GW4ALG's QRP Radio Pages

[ GW4ALG went QRT in February 2007 ]

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Configuring the CT Contest Logging Program
I'm quite new to CT for DOS, and it took me quite a while to set it up on a PC.  But, with a lot of help from people on the CT Reflector, I have managed to establish a workable system for managing the contest-specific data files.   I am particularly grateful to the following members of the CT Reflector for their help and guidance:
- Ed Parish, K1EP
- John Bednar, K3CT
- John Scott, K8YC
- Mike Mateescu, YO3CTK
Nevertheless, I take full responsibility for any howlers; gaffs; and other mistakes that may exist in any of the suggested configuration information presented below. 

(By the way, I regard myself as a novice when it comes to DOS, and when writing any kind of scripts or batch files -- so please do not hesitate to let me know if you can see ways to improve upon the methods that I have described.)

My contest logging requirements
Any contest logging program used at GW4ALG needs to run under DOS 5 on my aging Toshiba T1850 laptop computer.  (The laptop is only used for contesting, because the main family computer serves all our other computing needs.)   I occasionally run Win 3.1 on the Toshiba laptop for file management  and text editing purposes.  The laptop has a 25 MHz 386 processor; a 120 MB hard disk; and 4 MB RAM.

Other requirements include:
- good use of the Resume/AutoResume features of the laptop (but I think that the way CT operates means that I might have to forego this requirement!);
- automatic QSY of the log to the current band (via a serial port);
- CW keying (via a LPT  port);
- compatibility with the Elecraft K2 transceiver;
- ADIF export capability; and,
- Cabrillo export capability.

System Files
The settings in the CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT files included below may or may not result in the optimum performance of a 386 PC -- they are merely presented here for completeness.   But this configuration does make available enough memory so that CT can handle about 5,600 QSOs in the log, so it's good enough for me!

CONFIG.SYS

@ECHO OFF
rem *********************************************************
rem THIS FILE IS TAILORED FOR USE WHEN RUNNING CT FOR DOS
rem ON A TOSHIBA T1850 LAPTOP COMPUTER RUNNING DOS 5
rem *********************************************************
@ECHO OFF
FILES=50
BUFFERS=20
DEVICE=C:\DOS\HIMEM.SYS
DOS=HIGH,UMB
DEVICEHIGH=C:\WINDOWS\RAMDRIVE.SYS 512 /e
COUNTRY=044,,C:\DOS\COUNTRY.SYS
rem ********************************************************
rem CT gets upset when terminating the program if
rem ANSI.SYS is not installed.
rem ********************************************************
DEVICE=C:\DOS\ANSI.SYS
DEVICE=C:\DOS\DISPLAY.SYS CON=(EGA,,1)
STACKS=9,256

AUTOEXEC.BAT

@ECHO OFF
rem *********************************************************
rem THIS FILE IS TAILORED FOR USE WHEN RUNNING CT FOR DOS
rem ON A TOSHIBA T1850 LAPTOP COMPUTER RUNNING DOS 5
rem *********************************************************
@ECHO OFF
PROMPT $p$g
SET CT_PATH=C:\CTPROG
PATH C:\DOS;C:\CTPROG;C:\BATCH;C:\WINDOWS;C:\WINWORD
rem ******************* Mouse Setup *************************
PATH C:\CPS;C:\MOUSE;%PATH%
C:\MOUSE\MOUSE CENHANCE
rem *********************************************************
MKDIR D:\TEMP
SET TEMP=D:\TEMP
MODE CON CODEPAGE PREPARE=((437) C:\DOS\EGA.CPI)
MODE CON CODEPAGE SELECT=437
KEYB UK,,C:\DOS\KEYBOARD.SYS
C:\DOS\TOSHFONT\VGAC -r IBM
LOADHIGH C:\DOS\DOSKEY.COM
CLS
MENU.BAT

 

Custom batch files
Note that the last line of the AUTOEXEC.BAT file (shown above) runs MENU.BAT  

MENU.BAT

CLS
@TYPE C:\BATCH\MENU.TXT

 

MENU.BAT  (reproduced above) is a batch file that displays the contents of a text file to remind me of the CT-related options and CT-related batch files that I have set up.   (My thanks to John, K8YC for this one.)  

The MENU.TXT file looks something like this . . .

***************************************************************
*                 GW4ALG'S MENU SCREEN FOR CT                 *
*                 ===========================                 *
*   MENU        Displays this menu                            *
*   BATCH       Changes the current directory to C:\BATCH\    *
*   CT          Starts CT to create a new contest             *
*                 (Do this from the Contest-Specific Data     *
*                  Directory at C:\CTPROGS\LOGS\*\*\          *
*                  otherwise you'll have to move the new .BIN *
*                  file from your current directory later on.)*
*   EDIT        Starts the MS-DOS Editor                      *
*   EDITCFG     Starts the MS-DOS Editor and open the CT      *
*                 Configuration file at C:\CTPROG\CT.CFG      *
*   GO          Starts CT for the contest set up in GO.BAT    *
*   FUNRUN<yy>  Starts CT for the specified Fun Run Contest   *
*   CQWWCW<yy>  Starts CT for the specified CQWW CW Contest   *
*   ARRL10<yy>  Starts CT for the specified ARRL 10M Contest  *
*   ARRLDX<yy>  Starts CT for the specified ARRL DX Contest   *
*                                                             *
*                                                             *
***************************************************************

The individual batch files to support MENU.TXT are shown below.

BATCH.BAT

@CD C:\BATCH

EDITCFG.BAT

CLS
EDIT C:\CTPROG\CT.CFG

GO.BAT

CLS
FUNRUN04.BAT

FUNRUNXX.BAT

@ECHO OFF
rem  Above command inhibits display of the commands, including the
rem  ECHO OFF command (due to the presence of the @ character).

rem  ******************************************************************
rem  Unless you are viewing the FUNRUNXX.BAT template itself,
rem  this 'working copy' of the batch file has been copied from
rem  the FUNRUNXX.BAT template for QRP `Fun Run' contests.
rem
rem  Filename format of working copy: FUNRUNyy.BAT
rem
rem  If you want to start a working copy using the `GO' command
rem  from the DOS prompt, be sure to edit the GO.BAT file
rem  so that it references the filename of the working copy.
rem
rem  Before using `GO', or this batch file, always:
rem  a) set up the contest using the CT command; and,
rem  b) move the <contest>.BIN file to the Contest-Specific Data
rem  Directory as per the CD command (below).
rem  ******************************************************************


rem  Start the CT COM1 serial port controller at 4800 baud
COMTSR1 -P1 -B4800 -N82

rem
CLS

rem  Change the directory to the Contest-Specific Data Directory
rem  where the .BIN and other contest-specific data files are located.
rem   *  Remember to change yy in the target directory name to the
rem      two-digit year appropriate to this contest.
CD C:\CTPROG\LOGS\FUNRUN\FUNRUNyy

rem  Start CT using the specified .BIN file and switches.
rem   -NOW skips the contest set-up screen
rem   -L sets colours to black and white
rem   -LZ inserts leading zeros when keying serial numbers
rem   *  Remember to change yy in name of the target .BIN file to the
rem      two-digit year appropriate to this contest.
CT FUNRUNyy -NOW -L -LZ

rem  After exiting CT, unload COMTSR1
COMTSR1 -U

Summary
By inspection of the above files, I expect that you're getting the general idea of how everything fits together.

Firstly, here are the main directories that I'm using:

C:\CTPROG This is my Application-Specific Data Directory where I've put the main CT program and master reference files.  This includes CT.CFG - the Configuration File which is used to (partially) populate a new .BIN file.  For an example, see below.
C:\BATCH This is where I've put all my custom batch files and the associated MENU.TXT file.
C:\CTPROG\LOGS\FUNRUN This is where I keep a copy of  FUNRUN-specific files, including FUNRUN.TXT - a file that reminds me which options to set/unset for this contest type.  For an example FUNRUN.TXT, see below.
C:\CTPROG\LOGS\FUNRUN\FUNRUN04 This is my Contest-Specific Data Directory where the files for a specific contest are located which, in this case, include:
- FUNRUN04.BIN;
- KEYDEF.INI (if any); and,
- Files created by the WRITELOG command (if any)

And here is an example procedure for preparing CT for the next Yeovil QRP 'Fun Run' contest:
1) Enter MENU at the DOS prompt.
2) Use the naming of previous contests to decide on a name for the next contest (e.g. FUNRUN04).
3) Create a Contest-Specific Data Directory
       (e.g. C:\CTPROG\LOGS\FUNRUN\FUNRUN04)
4) Change your current directory to this new Contest-Specific Data Directory.
5) Enter CT to set up the details for the new contest.  CT will use information from the Configuration File, CT.CFG  to set up the new FUNRUN04.BIN file.
6) Copy the batch file C:\BATCH\FUNRUNXX.BAT   to  C:\BATCH\FUNRUN04.BAT
7) Edit FUNRUN04.BAT  to show the correct path to the new Contest-Specific Data Directory and the correct contest name of the .BIN file (i.e FUNRUN04).
8) Edit GO.BAT so that it points to FUNRUN04.BAT (optional).
9) At the DOS prompt, enter FUNFUN04 (or GO) to start the program, then set/unset the options as per FUNRUN.TXT

Other example files

CT.CFG

Name:Steve Rawlings
Call:GW4ALG
Address:14 The Paddock
Town:Chepstow
County:Monmouthshire
State:MON
ZIP:NP16 5BW
Country:Wales
Zone:14
Lat:51.63
Lon:2.68
Club:Bracknell ARC
Grid:IO81
Category:SO
Power:QRP
Mode:CW
Radio1:TS950, COM1, 4800
TNC:NONE
CWPORT:LPT1
Network:NONE
Network:NONE
Station:1
CQ:TEST GW4ALG GW4ALG TEST
QRZ:TU GW4ALG

AUTOSAVE:OFF
NO_WORK_DUPE:YES
CORRECT:YES
CW_ABBREV:YES
REV_PADDLE:NO
 

FUNRUN.TXT

AutoSave/NoAutoSave: NoAutoSave
Beep/NoBeep: Beep
Correct/NoCorrect: Correct
CWAbbrev/NoCWAbbrev: CWAbbrev
DefineKey: (` is the same as Shift+=)
Rpt/NoRpt: NoRpt
Sound/NoSound: NoSound
WorkDupe/NoWorkDupe: WorkDupe
F1 = CQ F^R^ GW4ALG GW4ALG CQ F^R
F2 = 5NN #  5 W   S^T^E^V^E
F3 = TU GW4ALG
F4 = GW4ALG
F6 = AGN
F7 = ?