Saturday, October 10, 2015

10 Oct 2015 - New Release: FMSuite v2.0.5761

This is a maintenance release; there are no new features.

Frequency Manager + Scanner, Frequency Entry, Activity Logger, and Scheduler

Recent significant changes in SDR# broke these plugins. In general these are now fixed although not as cleanly or robustly as I would like.  I felt it was more important to get working software to you as quickly as possible.  Look for further improvements in the weeks to come.

This release requires SDR# v1408 or higher and .NET 4.6

Known Issues 

  • Due to lingering compatibility problems, frequency changes by the Scanner or Scheduler are performed in Free Tuning mode.  Your preferred manual tuning method (Free/Sticky/Center) is remembered and restored when you turn off scanning.
  • When scanning starts, the Frequency will be reset to the Center Frequency.  After the scanner is running you can move the SDR# red line to your preferred position.  However at this time scanning works most reliably when Frequency and Center are the same.
  • The AFR zone display extends to the full height of the spectrum window when it should only display in the spectrum grid
  • The busy-frequency detection code is not perfect right now:
    • You may have to increase Radio Settle Time in order to get signal locks.
    • The scanner will sometimes find false positives when scanning a range of frequencies.
Please bear with me while I work on further fixes.  As a hobbyist I have only a few hours each week to work on this but rest assured I will try to bring FMSuite back to its quality standards as soon as possible.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Frequency Manager + Scanner Plugin

The FMSuite Frequency Manager + Scanner is a free plugin designed for use within the SDR# software application.  It delivers a full-featured frequency management tool permitting you to edit and browse frequencies and to scan ranges of frequencies or groups of frequencies that you define.

New features and improvements in this version

Frequency Manager

  • Multiple databases – now you can have separate databases for different kinds of monitoring.  For example, if you would like to import a database of Non-Directional Beacons, you can keep those records separate from your UHF frequencies which are in a different database.  And, you decide where to store the database.
  • New database fields. 14 new data fields are now available for each frequency in the database.  Now you can track a frequency’s City & Country, Language, transmitter Power, and other info.
  • New database filters.  The Browse window now lets you filter your database up to 11 ways simultaneously.
  • A new Preferences window lets you set 37 rules of behavior for the Frequency Manager + Scanner.  You can now customize FM without resorting to manual editing and the risk of corrupting your SDR# installation.

Scanner Metrics Plugin

Scanner Metrics is a free plugin designed for use within the SDR Sharp software application, as an accessory to the Frequency Manager + Scanner plugin.  It provides a means of recording scanner frequency activity to a database and later performing analysis on that information; the goal being to make it easier for you to determine which of the millions of frequencies you can receive actually are worth spending time on.

Features Summary

SM adds the following features to SDR Sharp:
  • A collapsible panel containing the recording and reporting controls.
  • Reports that analyze the recorded metrics and produce charts about frequency activity.
  • A small dedicated database for the collection of metrics.

Scheduler Plugin

The FMSuite Scheduler is a free plugin designed for use within the SDR# software application.  It provides a means of creating, using, and re-using schedules to manage frequency changes in SDR#.

This new plugin permits you to define multiple operating schedules.  When a schedule is activated, the Scheduler will change the frequency on the dates and times you specify.  You can use a schedule only on the dates and times defined in it, or you can ignore the dates and re-use the time portions of the schedule on any date.  Schedule activity is logged to a file so that you can review the actions it took.

Features Summary

The Scheduler adds the following features to SDR#:
  • A collapsible panel containing the scheduler controls.
  • The Manage Schedules grid that allows you to Add, Edit, Delete, and Use schedules.
  • An Add/Edit grid that allows you to Add and Delete dates, times, and frequencies to a schedule and to name or rename a schedule.
  • Options to ignore any dates in the schedule and use only the times (useful for re-using a schedule without having to edit it) and to log the schedule activity to a text file.
  • Run the selected schedule; which also displays the date, time, and frequency of the next scheduled frequency change.

Frequency Entry Plugin

The Frequency Entry plugin restores your ability to enter a specific center frequency into SDR#.  You may enter a Frequency and a Center Frequency.  The plugin also auto-updates as you or other software change those settings in SDR #.

Activity Logger Plugin

The FMSuite Activity Logger is a free plugin designed for use within the SDR Sharp software application.  It records scanner activity created by the Frequency Manager + Scanner plugin in a CSV-formatted file.

The Activity Logger listens for activity from the Frequency Manager + Scanner plugin.  When the scanner stops on a frequency the following data are written to the file.  Each row in the log represents one start time + end time + frequency event.

Data Tools Wizard

The FMSuite Data Tools Wizard is a free standalone utility program designed to download and import frequency databases for use within the Frequency Manager + Scanner.

It provides a way to download frequency databases from the internet and import them into an FM database.  It also permits you to import data from a generic data file format and to export an FM database to a generic file format.

Data Tools operates as a wizard; you make choices, fill in some blanks, and it takes care of the rest.

The Pluginator

The Pluginator is a free standalone program designed to be used for the management of SDR# plugins.  By using the simple user interface, you may add, delete, and change the sequence of SDR# plugins without having to manually edit the plugin XML file.