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Datamode - FT8


Then presumably you are content with the crazy feature that enables calling stations to pull your TX frequency on to theirs? Yes, you can disable that by checking the “Hold tx frequency” box, but then you are stuck with having to use the Shift, Ctrl and Alt keys to negotiate the complicated method of controlling your own TX and RX frequencies.

Can you imagine the chaos if everyone could change the TX frequency of a major DXpedition?


Walt (G3NYY)


Good find on the GPD Pocket mini-laptop. I wouldn’t pay US$500+ for something that runs on an Atom CPU, but it looks well built. The sound codec ALC5645 is probably a custom one, but looks to be from the same family as ALC5640 / ALC5672, which support 192kHz/24-bit (!).



A refurbished Microsoft Surface Pro at $200 has caught my eye as a possible portable computing device to drive a KX3 . . .

Is there any reason I couldn’t post a SOTAwatch spot tagged as FT8 and then call “CQ SOTA N1EU” instead of “CQ N1EU FN32”? Also, is it possible to shorten the QSO by omitting the RRR msg and simply send the 73 msg (R implied)?

Barry N1EU


Free text messages up to 13 characters are allowed. However, this is likely to upset the auto sequencing mechanism in WSJT-X. It will also upset the country that is displayed next to your CQ call at the receiving end. It also won’t work with those who have longer callsigns. So I wouldn’t do it.

The software does support any two letter combination from CQ AA to CQ ZZ. This is why CQ DX, CQ NA etc work. We could decide on our own SOTA code but it ought not to clash with any commonly used CQ direction including US states.


You have this back to front. It was RC2 that allowed calling stations to pull your TX frequency if you had Lock Tx=Rx ticked. In RC3 this does not happen, regardless of the setting of the Hold Tx Freq box. Now you just shift-click to set your TX frequency and double click on stations that you want to call - this will move your RX frequency only. If you want to work simplex, then untick Hold Tx Freq and all you have to do is double click and both TX and RX will move. If you are calling CQ then shift-click to set your TX frequency. Your TX frequency will not change regardless of the caller’s frequency.


You can change the RRR to RR73 and omit one of the messages. You do this by double clicking the Tx4 control. One problem with this is that many people are still running RC1 and this gets confused by this sequence.


I think my point about the complexity has been well exemplified! And you haven’t even started to explain all the combinations you need to use when you want to click on the waterfall.

It would be much better if the Alt, Ctrl and Shift keys were never used at all.

Walt (G3NYY)


Have you tried doing this on a Windows tablet without a Bluetooth or USB keyboard attached?


Fair point. PCs and laptops with physical keyboards are already obsolescent. Give it another 4 or 5 years, maximum, and everyone will be using touch screens.

Walt (G3NYY)


Hi Walt,

I think it’s already the situation where people more often use touch screens (Smartphones) than PC keyboards !

Hence as suggested above, someone needs to be asking for (or writing) a Tablet / Phablet version of WSJT-x, where no shift, ctrl, alt, windows symbol or other keys are needed.

73 Ed.


That’s right, Ed.

A couple of other points:

(1) It doesn’t seem to be properly documented anywhere that the “pull TX frequency” feature has been removed in .rc3. As I have always taken the necessary action to defeat this feature, I hadn’t noticed that it had gone!

(2) I have gone back to .rc2. The operating procedure is very simple:
I always uncheck the “Lock tx=rx” box when I am calling CQ.
I always check the “Lock tx=rx” box when I am answering other people’s CQ calls or selecting a frequency on the waterfall.
That way, I am never pulled to another frequency, and I never have to use the Alt, Shift or Ctrl keys.

Walt (G3NYY)


When RC3 was released, there was only a text file of the changes.

Now checking back, there has been some new documentation for v 1.8 RC3 released - whether this covers all the relevant points I don’t know as I haven’t read it yet, but in any case here it is: https://sourceforge.net/projects/wsjt/files/wsjtx-1.8.0-rc3/wsjtx-main-1.8.0_en.pdf/download

73 Ed.


Thank you very much, Ed. I will take a look!

Walt (G3NYY)


RC3 is no more complex than RC2, just slightly different. It seems your only gripe is that you cannot change TX frequency without using the shift key. If you click on the waterfall and then click “Tx<-Rx” then job done. RC3 is so much better at decoding than RC2 it seems silly not to use it.


I can detect absolutely no difference in the decoding capability of rc3 and rc2.
I have worked 50 W’s on 40m tonight using rc2 and experienced no difficulty.

Walt (G3NYY)


Walt, that only proves you want to argue. How many more might you have worked with rc3?



Hi Ed,

Re usage, for general communications yes but not on AR communications I think. The keyboard versions of digi programs are much more operator friendly than the apps on smart phones. I think they are called smart phones because you need to be smart just to make a phone call with them. Poking at spots on the screen is more klunky than using a TTY for a computer GUI, IMO.



Guys, I know the square root of b____ all about digital, and I care even less, but I know when a thread is degenerating into useless argument. This thread is pushing at the limits of our Acceptable Use Policy, so step back a bit and try and keep it productive or entertaining!

G8ADD is wearing his moderator helmet!


Ron, the issue is that lots of programmers (myself included) have several mindsets when programming based on many years experience. If I am writing software for a phone (limited screen size, touch input) then I write with those limitations in mind. When I write software to run on a glass TTY (like old DOS programs) then I write for the kind of IO I expect.

The problem with software for Windows now is that we have classic Windows programs (a la Win7), Metro or Universal apps (Win8, 8.1, Win10). And that software will run on a high end server, or home machine or laptop or simple old laptop or tablet. If you don’t design with gamut of machines and features available users may use, then you end up with software that is clunky on a tablet and great on a desktop/laptop or great on a tablet and clunky on a desktops. It has suddenly become very hard to ensure the UI works on all the Windows devices and it leads to a perfectly normal concepts - Shift+click or Shift+right click becoming a nightmare on a touch device.

It’s anything but trivial and leads to a plethora of versions having to be supported for all the different options. MS tried to make it work with Universal apps but that just made most things clunky on all devices. And fugly too!


Hi Ron,

A Smartphone is not primarily a phone! It is a PDA or minicomputer with a phone “app” installed. The performance of smartphones in marginal coverage regions show this where the “non’smart” phones perform better.