After 20 years away, I decided to have another go at Packet Radio. Of course things have moved on in that time and the “normal” MS Windows operating system is now Windows 10. I thought other might be interested in my experience…..
Here are my initial thoughts on using WIN10 (64bit) with Packet Radio….
The 2 ways I have tried are:
1> Virtual XP – I found this is very difficult to setup and make work. The “Hyper-V” system seems to have the possibility of working well but I suppose I wasn’t patient enough to see it through properly. You must allow internet access and you must let the XP installation find and install all the drivers it needs and you need a valid XP Licence to run it for more than 30days. The problem I found was the XP emulation is so “tightly controlled” that I can’t access the outside world to even install WinPack!! I realise this is probably my fault but should be a warning to others trying it that they need to aware of the possible pitfalls. I guess I’ve been spoilt by how easy WIN10 finds and installs drivers for peripherals (one thing that MS have got right at last!). My XP setup knew there was a CD/DVD drive but wouldn’t read a disk in there!!!
2> PuTTY – A very simple interface with none of the “bells and whistles” of WinPack (for example) but it works…for a time! Haven’t got to the bottom of this yet, but, after a lot of text on the screen (reading and writing messages etc), the program “locks up” and stops sending or receiving data to/from the modem; the cursor is still there but there is no keyboard entry. Closing the program and re-opening it restores everything to life with the modem still connected to a BBS for example. It doesn’t seem to be time-limited, because it will sit there in RX mode for much longer than in “connected and reading” mode. Not sure why yet – will report back if I find a solution.
So back to proper XP running on an older computer…
Running WinPack v6.80 – seems 100% reliable. My PK-232 modem starts up much, much quicker with a computer baud rate set to 9600 rather than the 1200 specified in the manual!!!!
Also, of course, this means I have another (new) email address… G3ZPB…at…GB7CIP.#32.GBR.EURO.
I’d be interested to hear if anyone has had success running Packet Radio under WIN10 (64bit) successfully.
73, Peter G3ZPB.