PennLink Group


D-RATS is a suite of programs that allows transmission of files, E-Mails, and Chat between amateur radio stations who are using DSTAR protocol.

PennLink Group has provided an Email Server, which allows for unattended forwarding of "Radio Based Emails" to their final destinations via internet based email.

The Email Server will eventually be moved to the DSTAR Repeater site, which is a mountain top site which has emergency power, and is closely connected to the Internet through a SONET ring backbone fiber. It is not impossible that this site could go down, but it is less likely for a contained local disaster. Thus, the Email Server is intended to be another tool available for the local area to provide emergency communications.

To use the Email Server:

(1) Establish D-Rats communication using your radio on the W3PLG B DSTAR Repeater - frequency (447.7125 MHz -5 MHz).

(2) Compose the Email, and/or schedule the Email to the "Send Via" mode. There are two ways to address an email, as a radio Callsign, or as an email address. If an email address is used, the system will send the email via internet. If a radio callsign is used, it will hold the email in its Outbox until that particular station comes online. It will then download the email to that station. This is called "Store and Forward."

(3) When the Send Via window appears, type in the Via Station as 'W3PLG M'

(4) Your D-Rats software will transfer the email to the W3PLG M Email Server, and it will forward it to its destination via internet email or by radio depending on what you have supplied as the destination address.

(5) If the Addressee replies to the email, the reply will be received by the W3PLG M Email Server (via internet), and will be held in its Outbox until the original 'From, Radio station' is seen on the air. The email will be downloaded to the original 'From Radio station' via RF.

D-RATS General Usage Guidelines:

When using D-RATS on either the W3PLG or W3OI DSTAR Repeaters, we suggest changing your radio's "To DR" setting from "Use Reflector" to "Local CQ". This will ensure that your D-Rats packets will not be routed through the Gateway to any linked voice reflector system. Using the local repeater also decreases handshaking Gateway traffic, which can improve the performance of DRATS File Transfer.

When using the PennLink Group Email Server, there is also a "RatFlector" established at IP Address: port 9000. This can be used at any time, or if you are out of the area and cannot reach the system via RF.