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Ham Radio Deluxe Newsletter | 3-August 2019

Newsletter | Ham Radio Deluxe | 3-August 2019

Ham Radio Deluxe Version 6.7 Status Update

There has been a whole lot happening over the past couple months. The intention is to summarize them here.

License Server Migration is Complete

The “License Server Migration (v6.6 release)” was completed at the beginning of July. As of this newsletter, 40% of the registered users have upgraded to the 6.6 release and have activated their new replacement keys. We need the other 60% to obtain their replacement key, download and install the 6.6 release, and activate their new key.

We continue to have folks tell us something like, “I’m running the 6.4.0.OLD release. Am I allowed to install the latest version?” The answer is YES! Yes, PLEASE install the latest version – always.

Hundreds of improvements have been made over the past few years. If you’ve ever purchased Ham Radio Deluxe in the past, you are entitled to install each new release to receive the benefit of bug fixes and performance improvements. It installs as an upgrade to your existing version and your logbook is safe.

[NOTE: Some features (like the panadapter feature) are enabled for folks when the feature is released before their Software Maintenance and Support expires. Nonetheless, a renewal has never been required in order to get bug fixes - only features and support.]

If you did not receive your replacement key, here is an FAQ that explains why that could happen and what to do about it. Click Here

Development on the 6.7 Release

Presently, there are over 40 development changes that have been completed and staged for the 6.7 release. They include – support for the ICOM IC-9700, Kenwood TS-890, and a panadapter display for capable radios (such as the ICOM IC-7300, IC-7610, IC-9700, Kenwood TS-890). We’re returning HamQTH as a lookup source. All this will be sent to the beta testers soon.

Some folks have asked us, “What do you mean by a panadapter display for “capable” radios?” This is a very important question that should be understood.

You can’t create a panadapter display out of “thin air.” “Capable” radios have the ability to provide spectrum output data via CAT commands. That’s a fairly short list of very popular modern radios (as stated above).

When radios aren’t “capable”, it may be possible to connect an external SDR radio (like the SDRplay) to the radio’s IF or RX ANT OUT port to achieve the same result. In that context, we plan to provide support for the SDRplay for those radios that aren’t “capable.” Keep in mind – some radios don’t have an IF or RX ANT OUT port either. But once we add a panadapter for the SDRplay, we’ll have covered as much of the landscape as we can. New “capable” radios will be added as they are released. This is the same approach being taken by other software titles.

We have not yet completed work on finishing QSL label printing (specific to font size and single label printers) or addressing the never-ending saga about FT4 matches in LOTW download. At the moment, we can’t commit to having both of these things included in the first 6.7 release.

It’s a dilemma. We could hold the 6.7 release to be sure the QSL label printing and FT4 item are included, or we could get the important radio support updates and panadapter feature published so folks could enjoy them. Depending on the timing of beta testing, those things may end up waiting until the next release after the initial 6.7 release. It’s hard to predict at the moment. We would like to see a release before the end of August. With all of this past us, we should be able to return to our normal cadence of 9+ releases per year.

On a personal note…

Your newsletter author (me, WA9PIE) and his wife (Tammy, KB9YHU) are moving to Brisbane, Australia.

Most of you know that HRD Software has never been my full-time job. I recently received that “offer that’s too good to turn down” and Tammy and I are excited about this new adventure.

Does that mean that Tammy and I are out of HRD Software? Absolutely not!

There are several things that I will continue doing, such as writing this newsletter, representing all of you in the development process of adding new features, publishing the new releases, and tending some fiduciary responsibilities.

What it does mean is that I won’t be as involved in the daily routine of support tickets. Tammy and I won’t be able to attend hamfests.

That said – we’ve got a fantastic team. They care about only two things – our customers and the quality of our products and services. We’ve spent the past 2-1/2 years fixing every problem we could get our hands on. The replacement of the license server was the “last system standing” from when Randy and I took responsibility for running the company in January of 2017.

All this, along with having the best quality software we’ve ever had (kudos to our gifted developers), the support burden is lower than it’s ever been – while we’re taking on new customers at the fastest rate ever.

My daughter Lindy (KB9PIE) will be taking on more responsibilities. She plans to continue attending hamfests. As a company, we still plan to attend them.

That’s all for now. You’ll hear from me before the end of August. Until then…

Cheers from “down under.”

Mike, VK4/WA9PIE

HRD Software, LLC

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