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Re: [ARRL-LOTW] LOTW and EQSL - Long winded

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  • Robert Chudek - K0RC
    Ken, I also upload my logs to both systems. So far I have worked back to my 1995 logs, when I moved to my current QTH. I have about 6 months experience with
    Message 1 of 6 , Aug 7, 2006
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      Ken,
       
      I also upload my logs to both systems. So far I have worked back to my 1995 logs, when I moved to my current QTH.
       
      I have about 6 months experience with eQSL and a couple months with LoTW. Like you, I am trying to understand the nuances of both systems. I published an article in our local DX Club newsletter and shared some of my initial observations with these two systems. If you're interested in reading it, look for the TCDXA June Grayline Newsletter here:  www.tcdxa.org 
       
      I have a few more months experience under my belt now. Regarding changing the times and dates for your QSL's, I don't see a major problem with this. As a matter of fact, several of my old contesting logs were recorded in local time, not UTC. I discovered this after I uploaded to the online databases.
       
      I did find it easier to detect and correct my mistakes using the eQSL.cc system. For example, I looked at my "outbox" for January 1995 and saw I had 600 contacts. Scanning the list of calls and timestamps, I also saw there were VERY few QSL matches from other stations.
       
      I then called up my "inbox" for January 1995 and saw I had 150 incoming cards. None of these 150 contacts were matched by the system. They were a "near miss". (Or as George Carlin asked, "Why do airlines call it a 'near miss' when two planes almost collide? That would be a 'near hit' to me!"
       
      Upon closer scrutiny, I saw these "near hits" were ARRL RTTY contest QSO's and all of them had a timestamp 6 hours ahead of my log. This tells me I had my clock set to local time instead of UTC. (The Central Time Zone is 6 hours behind UTC in the winter.) With a clear conscience I fixed the timestamp in my log and reloaded these 600 contacts to eQSL.cc and LoTW.
       
      There is a major difference between the systems in the fact that you CAN delete contacts from eQSL.cc but not LoTW. I did remove my 600 "bad" contacts from eQSL.cc before I uploaded the corrected QSO's.
       
      With LoTW, these invalid records simply "hang around" in their system. Someone mentioned these records may eventually be purged from the system by some yet un-invented process. I believe this is an unfortunate flaw in the LoTW system. The system is storing and thrashing through thousands of bogus records which eats up both processing time and storage. But I come to the table 3 years after the system implementation and am restating the obvious.
       
      Using LoTW, you can achieve a similar QSO reconciliation, but it requires close scrutiny of your online records. You are limited to reviewing only your "outgoing" contacts. You can't see "incoming" QSL requests. You have to look for contacts that don't match. The next step is to discover whether the station is a LoTW participant or not. Is they are, then you can get into an email dialog to investigate which end of the QSO may be recorded wrong. I just went through this exercise with Bill - W9OL, regarding a contact during the 1997 WAE RTTY contest. I won't disclose who's information was wrong because I hope to make more contacts during the contests with him!  :-)
       
      The previous discussion is my experience when finding bulk records that don't "jive." When I queried some hams regarding single QSO's that didn't "jive", some were satisfied to simply change the timestamp that I thought was correct. I am not comfortable with this because you can be verifying busted call signs if you don't pay close attention to the details. It takes time to investigate these anomalies. I have uploaded over 33,000 contacts so my experience is going to be more "intense" than someone who uploads their logs every week or month.
       
      I have rejected some eQSL's because they are obviously wrong. For example, one rejection was for a PSK contact. I have never operated PSK. The callsign was not in my log - ever! That was an easy call. In another example, my QSL request was (rightfully) rejected because, after investigating the contact via emails, it became apparent I was one of two stations on frequency at that time, but I did not make the contact. I hear these situations in contests often enough to accept that outcome. "Will that be paper or plastic for your NIL, sir?"  :-)
       
      That's my take on it right now. This looks like good fodder for a continuation of my original article!
       
      Like Ken stated, my intention is not to start a holy war, but I would really like to hear from people why there is such (apparent) animosity toward one or the other systems. I see this on numerous QRZ.COM listings often. "Absolutely NO eQSL's", "Direct only, NO LoTW", etc...
       
      73 de Bob - K0RC in MN
       
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Monday, August 07, 2006 1:58 PM
      Subject: [ARRL-LOTW] LOTW and EQSL

      I upload all my contacts to both EQSL and LOTW. I have noticed that I get QSLs
      on EQSL that don't match my uploads. Usually I check my log and find it is a
      time error. I'm usually not sure who messed up, but since I get my time from the
      computer synched with internet time standard I imagine it is often the other
      stations' bad time. In the days before internet logging, I would send a card
      back with my time and not worry about it. It seems to me that since most EQSL
      users are also using LOTW, that it would be a simple matter to correct my time
      to match that of the other stations and upload it to the LOTW. On first look, I
      see nothing basically wrong with doing this, but I am interested in others views
      of whether or not this is ethical.
      No, I'm not trying to start a row, I am actually interested in other's opinions
      on this.
      Thanks,
      Ken W7TS

      ------------ -------
      Kenneth E. Kinyon
      34 Princeton Circle
      Longmont, CO 80503-2106
      ------------ --------- --
      E-mail: W7TS@comcast. net
      ------------ ------

    • Prasad
      Hello Bob and Ken I had a problem with eQSL.cc. I was operating my mother s station - VU3FED - in 1996 CQ WPX CW contest - a small effort with about 531 QSOs.
      Message 2 of 6 , Aug 7, 2006
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        Hello Bob and Ken

        I had a problem with eQSL.cc. I was operating my mother's station - VU3FED - in 1996 CQ WPX CW contest - a small effort with about 531 QSOs. Inadvertently, I uploaded this log into eQSL under my own call - VU2PTT

        Imagine my surprise later when I found that I had 18 eQSLs from hams(!) to VU2PTT. They saw that they had QSLs from VU2... in their Inbox and manufactured a log to match it although we never had a QSO. I could only look at that and kick myself for uploading the wrong log. This issue does not happen on LoTW where you can get the QSL only when the other station uploads a matching log entry.

        I now only confirm QSLs that come into my Inbox in eQSL whereas in LoTW I upload all my old logs as and when I convert them form paper. I agree we should have a tool to delete bad entries in our logs on LoTW, and I am guilty of 531 QSOs perpetually floating around there in the LoTW database :)

        73 de Prasad VU2PTT



        On 8/8/06, Robert Chudek - K0RC <k0rc@...> wrote:

        Ken,
         
        I also upload my logs to both systems. So far I have worked back to my 1995 logs, when I moved to my current QTH.
         
        I have about 6 months experience with eQSL and a couple months with LoTW. Like you, I am trying to understand the nuances of both systems. I published an article in our local DX Club newsletter and shared some of my initial observations with these two systems. If you're interested in reading it, look for the TCDXA June Grayline Newsletter here:  www.tcdxa.org 
         
        I have a few more months experience under my belt now. Regarding changing the times and dates for your QSL's, I don't see a major problem with this. As a matter of fact, several of my old contesting logs were recorded in local time, not UTC. I discovered this after I uploaded to the online databases.
         
        I did find it easier to detect and correct my mistakes using the eQSL.cc system. For example, I looked at my "outbox" for January 1995 and saw I had 600 contacts. Scanning the list of calls and timestamps, I also saw there were VERY few QSL matches from other stations.
         
        I then called up my "inbox" for January 1995 and saw I had 150 incoming cards. None of these 150 contacts were matched by the system. They were a "near miss". (Or as George Carlin asked, "Why do airlines call it a 'near miss' when two planes almost collide? That would be a 'near hit' to me!"
         
        Upon closer scrutiny, I saw these "near hits" were ARRL RTTY contest QSO's and all of them had a timestamp 6 hours ahead of my log. This tells me I had my clock set to local time instead of UTC. (The Central Time Zone is 6 hours behind UTC in the winter.) With a clear conscience I fixed the timestamp in my log and reloaded these 600 contacts to eQSL.cc and LoTW.
         
        There is a major difference between the systems in the fact that you CAN delete contacts from eQSL.cc but not LoTW. I did remove my 600 "bad" contacts from eQSL.cc before I uploaded the corrected QSO's.
         
        With LoTW, these invalid records simply "hang around" in their system. Someone mentioned these records may eventually be purged from the system by some yet un-invented process. I believe this is an unfortunate flaw in the LoTW system. The system is storing and thrashing through thousands of bogus records which eats up both processing time and storage. But I come to the table 3 years after the system implementation and am restating the obvious.
         
        Using LoTW, you can achieve a similar QSO reconciliation, but it requires close scrutiny of your online records. You are limited to reviewing only your "outgoing" contacts. You can't see "incoming" QSL requests. You have to look for contacts that don't match. The next step is to discover whether the station is a LoTW participant or not. Is they are, then you can get into an email dialog to investigate which end of the QSO may be recorded wrong. I just went through this exercise with Bill - W9OL, regarding a contact during the 1997 WAE RTTY contest. I won't disclose who's information was wrong because I hope to make more contacts during the contests with him!  :-)
         
        The previous discussion is my experience when finding bulk records that don't "jive." When I queried some hams regarding single QSO's that didn't "jive", some were satisfied to simply change the timestamp that I thought was correct. I am not comfortable with this because you can be verifying busted call signs if you don't pay close attention to the details. It takes time to investigate these anomalies. I have uploaded over 33,000 contacts so my experience is going to be more "intense" than someone who uploads their logs every week or month.
         
        I have rejected some eQSL's because they are obviously wrong. For example, one rejection was for a PSK contact. I have never operated PSK. The callsign was not in my log - ever! That was an easy call. In another example, my QSL request was (rightfully) rejected because, after investigating the contact via emails, it became apparent I was one of two stations on frequency at that time, but I did not make the contact. I hear these situations in contests often enough to accept that outcome. "Will that be paper or plastic for your NIL, sir?"  :-)
         
        That's my take on it right now. This looks like good fodder for a continuation of my original article!
         
        Like Ken stated, my intention is not to start a holy war, but I would really like to hear from people why there is such (apparent) animosity toward one or the other systems. I see this on numerous QRZ.COM listings often. "Absolutely NO eQSL's", "Direct only, NO LoTW", etc...
         
        73 de Bob - K0RC in MN
         
         
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Ken Kinyon
        Sent: Monday, August 07, 2006 1:58 PM
        Subject: [ARRL-LOTW] LOTW and EQSL

        I upload all my contacts to both EQSL and LOTW. I have noticed that I get QSLs
        on EQSL that don't match my uploads. Usually I check my log and find it is a
        time error. I'm usually not sure who messed up, but since I get my time from the
        computer synched with internet time standard I imagine it is often the other
        stations' bad time. In the days before internet logging, I would send a card
        back with my time and not worry about it. It seems to me that since most EQSL
        users are also using LOTW, that it would be a simple matter to correct my time
        to match that of the other stations and upload it to the LOTW. On first look, I
        see nothing basically wrong with doing this, but I am interested in others views
        of whether or not this is ethical.
        No, I'm not trying to start a row, I am actually interested in other's opinions
        on this.
        Thanks,
        Ken W7TS

        -------------------
        Kenneth E. Kinyon
        34 Princeton Circle
        Longmont, CO 80503-2106
        -----------------------
        E-mail: W7TS@...
        ------------------


      • Robert Chudek - K0RC
        Thanks for the information Prasad! That s a very good point. It certainly highlights how a person might take advantage of the system in this situation. I
        Message 3 of 6 , Aug 7, 2006
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          Thanks for the information Prasad!
           
          That's a very good point. It certainly highlights how a person might take advantage of the system in this situation.
           
          I believe after an eQSL is simply viewed, that contact can no longer be deleted from the eQSL.cc database. I don't think they even have to create a matching record for it to get "locked into" the system.
           
          I'll have to research this more because I don't remember the trigger that locks a QSO/QSL into place. I had several of these instances when I deleted my contest log before uploading the corrections. A message popped up telling me it would not delete some of the contacts in the date/time range I defined. These were some of my early contest logs where my clock was set to local time instead of UTC.
           
          I have to say if I found a VU2 card in my inbox I would be curious to see what it looked like and I would want to view it too. Of course from the other side of the QSO, as in your case, you really don't know my intentions for the card. And that is the crux of the issue!
           
          73 de Bob - K0RC in MN
           
          BTW, I worked VU2RAK in May of this year, the only India station I have worked from this QTH. There's no confirmation in either system yet.
           
           
           
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: Prasad
          Sent: Monday, August 07, 2006 7:30 PM
          Subject: Re: [ARRL-LOTW] LOTW and EQSL - Long winded

          Hello Bob and Ken

          I had a problem with eQSL.cc. I was operating my mother's station - VU3FED - in 1996 CQ WPX CW contest - a small effort with about 531 QSOs. Inadvertently, I uploaded this log into eQSL under my own call - VU2PTT

          Imagine my surprise later when I found that I had 18 eQSLs from hams(!) to VU2PTT. They saw that they had QSLs from VU2... in their Inbox and manufactured a log to match it although we never had a QSO. I could only look at that and kick myself for uploading the wrong log. This issue does not happen on LoTW where you can get the QSL only when the other station uploads a matching log entry.

          I now only confirm QSLs that come into my Inbox in eQSL whereas in LoTW I upload all my old logs as and when I convert them form paper. I agree we should have a tool to delete bad entries in our logs on LoTW, and I am guilty of 531 QSOs perpetually floating around there in the LoTW database :)

          73 de Prasad VU2PTT



          On 8/8/06, Robert Chudek - K0RC <k0rc@pclink. com> wrote:

          Ken,
           
          I also upload my logs to both systems. So far I have worked back to my 1995 logs, when I moved to my current QTH.
           
          I have about 6 months experience with eQSL and a couple months with LoTW. Like you, I am trying to understand the nuances of both systems. I published an article in our local DX Club newsletter and shared some of my initial observations with these two systems. If you're interested in reading it, look for the TCDXA June Grayline Newsletter here:  www.tcdxa.org 
           
          I have a few more months experience under my belt now. Regarding changing the times and dates for your QSL's, I don't see a major problem with this. As a matter of fact, several of my old contesting logs were recorded in local time, not UTC. I discovered this after I uploaded to the online databases.
           
          I did find it easier to detect and correct my mistakes using the eQSL.cc system. For example, I looked at my "outbox" for January 1995 and saw I had 600 contacts. Scanning the list of calls and timestamps, I also saw there were VERY few QSL matches from other stations.
           
          I then called up my "inbox" for January 1995 and saw I had 150 incoming cards. None of these 150 contacts were matched by the system. They were a "near miss". (Or as George Carlin asked, "Why do airlines call it a 'near miss' when two planes almost collide? That would be a 'near hit' to me!"
           
          Upon closer scrutiny, I saw these "near hits" were ARRL RTTY contest QSO's and all of them had a timestamp 6 hours ahead of my log. This tells me I had my clock set to local time instead of UTC. (The Central Time Zone is 6 hours behind UTC in the winter.) With a clear conscience I fixed the timestamp in my log and reloaded these 600 contacts to eQSL.cc and LoTW.
           
          There is a major difference between the systems in the fact that you CAN delete contacts from eQSL.cc but not LoTW. I did remove my 600 "bad" contacts from eQSL.cc before I uploaded the corrected QSO's.
           
          With LoTW, these invalid records simply "hang around" in their system. Someone mentioned these records may eventually be purged from the system by some yet un-invented process. I believe this is an unfortunate flaw in the LoTW system. The system is storing and thrashing through thousands of bogus records which eats up both processing time and storage. But I come to the table 3 years after the system implementation and am restating the obvious.
           
          Using LoTW, you can achieve a similar QSO reconciliation, but it requires close scrutiny of your online records. You are limited to reviewing only your "outgoing" contacts. You can't see "incoming" QSL requests. You have to look for contacts that don't match. The next step is to discover whether the station is a LoTW participant or not. Is they are, then you can get into an email dialog to investigate which end of the QSO may be recorded wrong. I just went through this exercise with Bill - W9OL, regarding a contact during the 1997 WAE RTTY contest. I won't disclose who's information was wrong because I hope to make more contacts during the contests with him!  :-)
           
          The previous discussion is my experience when finding bulk records that don't "jive." When I queried some hams regarding single QSO's that didn't "jive", some were satisfied to simply change the timestamp that I thought was correct. I am not comfortable with this because you can be verifying busted call signs if you don't pay close attention to the details. It takes time to investigate these anomalies. I have uploaded over 33,000 contacts so my experience is going to be more "intense" than someone who uploads their logs every week or month.
           
          I have rejected some eQSL's because they are obviously wrong. For example, one rejection was for a PSK contact. I have never operated PSK. The callsign was not in my log - ever! That was an easy call. In another example, my QSL request was (rightfully) rejected because, after investigating the contact via emails, it became apparent I was one of two stations on frequency at that time, but I did not make the contact. I hear these situations in contests often enough to accept that outcome. "Will that be paper or plastic for your NIL, sir?"  :-)
           
          That's my take on it right now. This looks like good fodder for a continuation of my original article!
           
          Like Ken stated, my intention is not to start a holy war, but I would really like to hear from people why there is such (apparent) animosity toward one or the other systems. I see this on numerous QRZ.COM listings often. "Absolutely NO eQSL's", "Direct only, NO LoTW", etc...
           
          73 de Bob - K0RC in MN
           
           
          ----- Original Message -----
          Sent: Monday, August 07, 2006 1:58 PM
          Subject: [ARRL-LOTW] LOTW and EQSL

          I upload all my contacts to both EQSL and LOTW. I have noticed that I get QSLs
          on EQSL that don't match my uploads. Usually I check my log and find it is a
          time error. I'm usually not sure who messed up, but since I get my time from the
          computer synched with internet time standard I imagine it is often the other
          stations' bad time. In the days before internet logging, I would send a card
          back with my time and not worry about it. It seems to me that since most EQSL
          users are also using LOTW, that it would be a simple matter to correct my time
          to match that of the other stations and upload it to the LOTW. On first look, I
          see nothing basically wrong with doing this, but I am interested in others views
          of whether or not this is ethical.
          No, I'm not trying to start a row, I am actually interested in other's opinions
          on this.
          Thanks,
          Ken W7TS

          ------------ -------
          Kenneth E. Kinyon
          34 Princeton Circle
          Longmont, CO 80503-2106
          ------------ --------- --
          E-mail: W7TS@comcast. net
          ------------ ------


        • Bill Coleman
          ... You don t check this before a contest? I (nearly) always do, especially after I started one contest, and after making about 100 contacts, I found that the
          Message 4 of 6 , Aug 7, 2006
          • 0 Attachment
            On Aug 7, 2006, at 5:17 PM, Robert Chudek - K0RC wrote:

            > Upon closer scrutiny, I saw these "near hits" were ARRL RTTY
            > contest QSO's and all of them had a timestamp 6 hours ahead of my
            > log. This tells me I had my clock set to local time instead of UTC.

            You don't check this before a contest? I (nearly) always do,
            especially after I started one contest, and after making about 100
            contacts, I found that the time reported on my computer was way
            wrong. Took a lot of work to fix it, it wasn't as easy as just
            adjusting the hours....

            > There is a major difference between the systems in the fact that
            > you CAN delete contacts from eQSL.cc but not LoTW. With LoTW, these
            > invalid records simply "hang around" in their system. Someone
            > mentioned these records may eventually be purged from the system by
            > some yet un-invented process. I believe this is an unfortunate flaw
            > in the LoTW system. The system is storing and thrashing through
            > thousands of bogus records which eats up both processing time and
            > storage.

            I don't think these records are this much of a problem. True, they
            take up a small amount of space. It takes less than 50 bytes to store
            a LoTW QSO. And, since they are incorrect, they will never match
            anything. They do little harm remaining in the system.

            I have over 33,000 QSOs uploaded. Only about 200 were uploaded with
            errors. (Mostly from manually transcribing some old DOS program logs,
            and I had phone instead of CW)

            > Using LoTW, you can achieve a similar QSO reconciliation, but it
            > requires close scrutiny of your online records. You are limited to
            > reviewing only your "outgoing" contacts. You can't see "incoming"
            > QSL requests.

            There's no such thing with LoTW. You don't send QSLs. You just upload
            your log. Your entire log is used to match other QSOs in other logs.
            There are no "incoming" QSL requests.

            In fact, those very erroneous QSOs could cause a problem if there
            were such a thing. If you could look at other people's logs, you
            could "manufacture" QSOs that didn't take place.

            > You have to look for contacts that don't match.

            The LoTW has a note about this -- if you upload 100 or so recent
            contacts and don't get a single confirmation, then something is
            likely incorrect.

            > Like Ken stated, my intention is not to start a holy war, but I
            > would really like to hear from people why there is such (apparent)
            > animosity toward one or the other systems. I see this on numerous
            > QRZ.COM listings often. "Absolutely NO eQSL's", "Direct only, NO
            > LoTW", etc...

            I don't do eQSL, because it doesn't count for any awards, other than
            eQSL's own. At one point I considered uploading my log data for
            others, but I couldn't figure out how it worked -- it looked like I
            was going to have to manually confirm each of the QSL requests I had
            pending there. That sounded like a chore, so I haven't done it.

            A lot of people have a pent-up hatred for the League, so not likely
            LoTW is just another outlet for it. Others think that LoTW will do
            away with paper QSLs (not likely!), so they resist.

            Others have rebelled against the multi-step process to obtain a
            certificate. Even some very smart fellows have tried multiple times
            and have been unable to access the system. (This part I don't
            understand, if you follow the steps carefully, it's not that hard)


            Bill Coleman, AA4LR, PP-ASEL Mail: aa4lr@...
            Quote: "Not within a thousand years will man ever fly!"
            -- Wilbur Wright, 1901
          • Robert Chudek
            Comments inline: K0RC ... K0RC I do now! These wrong clock times were back in the DOS days running CT, NA, and WF1B. Later I got smart and created a
            Message 5 of 6 , Aug 8, 2006
            • 0 Attachment
              Comments inline: K0RC >>>

              --- In ARRL-LOTW@yahoogroups.com, Bill Coleman <aa4lr@...> wrote:
              >
              >
              > On Aug 7, 2006, at 5:17 PM, Robert Chudek - K0RC wrote:
              >
              > > Upon closer scrutiny, I saw these "near hits" were ARRL RTTY
              > > contest QSO's and all of them had a timestamp 6 hours ahead of my
              > > log. This tells me I had my clock set to local time instead of UTC.
              >
              > You don't check this before a contest? I (nearly) always do,
              > especially after I started one contest, and after making about 100
              > contacts, I found that the time reported on my computer was way
              > wrong. Took a lot of work to fix it, it wasn't as easy as just
              > adjusting the hours....
              >

              K0RC >>> I do now! These wrong clock times were back in the DOS days
              running CT, NA, and WF1B. Later I got smart and created a batch file to
              start my contesting programs and included date and time calls. This
              forced me to check these values before I started a contest.

              > > There is a major difference between the systems in the fact that
              > > you CAN delete contacts from eQSL.cc but not LoTW. With LoTW, these
              > > invalid records simply "hang around" in their system. Someone
              > > mentioned these records may eventually be purged from the system by
              > > some yet un-invented process. I believe this is an unfortunate flaw
              > > in the LoTW system. The system is storing and thrashing through
              > > thousands of bogus records which eats up both processing time and
              > > storage.
              >
              > I don't think these records are this much of a problem. True, they
              > take up a small amount of space. It takes less than 50 bytes to store
              > a LoTW QSO. And, since they are incorrect, they will never match
              > anything. They do little harm remaining in the system.
              >

              K0RC>>> I doubt we will ever know for sure. If each record is 50 bytes,
              and there's over 100 million records on file, that's a 5 terrabyte
              database. When users upload duplicate logs do these records also get
              stored or are they immediately discarded? From what I observed during my
              uploads, it appears a log is aborted when the system determines it is a
              duplicate. But there would still be a little overhead because it stores
              this activity and statistics in the transaction log in your account.

              > I have over 33,000 QSOs uploaded. Only about 200 were uploaded with
              > errors. (Mostly from manually transcribing some old DOS program logs,
              > and I had phone instead of CW)
              >

              K0RC >>> You keep meticulous records Bill! I found at least 3 of my
              contest logs had wrong time stamps. This was probably a couple thousand
              records. It took the better part of a weekend to straighten that mess
              out after I discovered it. With that experience under my belt and having
              manually entered the first 100 Novice qso's into my logger, I hope I
              live long enough to get the 35 years of missing data online!

              > > Using LoTW, you can achieve a similar QSO reconciliation, but it
              > > requires close scrutiny of your online records. You are limited to
              > > reviewing only your "outgoing" contacts. You can't see "incoming"
              > > QSL requests.
              >
              > There's no such thing with LoTW. You don't send QSLs. You just upload
              > your log. Your entire log is used to match other QSOs in other logs.
              > There are no "incoming" QSL requests.
              >

              K0RC>>> Yes, this is symantics, it really depends on how you view the
              system. For example, lets say you worked a couple of stations and wrote
              the info on a scrap of paper. You tell yourself you will log them the
              next time you have your computer running. In the meantime, the scrap of
              paper gets pushed off the back of the desk. These QSO's slip your mind
              and they don't get logged. When you upload your log, these contacts are
              not included, of course.

              K0RC>>> The other stations upload their logs which include these QSO's.
              With LoTW, you will never know you have missing QSO's. With eQSL, you
              will get an email (if you select this option) telling you there is/are
              QSL's that have arrived for you. You also have the "inbox" where you can
              review all incoming requests.

              K0RC>>> I understand LoTW is not a QSLing system in the traditional
              sense. But the concept of matching log entries is the same for both
              systems.

              > In fact, those very erroneous QSOs could cause a problem if there
              > were such a thing. If you could look at other people's logs, you
              > could "manufacture" QSOs that didn't take place.
              >

              K0RC>>> You can't look at other people's logs in either system. In
              eQSL.cc you can see requests for confirmation of QSO's. This is no
              different than going to your PO Box and finding a hard copy QSL card
              requesting a confirmation. With LoTW you don't have the equivalent of
              the PO Box, so you are operating in the blind in this respect.

              K0RC>>> Earlier in this thread Parsad - VU2PTT pointed out a problem
              with the eQSL.cc system that allows a user to accept a confirmation for
              a QSO that never really took place. I had heard rumors that users could
              "troll" for cards, but this is the first real-life example I have seen
              of how it can happen. This scenario would not have been possible in the
              LoTW system (because the users do not have the "inbox").

              > > You have to look for contacts that don't match.
              >
              > The LoTW has a note about this -- if you upload 100 or so recent
              > contacts and don't get a single confirmation, then something is
              > likely incorrect.
              >
              > > Like Ken stated, my intention is not to start a holy war, but I
              > > would really like to hear from people why there is such (apparent)
              > > animosity toward one or the other systems. I see this on numerous
              > > QRZ.COM listings often. "Absolutely NO eQSL's", "Direct only, NO
              > > LoTW", etc...
              >
              > I don't do eQSL, because it doesn't count for any awards, other than
              > eQSL's own. At one point I considered uploading my log data for
              > others, but I couldn't figure out how it worked -- it looked like I
              > was going to have to manually confirm each of the QSL requests I had
              > pending there. That sounded like a chore, so I haven't done it.
              >

              K0RC>>> There are over 60 award sponsors (excluding eQSL.cc) that offer
              awards using the eQSL system. If you are a paper chaser, or a new ham
              just getting started, this might be an attractive option for you. Also,
              that system supports SWL requests too. But if you're after the ARRL WAS
              and DXCC certificates, LoTW is the only game in town (besides
              traditional cards).

              K0RC>>> As far as uploading and managing your log, you can upload a
              standard ADIF file and forget about it. You don't need to manually
              confirm anything. If contacts happen to match, great... At that point
              you would be using that system just like LoTW.

              K0RC>>> You do not need to look into your "inbox", but if you do, it can
              help you identify logging inconsistencies or other problems. For
              example, I have a couple dozen QSL requests spread across several months
              in 1997. I have no logbook data for those months. What this tells me is
              I need to locate some missing contest logs. If I only used the LoTW
              system, I would have no clue that there was a problem on my end.

              K0RC>>> To upload your log, there's a page with a filename box similar
              to LoTW. You browse to your ADIF file location and click upload. I am
              not (yet) using my logging program to manage my uploads. So I don't have
              experience with any of the loggers and their automated upload systems.

              > A lot of people have a pent-up hatred for the League, so not likely
              > LoTW is just another outlet for it. Others think that LoTW will do
              > away with paper QSLs (not likely!), so they resist.
              >

              K0RC>>> Yeah, I remember that goal to become "the paperless society"...
              wasn't that supposed to happen in the 1980's?

              > Others have rebelled against the multi-step process to obtain a
              > certificate. Even some very smart fellows have tried multiple times
              > and have been unable to access the system. (This part I don't
              > understand, if you follow the steps carefully, it's not that hard)
              >

              K0RC>>> I installed TQSL on my desktop and my laptop. The desktop went
              smoothly, the laptop failed with "not authorized" errors which could not
              be resolved by myslef and Wayne Mills on the phone. He said they have
              seen a few instances of this kind of error but he doesn't have a
              solution. If my only computer was the laptop, I would be dead in the
              water right now, as far as LoTW is concerned. (I did find a work-around
              solution by creating a new user account on the laptop. That account
              works without errors but the master account still does not.)

              >
              > Bill Coleman, AA4LR, PP-ASEL Mail: aa4lr@...
              > Quote: "Not within a thousand years will man ever fly!"
              > -- Wilbur Wright, 1901
              >

              K0RC>>> Thanks for taking time to add your ideas and comments.

              73 de Bob - K0RC in MN
            • Bill Coleman
              ... Yup, the bad old days. ... Check your math. 100 million 50 byte records is 5 GB, not TB. ... If you upload a record that is a duplicate, it replaces the
              Message 6 of 6 , Aug 8, 2006
              • 0 Attachment
                On Aug 8, 2006, at 3:27 AM, Robert Chudek wrote:
                >
                > K0RC >>> I do now! These wrong clock times were back in the DOS days
                > running CT, NA, and WF1B.

                Yup, the bad old days.

                > K0RC>>> I doubt we will ever know for sure. If each record is 50
                > bytes,
                > and there's over 100 million records on file, that's a 5 terrabyte
                > database.

                Check your math. 100 million 50 byte records is 5 GB, not TB.

                > When users upload duplicate logs do these records also get
                > stored or are they immediately discarded? From what I observed
                > during my
                > uploads, it appears a log is aborted when the system determines it
                > is a
                > duplicate.

                If you upload a record that is a duplicate, it replaces the old
                record, it does not insert a duplicate. If the duplicate matches a
                QSL, it will re-issue a QSL.

                This is actually kind of irritating, too, because it causes old QSLs
                to bubble back to the top of the list. This is part of the problem
                with people signing and uploading their entire logs, when they only
                need to update a few weeks or months of activity.

                > K0RC >>> You keep meticulous records Bill! I found at least 3 of my
                > contest logs had wrong time stamps.

                It took a lot of work to get to this point. A lot of files were just
                plain text output, that had to be manually converted to Cabrillo.
                That was a big pain! One of the logs was a special field day logger,
                and the 15m log with about 300 QSOs was not readable. I actually had
                to write a program to pull the fields out of that file and create
                Cabrillo text. I discarded the one contact that was dmanaged.

                > With that experience under my belt and having
                > manually entered the first 100 Novice qso's into my logger, I hope I
                > live long enough to get the 35 years of missing data online!

                Keep plugging at it. There's only so much data to be entered,
                eventually you'll get through it.

                > K0RC>>> Yes, this is symantics, it really depends on how you view the
                > system. For example, lets say you worked a couple of stations and
                > wrote
                > the info on a scrap of paper. You tell yourself you will log them the
                > next time you have your computer running. In the meantime, the
                > scrap of
                > paper gets pushed off the back of the desk. These QSO's slip your mind
                > and they don't get logged. When you upload your log, these contacts
                > are
                > not included, of course.

                If you don't keep a good record, then no system is going to work
                well. If you received a paper QSL under this scenario, and it wasn't
                in your logbook, how would you tell the QSO ever took place?

                I do know of certain M/M stations who don't bother to look up QSOs at
                all. You send them a QSL, they just send one back. It's too much
                trouble to look them up.

                > K0RC>>> The other stations upload their logs which include these
                > QSO's.
                > With LoTW, you will never know you have missing QSO's. With eQSL, you
                > will get an email (if you select this option) telling you there is/are
                > QSL's that have arrived for you.

                The crux of this problem is back record-keeping, not LoTW.

                > K0RC>>> I understand LoTW is not a QSLing system in the traditional
                > sense. But the concept of matching log entries is the same for both
                > systems.

                The nice thing about it is that it is positive and sure -- if you
                have a match, you definitely had a contact. There's no chance for
                manufacturing contacts.

                > But if you're after the ARRL WAS
                > and DXCC certificates, LoTW is the only game in town (besides
                > traditional cards).

                I've gotten WAS mixed, Phone, and just qualified for CW after the
                NAQP CW contest this weekend.

                > As far as uploading and managing your log, you can upload a
                > standard ADIF file and forget about it.

                The "signing" portion of the LoTW process serves two purposes. The
                first is to attach the key and hash so that the system can tell that
                the submission is from a certificated user, and the submission hasn't
                been modified in transit.

                The second purpose is to note the location the contacts took place.
                At a minimum, this is the DXCC entity, but may include the state,
                county, grid square, etc.

                > I have a couple dozen QSL requests spread across several months
                > in 1997. I have no logbook data for those months. What this tells
                > me is
                > I need to locate some missing contest logs. If I only used the LoTW
                > system, I would have no clue that there was a problem on my end.

                The problem here isn't LoTW, it's poor record-keeping. <grin>

                > K0RC>>> Yeah, I remember that goal to become "the paperless
                > society"...
                > wasn't that supposed to happen in the 1980's?

                Yup, we just invented computers which allowed us to create more paper
                even faster....

                Bill Coleman, AA4LR, PP-ASEL Mail: aa4lr@...
                Quote: "Not within a thousand years will man ever fly!"
                -- Wilbur Wright, 1901
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