AllStar Link

For more information visit the ALLSTAR website

 

The AllStar Link network consists of a number of large (and small) individuals and groups who wish to provide efficient large-area communications to the Amateur Radio public in their respective local areas. This is done by providing a local VHF or UHF repeater system controlled by a Linux-based computer system running the open-source Asterisk PBX telephone switch platform along with the app_rpt repeater/remote base controller/linking software module (which is included in the distribution of Asterisk) connected to a high speed (broadband, such as Cable Modem or DSL) Internet connection.

The computer system running Linux/Asterisk PBX coupled with the app_rpt module makes a powerful repeater/remote base controller capable of controlling many (like up to hundreds, theoretically) repeaters and/or remote bases per computer system. It provides linking of these repeater and remote base “nodes”, with “nodes” on other systems of similar construction anywhere in the world, over the Internet via its IAX2 Voice Over IP protocol. It also, of course, provides for an Autopatch (public switched telephone network access over the radio) on each node (Asterisk is a phone switch after all J), if desired. For detailed information on system requirements and configurations see the app_rpt documentation.

Node Types

When you sign up for a node, you will have the option of checking some check boxes which identify the type of node you are putting up.  I have had to cancel several node number requests because of non-working email addresses!! We will be changing the software to automatically validate email addresses on node number requests in the future.

Repeater

This is a full duplex node which is able to be controlled with DTMF commands. Repeater nodes may or may not have emergency power or extended coverage. Offset (+/-) and CTCSS tone should be supplied during the signup process. Latitude and Longitude in degrees/minutes/seconds format should be supplied.

Simplex Node

This is a half-duplex node which is able to be controlled with DTMF commands. Simplex nodes may or may not have emergency power or extended coverage. A CTCSS tone should be supplied during the signup process if one is required. Latitude and Longitude in degrees/minutes/seconds format is optional.

Remote Base Node

This is a half-duplex node which is for initiating outbound radio connections only. A remote base node will not decode DTMF and act on any commands from the RF side. This type of node should only have the remote base, and perhaps the frequency-agile check box(es) checked; none of the other boxes make much sense. This node type is typically used to implement a frequency-agile VHF/UHF/HF remote base.

Hub Node

This is a node which has no Radio hardware associated with it whatsoever. This node type is typically used in a location where there is a large amount of Internet Bandwidth available in addition to a computer system with a good amount of CPU power, and is used as a “central connecting point”.

My Nodes

I currently have 3 registered nodes. They are:

27504 – Echolink Node
29912 – KD8BIW/R 224.5800 – [110.9]
29924 – Ohio 220 Group Hub

Node 29912 is connected to a 220MHz link radio with a 3el Yagi pointed at the repeater. Echolink is active on this node (Node# 297683 KD8BIW-R) and is open for everyone to use. You can access via the reverse autopatch, web transciever, or via SIP on your smart phone or IP desk phone. Contact me for SIP settings or more information.

Node 29924 is on the same computer as 29912 and is the HUB for the Ohio 220 Group. Once more repeaters start getting connected to this node, we will be moving it to a location with a more robust IP connection.

Node 27504 is my testing node. This is where I work the bugs out of new installations, or simply experiment with new scripts and/or features. There is no RF hardware currently connected to this node.

Current Nodes Status

Node 29912 KD8BIW/R 224.5800 [110.9]
Node 29924 Ohio 220 Group Hub
Node 27504 TEcholink Node

 

 

2 thoughts on “AllStar Link”

  1. What is the typical config for a HUB? I know the rxchannel needs to be set to rxchannel=Zap/pseudo in rpt.conf. But what about the duplex settings etc. Thanks.

    1. Hi Chad!

      I use duplex=1, although i’m not 100% sure if it makes any difference. Also for the RX channel, it depends on what your running. For CentOS (Acid) based systems, zap/pseudo is correct. For Debian (Dial) based systems, rxchannel= dahdi/pseudo is the way to go.

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