Tag Archives: configuration

Back in the Groove

Let’s face it, 2020 has been a horrible year. Events canceled left right and centre, job losses, and who can forget spending ten weeks with your nearest and dearest. It is enough to make most operators go nuts. But things are improving!

On Saturday, September 26, 2020, the Willing Warriors held their delayed Warrior Bike Challenge Ride. This included three loops, one a metric century, one a 30-mile loop, and a 13-mile loop. Mother Nature spent Friday getting the rain from Tropical Storm Beta out of her system, so while it was not a beautiful, sunny day, it was at least dry and provided great riding conditions.

Here are some views from the course.

The view at Romeo 3 (WA4GSD)
The view at Romeo 3 (WA4GSD)

WC4J keeping us in line as Net Control and chief data wrangler
WC4J keeping us in line as Net Control and chief data wrangler

KG4GIY can do small setups at Romeo 6
KG4GIY can do small setups at Romeo 6

KM4CCG’s micro setup at Romeo 2
KM4CCG’s micro setup at Romeo 2

The antenna at Net Control
The antenna at Net Control

Congratulations to the team that participated and Andy, KJ4MTP, for herding the cats on this one, so your humble EC could sit and operate for a change.

Photos are copyright of their photographers.

Xastir and local shape files

Derek, KV4SH and myself were discussing shape files and other things that are useful for mapping with Xastir, the Linux based APRS program. To increase the level of visibility you can download additional files from the USGS and the Census Department, but it is a bit of tricky process, so here are some tips.

When you click on the link, you will get the web interface to select the features you wish to use. For example Choose 2018, Roads, Choose “Virginia” under All Roads, Choose “Prince William” and the download points at tl_2018_51153.zip. For convenience I have downloaded a number of these files and put them on the PWCARES site, but the most current ones are always the best. See the Web Links at the bottom of this article.

In the zip files, the .shp files are useful for Xastir, so for example, if you unzip tl_2018_51153.zip you will see something like:

[kg4giy@Jura Downloads]$ cd tl_2018_51153_roads
[kg4giy@Jura tl_2018_51153_roads]$ ls -la
total 12440
drwx------@   9 kg4giy  staff      288 Jan 30  2019 .
drwx------+ 138 kg4giy  staff     4416 Aug  9 09:34 ..
-rwxrwxr-x@   1 kg4giy  staff        5 Sep  5  2018 tl_2018_51153_roads.cpg
-rwxrwxr-x@   1 kg4giy  staff  1933227 Sep  5  2018 tl_2018_51153_roads.dbf
-rwxrwxr-x@   1 kg4giy  staff      165 Sep  5  2018 tl_2018_51153_roads.prj
-rwxrwxr-x@   1 kg4giy  staff  4186140 Sep  5  2018 tl_2018_51153_roads.shp
-rwxrwx---@   1 kg4giy  staff    20411 Sep  5  2018 tl_2018_51153_roads.shp.ea.iso.xml
-rwxrwx---@   1 kg4giy  staff    92672 Sep  5  2018 tl_2018_51153_roads.shp.iso.xml
-rwxrwxr-x@   1 kg4giy  staff   119980 Sep  5  2018 tl_2018_51153_roads.shx

You will then need to move the .shp file to /usr/share/xastir/maps/ for Xastir to be able to find them. Specifically:

  • tl_2018_51153_roads.zip into /usr/share/xastir/maps/TIGER/2018/AllRoads/
  • tl_2018_51_cousub.zip into /usr/share/xastir/maps/TIGER/2018/CouSub/
  • tl_2018_51_prisecroads.zip into /usr/share/xastir/maps/TIGER/2018/PriSecRoads/

How to control display for zoom

In Map Chooser, select the parent directory, then click Properties

Hit the Select All button, then type (e.g.) 128 to the Max Zoom box, and click the button “Max Zoom->”. Now, the roads do not clutter when at 30k feet.