Other articles

  1. Sweeteners in soda

    I’ve been wondering what the difference between diet beverages is; why is there a diet beverage and a zero or free option as well. I’m also including regular soda when I get a chance. I finally spent five minutes looking this information up, here’s what I found …

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  2. SOTA activation of Lambs Knoll

    The day started with a good night’s sleep; an almost rare thing for me. I had planned on leaving at 9AM but when one wakes up at 8:45A you realize that’s not going to happen. We did leave the house around 10 o’clock so no big …

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  3. Emergency Communications using JS8Call

    JS8Call logo

    JS8Call is a program developed by KN4CRD and is based on the popular WSJT-X application and the related FT8 mode. Basically, the software takes the weak-signal benefits of FT8 and turns it into a keyboard-to-keyboard mode that doesn’t use canned messages and has some really nice other features including …

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  4. Tracking Wanderers

    Just a few years ago I was looking for a tracking solution for my mom. She had been diagnosed with dementia, probably Alzheimer’s, and was prone to wandering. Nothing on the market, at that time, really fit the bill. They were either too bulky, didn’t track the individual …

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  5. Options for MDMTNS-7

    This July will be the first time I’ll be activating MDMTNS-7 for the Appalachian Trail Golden Packet (ATGP) event. Previous years have seen this station manned from a home with tower. Unfortunately, this is no longer an option.

    Topographic chart of the three sites for MDMTNS-7

    Today I went looking for options for this year’s event …

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  6. SWL Logs for the week of 2021-01-02

    2021-01-03 – 19:45 – Radio National da Amazonia – 11910kHz DRM

    A very good music program in Portuguese broadcast using DRM (Mode B) from Parque do Rodeador, Braslia, Brasil. Heard via SDR in Santa Domingo, Dominican Republic. Nearby AM signal was causing some dropouts. Adjusting receive frequency up 0.12 kHz seemed …

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  7. Signal routing

    Made a Signal call to a friend today. He was curious and pulled up Wireshark to see how the call was being routed. It appears that our call was going point-to-point, over IPv6 (no NAT), directly between devices.

    So, as the Internet was designed…​

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  8. DMARC Works

    Earlier today I received a few notifications of bounced mail from Google. This was odd seeing as how I hadn’t sent any mail to Google in a while. Upon further inspection, the messages originated from an application running on one of my servers. These were password reset messages destined …

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  9. Applications for Ham Radio 802.11 Networks

    This article originally appeared on 2016-02-12 but has been revamped to better include amateur radio technologies that are present in 2020.

    Digital wireless networks have been around for decades, now. In the last few years, amateur radio operators have been taking advantage of cheaper microwave gear that has allowed …

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  10. Shortwave Radiogram 163

    I usually can only decode the Shortwave Radiogram program on Sunday evenings (local time) when conditions and frequencies line up to be perfect for the short transmission path from Florida. This morning I decided to tune in to the 15775 kHz channel, transmitted from WRMI. To my surprise there was …

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  11. 2020 Golden Packet Event on Apple Orchard Mountain

    SOTA Stats

    • When: 2020 from 1442Z to 1600Z

    • Where: Apple Orchard Mountain - W4V/RA-001

    • Who: Just me

    • Ascent: Hike Up

    • Equipment: Kenwood D-700, Opek HVU-500 antenna

    • APRS Coverage: Excellent

    • Contacts Made: 7

    Mistakes were made; success was had.

    As in years past, the goal of the Golden Packet Event is …

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  12. E-mail Security

    Way back when, e-mail was from server-to-server, and really client-to-server as well, without much thought to security. Messages were transmitted in plain text (no encryption) and the only people reading your mail (literally) were the system administrators who ran the email server. Of course, those system administrators knew what was …

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  13. Upgrading APRS on the Outer Banks

    I recently had the opportunity to help a friend update the APRS digipeater in Buxton, NC. The digipeater has been in service for around fifteen years and during those years a few things have changed.

    The digipeater used to transmit weather data from an Ultimeter weather station. That weather station …

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  14. Dare County Repeaters

    Changes to the way the multitude of repeaters in Dare County operate recently came to my attention. The introduction of links and DMR has added many ways for residents, as well as visitors, to communicate in interesting ways.

    Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands Linking System

    Repeaters on Hatteras Island that are linked together.
    Figure 1. Linked repeaters on Hatteras …
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  15. Shortwave Radiogram 146

    This week’s Shortwave Radiogram was an interesting test of digital mode in a variety of propagation conditions. Many times, the Radiogram is transmitted using MFSK modes. This week, with Springtime coming in and propagation changes happening, Olivia 64-2000 was used to transmit a portion of the program.

    With this …

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  16. Shortwave Radiogram 145

    Welcome to program 145 of Shortwave Radiogram.
    I'm Kim Andrew Elliott in Arlington, Virginia USA.
    Here is the lineup for today's program, in modes as noted:
     1:48  MFSK32: Program preview (now)
     2:59  Olivia 16-1000: Hams to help develop low cost ventilator
     9:42  MFSK64: Ford helps produce respiratory …
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  17. Updates to the VIPER Network

    Coming home from Plymouth, today, I captured updates to eleven trunking sites of North Carolina’s statewide radio network (VIPER). A few months ago there was a large update to the network that included many control channel updates. Some radio monitors haven’t caught up just yet.


    Records showing …

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  18. Shortwave Radiogram 144

    I’ve been absent from the radio lately but I finally got some time to update some gear and get my KX3 on the air on digital modes. Tonight I received the Shortwave Radiogram; a program I really enjoy receiving.

    The program, decoded.

    Welcome to program 144 of Shortwave Radiogram …
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  19. Building a network for AMPR

    Okay, I’m quitting just before I go completely crazy and start shredding things that actually work.

    A little background on what I’m working on. I’m trying to build out a little piece of the AMPRnet for me to play with. Mind you, I’m more of a …

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  20. A look at electric vehicle charging.

    I’ve been driving an electric vehicle (EV) (Chevrolet Bolt) for a little over a year now and have now gotten used to the way it drives and the lifestyle of charging. Getting behind the wheel of a internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle is now quite disturbing. The noise, the …

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  21. Satellite APRS Article from 2005

    I’ve been going through some papers around the house and scanning them onto my computer for longevity sake. Recently, I ran across an article I published in Project OSCAR’s The Satellite Beacon journal back in 2005. I reprint it here for those that might be interested in what …

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  22. APRS-IS Core Servers

    I’ve been running WG3K-NJ, an APRS Firenet server, for a few years now, which is configured to connect to a core APRS-IS server to provide upstream connectivity to the rest of the network. Tonight I got thinking about network efficiencies and wondered if this connection could be made any …

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  23. Received WRMI QSL

    Front of a WRMI QSL Card I took at a short trip up to Catoctin Mountain Park at the beginning of the year and stayed in a rustic cabin with no running water and no electricity. It was nice, to say the least. For evening entertainment I used my Elecraft KX3 with a longwire antenna to …

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  24. Two Monks and a Woman

    A friend and Sensei has shared this story with me a few times and I share it here so I will not forget it. Searching for it on the Internet turns up many iterations but I’ve not come up with a definitive author.

    A senior monk and a junior …

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  25. Electricity generation for 2018

    Today I received my December electricity bill from Baltimore Gas and Electric (BG&E) which reminded me that I hadn’t actually looked at our electricity usage over the past year since we had the solar panels installed. We started producing electrical power on 19 February 2018 and by April …

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  26. The loss of local content

    It’s interesting to me that we’ve come so far from where we started when looking at the landscape of the Internet. As originally built, content was hosted locally and it was a benefit to obtain it at a distance (over the Internet). Now, all content is hosted in …

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  27. Dipping my toe into FT8

    There has been a lot of talk, recently, about the new FT8 mode that has recently been included in the WSJT software. It’s very similar to it’s older cousin, JT65, in that it is for weak-signal work but the transmission/reception time has been cut down to 15 …

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  28. Moving to Pelican

    I’ve maintained a blog for the previous ten, or so, years in one form or another. The first iteration was hosted on some platform that I don’t remember followed by WordPress (.com and self-hosted). I’ve grown weary of all the third-party stuff that gets brought in when …

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  29. SOTA Activation Report: Methodist Hill North W3/PD-006

    [caption id="attachment_1259" align="alignleft" width="300"]An Elecraft KX3 HF transceiver on the ground with a SOTA flag. Portable HF setup on Methodist Hill North[/caption]


    • When: 2017-12-23 from 1832Z to 1915Z
    • Where: Methodist Hill North - W3/PD-006
    • Who: Just me
    • Ascent: None (see below)
    • Equipment: Elecraft KX3, SOTABEAM MIDI antenna
    • APRS Coverage: Excellent
    • T-Mobile Coverage: Nil

    I arrived at …

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  30. The Radio Shack

    Somehow, in all this mess, work does get done...

    [caption id="attachment_1179" align="aligncenter" width="2617"]WG3K Operating Position showing a mess of radios and assorted parts and pieces. WG3K Operating Position[/caption]

    [caption id="attachment_1180" align="aligncenter" width="2895"]WG3K Electronics Workshop showing lots of tools, wire, and stuff... everywhere. WG3K Electronics Workshop[/caption]

    The scary thing is, I haven't yet fully moved-in yet so this could get better, or worse.

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  31. FOUND: CLOVER2 Board cables

    CLOVER2 Board cableYears ago I was given a CLOVER2 board. I later gave it away to someone who was interested in trying to add capabilities to his BBS. I now have found the cables for it! I wonder if I can figure out who got the board or if someone else could …

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  32. J-Pole antennas for SAR

    [caption id="attachment_1055" align="alignleft" width="169"]Image of fibreglass mast with two VHF j-pole antennas affixed. Fiberglass mast with two VHF j-pole antennas affixed.[/caption]

    I recently started working with Calvert K9 Search, a local SAR team that specializes in using dogs to search for people.  In an effort to improve communications between the command post (base) and teams …

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  33. 2015 August UHF Contest Results

    2015 August UHF Contest certificateOpened the mailbox today and was surprised to see an envelope from Newington waiting for me.  Looks like I placed third in the Atlantic Division (SOLP) and first (out of two) in the MDC section!

    Missed all the VHF+ contest this year but I'm hoping to get my antennas back …

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  34. POSM, OSM without the Internet

    Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with the POSM or its development.  I'm just an OSM contributor who thought this was neat and wanted to share the love.

    For a while I've been envisioning some sort of system that would allow map data to be collected over a large …

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  35. Activating Apple Orchard Mountain (W4V/RA-001)

    On Saturday, 16 July 2016, Dave KB3RAN, Steve N3IPN, and I hiked up Apple Orchard Mountain (SOTA W4V/RA-001) to activate it for the Appalachian Trail Golden Packet event.  While we were there we took advantage of the altitude and activated the summit for Summits on the Air (SOTA), National …

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  36. More tropo ducting today

    This morning around 9AM I got mixed up with a crowd on 144 MHz.  Since I'm the new guy I ended up with a pileup on my hands!  I picked up KA3QWO, KG4KWW, K1PXE, WB2SIH, K3GNC, WV2H, N2FKF, W1AN, and WB2QEG in very quick succession.  We then ventured up to …

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  37. The difference a few miles will make.

    Tonight I worked several station with two in particular being W1AN and WZ1V.  Both of those stations I worked on three bands: 144, 432, and 1296 MHz.  W1AN is a little further away than WZ1V but both are fairly close to each other in Connecticut with WZ1V being a bit …

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  38. N6NB VHF/UHF Quad Antenna

    N6NB VHF/UHF Quad Antenna drawingI'm interested in VHF and higher bands.  Unfortunately my current home doesn't permit me to really dive into these bands like I'd prefer (with LOTS of big antennas!).  So, to get my fix, I'm hoping to build a rover station that I can use go catch some new grids and …

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  39. Sked and QSL from GM3YOR

    [caption id="attachment_781" align="alignright" width="300"]GM3YOR QSL Card QSL card and envelop received from GM3YOR.[/caption]

    While looking over my DXCC statistics I noticed that my log didn't match the DX station's log as uploaded to Clublog.  I double checked my log and it looked like a good QSO but upon …

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  40. DXCC Entity # 153 - Asiatic Russia

    Taking immediate advantage of my new Extra Class privileges, last night I picked up a new DXCC entity - Asiatic Russia.  This one has been difficult for me.  I worked the entity back in 2002 but couldn't get a confirmation.  Since then I've heard them but never been able to work …

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  41. Confirmed DXCC Entity #149: South Cook Islands

    E51JD QSL CardThursday was QSL bureau day (the day in which I receive cards from the bureau).  If that wasn't exciting enough, I also received an envelope with a return address of "Rarotonga, Cook islands"!  Oh yeah, I finally got E51JD confirmed!  This is my 149th confirmed DXCC entity.

    The stamp on …

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  42. Now on medium wave!

    160m on Kenwood TS-2000XYears ago I purchased a 40-80-160m dipole antenna in hopes of getting a good signal out on the lower bands. Unfortunately the antenna ended up being too large for my yard and I didn't use it.  Fast forward to now and I've got plenty of room for antennas.  When I …

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  43. What a difference 3.5MHz makes.

    I was surprised at the difference three and a half megahertz made this evening.  While chatting with my friend Emily, N1DID, we started trying different bands to check for a better signal.  Fifteen meters was okay but twelve was better.  We decided to try ten meters for the heck of …

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  44. Results of the W4OTN/R UHF repeater test

    As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I bought a UHF repeater and put it on the air at the Mt. Hope tower site here in Calvert County.  This was a temporary test which allowed myself and other CARA club members (and anyone else) to see what UHF would do …

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  45. W4OTN/R on the air

    [caption id="attachment_601" align="alignleft" width="300"]W4OTN/R Installed at Mt. Hope W4OTN/R Installed at Mt. Hope[/caption]

    Earlier today, Dave W3PQS and I installed my UHF repeater up at the CARA site in Sunderland.  The repeater is on the air on the TMARC shared, non-protected pair which makes the system quite portable.

    In …

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  46. Okay, this is a neat attack...

    This morning I received an email from my "administrator" saying that I needed to validate my email address within the next 48 hours or my email account would be suspended.  Seeing as how I'm my own email administrator, I couldn't remember sending out such a message, I decided that this …

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  47. UHF Repeater and APRS

    Image of UHF repeater station using a Kenwood TKR-820.Frequency
    444.350MHz (+ 5MHz)
    CTCSS 131.8Hz

    Location Chesapeake Beach, Maryland

    Image of a packet radio station using a Yaesu FT-8900, Kantronics 9612+, and MFJ-4125P power supply.Just a little project I'm working on.  I picked up a UHF repeater, controller, and duplexer at a RARSFest from a friend of a friend and I now have it here at home in Calvert County.  The repeater, along …

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  48. FO-29 Success

    Yesterday I had a broken QSO with K9?H?.  We were running CW and between the fading, the Doppler shift, and my poor CW skills I couldn't quite get the full callsign and exchange. And then, of course, I was also chasing myself all over the transponder.  This morning was …

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  49. First attempts at FO-29

    I had a good pass of FO-29 this morning so I figured I'd give it a try with my 2m/70cm loop antenna.  I wasn't expecting great things as this is not a gain antenna and I'm not sure how much of the signal is actually radiated up but I …

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  50. Signing PGP keys

    If you've recently completed a key signing party or have otherwise met up with other people and have exchanged key fingerprints and verified IDs, it's now time to sign the keys you trust.  There are several different ways of completing this task and I'll discuss two of them now.

    caff …

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  51. Secure E-mail

    E-mail is inherently insecure.  Just as sending a post card, any message sent by e-mail can be read by any number of people, including those monitoring the network path, the servers that process the message along its route, or anyone with access to the distant computer.  Basically you should consider …

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  52. Crossing the 150 mark

    Yesterday I unofficially* crossed the 150 mark.  That's 150 DXCC entities worked.  I've actually worked 151 as I just picked up 3B8CF (Mauritius Island (AF-049)) tonight on 20m CW.  That means I've added 21 new entities to my log just this year.  I've also added quite a few new islands …

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  53. GHz... where terrain matters

    Earlier this week the Calvert Amateur Radio Association (CARA) hosted its monthly meeting with a program by a local guru of mesh networking. Keith KB3TCB gave a presentation on what mesh networking is and what it can be used for.  I've known about mesh networking for some years but never …

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  54. Five new DXCC entities in the log

    Since moving to Calvert County and getting my Carolina Windom up (radiating East-West) I've added five new DXCC entities to my logs:

    1. Kuwait - 9K2WA - 20m SSB
    2. Wallis & Futuna Islands - FW5JJ - 17m CW
    3. San Andres & Providencia - 5J0X - 10m SSB and 10m CW
    4. Kazakhstan - UN1L - 15m RTTY
    5. American Samoa - KH8/DL6JGN - 12m …
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  55. New maritime mobile QSL

    While I haven't worked much in the way of DX since moving onto the boat I have worked some (and would like to work more!).  I've been contemplating using a different QSL card for those contacts and last night I opened up GIMP and started playing around.  I'm pretty happy …

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  56. An alternative to QRZ.com

    If you've been a QRZ.com user for a while you probably noticed a lock-down of information in recent years.  The effort prevents amateur radio operators from using automated methods (like logging software) to collect contact information on their fellow radio operators.  And while you can easily establish an account …

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  57. Kicking RC4 out the door

    I've been arguing with my web hosting company about their use of RC4.  Like many enterprise networks they aren't consistent across all their servers with respect to available ciphers and such.  It appears that all customer servers support TLS_RSA_WITH_CAMELLIA_256_CBC_SHA and TLS_RSA_WITH_CAMELLIA_128_CBC_SHA, in addition to TLS_RSA_WITH_RC4_128_SHA (although the latter is preferred …

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  58. The Police State: History repeats itself.

    If you've done any reading of 20th century European history then this story will seem familiar.  Back then there were places where you had to be careful about what you said to whom.  It could really be anything you said to any number of people including close friends, family members …

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  59. Encrypting SMS messages and phone calls on Android

    Much of our daily lives are contained within our smartphones and computers.  Email, text messages, and phone calls all contain bits and pieces of information that, in the wrong hands, could harm our privacy. Unfortunately many people either don't understand how vulnerable their data is when sent across the Internet …

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  60. Git access from within vim

    Today a line was crossed.  I'm not sure if it was the insanity of spending all day writing nine lines of Python (I am not a developer... I am not a developer... I am not a developer.) or what, but I really wanted to do git commands from within vim …

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  61. Removing dependencies when using yum

    yellowdog updater modifiedA forthcoming article on the Red Hat Security Blog got me to ask the question: is it possible to have yum remove dependencies when uninstalling packages?  The answer is a somewhat surprising "yes"!  The functionality is turned off by default for a good reason but that's no reason why everyone …

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  62. US-CERT: Java vulnerability

    A bad (as in it's a 10) Java vulnerability has been discovered.  Affecting Java 7 Update 10 and prior versions, this vulnerability can allow an untrusted Java applet to escalate its privileges without requiring code signing.

    Currently, the only defense to this vulnerability is to disable Java in your browser …

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  63. Starting work at Red Hat

    I'm excited.  Earlier this week I accepted a position at Red Hat working on a very cool project that has the ability to affect many open source, and not so open source, projects in a very positive way.  The opportunity that I was presented was too good to turn away …

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  64. The Voice of Russia

    [caption id="attachment_446" align="alignleft" width="300"]Voice of Russia QSL Card Voice of Russia QSL Card[/caption]

    In a recent rash of shortwave QSLs being received the Voice of Russia was not to be left out.  They sent me a nice QSL honoring their 50 years of manned space flight, 1961 to 2011.  I …

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  65. Algeria - DXCC Confirmed Entity #122

    [caption id="attachment_449" align="alignleft" width="300"]QSL from 7X4AN QSL from 7X4AN[/caption]

    I received confirmation for my August contact with 7X4AN, today.  Most excited to receive another "new one" I confirmed receipt of the QSL. Mohamed is one of those courteous CW operators that will happily slow down for you if …

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  66. Mutt Configuration of GPG and From field

    Mutt is one of those programs I have a love-hate relationship with: I hate to love it.  It's flexibility and almost infinite configuration options makes this email client one of the best and worst to use.  Once you get mutt configured you'll want to put the configuration file in the …

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  67. QRT

    Today I boxed up my radios, rolled up the coax, and removed all my antennas from their heights.  This is all in preparation for our move to Maryland in a few days.  We have almost completely packed up everything we own and either moved it to the boat, into storage …

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  68. Confirmed DXCC entity # 119 and 120

    8R1Z QSLToday I received a QSL in the mail from 8R1Z in Guyana, South America.  I worked Lennox on 14 August 2012 and was quite pleased to have a return QSL from him in a month's time.  Contact was made on 20-meters SSB when conditions were good and the confirmation represents …

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  69. Spring cleaning means... things for sale!

    It's Spring cleaning time, again, and I'm offering up the following items for sale:

    • [STRIKEOUT:Kenwood TS-480SAT HF transceiver.  Includes power cable, hand microphone, and original box.  $700 obo + shipping.]
    • [STRIKEOUT:Kenwood TS-790A with the UT-10.  144/432/1200MHz all-mode transceiver.  Includes power cable, hand microphone, and original box.  This …
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  70. Antenna maintenance

    The weather was nice enough for me to get some of my antenna maintenance done that I couldn't do during the cold winter months.  First on the list was to completely remove the 23cm (1.2GHz) antenna from the top of the tower.  While I've had good luck working stations …

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  71. New year, updated keys.

    GnuPG LogoI run a SKS key server and watch my daily numbers to see how many keys get updated, etc.  Being a numbers guy I wondered how many people, like me, update their GPG keys, I specifically update the expiration date and generate new encryption keys annually, at the beginning of …

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  72. First QSO of 2012

    The first QSO of 2012 was with a good friend of mine, Joe K4EIT.  Joe received his ticket late last year and I have been trying to hook up with him ever since.  With our schedules dividing us it has been difficult at best.  Today, however, the planets aligned and …

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  73. End user security for web browsing

    Someone asked me, earlier this week, how to setup a "very secure Fedora 16..." system for a user that mostly surfs the web and uses email. Instead of responding directly to that user I'm writing this in order to get others to comment and provide additional information that I may …

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  74. HSMM

    HSMM, or High Speed Multimedia, networks provide IP-based wireless network communications over amateur radio microwave frequencies for the amateur radio community. Many different services can be offered across this network providing a wide range of communication operations to the users.

    Communication Modes

    Because this network is IP-based, the network will …

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  75. DXCC Update for 2011

    The ARRL processed my DXCC Award update for 2011 in record time this year.  Since I received the Mixed DXCC award last year I have added 14 new entities to the confirmed list bringing my total up to 115 current (116 total).  Here's the running total including year 2011:

    TYPE …
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  76. Five Principles of Amateur Radio in the United States

    Did you know there were five principles of Amateur Radio written into the law that is Part 97?  Those principles are:

        (a) Recognition and enhancement of the value of the amateur service
    to the public as a voluntary noncommercial communication service,
    particularly with respect to providing emergency communications.
        (b) Continuation …
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  77. HamQTH.com

    image0Recently the owners of QRZ.com Callsign Database started restricting access to addresses and other data unless you were a registered user. If you used a logging program, such as CQRLOG, you would have to pay a yearly fee to access this mostly public information. I'd much rather give a …

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  78. 2011 DXCC Update

    Just submitted my 2011 DXCC Update to the ARRL.  I submitted fifty QSOs via LoTW and twelve QSOs via paper QSLs.

    New DXCC entities include:

    1. 5B - Cyprus
    2. CE9 - Antarctica
    3. CP - Bolivia
    4. CT8 - Azores Islands
    5. CY0 - Sable Island
    6. EU - Belarus
    7. GU - Guernsey
    8. PJ4 - Bonaire
    9. TF - Iceland
    10. TK - Corsica
    11. T7 - San Marino …
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  79. CW Opportunties for Fun

    I friend of mine recently tested for the Technician-class Amateur Radio license and passed without trouble.  Not that this is surprising given his history in the communications world (fricken helium atom, Sir). What I find neat is his style of operating as a newly licensed ham.  I remember when I …

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  80. Preparing to leave for Core Banks NA-067

    The Core Banks (Cape Lookout) DXpedition team will be heading to the island tomorrow morning.  We plan to have at least one phone and one CW station on the air this weekend (digital modes are an option as well). We will be QRV as N4I beginning Friday through Monday and …

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  81. QSL from Radio Habana Cuba

    Cuba QSL cardFinally received a response from the QSL request I sent for last October.  In good form I received several "extras" along with the confirmation cards.  I didn't receive a response to the question I submitted so maybe that will be coming soon.

    I'll add this to my other QSL from …

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  82. Does Google's multi-factor authentication make your security weaker?

    A few months back Google introduced "2-step verification" for all Google accounts.  This amounted to multi-factor authentication (something you know (password) and something you have (token)) for all web-based Google applications.  Cool, right?  They created an app for the Android, I-Phone, and Blackberry devices that acted like a token and …

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  83. IPv6 up and running on Fedora

    I'm coming to you through the shiny and "new" IPv6 Internet.  No, seriously, I am!  I'm sure there are many people in the community that have jumped on the IPv6 bandwagon but I just made the leap this weekend.

    I'm using the "IPv6 development and tunnel broker" SixXS and it …

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  84. Setting up your (my) HP LaserJet 3055 Scanner

    A couple of weeks ago I posted a message on identi.ca inquiring as to if anyone knew how to get my multi-function HP printer device to scan.  I got a couple of responses but, unfortunately for me, these responses dealt with devices that were much nicer than mine.

    Today …

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  85. CQ WW SSB - 15m Open

    15 meters is open to Europe from the east coast of USA.  You have to be greater than 4000 miles, less than 6000 miles, and the wind has to be blowing in the proper direction for those stations to hear me.  I missed on OH0 because they were just too …

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  86. Dressed for success... I hope.

    [caption id="attachment_487" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="I've been labeled."]Shirt that says 01000100 01000001 01000100[/caption]

    My wife, being the organized one in our household, believes that everything has a place and everything in its place.  Items should also be labeled so that you know what they are, their purpose, and most importantly where …

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  87. Bureau Cards Received

    Received bureau cards today.  All from Europe and no new confirmations but I always enjoy receiving the art work that is QSLs.  Confirmations received from:


    My Europe stack of cards is getting …

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  88. Met my neighbor

    I've been meaning to introduce myself, really I have, but I just never got around to it.  My neighbor, one street up and over a bit, put up a 70-foot tower a number of months ago and put a very impressive beam on top.  That was an immediate indicator that …

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  89. IP Voice and Amateur Radio

    Here's something I've been thinking about. If you have a VoIP phone system in your house with your own phone switch (like Asterisk) why couldn't you hook in a transceiver to monitor your local repeater or simplex frequency so you could monitor throughout the house without having to carry an …

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  90. New CQRLOG installed.

    I just installed the new CQRLOG on both my computers. I noted that in the release notes that a change was made to the main logging screen that allows netbook users to more easily use the program. I was very excited about this as I do run a small laptop …

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  91. DXCC!

    I have submitted my application to the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) for my initial DXCC (https://www.arrl.org/dxcc) award. The plan is to present my cards for checking to the ARRL on 6 August. I'm quite excited as this has been a long-term goal of mine.

    I …

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  92. HTTPS-Everywhere

    The other day I found myself reading about a new Firefox plugin that will automatically select HTTPS for various websites (and you can make your own rules, too).  The plugin, created by the EFF, is named HTTPS Everywhere.

    Basically it knows that there are several popular websites out there that …

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  93. QSL from TG9AHM


    Received a nice surprise in the mail, today.  TG9AHM sent his card, a sticker of the Guatemala flag, and two smaller stickers showing the image from the front of the QSL card.  Very nice!  The stamps on the envelope were also a nice surprise and will immediately go into my …

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  94. DXCC Entities #100 and #101 confirmed!

    Well, I finally received QSLs for DXCC entities 100 and 101!  HD2A sent his card for our 15m contact thus confirming Ecuador for number 100 and then YN2EA confirmed our contacts on 15m and 20m for Nicaragua and entity number 101.

    It's official, I now qualify for DXCC!  Woot!  Only …

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  95. Hugh Martin, K4HMM SK

    Writing the title of this post was extremely difficult for me.  This morning I checked my email to find a message from Gregory informing me of Hugh's passing yesterday and the dates and times of his visitation and funeral.  I was shocked, to say the least.

    Hugh was my boat …

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  96. New DXCC entities in the log

    Got lucky today. Saudi Arabia and Lebanon managed to make their way into my logbook today. Needless to say I was very excited to put them there. I also received confirmation, via LoTW, from New Zealand for a contact that I made a couple of weekends ago. So that puts …

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  97. CQRLOG

    Last week I went looking for better logging software.  I have been using xLog for the last year and it did a good job but I found it lacking in features that I wanted.

    I found many solutions that did less than xLog in my search but finally found CQRLOG …

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  98. Confirmed DXCC entity # 90

    Received a reply to my QSL for TL0A, today.  Glad to make #90 the Central African Republic!

    QSL cards from Africa always make me stop and think about the world. I've received sunset pictures from South Africa, mountainous sea-scapes from Cape Verde, and various scenery pictures from Madeira Island, but …

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  99. 10m and 6m band opening

    Heard 10m was open this morning but concentrated my efforts on 6m as it is rarely open this time of year.  Worked NJ2F, N2WB, N3LL, W4LT, and K4MM, all from Florida.  I didn't really hear anyone else on but the Florida stations were saying that the bands were crowded!

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  100. Ten-Tec Argosy


    I picked up this little beauty at FrostFest yesterday in Richmond.  I've been looking for a backup HF radio for the shack but this one is quickly becoming my primary rig!  It came with a power supply, hand microphone, mobile bracket, and the manuals.

    The audio is quite clear and …

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  101. Amateur Radio in next month's Linux Journal

    I just pulled down the December version of Linux Journal a couple of minutes ago.  I made it all the way to page 4 and read that next month's issue would be on Amateur Radio (or at least some portion there of). I'm excited to see that Amateur Radio and …

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  102. Expiring OpenPGP keys...

    A discussion was had on one of the Fedora IRC channels months ago about the "proper" way to handle expiring GPG keys without breaking the web of trust. It was my opinion that by generating new keys every so often (yearly?) that it would increase the security of the overall …

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  103. Notification to ARES groups

    I've been thinking a lot about volunteer responders in the scheme of emergency management. Many of these groups lack a robust communications system without which you are going to be stuck in the mud.

    So what about ARES groups. From the emergency managers point of view ARES is a communications …

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  104. All antennas up in the air.

    All antennas are up. I now have 11 elements on 2m, 22 elements on 70cm, and 25 elements on 23 cm. I was able to trim a couple of branches out of the nearby tree and now my antennas swing nearly free through space.

    I've also noted that the only …

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  105. Received 23cm antenna

    Came home to find a long box on the doorstep. Opened it up to find my new 23cm (1.2GHz) antenna ready for assembly. In less than an hour I had my twenty-four element loop yagi put together and ready for talking. Now I just need to get some N …

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  106. VHF/UHF Update

    Well, things took a slight turn for the worst last night. After receiving the UT-10 and the coax, N-connectors, and rotator control wire I realized that the pole I have stuck up in the air isn't wide enough to support the rotator. Apparently the pole is 1" in diameter and …

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  107. New toys...

    I haven't posted anything lately but that doesn't mean that nothing has been happening.

    First, a couple of weeks ago I found a Kenwood UT-10 1.2GHz module for my TS-790A. I've been looking for one of these for going on two years. Finally my eBay alert came through and …

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  108. Found a UT-10

    Last night eBay sent me an e-mail saying it had located a UT-10 for me. I jumped on it! I've been looking for one of these for about two years. The price was right, too, so now I'll have 1.2GHz in the TS-790A in a couple of weeks! Oh …

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  109. Mini-DXpedition to Hatteras Island NA-067

    Mini-DXpedition to Hatteras Island NA-067 I had the pleasure of doing a mini-DXpedition over the Memorial Day weekend on Hatteras Island. The YL and I setup a 20m SSB station in the tent using a MFJ 20m SSB Travel radio, a hamstick rotatable dipole, a 12ah battery, and a 18w solar panel.

    Overall, the test …

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  110. Securing Instant Messaging

    More and more sensitive communications are occurring over unsecure instant messaging (IM) systems. These messages go through a third-party and can be read anywhere along the way. An easy, open-source solution does exist to help protect these communications, however.

    First you need the IM client called Pidgin. This client works …

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  111. 10m Repeaters

    A few years ago, when I had just passed my General test, the solar cycle was still up to where I could hear 10 meter repeaters all over the east coast.  I used to chat with the owner of a 10-meter repeater on the island of Puerto Rico often.  The …

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  112. Bureau cards received today

    I was surprised to see a bureau envelope in my mailbox today. I really wasn't expecting it as I haven't really been on the air that much but some how they had some cards for me.

    Cards received today:
    SP9LJD - Poland
    NP2/AK2P - St. Croix Island
    LX7I - Luxembourg
    VE2AXO - Quebec …
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  113. Two Fedorians on a Northbound Train

    So I'm sitting at the Staples Mill Rd, Richmond Amtrak Station waiting for the northbound 84 when none other than Seth Vidal walks up to me and says "do you work for Red Hat?" noticing the Shadowman hat I'm wearing. Maybe we should host a hackfest on the train!

    Just …

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  114. Satellite Operations

    I'm ready to take the next step. I have a set of azimuth and elevation rotators and I even have a 2M beam. I think it is time I get serious about my satellite operations. Not that I don't have fun working the FM birds via my HT and an …

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  115. Humor Posts via Packet

    Every day or so my local packet BBS receives a humor post from W1GMF in Massachusetts. I really enjoy the jokes but I'm really impressed by the path the message has to take to make it to Yorktown, Virginia. The path looks like: KR4MA N9NDS KB0OFD N0KFQ KB8DM N4JOA N9ZZK …

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  116. My new WiFi Card

    Some of you know that I have been having problems getting my laptop on WiFi. The on-board card is proprietary and left me banging my head against the wall trying to make it work. A couple of weeks ago I decided enough was enough. I searched Newegg for a PCMCIA …

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  117. New DXCC entity confirmed

    Got a return QSL from EA6SX today. Before you say "You didn't have Spain?" you should know that this isn't exactly Spain. Turns out it this is from the Balearic Islands in the Med. Contact was made on 16 Mar on 17 meters.

    Grid JM19ik
    IOTA EU-004

    Thanks Mike for …

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  118. HF Noise Floor

    Last night John and I were up on 75 ragchewing and we noted the relatively high noise floor. Now it is 13:50z and the noise floor still seems high on some bands. Here are the current conditions:

    160m - S5
    80m - S3
    75m - S5 with static crashes (nearby thunderstorms)
    60m …
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  119. DOC v. PDF v. ODF... size wise

    At my job we create very large documents for customers explaining how we are going to test their systems. These documents are usually a couple thousand pages long which means the files can also get pretty large.

    I got curious to see how big the file would be based on …

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  120. Amateur Radio: Terminal Program

    So I have been looking for a simple "terminal" program to run that will allow me to interface to my terminal node controller (TNC) that I use for packet on Amateur Radio. I've found two programs that work but each of them has some crazy side effects that limit their …

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  121. IARU's Worked All Continents - RTTY Award

    On October 20th I completed my application and sent my cards to the ARRL for verification that I had met the requirements for the IARU's "Worked All Continents" award. Exactly seven days later I not only had my cards returned but also had my certificate as well. Now that is …

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  122. HF Propagation Extension for Firefox

    I just learned of a plug-in for Firefox that automatically polls and displays the current solar index and other propagation numbers right on the status bar in Firefox. N0HR Propfire is the name of the plug-in and it seems to work just fine. It will automatically poll to obtain the …

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  123. November Sweepstakes

    It appears that I'll be working the November Sweepstakes with friends this year. Ed, KN4KL, will (hopefully) be sponsoring us at his house for the contest and will be joined by Jeremy, KO4SJ, and Jason, N4ZBE. There was even a rumor about Amanda, KI4IWS, joining in the fun. I guess …

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  124. QSLs out for delivery

    Got 114 QSLs mailed to the ARRL Outgoing Bureau yesterday. Costs less than $3.00 for shipping so I'm happy about that. I also sent out a handful of DX cards via Airmail as well. All but five have been sent as I'm waiting for IRCs from the Post Office …

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  125. CQ WW RTTY DX Contest FINAL

    A man can only take but so much and I have gone well beyond that. I have figured out where I stand in the ham radio community, I am not a contester but rather a DX chaser. The CQ WW RTTY DX Contest goes for 48-hours and it is quite …

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  126. CQ WW RTTY DX Contest - Day 1

    Well, actually it is day one plus four hours or so. I haven't been really "competing" but I have been grabbing the QSOs that I could. So far I've racked up 160 QSOs on 4 continents, 42 countries, 28 US states, 7 Canadian providences, and 16 CQ zones. Not bad …

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  127. 20m Vertical Erected

    Last night I put the final touches on the 20m vertical antenna I built the previous night. Looking over everything and checking it twice I thought I had everything taken care of. I looped a branch in a nearby tree and pulled the antenna skyward so that the base was …

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  128. New HF Antenna

    I'm going to build a new antenna I found in the 2003 edition of the ARRL Handbook. This antenna was originally published by the ARRL in their September 1984 edition of QST in which Chuck Hutchinson, K8CH, explains his "Tree-Mounted HF Groundplane Antenna".

    I will be building the 20m version …

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