DXtreme Station Log 14

What's New?

Topics

To Order


Entity Identification and Selection Enhancements

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1. In General

To support the entity identification and selection enhancements made in DXtreme Station Log 14, DXtreme Software recommends using QRZ XML Logbook Data or HamQTH.com because those call sign subscription services (CSS) return the DXCC Entity Code for stations most often, thereby increasing accuracy.

2. When Using the DX Spot Checker

When identifying the DXCC entity of each incoming spot and displaying entity-needed status, the DX Spot Checker first polls the CSS (QRZ XML Logbook Data or HamQTH.com) to determine the entity.

If the CSS does not return the DXCC Entity Code, the DX Spot Checker queries Station Log 14's Entities, Prefix Cross-Reference, and Call Sign Cross-Reference tables to determine the entity.

This two-step approach results in greater accuracy than ever before, reducing the times you'll see multiple entities displayed per station (when the prefix of the station is shared by several entities). A Source column on the new Grid Feed (described later) displays CSS ### when the call sign subscription service returned the DXCC Entity Code (where ### is the entity code returned) and Table when the Entities, Prefix Cross-Reference, and Call Sign Cross-Reference tables were used to determine the entity.

3. When Logging Stations

The same two-step approach is used when logging stations to identify the DXCC entity and display entity-needed status. The DXCC field on the Station Log window displays the DXCC Entity Code along with entity-needed status.

4. When Importing ADIF Files

Here's how the utility now finds the entity of each imported station:

  1. When a DXCC Entity Code is present in the ADIF file for a station, the utility uses it to obtain the entity from the Entities module.
  2. When a DXCC Entity Code is not present in the ADIF file for a station, the utility polls QRZ XML Logbook Data or HamQTH.com (if obtained by you and activated) for the entity code. If a code is returned, the utility uses it to obtain the entity from the Entities module.
  3. If neither QRZ XML Logbook Data nor HamQTH.com are activated, or if they fail to supply the needed entity code, the utility uses the standard prefix (if present) of the call sign to obtain the entity from the Entities module.
  4. If the call sign has a non-standard (special) prefix, the utility uses the Prefix and Call Sign Cross-Reference modules to obtain the entity.

Note: DXtreme Software is not responsible for the accuracy of information supplied by call sign subscription services or by the Country.Dat file, the source of Prefix and Call Sign Cross-References.


DX Spot Checker Enhancements

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1. DX Spot Checker Now Has Two Presentation Modes

The two presentation modes are the traditional Rich Site Feed and a new Grid Feed.

Rich Site Feed

When selected via the Rich Site Feed tab, the traditional Rich Site Feed displays the actual, continuous feed from the Telnet server. It also lets you interact with the server to set options like filters and to perform queries. It retains all functions from previous releases and is described fully on the Product Summary and Data Sheet pages of this web site.

Grid Feed

When selected via the Grid Feed tab, the new Grid Feed displays 10 to 50 rows (your choice) of DX spots in a structured, resizable, alternating-color grid. It can be activated and deactivated via the DX Spot Checker toolbar:

Activates

Deactivates

Grid-Feed spots can be displayed on a rotating basis (erase then continue) or by overwriting spots already displayed, as selected via the DX Spot Checker toolbar:

When selected, the grid erases completely after a spot displays on the last row. The last spot is then repeated on the first row, and subsequent spots display in succeeding rows as expected.

When selected, the grid overwrites old spots with new ones from the top down.

You can select the number of rows to display, change the height and width of the window, and adjust the widths of the columns. When you increase the number of rows, you must resize the window so all rows are visible.

You can use the Properties dialog box of the Last Log Entries grid to set the font attributes (font size within reason) and foreground and background colors of the Grid Feed's heading and data rows — one format for odd data rows, and another format for even data rows. Font attribute and color changes take effect upon grid refresh.

Heading font attributes and colors are also applied to the Bearing and Status text boxes with font sizes limited to those of data rows (up to a maximum of 12 for optimal display).

Important: Using servers that display rapid-fire, Skimmer-type spots can overwhelm the DX Spot Checker. When using any server, especially during contests, we suggest filtering be applied at the server level to control the flow rate, and that Services within DX Spot Checker Options be set as appropriate. Sites in the Links menu provide access to server documentation.

Grid Feed Clickable Functions

The Grid Feed display has left-click functions you might find useful.

  1. If rig control is configured, you can single-click the Frequency of a spot, or double-click any column of the spot (other than DXCC Status and Mode Status) to tune your rig to the frequency of the spot.
  2. To view in the Status box, information such as:
    • DXCC Status regarding the spot, just single-click one of the following columns:
      • DX de
      • Freq (also changes the frequency)
      • Station
      • UTC
      • LoTW
      • DXCC Status
      • Source
    • Remarks about the spot, single-click the Remarks column.
    • Mode Status about the spot, single-click the Mode Status column.

    Note: The Status box makes it possible to view the information described above when the Grid Feed columns are not sufficiently wide. The Status box also displays the date and time a LoTW user last updated his or her account.

  3. To view Spot History and DXCC Information for a spot in a resizable window, you can double-click the DXCC Status or Mode Status columns. The window also displays the bearing to the station, and the date and time a LoTW user last updated his or her account.
  4. This window is particularly useful when the DXCC Status column includes the word (Multiple) in parentheses (which means more than one entity is associated with the standard prefix of the spotted station) because it lets you view entity, band-entity, and mode-entity information separately for each associated entity. (Multiple) will appear most often when QRZ XML Logbook Data or HamQTH.com is not activated, or when the Entities module is used to determine entity-needed status.

The Grid Feed display also has right-click (shortcut menu) functions you might find useful. Shortcut menu operations are a bit easier on the Grid Feed display, when compared to Rich Site Feed.

After single-clicking the Station of a spot, right-click, and then click the desired menu item:

2. New Spot Display Filtering Option: Suppress Verified Spots by Mode Per Band (Band Plan)

In DX Spot Checker Options, you can click the Suppress DXCC Announcements by Mode Per Band option button to suppress the display of spots for modes already verified within the band plans defined on the Modes-Per-Band Plans tab.

Once defined and activated, you'll see only the spots you need for mode-entities not worked and not verified within the band portions you define — with the understanding that you cannot overlap mode definitions per portion of each band. For example, incoming CW spots for entities already verified on CW will not be displayed if the frequency of the spot is from 14000 to 14070, but the spot will appear if FT8 is not verified for the entity and the frequency of the spot is from 14074 to 14076. Call signs and entities of all spots will continue to appear in the Call and DXCC list boxes.

The selected Spot Display Filtering Option is now indicated on the DX Spot Checker window. You can double-click this indication to access the Services tab.


JT Log Entry Processing Enhancement

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Worked-Before Management/JT Log Entry

The WSJT-X and JTDX worked-before features have the benefit of displaying worked-before status indications natively, letting you keep your eyes glued to the WSJT-X or JTDX interface while operating — which we consider important, especially when using quick modes like FT8.

As such, our approach to supporting JT Log Entry Processing is unique; whereby, at your option, DXtreme Station Log 14 manages the pre- and post-log-entry population of the WSJT-X and JTDX log files, and controls the size the WSJT-X and JTDX ALL.TXT files. The result: you perform all logging operations on the DXtreme Station Log 14 window and receive worked-before status indications on the WSJT-X and JTDX windows. No other software is required.

Interaction with WSJT-X

Version 2.0.1 (and greater) of WSJT-X can be set so it distinguishes between bands and modes when displaying worked-before status. Station Log 14 provides a prepopulation function that needs to be run only once (usually) to prepopulate the WSJT-X log file with contacts made in multiple bands and all JT modes. You don't have to prepopulate again unless you log WSJT-X contacts using the New Standard Log Entry method, import WSJT-X contacts via ADIF Import, or use a different digital application to work a JT-mode station. You do the following:

  1. Whenever necessary, click the JT Log Entry Processing button to the right of the New button, and then click Prepopulate WSJT-X Log File to prepopulate the log file with previous contacts made in the bands and JT modes you are about to use, thereby enabling WSJT-X to determine worked-before status (provided you have enabled such status in WSJT-X Settings).
  2. On the Set Criteria for ADIF Export window, click the desired Range of Bands and the first JT Mode.
  3. Click Run.
  4. If desired, on the Set Criteria for ADIF Export window, click the second JT Mode.
  5. The Append to File box is selected automatically. Click Run.
  6. If desired, on the Set Criteria for ADIF Export window, click the third JT Mode.
  7. The Append to File box is selected automatically. Click Run. (We're stopping at three JT modes, but you can continue prepopulating with more modes, if desired.)
  8. WSJT-X imports the updated log file the next time you start it, but you can import the log file right away by pressing F2 and clicking the Colors tab, the Rescan ADIF Log button, and OK.

    Now you're ready to make and log contacts made in the prepopulated band range and JT modes.

    There's Portugal in blue, not-worked-before on 6-Meter Sporadic-E FT8:

  9. To log the contact, while sending ...

    • A standard 73 message containing YOUR-CALL 73 or YOUR-CALL RR73 (as in KA1BAM NE1I 73 or KA1BAM NE1I RR73), or
    • A custom 73 message containing YOUR-CALL 73 or YOUR-CALL RR73 (as in HNY NE1I 73 or HNY NE1I RR73)

    ... click the JT Log Entry Processing button and then New WSJT-X Log Entry to pre-fill the Station Log window with information from the nearly completed contact.

    Note: Only your most recent WSJT-X contact can be logged using this method. If desired, you can start a log entry, begin a contact with another station, and finish logging the previous contact before the new QSO ends.

    You finish the log entry by specifying the appropriate information in the remaining fields on the Station Log window and by clicking OK.

    As part of saving the log entry, Station Log 14 populates the new Digital Application Used field on the Digital Application tab as appropriate...

    ... and then it updates the WSJT-X log file automatically with the new contact. As with prepopulation, WSJT-X imports the updated log file the next time you start it and you can import the log file right away by pressing F2 and clicking the Colors tab, the Rescan ADIF Log button, and OK.

    But as an alternative, you can import the log file quickly by pressing Alt-Q then OK without making any changes on the WSJT-X Log QSO window. (A duplicate log entry will appear harmlessly in the WSJT-X log file.)

Note: For contest operations, you might want to log in WSJT-X and use the Import ADIF Utility to import log entries after the contest is over.

Interaction with JTDX

Because JTDX can also distinguish between bands and modes when displaying worked-before status for stations and DXCC entities, Station Log 14 provides a prepopulation function that needs to be run only once (usually) to prepopulate the JTDX log file with contacts made in multiple bands and all JT modes. You don't have to prepopulate again unless you log JTDX contacts using the New Standard Log Entry method, import JTDX contacts via ADIF Import, or use a different digital application to work a JT-mode station.

You do the following:

  1. Whenever necessary, click the JT Log Entry Processing button to the right of the New button, and then click Prepopulate JTDX Log File to prepopulate the log file with previous contacts made in the bands and JT modes you are about to use, thereby enabling JTDX to determine worked-before status (provided you have enabled such status in JTDX Settings).
  2. On the Set Criteria for ADIF Export window, click the desired Range of Bands and the first JT Mode.
  3. Click Run.
  4. On the Set Criteria for ADIF Export window, click the second JT Mode.
  5. The Append to File box is selected automatically. Click Run.
  6. On the Set Criteria for ADIF Export window, click the third JT Mode.
  7. The Append to File box is selected automatically. Click Run. (We're stopping at three JT modes, but you can continue prepopulating when JTDX adds new modes, like it did with T10.)
  8. JTDX imports the updated log file the next time you start it (with Per Band or Per Mode Notifications selected).

    Now you're ready to make and log contacts made in the prepopulated band range and JT modes.

    There's Lebanon in blue in the Rx Frequency area, not-worked-before on 17-Meter FT8 (it was in the Band Activity area earlier, before it scrolled):

  9. To log the contact, while sending ...

    • A standard 73 message containing YOUR-CALL 73 or YOUR-CALL RR73 (as in KA1BAM NE1I 73 or KA1BAM NE1I RR73), or
    • A custom 73 message containing YOUR-CALL 73 or YOUR-CALL RR73 (as in HNY NE1I 73 or HNY NE1I RR73)

    ... click the JT Log Entry Processing button and then New JTDX Log Entry to pre-fill the Station Log window with information from the nearly completed contact.

    Note: Only your most recent JTDX contact can be logged using this method. If desired, you can start a JTDX log entry, begin a contact with another station, and finish logging the previous contact before the new QSO ends.

    You finish the log entry by specifying the appropriate information in the remaining fields on the Station Log window, and by clicking OK.

    As part of saving the log entry, Station Log 14 populates the new Digital Application Used field on the Digital Application tab as appropriate ...

    ... and then it updates the JTDX log file automatically with the new contact. As with prepopulation, JTDX imports the updated log file the next time you start it, but you can import the log file right away by pressing Alt-Q then OK without making any changes on the JTDX Log QSO window. (A duplicate log entry will appear harmlessly in the JTDX log file.)

Notes

  • If desired, you can turn off Station Log 14's Worked-Before Management feature.
  • You can also perform logging within WSJT-X or JTDX and use Station Log's ADIF Import Utility to import JT log entries.

  • If you want to view or search the WSJT-X or JTDX All.Txt files, you can click the appropriate entry on the JT Log Entry Processing menu. You might find these functions useful to search for decoded stations, entities, or grid squares without having to interrupt, or be interrupted by, new decodes on the WSJT-X window or JTDX window.

Digital Application Enhancements

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1. Digital Application Assignment

When you add a JT log entry via the JT Log Entry Processing button, Station Log 14 populates this field automatically, with either WSJT-X or JTDX as appropriate.

When you add other digital contacts via the New button (such as a PSK contact using Fldigi), you can click the desired application after entering it in the new Digital Applications module. If you find yourself entering lots of non-JT digital log entries (such as PSK), you can set the appropriate digital application (such as Fldigi) as the new default in the module. Change the default back to None when finished.

For non-digital contacts, Station Log 14 selects None if it's the default set in the module. As stated earlier, you can change the default any time you wish.

When making consecutive add operations via the New button, the Retain Current Digital Application check box lets you temporarily retain the last digital application selected over several log entries. This function is useful when transcribing log entries from a paper log, etc.

You can perform advanced searches, reports, and exports for a selected digital application via the Criteria window.

2. Digital Application Assignment By Mode

The Digital Application Assignment facility lets you assign digital applications to pre-existing log entries by mode, either filtered or unfiltered by date and band.

This facility is particularly useful after upgrading from a previous version of Station Log, and after importing an ADIF file with contacts made using a variety of digital applications.

3. Digital Application Assignment During ADIF Import

For cases where a single digital application was used for all contacts in an ADIF file being imported, a Digital Application field on the ADIF Import Utility lets you perform a digital application assignment during the import. You select None if no application was used.


Mode Replacement Enhancement

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Mode Replacement Facility

The Mode Replacement facility lets you substitute one mode for another in your log, the Bands module, and the Entities module.

Running this facility is useful, if desired, for ensuring your modes adhere to ADIF-specification guidelines (such as reconfiguring submodes as modes).

Here we're in the process of consolidating JT65A, JT65B, and JT65C submodes into a single JT65 mode throughout the database.

Performing this function is optional as many users would prefer maintaining submodes as modes within Station Log.


Prefix and Call Sign Cross-Reference Update Enhancements

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1. Quick, Non-Interactive Updates Via the Exception Cache

The new Exception Cache feature lets you replace the traditional, interactive cross-reference update operation — which has been part of Station Log for years — with a quick, non-interactive process.

After upgrading to Station Log 14, you must perform an interactive operation the first time you run a Prefix and Call Sign Cross-Reference Update. This action populates the exception cache with your selections.

Thereafter, during an update the Prefix and Call Sign Cross-Reference Update facility will use the exception cache to automatically enter the selections you made previously. The only dialog box you'll see during the operation should be this one announcing the update complete:

At times, you'll need to clear the exception cache. For example, after making prefix-related changes to the Entities module. To do so, double-click Clear Exception Cache on the initial dialog box. You will then need to perform an interactive operation to build a new exception cache.

2. I Need/Have the Country.Dat File Options

The I Need/Have the Country.Dat File hyperlinks let you download the Country.Dat file once and then use it again to update a secondary database.

3. Stop the Update

If you make a mistake during an interactive operation, you can double-click Stop the Update to start over. Be sure to clear the exception cache before updating again.


Club Log Integration Enhancement

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1. Automatic Club Log Record Creation

At your option, you can create Club Log records automatically when adding or modifying log entries.

While you're adding or modifying a log entry, the Busy indicator appears on the Club Log toolbar button:

When the record has been created in the Club Log workfile, the Done indicator appears on the button:

Club Log records accumulate in the workfile per database until you upload them.

Only qualified modifications are allowed to a Club Log record, such as changes to the call sign, DXCC entity, date, time, band/frequency, mode, and QSL status (as in Yes or No).

Note: You can also create Club Log workfile records manually by turning off automatic creation in Preferences.

2. Club Log Workfile Viewing and Editing

Should you need to view or edit the Club Log workfile, you can click the arrow next to the Club Log toolbar button and then View/Edit Club Log Workfile.

Notepad appears with the workfile loaded.

After you make ADIF-compliant changes to the workfile, on the File menu in Notepad, click Save without changing the file name or location.

3. Club Log Workfile Upload

When you're ready to upload the workfile:

  1. On the Station Log toolbar, click the arrow next to the Club Log toolbar button and then Create/Upload Club Log Records.
  2. Click Yes to confirm, and Station Log 14 creates an upload file in the Exports folder, which by default is:

    c:\DXtremeStationLog14\Exports
  3. When the Club Log Web site appears, upload the {Name of Database}_ClubLog_Upload.adi file from the Exports folder. Refer to the Club Log Web site for upload instructions.

4. Batch Upload to Club Log

Batch Upload to Club Log is useful when Club Log does not contain all your log entries. Thereafter, the automatic (or manual) method, described earlier, is recommended.

When you're ready to perform a batch upload:

  1. On the Station Log toolbar, click the arrow next to the Club Log toolbar button and then Batch Upload to Club Log.
  2. When the Criteria window appears, specify a date, a range of dates, or other criteria to select log entries to upload.
  3. Click Run. Station Log 14 creates the Club Log records and writes them to a database- and batch-specific upload file in the Exports folder, which by default is:

    c:\DXtremeStationLog14\Exports
  4. When the Club Log Web site appears, upload the {Name of Database}_ClubLog_Batch_Upload.adi file from the Exports folder. Refer to the Club Log Web site for upload instructions.

5. Searching Club Log

You can search another ham's Club Log by adding or displaying the desired log entry, clicking the arrow next to the Club Log toolbar button, and then clicking Club Log Search: Worked Station.

You can search your Club Log by clicking Club Log Search: Me.

The Log Search page on the Club Log Web site appears. Follow Club Log instructions to search the log.

6. Creating Club Log Records During ADIF Import/LoTW QSL Update

The Create Club Log Records check box lets you specify whether to create Club Log records as you import ADIF files and update your database with LoTW QSL records.

The import/update utilities append the Club Log records to the same workfile as that used for automatic and manual Club Log record creation on the Station Log window (as described earlier), leaving the workfile open for the non-batch creation of additional records.

7. Station Log Menu

The Club Log toolbar-button menu items also appear on the main Station Log menu.


eQSL.cc Integration Enhancement

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1. Automatic eQSL.cc Record Creation

At your option, you can create eQSL.cc records automatically when adding or modifying log entries.

While you're adding or modifying a log entry, the Busy indicator appears on the eQSL.cc toolbar button:

When the record has been created in the eQSL.cc workfile, the Done indicator appears on the button:

eQSL.cc records accumulate in the workfile per database until you upload them.

Only qualified modifications are allowed to an eQSL.cc record, such as changes to the call sign, date, time, band, and mode.

Note: You can also create eQSL.cc workfile records manually by turning off automatic creation in Preferences.

2. eQSL.cc Workfile Viewing and Editing

Should you need to view or edit the eQSL.cc workfile, you can click the arrow next to the eQSL.cc toolbar button and then View/Edit eQSL.cc Workfile.

Notepad appears with the workfile loaded.

After you make ADIF-compliant changes to the workfile, on the File menu in Notepad, click Save without changing the file name or location.

3. eQSL.cc Workfile Upload

When you're ready to upload the workfile:

  1. On the Station Log toolbar, click the arrow next to the eQSL.cc toolbar button and then Create/Upload eQSL.cc Records.
  2. Click Yes to confirm, and Station Log 14 creates an upload file in the Outgoing QSLs folder, which by default is:

    c:\DXtremeStationLog14\OutgoingQSLs
  3. When the eQSL.cc Web site appears, upload the {Name of Database}_eQSLcc.adi file from the OutgoingQSLs folder. Refer to the eQSL.cc Web site for upload instructions.

4. Batch Upload to eQSL.cc

Batch Upload to eQSL.cc is useful when eQSL.cc does not contain all your log entries. Thereafter, the automatic (or manual) method, described earlier, is recommended.

When you're ready to perform a batch upload:

  1. On the Station Log toolbar, click the arrow next to the eQSL.cc toolbar button and then Batch Upload to eQSL.cc.
  2. When the Criteria window appears, specify a date, a range of dates, or other criteria to select log entries to upload.
  3. Click Run. Station Log 14 creates and writes the eQSL.cc records to a database- and batch-specific upload file in the OutgoingQSLs folder, which by default is:

    c:\DXtremeStationLog14\OutgoingQSLs
  4. When the eQSL.cc Web site appears, upload the {Name of Database}_eQSL.cc_Batch_Upload.adi file from the OutgoingQSLs folder. Refer to the eQSL.cc Web site for upload instructions.

5. Creating eQSL.cc Records During ADIF Import

The Create eQSL.cc Records check box lets you specify whether to create eQSL.cc records as you import ADIF files.

The ADIF Import Utility appends the eQSL.cc records to the same workfile as that used for automatic and manual eQSL.cc record creation on the Station Log window (as described earlier), leaving the workfile open for the non-batch creation of additional records. (The LoTW QSL Update utility can perform the same action, but only for the import of unmatched log entries.)

6. Station Log Menu

The eQSL.cc toolbar-button menu items also appear on the main Station Log menu.


Other Product Enhancements

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1. LoTW Users Update Now Downloads from the ARRL

Station Log 14 now downloads LoTW user activity from the League. ARRL says downloads are "typically updated once each week."

There's more information in these downloads, including the date and time each LoTW user last uploaded log entries to his or her account.

As such, allow 8 to 30 minutes for the LoTW Update process to conclude, depending on the speed of your computer. In our lab, an Intel Pentium 4 PC running Windows XP took 30 minutes, while an Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 PC running Windows 10 took 17 minutes. An Intel Quad Core i5 PC running Windows 10 took only 8 minutes.

The DX Spot Checker window, Station Log window, and an ADIF Import Utility report indicate whether the ham spotted or contacted is a user of Logbook of the World, including the date and time the user last uploaded.

2. Mozilla Thunderbird Support

Station Log 14 now supports the Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail application on PCs running Windows XP SP3 through Windows 10.

3. Microsoft Edge Support

If Microsoft Edge is your registered (default) browser in Windows 10, you can type Edge in the following boxes of Preferences to use it:

  • File Specification of Web Browser for General Use box on the Internet tab — To use Edge as your browser for general use throughout the software.
  • File Specification of Web Browser for Standard Report Viewer Use on the Report Viewer tab — To use Edge as your browser for viewing standard reports.


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