Welcome to Paul's Web Site
OK - I admit I'm boring. I have one major hobby that permeates my life.
I have a couple of secondary hobbies, but they seem to get intertwined with my major obsession hobby.
Thats not to say that my hobby doesn't have its benefits. I don't have to physically travel to be entertained, I can do it virtually.
My hobby doesn't cost that much, unless I want to spend money on new equipment. It can take almost no time, or every freakin' spare minute
that I have (usually the latter). If the callsign doesn't give it away, I am an amateur radio operator.
Yes, I am in therapy and I am almost cured. I feel much better now. See my headache has almost gone away!
CQ CQ TEST this is VA3PC CQ (.....oops sorry!)
Weather Station On-Line
I purchased a weather station this year, and I finally got around to installing it on the old WISP tower in July. It was reporting via the APRS system, but over the past 24 hours, Kevin managed to modify the WS1 driver for the weewx website code in order for it to communicate with the server using an IP connection instead of a serial port. This allows me to upload to Wunderground, APRS, and CWOP - these are all different and distinct weather sites.
So to see my local weather page (it updates every 5 minutes), click on the link in the top bar, or just go here.
Server Upgrade - Yet Again!
I upgraded the server to ClearOS 6.6 Another re-install from scratch. This time I was able to port over the e-mails, so didn't lose any of them. There was teething pains with some of the PHP scripts used in the background, but they got sorted too. Kevin (my son and now #1 programmer) revamped the repeater listings pages to make them "responsive" to the device and browser in which they are viewed. I have also joined the growing ranks of SSL capable websites.
Also, if you want a peek of the local microclimate here, check out my weather page at findu.com
Too many hobbies, not enough time <sigh>
I have upgraded the server OS to ClarkConnect5. In doing so, I completely re-installed the system. The last few upgrades were done "in place" - meaning I just installed the software
over top the existing installation. This time they recommended a "fresh install". Of course, not everything worked straight out of the box. If you do spot anything not working correctly,
I would appreciate you dropping me a note. Thanks.
I have changed some web server settings to speed up the site. A recent installation of the Drupal Content Management System to host
the North Bay Amateur Radio Club website caused it to slow down to a crawl. All the tweaking does is speed up the site (I hope).
Server Software Upgrade
I have upgraded the server to ClarkConnect 4.3 software. I don't think you will notice anything from a user's perspective,
but the updates implement security patches and additional functionality in groupware applications. If you notice anything amiss, please let me know.
PHP and MySQL Upgrade
I now have more up-to-date versions of the backend software to drive some of the interactive features of the sub-sites
that are hosted here (primarily the repeater directory and the ARES website). If you run into any problems, drop me a line and let me know.
I've updated my website to get away from frames and go to a completely CSS driven layout. I hope you like the
result. I'll be adding more content in the near future as well as fleshing in some of the links etc.
Amateur Position Reporting System
I finally got my APRS (Amateur Position Reporting System) working.
Here is a bit of a write-up on APRS and the settings I use
in the TinyTrack3
unit installed in my vehicle.
15kW Standby Power System
After July's power outage, the decision was made to give ourselves a
standby generator for a Christmas present (and a few other occasions too). We decided on a 15kW unit made by Eaton/Cutler-Hammer..
Power Outage and Storm Damage - July 17th/2006
We've just got power back after 5 days. A severe storm lashed our part of the province on Monday July 17th.
No commercial power, no water (we're on a well), and the hum of generators in the background.
Luckily our only damage was some eavestrough and a TV antenna we don't use very much.
Our trusty portable generator (purchased for house construction in 1990) came through like a champ and provided enough power
to run not only our freezer and fridge, but the neighbours' as well.
They bought their own genny the second day of the outage. Here are some pictures of the tree lying against our house.
Our utility - HydroOne Networks (the distribution arm of the old Ontario Hydro) publicly stated that this was the
second worst infrastructure damage in the history of the province, just behind the ice storm of 1998.
Luckily I had just taken down my HF triband antenna in order to replace the thrust bearing, so it was not damaged,
but I did lose my wire dipole antennas when trees fell on them. I hope to get everything back on the air soon.
In the meantime we have to cut down some danger trees and clean up those which fell on the night of the storm.
The Town of Callander declared a state of emergency which lasted for 7 days - which was also the case in nearby
municipalities also affected by the storm.
Happy Holidays - 2005/2006
In the last month I've changed the welcome page to the main CIINET.ORG site, and implemented Cascading Style Sheet
formatting. That was a fairly steep learning curve! Over the next few weeks, I hope to update all of mycontesting logs on this site.
On behalf of Wanda, Kevin and myself - all the best over the Holiday Season, and have a great 2006.
I've upgraded the server hardware and software. Its now running on a celeron 2.4 with 512Mb of ram,
and I've upgraded the software to ClarkConnect 3.1 - Microsoft has discontinued Linux support for FrontPage2000,
so I will be migrating away from that publishing software in the next few weeks. My apologies if the hit counters
Also, the server PHP version changed to 4.1 which is incompatible with the scripting I used on the original NORL
listings (used too many version 3 shortcuts in the code). I am in the process of rewriting the site,
so when I get it finished I'll put the links back up. Sorry for the inconvenience.
I've just completed a course in PHP/MySQL so as a final project, I've added a section to the website.
There has always been a lack of current information on amateur repeaters in Northern Ontario,
so I've created an interactive database for repeater owners and interested parties to submit their information.
Once a year, I'll download selected information and ship it off to RAC or ARRL for inclusion in the latest repeater directory.
Kevin is now a Ham - VA3KVC
Kevin passed his Amateur Basic Test tonight! Now we have three hams in the family.
He has chosen VA3KVC as his call. Mom (VE3KOJ) and Dad (VA3PC) are proud of you Kevin! -
update: (Listen for him on the local repeaters - Kevin got a Yaesu FT-60 for Christmas!)
Server Upgrade to RAID1
Upgraded the server today. Its now running on a P3-600 with dual 80G drives in a RAID1 configuration.
What this means is that if one drive fails, the other one carries on and the server doesn't go off line.
I also got the HT://Dig search engine working!
I finally got the website up and running. Kevin is busily constructing his site as well.
I'm running it on a ClarkConnect Linux box that also provides an e-mail, broadband gateway and firewall solution.
More info can be had on the CII website.