Subject: Re: Sun 3/50 Ham Radio.
To: None <>
From: =?ISO-8859-1?Q?H=E5kan Th=F6rngren?= <>
List: port-sun3
Date: 01/31/2001 22:54:47
>>>>> "David" =3D=3D David Kelly <> writes:

David> Alan Pearson writes:
>> Hi folks,
>> Got a sun3 given to me a week or so ago and got NetBSD and Xwindows =
working on
>> it after some hassle. It is an unexpanded beast (4Mb) with no local =
disk (yet, I
>> have the box and cables etc..).
>> I was wondering how NetBSD shapes upto the world of AX25, as I would=
 like to
>> use this machine as an AX25 sort of router for HAM packet radio.
>> Not sure quite what yet, but silly questions here they are.

David> Look for JNOS and TNOS applications. At one time these compiled =
and ran=20
David> under at least SunOS. I've compiled TNOS for FreeBSD and even su=
David> pactches which were folded back into the main source. However th=
e TNOS=20
David> author can only be described as a Linux bigot and gratuitous lin=
David> broke the next version.

I used NOS back on my Amiga.  It was a typical PC program, a monolite t=
hat reinvented everything and totally closed.  I hated it.

You can use AX25 as link level protocol for TCP/IP, so why not put it
into to NetBSD kernel?

I wrote an AX25 implementation for the Amiga once and some
applications for it as well.  The problem with packet radio is that
you are not allowed to use it for anything useful and people get
annoyed at you when you try to use it.  The installed base of users
are also quite small (at least around here).  I have not checked for a
couple of years, but I guess it is the same today.  The whole point of
packet radio is to build networks, but few users understand that.=20

A year after I disconnected my radio a neighbour stormed into my
apartment and accused me of disturbing the sound on his TV, just
because I had left the antenna up.  For the sake of good spirit I took
the antenna down, not that it helped his TV...  But I will hopefully
move some day and it may be interesting to try it out again.
Hopefully some fellow has implemented it for NetBSD by then, or I
might use a Linux box, or possibly take the time and implement it

I do not spend much time on these NetBSD lists, I once hacked up HP
Lif floppy support for the Amiga port and asked if there where any
interest in it or how I should proceed to get it into the
distribution.  I got no reply.  Yes I know it was a narrow
extension.. :-)

David> Be cautioned that JNOS and TNOS are security disasters waiting t=
David> happen. Both are ports from an all-in-one DOS program. Have the =
AX25 and
David> TCP/IP network stacks built in, BBS, SMTP, FTP, HTTP...

Doesn't it sound silly to have NOS reinvent the wheel for you over and

David> I fail to see why AX.25 belongs in the kernel, as Linux has done=
. Timing
David> isn't that critical. If a connection out the other network facil=
ities is
David> needed then use the kernel's SL/IP, PPP, or BPF interface. Direc=
David> access to the 8530 serial port would be nice as then one could u=
se a=20
David> BayCom-ish radio modem without bit-banging the protocol.

I am no kernel expert in any way, but I think it would be nice to have
it in the kernel.  I would like to use it together with TCP/IP, can
that be done without having it inside the kernel?  You should also
consider that many machines that run NetBSD are old and slow.  AX25
in itself is not slow, it depends on the communication hardware being

If someone would like to describe to me briefly how they think AX25
should be implemented on NetBSD I would be very interested.  Just to
get me started and think a little bit more about it...

David> Unix needs a Unix-AX25 userland suite of applications. But nobod=
y seems=20
David> to care enough these days to spend the time doing it. Myself inc=

That is probably correct, but you could probably get somewhere using
TCP/IP based applications over packet radio for a start.  FTP and SMTP
would be nice for example. We used AX25 a little bit for running a
multiuser game around here. It was not popular, other people seemed to
like a quiet channel more, even though they did little with it...