Badgerwear or buy one of the other LHS-branded items at PrintFection.com/lhs or Cafe Press. Thanks!


  • Contact Richard at kb5jbv@gmail.com, Russ at k5tux@lhspodcast.info, or both at the same time at info@lhspodcast.info
  • Listen to the live stream every other Tuesday at 8:00pm Central time. Check the LHS web site for dates.Leave us a voice mail at 888-455-0305 or 417-200-4811, or record an introduction to the podcast.
  • Sign up for the LHS mailing list.
  • Thanks to Dave from Gamma Leonis for the theme music.


  • "Monument" by Shearer from the album "Monument," courtesy of Jamendo.
  • "This Love" by Spinous from the album "Empathy," courtesy of Jamendo.

LHS Show Notes #049



  • Mitch D., Bill A., and Jim C. sent donations. Thank you!
  • To support the podcast, please click the Donate button on the website or buy one of the LHS-branded items at PrintFection.com/lhs or Cafe Press. Thanks!


  • OpenOffice has forked! (Thanks to Russ of The Techie Geek podcast for the link.) The Document Foundation is an independent open source version of OpenOffice called LibreOffice. This version of OpenOffice will be maintained separate from, and without dependence on, Oracle. For extensions to the package, see the FSF Extension list.
  • CQRLog Revisited: A fully featured ham radio logging program for Linux.
    • Documentation link
    • The authors (Petr OK2CQR and Martin OK1RR) recommend using the binary installer instead of compiling manually. There is a source package that can be installed but the authors say it is easier to help the users if the binary package is used. It has been tested on several distributions including the latest versions of Slackware, Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Mandriva, Fedora and OpenSuSE Linux. CQRLog must have hamlib installed to work. Note that CQRLog is probably not in the distribution repositories, but hamlib is in the repositories of most Debian-based distributions.
    • Again, you must have the current ham libraries installed. In Ubuntu, that is libhamlib2, version 1.2.10-3.
    • Award Tracking:
    • Club logging, like OMISS, 10-10 International, etc. This is found under the membership tab of the Preferences dialog box (File -> Preferences).
    • Allows you to track contacts for clubs or special stations.
    • Lots of preconfigured databases, but also has the ability to add databases for other clubs.
    • There is also Logbook of The World (LoTW) integration, as long as you have Tqsl and Tqslcert installed. (Listen to episodes 43 and 46 of LHS for more on LoTW and Linux.)
    • FLdigi integration! Fldigi must be installed and functional, of course. CQRlog runs in offline or remote mode while running FLdigi. Fldigi is in control. Use FLDigi in the normal way and CQRLog will pickup the information and log it.
    • Xplanet integration.
    • There is currently no other function than DX Cluster spot displaying in true azimuthal projection with correct angles (azimuth) and distances. Alternatively, a map without projection, ie. the globe as seen from the space, can be selected.
    • Additional notes area, which allows you to add extra information to a contact such as picture and text files. This area can contain text, html, pdf, and image files.
    • Other nice features:
      • Automode
      • Group editing
      • Easy DX Cluster setup
      • Bandmap
      • Propagation Window, a simple window providing propagation indices as provided by the NOAA Space Weather Center. CQRLOG does not include any propagation forecast module but keen users can estimate many parameters just from the supplied data.


  • Google Alert: In the ask.elmershack.com forums, AC0QW asks, "What podcasts do you like related to ham radio?" N3JIM recommended Linux in the Ham Shack. Also mentioned: SolderSmoke and The Practical Amateur Radio podcast.
  • Google Alert: In the forum for the Podnutz podcast, Tom asks, "Who else in the forums does a podcast or videocast? I am experimenting (struggling) with doing one on a different subject (Ham radio) and would like to get some inputs from people who are doing shows now." computerteq responds, "There is a podcast called Linux in the ham shack. https://lhspodcast.info/ I personally am not into ham radio, but they might have some info for you. They had a table set up at the South East Linux Fest when I was there."
  • Frazer emailed us that he has experienced problems with the podcast feed, both .mp3 and .ogg. (He also will soon take his license test.) Give it another try, Frazer, and let us know how it goes.
  • Gorkon from The Linux Link Tech Show talks about the LHS and QSK podcasts, and Ohio Linux Fest over at geardiary.com.
  • Randy, K7AGE, has a video chat where he mentions Resonant Frequency and LHS. Russ wishes he would use his name, not just "Bill and another fellow".
  • Mention of LHS on The Techie Geek Episode #71.
  • Link to our site from listener KC8LPZ. We linked back.
  • Bryan, drtelnet, followed us on Identi.ca. Everyone go follow a fellow ham!
  • LHS site via BSM is mentioned by Chris 2W0PHP using his signature at the Transmission 1 forums. Everyone should add "For quality amateur radio and Linux information, visit https://lhspodcast.info." to their email signature files.
  • We have been linked from www.amateurradio.com. We linked back.
  • Russ rants about KE9V stopping the Cornbread Road podcast series in favor of going to a commercial outlet.
  • Frazer B. on Facebook comments that he's using Ubuntu 10.4 and is studying for his amateur radio license in Canada. Good luck, Frazer, and let us know how it goes.
  • Don, WS4E, writes that both Crunchbang Linux and Linux Mint now have versions based directly on Debian. The Mint project is experimental, but Crunchbang has announced that the next version will be based on Debian Testing. Don has tried both, and is staying with the Crunchbang product.

Contact Info:

  • Contact Richard at kb5jbv@gmail.com, Russ at k5tux@lhspodcast.info, or both at the same time at info@lhspodcast.info.
  • Listen to the live stream every other Tuesday at 8:00pm Central time. Check the LHS web site for dates.
  • Leave us a voice mail at 888-455-0305 or 417-200-4811, or record an introduction to the podcast.
  • Sign up for the LHS mailing list.
  • Thanks to Dave from Gamma Leonis for the theme music.


  • "Superglue" by Heifervescent from the album "The Glue Factory", courtesy of Jamendo.
  • "To a Friend in His Climb" by "Men in Route" from the album "'Ndemo!", courtesy of Jamendo.