VK Contest Log
The home of VK Contest Log (VKCL)
specialising in Australasian contests
but also covering some international ones too.
VKCL Version 4.1.3
23rd June 2017
It has just been noticed that points calculations for Division 2 give rather inflated values. This is caused by adding 2000m and 630m bands to the band table for Station Log, but forgetting to revise the index for band multiplier for Division 2. The points calculations will be corrected before cross-checking uploaded or submitted logs.
If you notice this update before uploading your log, you can correct your points calculations by downloading and installing this update, then perform a "fake" edit of a Division 2 contact on the whole log display, clicking on the Save & Recalc button to finish. Of course, it can also be done any time after too.
(See below for information about installation.)
Winter VHF-UHF Field Day
No news have been heard about the long promised review of the rules, so presumably the Winter contest will still have the two divisions as before.
Thanks to Marc, VK3OHM (yes, he is on the cover of the 2017 Call Book, and yes, he is also on the cover of the March 2017 Amateur Radio magazine), who wrote and installed the necessary software at the WIA web site, VKCL can now directly upload your log(s) to the WIA web site without you having to find the log files on your computer.
After creating a log and returning to the Contest Log Output dialog window, a large button on bottom left appears labeled Upload Existing Log. Pressing that button opens the following upload dialog;
After entering a description of the log being uploaded, press the UPLOAD button to perform the upload. More information is available in the help files. Please use this facility, and if you do not care about the results, just describe your log as a 'Check Log' as in the example above. It will help in cross-checking other logs and give the contest manager a better overview of what happened during the field day. (Add "No report" if you do not wish to receive a Log Check Report either.)
Still being hopeful that the review will happen one day, the notes prepared some time ago, although probably not exhaustive or complete, may still be useful as a prompt for your input to the review. The notes can be seen on this page, and the page also includes some suggestions and questions regarding the cross-checking of logs after the contest.
Please submit your logs! You didn't really participate if you didn't submit your log!
VKCL Version 4.1.2
12th June 2017
On first install and start, it is essential to create or select a contest folder before selecting the contest, or else VKCL will crash.
A small patch has been added to inhibit contest selection until a contest folder has been first created or selected. Also another patch is required to avoid a crash when creating the Cabrillo log file for multi-operator stations.
VKCL Version 4.1.1
2nd June 2017
The list of Australian Shires has been revised and corrected. In this release, there is no change to the software, just a new VK Shires database.
As noted below, if you get an "Unknown Shire" indication from VKCL and you are in a hurry, just log it anyway and let the contest manager resolve the problem. If you have time, you can ask for the name of the shire and then find the correct code in the pick list activated by the 'Select Worked Shire' button on the right of logging window.
VKCL Version 4.1.0
16th May 2017
This is the first "release" of VKCL Ver 4, long time in preparation. It is actually being released earlier than intended, but it avoids having to augment the previous version with new facilities.
Operationally Ver 4 is almost identical to the previous Ver 3 so there should be no 'learning curve' to use the new version if you have used the previous version before. Internally, Ver 4 uses a very different database, one that is much more resistant to corruption and also can be accessed across a network.
By default, Ver 4 installs into a different folder, C:\VKCL4, without disturbing the installation of Ver 3. (See below for more information about installation.)
(WARNING for those that used beta test versions of VKCL4. If you attempt to open a previous contest using this version, it will probably lead to a crash, as the database structure has been revised!)
VKCL Version 4 Installation
The installation process for Version 4 is identical to the previous versions. The new version installs into a different folder, C:\VKCL4 by default, and a shortcut labeled VKCL4 appears on your desktop. Both versions can co-exist in the same computer, and if necessary, run at the same time without interference to each other. (The shortcut image is the same as before, only with a new label. To avoid confusion it may be useful to delete the VKCL3 shortcut. You can always activate Ver 3 by navigating to the installation folder C:\VKCL3 and double clicking on the VKCL3.exe there.)
The help files for Ver 4 are reasonably complete and should be perused as time permits or when in doubt how to proceed. If a satisfactory answer is not found, email to the author as above. Suggestions as to what else should be included in the help files, or what parts could be elaborated, are welcome. (No promise that every suggestion will be implemented, but it will be appreciated.)
After several requests, a very simple "station log" has been implemented in VKCL. The page here describes what is implemented and how it works.
As always, please report any problems in installation or use of VKCL.
Voice and CW keying for VKCL
Currently an omission from VKCL is any form of voice or CW keying facilities. Many transceivers have such facilities built-in, but for those that do not, Greg, VK3VT, has developed a comprehensive keying system for both voice and CW using additional free utilities.
The setup of the keying is written specifically for the Remembrance Day contest, but can be adapted for any other contest. You can download the setup instructions and the required scripts from the NERG web site at this link: http://www.nerg.asn.au/?q=node/7 (This was developed with VKCL Ver 3, but should also work with Ver 4.)
The ContestRadar web site has been upgraded to accept 8-char locators. Distance calculations in VKCL are always made using 6-char locators, but use and exchange of higher accuracy locators is useful to give better accuracy for where to point your antennas.
Contest radar may be updated from VKCL when configuring the VHF-UHF Field Day, or directly on ContestRadar map at http://contestradar.com/ before the contest.
There has been some interest in the use of transverters with VKCL. Since it is no longer possible to determine the band from OmniRig input, additional input is required to VKCL for that purpose. The page here (revised Aug 2016) describes what will be implemented in the next major version of VKCL, Ver.4, that will be 'released' when the rules for the VHF-UHF Field Days are finalised and implemented.
Among other enhancements, Ver. 4 will use a much more reliable, albeit a bit slower, database, SQLLite3, which can be fully networked so that multi-operator stations can log all contacts to one database.
A slash-0 font is distributed with VKCL which is easy to install and differentiates letter-O and digit-0 more unambiguously.