New, Rewritten Field Day Contest / Network Log 4.0 is Now Available!
In 1976 at 14 years old, a local family friend took my Dad and me to a Field Day site and started this wonderful adventure, so it is with special excitement that I share the announcement for this upgrade:
Field Day Contest Log 4.0 is Now Available!
This program is the next in the series of C#.NET rewrites, is networkable and replaces both Field Field Day Contest Log 3.0 and Field Day Network Log 2.7.
You'll find the new Field Day Contest Log software on the Field Day link at www.n3fjp.com. As always, upgrades are free to registered users. This includes either the previous contest or network versions and of course our N3FJP Software Package users!
Until Field Day Contest Log 4.0 has a contest under its belt, you'll find both the new version and the older, tried and true VB6 versions on the website. Field Day Contest Log 4.0 is brand new, better, has additional features not found in the VB6 versions and represents the future of N3FJP Software. It is also completely new code - every single line of it! While the template has been tested extensively and the new, C#.NET versions for NAQP, CQ 160 and International DX performed very well during those contests, this will be the first use as applied to Field Day. It is quite possible that a contest specific bug or two remain to be found, so I want to give you the option of using the VB6 version if you prefer.
Here are a few considerations to help you decide:
- For networking, everyone in your group must all either use the old VB6 version, or the new C# version. You will not be able to mix and match and update a single common data file in a networked environment. The old, VB6 version will not be able to update the .MDB log file used by the new version, and vice versa. If you do run a combination, you'll have to transfer your data via ADIF.
- The new version will not run on Win 95 and operating systems prior to XP have been minimally tested. The C#.NET template from which the new Field Day software was created also produced programs for NAQP, CQ 160 and ARRL International DX so far this year. The programs ran with great success in those contests, but I suspect any operating systems used prior to XP were extremely limited. Given the minimal testing on pre XP systems, I would recommend staying with the VB6 version if you are still running an older operating system, prior to XP.
- The new rewrite screen layout is very similar to the old version, but it was designed with wide screen monitors in mind. It looks okay on the older, narrow width format monitors, but shines on the newer ones. Check it out on all the PCs you plan to use in advance, just to make sure it plays well with your screen size and resolution.
- The new version will key your CW interface by your serial port or USB to serial adapter (or Winkeyer), but since parallel ports are now extremely rare, parallel ports are not currently supported in the new version.
- If you plan to interface directly with K7RE RTTY, you must use the VB6 version. C#.NET no longer supports the communication protocols we used in VB6 that allow the programs to talk to each other. If you would like to help make K7RE RTTY compatible with the new, C# versions of my software, please contact Brian, K7RE here: briank7re@.... Brian would love to hear from you and really appreciate your help! If you will be using another digital program, you can transfer your contacts to the new version via ADIF, provided your digital program exports all the necessary fields.
- The new rewrite requires Microsoft .NET 4.0 client or later. If you have an operating system later than XP, or if you have been keeping up with Windows XP updates, you likely already have what you need. If you haven't, when you install the software, if it doesn't find .NET 4.0 Client or later, it will install it for you automatically from Microsoft's website, but this will require an Internet connection, so don't wait until you are at your Field Day site, without Internet, to do the installation!
Whether you ultimately decide to use the new version this year or stick with the old for one more year, please download the new version, install it on all the machines you use for Field Day each year (well in advance of the contest) and give it a try, so you can have a good sense of the program for the future!
Copyright 1997-2013, N3FJP Software - Affirmatech, Inc