Key West Feed Network TRBL

The Windows Event Log shows the Southernmost Feed is bickering with the Ethernet switch serving it. So today I locked it at 100Mbps on both ends which will hopefully eliminate these random drops resulting from the port bouncing. It started after a Windows Update a few months ago and nothing else I've tried seemed to cure it.

It was especially bad right after a reboot. I like to apply Windows Updates and reboot the thing weekly because...Windows, so you can see how that would be a problem.

I will keep an eye on it, but I think it should be solid from now on.


Railfan Scanner Is Here

 Uniden has finally released the BCD260DN scanner that receives analog FM as well as NXDN and DMR (MotoTRBO) digital modes. It does not follow trunking systems, they want the big bucks for the SDS200 to do that.

The AAR (American Association of Railroads) has settled on NXDN as the digital mode of choice for U.S. railroads going to narrowband. F.E.C. has made a couple attempts, but is still in good old analog FM. If and when they ever switch this scanner should be ready for them and all the others.
Plus, a recent road trip revealed that many public safety agencies in smaller jurisdictions have switched to MotoTRBO or NDXN, so this would be good for someone, say, in south Georgia or along the panhandle of Floriduhhh. 
I don't own one, in fact nobody does yet because they're still in pre-sale at the time of this writing in late February 2024, but they're supposed to start shipping some time in March.
I get a cut from Amazon if you buy it from them, as you would expect.
Uniden BCD260DN scanner



Southernmost Feed Broken

UPDATE: 2023.12.02 Thanks to my good friend Lu, Bote's Southernmost Feed is back up. BUT! The same problem that started with the Windows Update is still taking down the network interface at random times for random durations. Until I can figure out why it will just go haywire sometimes. Best I can do with this hobby project.


Windows Update upset the network driver in the Key West feed computer. In the process of troubleshooting it the thing never came back from a reboot. It's down there and I'm up here, so it will probably be some time before anybody can walk up to the screen and see what it's trying to tell us.

Networking is the one thing that can kill a remote system like that. It figures.


Comcast Murders Broward Feeds

UPDATE: As of 11:05 Comcast is back up, but it keeps going out for a few minutes at a time. I guess they're disconnecting network nodes along the line back to their head-end. Expect brief outages the rest of the day.

Comcast promised their Xfinity cable internet service would go down for an extended period of time in order to allow them to "upgrade" their network to whatever 10G means this week. I guess today is the day because there's a truck with a ladder up to a utility pole and no bits are flying across my cable modem.

When it comes back, all the Broward feeds will come back:

Bote's Mixer Board

Bote's Wild Feed

Bote's F.E.C. Oakland Park feed

Bote's CSX/SFRTA Oakland Park feed

Good thing I'm building a system locally on my bench LAN today and that still works just peachy keen!


Key West Feed Kerflooey AGAIN

UPDATE: 2023.02.01 19:33 service restored, thanks to Remote Desktop (for a change).

Same ol, same ol. Windows Update -> Windows Explorer (Desktop in reality) crashed -> black screen

No E.T.R.

Hopefully, we can get somebody down there to reboot it, but that's not a guarantee.

I hope to replace that p.o.s. laptop with a more powerful machine, but will need time to make the preparations. Good luck with that.

If I could get VSThost to run on linux I'd get rid of Windows yesterday!


Railroad Feeds Funky

UPDATE: I rebuilt Windows and re-installed the latest versions of the software. It was needed anyway. There might still be a reboot or two upcoming as I tweak a few settings, but all Broward feeds are back online. I will also tweak audio levels as I try to balance everything again.

After FP&L blew up a transformer which took out our electricity for a couple hours, now SDRsharp is acting funky. I guess it's high time to upgrade to the latest, greatest release, but I don't know if that will fix this problem or not. It could be due to the latest Windows Update.


Hurricane Ian updates

 Hurricane Ian knocked out power to so much of Key West that most of the island can be considered without electrical power today. Bote's Southernmost Feed lasted as long as the big UPS batteries allowed, but finally lost power around 07:00 this morning. Keys Electric Coop crews were heard talking on the radio just before the feed went down, so it's only a matter of time before power is restored and we can get somebody to walk over and turn on the feed computer and everything.

Meanwhile, Broward County is getting hit with some gusty breezes. I saw an unconfirmed 911 report of a tornado near Oakland Park Blvd and the ocean, but nothing heard on the scanner so far. We might yet lose power here at our world HQ as gusty as it has become this morning.

UPDATE: Electrical power was restored around noon Wednesday, so Bote's Southernmost Feed is back online. For now I'm leaving Florida Keys Electric talkgroups enabled so we can hear the extent of damage and some people might even hear when their power is to be restored, which is nice. 

The airport is open, although the airlines have not resumed service as of this writing. Their Internet service is still out, which is a very common problem in the Keys. I'll have to listen for the daily crash phone test tomorrow morning; I missed the one on Wednesday because the power died on the stream about a half hour earlier.


Weather Tweeps

 A list of good accounts to follow on Twitter for reliable information about South Florida weather and tropical systems in the Atlantic.

Scientists at NHC and Other Tropical Researchers

@NHC_Atlantic - official National Hurricane Center account







Hurricane Hunters (actually fly the planes into hurricanes)



Weather Forecasters









Automated Accounts



Key West feed kerflooey

UPDATE 2021.04.23 - Bote's Southernmost Feed has been restored to service thanks to the efforts of a loyal local listener. The screen was blank no matter what we did so a power cycle brought it back to life. Aint Windows 10 great??

The Southernmost Feed has gone off into space (again). And Windows 10 was supposed to be so solid and reliable. And today is Wednesday which typically follows Tuesday, which is the big Windows Update day, so...I thought I disabled all that automatic update stuff so that I could supervise it to prevent THIS EXACT PROBLEM.

As soon as a local contact person can make it over to the feed site to reboot it, the thing will be back online, but that likely won't happen until tomorrow. This is a hobby, after all.


Comcast Up and Down

UPDATE 2021.04.07:  Comcast has been stable for the better part of 24 hours so I'll declare things up and running again. Now the trouble is that I have a new public i.p. address, so I have to update that address in the other end of my point-to-point VPN links, which is not going well.


Comcrap has been up and down all morning (mostly down) so the Broward area feeds have followed suit. 

 I'm not declaring that things are back up until at least tomorrow. Comcast's app first said it would be repaired by 3PM, then when I checked an hour later it said by 4PM. Extending the promised repair time is their oldest trick in the book.

Just be patient. You be patient, sir, or you won't get anything.