Notizbl0g.

h4cking, ham radio, fire fighting and m0re

Fake Virtual Box BIOS Time

Some Windows software in my virtualized Windows XP machine stopped working the other day. It says that the validity period is over. Okay that should not be too hard to get around this issue. As the machine is running on a VBox anyway I looked for some solution to fake the BIOS time - and found something:

$ VBoxManage modifyvm "Windows Testsystem" --biossystemtimeoffset -126489600000

That simly changes the offset from the system time to the virtualized BIOS time. Note: It takes milliseconds as an argument. As I needed the time to be some 4 years a ago I calculated: 60*60*24*366*4*1000. That results in:

Compiling MMDVM Firmware on Arduino 1.6.9

Today I wanted to update my MMDVM to the latest firmware as some new features were added during the last commits. Firstly I upgraded the Arduino IDE to 1.6.9 and the board files to SAM 1.6.8. After that the firmware wouldn’t compile anymore. Ah yes, there was something to be manually edited in a platform.txt file.

After searching I found it to be in /home/$user/.arduino15/packages/arduino/hardware/sam/1.6.8/. The diff is here:

$ diff -purN platform.txt.bak platform.txt
--- platform.txt.bak 2016-05-13 08:42:00.993078492 +0200
+++ platform.txt  2016-05-13 08:42:08.744972003 +0200
@@ -78,7 +78,7 @@ archive_file_path={build.path}/{archive_
 recipe.ar.pattern="{compiler.path}{compiler.ar.cmd}" {compiler.ar.flags} {compiler.ar.extra_flags} "{archive_file_path}" "{object_file}"
 
 ## Combine gc-sections, archives, and objects
-recipe.c.combine.pattern="{compiler.path}{compiler.c.elf.cmd}" -mcpu={build.mcu} -mthumb {compiler.c.elf.flags} "-T{build.variant.path}/{build.ldscript}" "-Wl,-Map,{build.path}/{build.project_name}.map" {compiler.c.elf.extra_flags} -o "{build.path}/{build.project_name}.elf" "-L{build.path}" -Wl,--cref -Wl,--check-sections -Wl,--gc-sections -Wl,--entry=Reset_Handler -Wl,--unresolved-symbols=report-all -Wl,--warn-common -Wl,--warn-section-align -Wl,--start-group {compiler.combine.flags} {object_files} "{build.variant.path}/{build.variant_system_lib}" "{build.path}/{archive_file}" -Wl,--end-group -lm -gcc
+recipe.c.combine.pattern="{compiler.path}{compiler.c.elf.cmd}" -mcpu={build.mcu} -mthumb {compiler.c.elf.flags} "-T{build.variant.path}/{build.ldscript}" "-Wl,-Map,{build.path}/{build.project_name}.map" {compiler.c.elf.extra_flags} -o "{build.path}/{build.project_name}.elf" "-L{build.path}" -Wl,--cref -Wl,--check-sections -Wl,--gc-sections -Wl,--entry=Reset_Handler -Wl,--unresolved-symbols=report-all -Wl,--warn-common -Wl,--warn-section-align -Wl,--start-group {compiler.combine.flags} {object_files} "{build.variant.path}/{build.variant_system_lib}" "{build.system.path}/CMSIS/CMSIS/Lib/GCC/libarm_cortexM3l_math.a" "{build.path}/{archive_file}" -Wl,--end-group -lm -gcc
 
 ## Create output (.bin file)
 recipe.objcopy.bin.pattern="{compiler.path}{compiler.elf2hex.cmd}" {compiler.elf2hex.flags} {compiler.elf2hex.extra_flags} "{build.path}/{build.project_name}.elf" "{build.path}/{build.project_name}.bin"

This is now also part of BUILD.md in the official github repo. See [1].

References

[1] https://github.com/g4klx/MMDVM/blob/master/BUILD.txt

Read DVmega Firmware Version

After discussion on a thread in the MMDVM group I hacked a little shell script that queries the DVmega for its firmware version. I got the details from the MMDVMHost code. That is sending 3 bytes to the unit and reading the response. For the version you need to send the bytes 0xE0 0x03 0x00 and read back the version information. That is done by the following shell script:

#!/bin/bash

set -m

PORT="/dev/ttyUSB5"

stty -F ${PORT} ospeed 115200 ispeed 115200 -crtscts

#cat -v < $PORT &
dd if=${PORT} bs=1 count=17 status=none | sed -e "s/$/\n/" &
echo -ne '\xE0\x03\x00' > ${PORT}
sleep 0.1
exit 0

I tested it with a DVmega on a BlueStack micro+.

Nextion TFT With Touch Screen

After getting the the MMDVM up and running for access to D-Star and DMR Brandmeister networks I experimented with the touch screen of the Nextion TFT display upon request of DL5BQ. The idea was to have a standalone unit that can for example be shut down with a single key press. Currently this is realized with a push button and a Python script (see [1]).

But as we added a Nextion display with touch screen to the Raspberry Pi running the MMDVMHost the idea was of course to use the touch screen for input. The option are for example to shut the RPi down or to link to a specific reflector with a press on the button of the display. This would also save input pins and instead use the wiring to the display which is there anyway.

Dissecting D-Star Streams Between Reflectors

In preparation for some software development work contributing to XLX reflector software I wanted to disassemble the UDP stream exchanged between D-Star reflectors and a reflector and a connected node respectively. My wish is to add the output of the user configuralbe 20 character message to the dashboard. If running well I would also replace the link to aprs.fi with an output of GPS data transmitted by the client if available. The current solution just links to the callsign which is not necessarilly the real current position.

Resetting OpenPGP SmartCard

After my private key expired a few days ago I extended the lifetime of the key for another two years. Since I am using an OpenPGP SmartCard for storing the keys I had to edit card as well. After a few tries I gave up because gpg was always telling me that the keys exist on the card and was not willing to replace them.

Now I found a hint on how to reset the card to factory defaults [1] [2]. It is basically feeding the gpg-connect-agent with some hex stuff:

Customizing Tytera MD-380

A few days ago I received my Tytera MD-380 which I ordered in order to exeriment with the modified software and to have the chance to hear my own audio back. It was just a little less than an hour after it was flashed with the modified firmware allowing for talk group independent listening. I used the toolset by Travis KK4VCZ from [1] to compile respecitvely patch the original firmware for the radio.

Firmware Upgrade on DVmega Without Programmer

A while ago I stumbled accross a thread in the MMDVM Yahoo group about the firmware upgrade on DVmega PCBs [1]. The interesting note was that Tom ON4TOP managed to upgrade the firmware without the need for a programming adapter. This is especially of interest for all those who have a dualband DVmega because the ATmega CPU in this case is a SMD one. For the single band radio there is an easier solution: Just pull out the ATmega 328P DIL processor and reprogram it with an Arduino Uno. So I tried the direct programming of the controller for my dualband radio DVmega.

Latest OpenDV on Raspberry Pi

This time just some short notes on how to compile the latest OpenDV [1] software on a Raspberry Pi running Raspbian (Jessie). As I learned from the irdDDBGateway newsgroup the latest versions of OpenDV link against libwx 3.0 instead of 2.8. So it is basically installing the required libraries and then compile OpenDV.

Handcrafted MMDVM Adapter

During experiments with digital voice mode in hamradio I discovered a nice project describing an adapter for D-Star, DMR and other digital modes based on an Arduino Due and a little PCB to be put on top. This unit is called the Multimode Digital Voice Modem or MMDVM (see [1]). It seems that this is getting quite popular because hard- and software is Open Source.

The units can be ordered from Bruce, VE2GZI for a very reasonable price. As of writing this the time for delivery was about 3 to 4 weeks. Because this unit was really of interest I decided to build one myself besides having ordered a set of the nice PCBs with SMD parts.