RE: [tracker2] New feature for the OT2
- It could certainly be done. It already keeps a total count of digi'd packets. It'd take a little more work to make it a 10-minute count, and to have it announce the load automatically.Scott
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of James Ewen
Sent: Friday, May 04, 2007 8:01 PM
Subject: [tracker2] New feature for the OT2
I just answered a recurring question for the umpteenth time on the
NWAPRS reflector... How come I see delayed packets.
My theory that I am sticking with is channel overloading. I run
UI-Traffic on my home station with UI-View. It allows me to graph the
traffic that I see at my station. It also sends out an object beacon
every 10 minutes with the latest channel loading, like this:
VE6SRV-1>APU25N, TCPIP*,qAC, T2MONTANA: ;SRV
*040259z5331. 31N\11317. 42W?28 In 10 Minutes
I keep trying to convice people that even if it is quiet in the
valley, the channel may be overloaded up at the digipeater. Packets
that have the hops all used up still get heard at the digipeater, they
just don't get acted upon. They still use up local air time.
So I was thinking, maybe I could put a computer up at the digipeater,
and have the OT2 send the packets to the computer which would be able
to graph the activity. But then I thought, most people wouldn't want
to have a computer at the digi, nor would they have internet access
there. Hmm, what about having the digipeater keep track of the number
of packets heard, and report that the same as UI-Traffic does. Even
beyond that it could report packets heard, and packets digipeated.
This would inform people of how many packets are being heard versus
the number that get digipeated. It's quite possible to have 30 packets
heard per minute, but only 10 of those digipeated because the other 20
had used up paths. To users in the valley below, the channel load
appears to only be 33% of what the digipeater is hearing.
This would be a useful tool to teach people that putting digipeaters
on the absolute highest point around is not such a good thing in high
use areas. Highly congested areas need to pull the high digis down and
create more smaller coverage area digis to allow for the higher user
To implement something like this would only take a couple variables,
one to keep a 10 minute timer, one to keep track of the number of
packets heard, and a final one to keep track of the number of packets
digipeated. You'd also need a command line switch to enable/disable
sending the report out. Obviously some people would not want the
report, and some would. The reporting could be turned on occasionally
to assess traffic loading, and turned off again later.
The report could be something along the lines of
SRV *040259z5331. 31N\11317. 42W?34 of 56 in 10 minutes
BTW Scott, I'll be at Dayton, and I have a whole sack full of whacky
ideas I want to throw at you including multiple outgoing path
settings, and geodigipeating.
- On 5/8/07, Scott Miller <scott@...> wrote:
> It could certainly be done. It already keeps a total count of digi'd packets.I agree that keeping track of the total number of packets versus
> It'd take a little more work to make it a 10-minute count, and to have it
> announce the load automatically.
number of packets in the last 10 minutes is a bit more of a challenge.
The annoucement portion is similar to a status beacon, you just grab
the appropriate values out of the variables and stuff them into the
Another concept that I would like to see in the OT is the concept of
multiple outgoing paths. This allows us to send position reports
varying distances. Bob uses a concept that I developed a few years ago
and showed him. He tossed it aside, but now he has reintroduced the
concept, and calls it proportional pathing.
In the APRS world, local objects are of more importance than distant
objects. Things that are happening closer to us are of more interest
than things happening far away. Also, things that are happening
currently are of more importance than things that happened in the
past. To implement these concepts we want to set up our trackers to
report current information to those close to us at a reasonably rapid
rate, while keeping those further away updated at a slower rate. We
also want to update changing information as soon as it happens, but
report static information at a slower rate.
By using multiple length paths, you can send more packets out to those
close by, while still sending packets out a couple hops as well. We
use this concept with the 4 LTP settings in the Kantronics line to
send packets out locally every 10 minutes, out a little further every
30 minutes, and the longest distance packets every hour.
In Byon's TinyTrak, you can make this happen using the alternate digi
paths option. If you set one path to WIDE2-1, and the second to
WIDE2-2, you can keep people nearby updated in a timely fashion, but
effectively decrease the load you are creating on neighboring
digipeaters by 1/2. Having 3 or 4 alternate digi paths can allow even
better optimization of your channel load. With 4 paths, I can set up
paths such as: local, WIDE2-1, local, WIDE2-2 (where local is no
path). If I beacon every 60 seconds, those within simplex range see me
every minute. Those within one hop see me every 2 minutes, and those
within 2 hops see me every 4 minutes. This also works with
SmartBeaconing (tm), just the timing is obviously different. Also,
with 4 digi paths we can set up the OT2 in digipeater mode with a
proportional pathing solution like the KPC-3 settings Bob suggests.
You'll find that people are interested in letting others know where
they are by beaconing quite often. They also want to tell people for
miles around where they are. Lots of beacons going out over a long
path causes network congestion. Alternate digi paths allow people to
beacon at a rapid rate, and also get their position reports out over a
long path. Close in the rate is rapid, but the further you go away,
the slower the effective beacon rate. This type of operation keeps
I told you I had some ideas I wanted to toss at you. There's still more!