Field Day Logs Information & Tips

Starting with the Basics - Super Easy to Use!

Dennis, KG4RUL was kind enough to send along this PowerPoint presentation of the N3FJP Field Day Software tutorial, which covers all the basics and is perfect to use to introduce new folks to the software at club meetings prior to Field Day. This presentation was written for the older VB6 versions, but still gives a nice introduction and overview. Please see the text below the Registration Information for more helpful setup information.

Please click this link to download the PowerPoint presentation (and feel free to edit it for your club's use as you see fit). Download the N3FJP Field Day Software tutorial in PowerPoint format.

Even if you don't have PowerPoint installed, you can still display all the slides by downloading the presentation in PDF format! Download the N3FJP Field Day Software tutorial in PDF format.

Here is a quick start video I created with folks brand new to Field Day in mind, covering the very basics of my Field Day software:

Registration Information

Club Registration:
If you are registering one of these programs for your club event, please provide the CLUB call sign for password registration as well as a call sign/e-mail address for a contact person so that we can relay important upgrade information.

Previous Registration or Lost Password:
If you have registered the Field Day Contest Log or the Field Day Network Log previously, the password we sent you will work with the current version. While we always appreciate your continued support if you would like, you don't have to register again for a newer version. You can e-mail us if you have misplaced the password, and we will look up your registration and forward the password to you.

Installation on Multiple PCs under One Registration:
One registration entitles your club to run multiple copies of the program on different PCs under one call sign at one Field Day location. GOTA stations are the exception. You may run a copy of the software under the club registration for the GOTA station, even though it has a different call sign. Please keep the password confidential for club use at your Field Day site only. The registration is not transferable to any other club, person or entity.

Setting up the new Field Day Contest Log 4.0 and later for Networking...

Setting up the new, C#.NET version of my Field Day Contest Log, which is networkable and replaces BOTH the old, archived VB6 versions is very easy and quite similar to the old, VB6 networked version (details on the VB6 networked version are near the bottom of this page).

If you are running Field Day Contest Log 4.0 or later as a stand alone application, simply install the software and you are good to go. If you are setting up multiple clients in network configuration, updating a common data file, the networking setup of the new version is almost identical to the old, VB6 version. The only difference is the new version allows you to click File > New to create a new file in a shared location, instead of having to use Windows Explorer to copy the .mdb file, as you had to do with the VB6 version. This makes it even easier to get started using the new version!

In short, simply put the LogData.mdb file in a drive and folder location that is accessible with permissions for updating (not just reading) to all clients on your network. From the menu options of each client, click File > Open, navigate to the file and select it. That will do the trick. Once you have done that, enter a test contact from each client. They all should appear within 60 seconds on each client (faster if you click Settings > Refresh Rate and increase the speed).

If you attempt to log a contact and receive "unable to execute SQL Command", your folder permissions are set to read, so you can see the file, but not update. Setting your permissions properly will correct that.

For enabling messaging, band message status, etc., from Field Day Contest log 4.0's menu options click Settings > Network and follow the directions on the form that appears. It is not necessary to enable these features to log in network configuration.

You'll find lots more specific instructions for the new versions of my Field Day software, a new TCP networking option (as of July 2013) and requirements for your network here!

Below are instructions more applicable to the old VB6 version.

Above all, do not wait until Field Day to set up your network! Problems solved easily in a relaxed environment can seem insurmountable when the clock is ticking! Take some time now, get your Field Day equipment together, install the software and get everything set up, so when Field Day Saturday arrives, you can just relax and enjoy the contest!

Field Day and Digital Interface!

Here is a quick start page to help you quickly get up and running with a number of different digital programs that will interface with my software including FLDigi, Digital Engine, PSK Express. JTAlert and W4ELP Lookup (which connects my software with DM 780).

Old, Archived VB6 Field Day Contest Log

This Field Day Log is meant to be used as a stand alone version.

If you cannot use the Network version, you can combine files from more than one PC for submission by clicking from the menu options File > Combine or Restore File from Backup.

You can use this Log in conjunction with the Field Day Network Log to operate your GOTA station, but it requires a separate registration.

If your map does not display properly, please try this:

From your Windows Taskbar (XP users) click Start > Control Panel > Display > Settings > Advanced. Under the General Tab in the Display section you will see a choice for DPI Settings. This must be set to Normal Size (96 DPI) in order for the Map to display properly. Click Apply after selecting your choice.

Old, Archived VB6 Field Day Network Log

This program is almost identical to the Field Day Contest Log (see above) in appearance and performs all the same functions. The code, however, has been modified extensively so that this program will function on a local area network (LAN).

With the Field Day Network Log, you can have as many PCs updating the same log file simultaneously as your LAN will support.

You do not need a separate license for each PC that the program is installed on. Please keep the password confidential for club use only.

If your club is running a GOTA station, this station CANNOT be part of the network. You must add the totals from the GOTA station to your grand total at the end of the contest on the Summary Sheet.

The Network version requires more RAM and processor speed for optimum performance than the stand alone version. If your group only plans on making 1,000 contacts or so, you can probably get by with 75 MHz Pentiums. If on the other hand you have serious competition in mind, then we would recommend at least 300 MHz machines with 64 MEG of RAM for acceptable results with large databases.

Old, Archived VB6 Field Day Network Log Pointers

- For the messaging features to work properly, the path to the log file from the computer hosting the log should NOT route through the network. The client's path must route through the network and begin with \\ (the \\ tells the software that it is a client and which PC to connect to as the server). For example, the server's path might be: C:\FD\FDLog.mdb and each of the client's paths would be: \\Develop\C\FD\FDLog.mdb (assuming the PC hosting the file was Develop).

- Because some versions of Windows can be particular about accessing files in the c:\program files directory via the network, it is best to create a separate directory outside of program files on the PC hosting the log file such as c:\FD.

- Make sure that all PCs and your router or hub are on a UPS (uninterruptible power supply)!

- A backup of all your data is written to every PC connected to the log file every 15 minutes. Even if the PC hosting the log file has a catastrophic failure, you can recover your log from any other PC on the network by clicking File > Combine or Restore from Backup.

- Don't wait until the Saturday morning of Field Day to install and test out the software on your network! If you haven't already done so, get the PCs together before Field Day, hook them up and make sure that each PC is able to access and update the common data file. Problems solved very easily in a relaxed atmosphere can seem insurmountable when the clock is ticking.

Have fun, and we hope to work you!