Connected to Radio, Now to Transmit

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Keith Kaiser

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Sep 19, 2022, 12:45:21 PMSep 19
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Finally thanks to KM4ACK I have Pat talking to my transmitter. It connects, it checked the frequency on the way in, and it can change the frequency as needed. But when I try to connect using RF via VARA FM or HF, or even via telnet the transmitter never goes into transmit mode.
I'm connected from M2 MacBook Air, to a Icom IC-7000, and a SignaLink USB sits between them. All other digital modes WSJT-X, fldigi, JS8, all work perfect. 

Thoughts on getting it working?

Eric Wiessner

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Sep 19, 2022, 5:53:48 PMSep 19
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I didn't realize I'd been replying directly to the author, but I wanted to post the highlights here too:

The Mac side of things is a mystery to me as well. 

I wish this was simpler since I know most people just want to get on the bands, but VARA being Windows-only makes things much harder. To run VARA on Mac M2, we have a triple threat computer engineering problem: VARA uses Windows libraries/API's but needs to 'speak' Mac (Wine does this), and VARA uses x86 machine code but needs to 'speak' ARM64 (box86 or Rosetta 2 try to do this).

I’ve been reading up a bit today on using Wine and x86 with M1/M2 processors since you posted. The unfortunate short answer is that it looks like only pay-for versions of Wine (called CrossOver) might be able to hook into the Rosetta 2 processor on your laptop to translate Windows->Mac & x64->ARM64. However, I haven’t found any information on CrossOver doing that third extra translation step of x86->ARM64… so we might be out of luck. I’m not sure though as I don’t have any hardware to play with. Last I heard, Chris Keller of the Pat-VARA team might have been playing with VARA on Mac M1/M2 laptops.

I wish I had a better answer other than “I’m not sure”, but maybe this info could get you a little father.

73, de KI7POL

Eric Wiessner

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Sep 19, 2022, 6:23:56 PMSep 19
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p.s. This short blurb about 32-bit (x86) compatibility in CrossOver from a Mac M1 Gaming wiki looks promising?
"32-bit games run slowly, and will probably function better on Parallels. Wine 7.0 support will introduce much faster 32-bit support in CrossOver 22." source
Wine is currently at version 7.17 as-of the time of this email. source

Martin Hebnes Pedersen

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Sep 20, 2022, 2:14:28 AM (13 days ago) Sep 20
to Eric Wiessner, pat-users
Thanks for sharing Eric :-)

IMHO I think ARDOP is the better option on everything but Windows. Unless you have very special requirements, ARDOPc does a decent job on HF, it's open source, cross platform and headless. It is also much easier to set up on Linux based systems, and thus much easier to get started with for unexperienced users.

If everyone jumps over to VARA, chances are ARDOP won't be maintained for long and we'll end up with nothing but propriatery modes for Winlink again. So please, please try to make ARDOP (and/or AX.25) work for you before jumping onto the VARA train :-)

I'm glad we're now able to provide the option to use VARA with Pat. But please keep in mind that VARA is written for Windows only, and as such is really not the perfect fit for most Pat users.

Just my honest thoughts on the subject, since we're sharing 😅

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