Centerville Repeater moved to Brandmeister Network

Terry’s repeater in Centerville was moved from the K4USD cBridge over to Brandmeister about 4pm this past Saturday the 31st. Minnesota State TG3127 is on Time-Slot 1.

Updated code-plugs (Radio Programming) are available for download on this website.

The move includes a couple of minor changes for talk-group numbers. The Old TG1 becomes 91, the Old 3 becomes 93.  MNDMR is now available at TG31127.

More repeaters swapping Minnesota Statewide and MNDMR Time-slots

Bill – KDØYRF has announced that on Wednesday evening after the Wednesday night net, January 10th, Repeaters connected to the MNDMR cBridge will be reconfigured to modify or swap the time-slots for two talk-groups. Minnesota Statewide TG3127 will be moving from Time-Slot 2 to Time-Slot 1 just like the MTKA, BLM, BLW, Chaska and StPaul repeaters. They will then move their MNDMR TG31127(1127) from Time-Slot 1 over to 2.

The impacted repeaters are AIR, MSP, LIT, BKH, MED, RST.

The move for Minnesota Statewide from TS2 to TS1 accomplishes the goal of freeing up Time-Slot 2 for more user activated activities including Local2, Local9 and the TAC talk-groups. Today Minnesota Statewide is where most of the activity is. If it’s active, these other talk-groups are impacted and basically unavailable.

Please plan for updating your code-plug (Radio programming) on Wednesday night after the net or around 8pm January 10th. New updated code-plugs can be found on this site around that date.

MMDVM Hotspot with OLED display

For anyone handy with a soldering iron, here’s some eye candy. It’s not that difficult to add an OLED display to the MMDVM hotspots if you have a steady hand, good eyesight and about 10 bucks. I’m recommending the Pi-Star software distribution for our MMDVM hotspots as most all of the configuration is now possible from a web browser and the software for running external displays is built in (always could be enabled, but it’s easier now) OLED display can be sourced from China for about 4 bucks and 4 weeks… Amazon will bring you one tomorrow if you like: I plan to polish my plastic case with one of those headlight rejuvenation kits. Should become crystal clear with a small amount of elbow grease.


Another teaser – New hardware pledge

If you’re a digital radio nerd, you might be interested in the sexy, ham sexy, new hardware under development. I am one of the early pledges to see this hardware come to fruition. You can check out the device here:

This little USB dongle will support the bidirectional trans-coding of our digital streams from one radio technology to another. So, someday in the not too distant future, you might be able to turn on your DMR radio and bridge to another radio frequency in a another part of the state or world. Let’s say you’re on vacation and in Hawaii. Imagine turning your radio dial to a DMR talk-group where you can control a remote base in Minneapolis and entering the 146.XX repeater into the DTMF pad on the front of your radio. That ability to encode and decode the analog stream into the DMR network is provided by this hardware. There’s still software in development and the same is true with this hardware. It’s not here today, but there are those of us behind the scene working on these technical challenges. DStar, Fusion, Analog, DMR, P25, Other IMBE are all modes being worked on.

I’d like to ask for your financial support. Installing and operating the DMR network isn’t inexpensive. The repeaters themselves begin to look really cheap when you consider the filtering, cabling, duplexers, electric bills, hard-line, connectors, lightening protection, Internet access, routers, microwave links, etc. With your financial support, I can continue to invest in new technologies and increase the capabilities of Minnesota’s DMR (and other) Radio Networks. The KickStarter project will be funded at the end of January. I hope to have ~$400 for this hardware dongle and will contribute testing and code review to the projects. Additional projects include the WhiteBear Township Water Tower DMR site, Duluth Hill DMR site and with the right funding, a major DMR installation in the eastern metro. Unfortunately both WhiteBear and eastern metro have hellacious installation expenses. Paypal donations gladly accepted at – 73 nØnki – Eric Osterberg I’d like to thank those of you who have already donated for past projects and without any solicitation. I very much appreciate this.

Check out the video on Kick Starter, (link above)

Software Info: dvswitch, hblink, hbbridge, dmrlink, ipsc2hbp, dmrlink, dmr_utils <– all of these found on GITHUB @ – Amazing work by many including nØmjs, n4irs, m0nwi, HuskyARC, MrBungle42 and so many other names.

Happy Birthday Brandmeister

Two years ago today, Brandmeister appeared at the domain:
The network designed by hams for hams using completely open specifications designed to connect anything without regard for the politics.
Without Brandmeister, your hotspot would not exist. Home brew equipment would not have access to the networks. (Or maybe someone else would have done it!) I’m very thankful myself. Happy belated Thanks-Giving day!
73 – NØNKI (Eric Osterberg) – n0nki

DMR Simplex Frequencies

Below are the recommended simplex frequencies to be used with DMR in the United States and Canada. In addition to this information, please note the following radio configuration items:

Admit Criteria: Please set this to “Always”
In Call Criteria: Please set to “TXI” or “Always”

441.0000 UHF 99 1 1
446.5000 UHF 99 1 1
446.0750 UHF 99 1 1
433.4500 UHF 99 1 1
145.7900 VHF 99 1 1
145.5100 VHF 99 1 1

The $400 World Wide Mobile Me . . . Part 4: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

This is Part 4 of a 4 Part Article.
Part 1 covers assembling the hardware

Part 2 covers provisioning the Raspberry Pi with Software

Part 3 covers Final Configuration of the hotspot

Part4 is Frequently Asked Questions

While I can’t be there to troubleshoot all your questions and problems as a community we can learn from each other.

Note from KØBSB: I am not going to be the general help desk for the Raspberry Pi, Raspian, or anything not directly connected to this article.  Try a Google or other search engine  to find your problem or error message, or go to stack exchange and ask them.   I reserve the right to ignore any questions that in my Opinion do not apply directly to this series how to!  Do not expect an email or call.   

If you have a problem, or a question in assembling this particular HOTSPOT send an email to:


 Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: I try using Pi Finder “Terminal” button, the screen opens up, and tells me that it can’t connect.  (Example: you get a message like, “Error: All configured authentication methods failed “)  What am I doing wrong?

A: You are having an SSH Access problem.  Check the following points:

  • Check your Pi Finder screen and make sure the SSH User ID is pi-star and the SSH Password is Raspberry  Note you should change it to something else, as someone can easily get in and use your system for nefarious purposes.
    • The easiest way to change the pi-star password is to wait until everything is done, and at the bottom of the configuration page you can change the password simply.
    •  If you want to change the password from the Raspberry Pi console enter the following commands:
      • sudo passwd pi-star
      • if this is the first time you have entered sudo you may be asked to enter the original password most likely raspberry
      • it will ask you to enter in the new password
      • it will ask you to re-enter the new password
      • if everything checks out it will inform you the password has been changed
      • do not forget to update the Pi-Finder screen with the new password!
  • The IP Address was used before with a different MAC Address or ID.  This can happen if you write new software onto the µSD Card.  On your computer (Not the Raspberry Pi) edit the file .ssh/known_hosts, find the previous IP address of the pi-star system and delete the line and save the file.  
    • On a MacOS or Linux System Open a terminal session and enter:
      • sudo nano ~/.ssh/known_hosts
      • scroll down to the pi-star previous IP address and delete the line
      • save the file
    • try accessing the Raspberry Pi with the Pi Finder Terminal button to see if it works now.
  • You skipped a step in the SD Card preparation.  SSH is disabled.  Starting in October 2016 the Raspberry Pi Foundation with the release of the new Pixel desktop shut off SSH.   They explain what they have done, and how to fix it here. Its a good lesson in Raspberry Pi Security.  To Summarize:
    • Power off the Raspberry Pi
    • Remove the µSD Card, and put it back in a card reader on your Laptop/Desktop
    • Open the drive volume:  boot
    • create a blank file called ssh in the /boot directory (i.e. /boot/ssh)
    • Note: there is no extension, if your editor created a file extension rename the file without one.
    • eject the drive
    • place the µSD Card back in the Raspberry Pi and boot it up.
    • SSH should now work

Q: I keep forgetting to type sudo before all the commands.  Isn’t there a simpler way?

A:  Yes, but it is a bit dangerous.  You could put the terminal session into administrator mode.  Understand that in UNIX like systems Administrative or root mode has very little protections and you can seriously damage you system.  For example, if you tell the system to delete a file(s) it will do so without question, including its own operating system essential files.  In other words, if you don’t watch what you are doing in this mode very carefully, you can brick the system.   If you want to easily enter root mode on the pi, simply type:

  • sudo bash

To exit root mode enter:

  • exit

another way is to enter:

  • su –

but that will require the root password.

Note: It’s probably a good thing to set the root password on the Raspberry Pi.  It is not set initially and most people never set it.  There are security considerations for this. If, however, you need to recover the disk drive during the boot sequence a program called fsck (the Linux version of ScanDisk) will ask for it.  If you have not set a root password, you will not be able to proceed further and the only alternative is to re-write the µSD card with the last backup.  Essentially you have a brick on your hands.  For this reason I always set the root password and to something very secure.  Please note that the error I have just described would not be visible as we have configured the DHAP as a headless system.  To detect this error, you would need a monitor with HDMI input and a USB keyboard connected to the DHAP.  I have such a setup at home, I just don’t take it traveling with me.  The Raspberry Pi being so  small and simple tends to make people thing it is not complex.  Hook a HDMI monitor to the Raspberry Pi and watch the boot sequence, it is pretty complex, all the programs running in the background.  But I digress…

To set the root password enter:

  • sudo bash
  • passwd root
  • set the password
  • exit
  • you should return to a pi-star prompt


= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

This concludes the 4 Part Series The $400 World Wide Mobile Me….


Happy communicationg, and having fun with your new Hotspot!


Barry, K0BSB