What is ClubPi?

Getting QSO’s from a DXpedition to a cloud log like ClubLog can be technically challenging and time consuming.  For many DXpeditions the advantages of log confirmation are viewed as too costly in time and connection costs and ‘updating’ the cloud log is relegated to a low priority.

ClubPi attempts to address these issues for both small and large DXpedtions.

Smaller Dxpeditions that have access to reasonably priced Internet should seriously consider integrating real-time QSO updates to ClubLog into their logging system. Larger expeditions that rely on satcom should automate small-batch ‘updates’ of QSO’s on a planned and announced time table to provide predictability and conserve data usage.

Both of these approaches are possible today using an open source network appliance called ClubPi. Opensource means the software is free. Appliance means it is a stand alone network device. ClubPi is a bridge that consumes broadcasted QSO’s from N1MM, transforms the QSO’s into ClubLog ADIF format and sends those QSO’s in batch or real-time to ClubLog automatically.

(New!)  ClubPi is now supported on TR4W thanks to Tom Schaefer.

ClubPi is a network appliance based on the Raspberry Pi Linux computer technology. A Raspberry Pi is a small (deck of cards size),inexpensive ($35) computer capable of being a Linux server. By downloading the ClubPi image, loading it on an SD card and plugging that SD card into the Raspberry Pi, you have a ready-to-go ClubPi

ClubPi is designed to work with N1MM’s broadcast capabilities.   This makes ClubPi ‘non-interference’ with your logging network.  It simply listens to the N1MM broadcasts.

The latest version of ClubPi (20151127) supports batch uploads.  The expedition IT person can configure the ‘size’ of the batch (number of QSO’s before uploading) and the ‘time out’ (time since last attempted upload).  ClubPi does the rest.  If you have a flakey connection or have disconnected your Internet and ClubPi fails to upload, after the ‘time out’ time passes, ClubPi will attempt to complete the upload of all batched QSO’s.

ClubPi gives you  the option of ‘real time’ (every QSO is sent as received), clear text batch or zipped batch uploads.   Zipped batch uploads  provide the lowest data ‘payload’ sizes.

With the addition of a ClubPi appliance configured for the Dxpedtions logging network, both small and large expeditions can have automated ClubLog capabilities.

Want more information?  Send me a comment!

19 Responses to What is ClubPi?

  1. Keith Witney says:

    Paula
    I am interested in ClubPi for a forthcoming DXPedition.
    Any N1MM+ issues?
    73 Keith

    • admin says:

      Hi Keith, No N1MM+ issues but I have not done my testing with the new verison of Raspberry Pi. I have a new Pi and hope to spend some time with it and ClubPi soon. What does your schedule look like?

  2. Keith Witney says:

    Thank you Paula
    We are on site from Feb 17 to 29, 2016.
    I am planning on having the IT gear here by the end of the month. We should have the call sometime in November so ClubLog will have to wait until then.
    I have not ordered the Pi so you could perhaps advise me when you have done your tests or to just go ahead with the older model (if still available).
    It would of course be nice to do a dry run to a dummy account prior to leaving, maybe during a M-M contest at one of my local club stations.
    73 Keith VE7KW

  3. Keith Witney says:

    Sure. You should have access to my email as I don’t have yours.
    73 Keith

  4. Pingback: Clubpi & Tonga A35T | Radio Station NX1P

  5. Bob Feldtman says:

    Does the N1MM+ broadcast data include the operator call? I wonder how the Clublog know who the operator is (and puts up their picture) on the DXpedition leaderboard page. Thus weather that function will work on our upcoming A35T as we ops change times and rigs we are sitting at. I am amazed at how seamless the Clubpi is.. I do note that in the dhcp environment, one needs to keep all in order if there is a power glitch, and re-point the N1MM+ broadcast page to the proper ip address for the Clubpi. I guess we could assign it a static address, but I defer to Keith as the router is his domain.

    • admin says:

      Yes, N1MM does broadcast the operator call. ClubLog expects a field which clubpi supplies.

      Regarding DHCP, there is a ‘lease’ time that can be set in Gargoyle. I’m not sure why your Pi is changeing leases. Mine seems to hold on to the same IP address for ever. Never had the problem you are describing. And, yes, you can use gargoyle to attache a fixed ip to the pi mac address, then you can be sure it will never change.

      For router and ClubPi power protection I use an older model of this:
      http://www.amazon.com/Energizer-XP18000-Universal-External-Netbooks/dp/B002K8M9HC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1454007053&sr=8-1&keywords=Energizer+XP18000

      which can supply UPS power to both the router and the pi. This new version has more amp hours and can probably keep both up for hours while power issues are resolved. Just plug the router and pi into the charger and plug the charger into the wall. If power goes out, the battery in the charger takes over seamlessly.

      GL on the trip!

  6. Tom Schaefer says:

    Hi. I added the same style N1MM broadcast message to TR4W. I wonder if I can get a copy of ClubPi to validate this works with this software as well. We have had interest from some users of TR4W to send QSOs to ClubLog in real-time. This would be nice to test and ensure it works properly.

  7. Edd Seeliger says:

    May I have access for a copy of the Club Pi image please?
    I have both current (new) and older Raspberry PIs.
    Thanks

    • admin says:

      I attempted to contact you requesting additional information and had my message bounced. If you would like access you will need to provide a better communications channel.

      received this message:
      eseeliger@earthlink.net
      12:20 PM (2 minutes ago)

      to me
      I apologize for this automatic reply to your email.

      To control spam, I now allow incoming messages only from senders I have approved beforehand.

      If you would like to be added to my list of approved senders, please fill out the short request form (see link below). Once I approve you, I will receive your original message in my inbox. You do not need to resend your message. I apologize for this one-time inconvenience.

      Click the link below to fill out the request:

      https://webmail.pas.earthlink.net/wam/addme?a=eseeliger@earthlink.net&id=11e5-cd0f-1361d416-a5d0-00144fe24834

  8. Kenneth OZ1IKY says:

    Any plans on doing an Win-Test version?
    Many are using Win-Test on DXped’s

    • admin says:

      Kenneth, I have reviewed Win Test documentation and the program does not offer a ‘broadcast’ completed QSO feature where the QSO info is broadcast on a socket port. Club Pi ‘listens’ on a designated port and receives QSO info. Currently N1MM+ and TR4W provide QSO broadcast information. The format follows the N1MM+ QSO broadcast information format, a very simple XML style format. I would certainly be willing to work with the Win Test developers to help implement a ‘broadcast’ feature for Win Test, however, I am not a windows developer. I will post to their mailing list. It may be helpful for others interested in using ClubPi with Win Test to also provide comments on the Win Test mailing list. Thanks for your interest!

      Paula

      • admin says:

        Larry, F6FVY has contacted me and gave me info about broadcast messages on QSO complete. I’ll be looking at the protocol over the coming weeks. If it goes well, I should have Win-Test support for ClubPi by Visalia.

  9. Christopher AF5XP says:

    Is the image still available. I would love to try this project out.

  10. Steve says:

    We would be really interested in testing this at our Scout Multi Multi station, Gb2GP. Could we have an image, please? As we are also active in JOTA we would like to publish our frequency on a website. I wonder if a “good enough” work around would be to publish the frequencies of the last QSOs from the broadcast data. Would you be happy if the IT savvy scout ham team look into a fork to achieve that?

  11. Steve says:

    Hi,

    Would you be willing to let us have an image for use at GB2GP, please? As we run N1MM in special multi-multi special events we would also be interested in producing a fork that allows us to publish the frequency of our last QSO on our website for use in JOTA. As the national centre for Scouting people are often trying to find us!

Leave a Reply