Thursday, May 01, 2008

Charles Brain's Web Site Vanishes

Those looking for Charles Brain's web site with the "official" distributions of PC-ALE and PC-HFDL got a rude surprise today when it vanished. Those taking the link got a blank white page with the cryptic, "I am sorry but my website got deleted."

The last "official" stable release of PC-HFDL, version 2.031, is still available on this column's web site. It was put there originally by request of Charles to help with his bandwidth issues, and it is a copy of the official msi file in a zip folder.

Since the beta 2.04 was never "officially" released, I won't put it up unless asked to, even though I have the distribution zip archive, and the program has always worked just fine here.

The latest stable, non-MARS version of PC-ALE is 1.062G. There's a beta of 1.062H available here. This one is really intended for amateur radio use, though I have gotten it to work for utilities simply by changing the frequencies and group names in the QRG file. There has been some grumbling about this program by those who preferred the old, terse, rather inscrutable user interface. However, it's the one in use here.

While checking all this, I notice that the frequency 14109.0 is now the amateur ALE "pilot channel," though 14109.5 will be scanned until July of 2008.