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W0CHP.radio

The WPSD Project

Main Dashboard Screenshot

Welcome to the official home of the WPSD Project. WPSD is a next-generation digital voice software suite & distribution for amateur radio use, enjoyed by many thousands of hams around the globe. It is used for personal hotspots and repeaters alike. It supports M17, DMR, D-Star, Yaesu System Fusion (YSF/C4FM), P25, NXDN digital voice modes & POCSAG data/paging.

WPSD is available as installable disk images, and multiple platforms & devices are supported. The WPSD Project is free and open-source software (FOSS).

Table of Contents:

Installing WPSD

Quick Start

  1. Download the appropriate disk image for your device / platform.

  2. Use a tool such as Raspberry Pi Imager or Balena Etcher, to write the disk image to your SD-Card. These tools will automatically decompress the .xz file as well.

    • You will need an SD card of at least 8GB to install these disk images.
    • Important: If using Raspberry Pi Imager, do not use the “advanced options” to create a user, change the password, etc.! The “pi-star” user and password is already on the disk image, and it is required for many of the programs to function properly. (You can change the “pi-star” user password from the WPSD configuration page after you first boot up WPSD.)
  3. Optional: Use my WiFi Config File Generator to automatically connect the dashboard to your WiFi…

  4. Otherwise: After about 5+ minutes post-bootup, you can connect to the “Pi-Star-Setup” WiFi network to login to the dashboard and configure your hotspot after it’s booted…

  5. Insert the SD-Card into your hotspot and bootup!

  6. The default login is;

    User: pi-star

    Password: raspberry

  7. Important: if installing the WPSD Bookworm version, please note the special instructions and changes.

Detailed Instructions

A detailed installation guide is also available in the official WPSD User Manual.

Installation Notes

Important Info for First Bootup:

  1. When first booting from the WPSD disk image, go grab a coffee, drink, etc. and let the file-system auto-expand and the rest of the system initialize. Be patient. Full details on this can be found in a dedicated document.
    First Gen. Pi Zero W users take note!
  2. When installing from the WPSD disk image, it’s a best practice (and better) to run an update before setting up or making configuration changes to your hotspot. This ensures that setup/configuration changes you make are the most tested and up-to-date.

Download WPSD

Choose the disk installation image for your specific hardware / device from the following device matrix…

If you don’t see a disk image in the matrix for your specific hardware, it doesn’t exist…read the FAQs.

Select Operating System:

Bullseye (Debian 11) Operating System
Common and Generic Hotspots / Devices WPSD Disk Image
Raspberry Pi (for RPi Zero, Zero 2 and Models 2, 3, & 4) Platforms WPSD_RPi_Latest.img.xz
Nano Pi Neo Platform WPSD_NanoPiNeo_Latest.img.xz
Orange Pi Zero Platform WPSD_OrangePiZero_Latest.img.xz
Vendor-Specific Hotspots / Devices WPSD Disk Image
BridgeCom SkyBridge MAX/Plus

This is the official and custom-built disk image specific to the newer SkyBridge MAX and older SkyBridge Plus Hotspots.
WPSD_SkyBridge-Max_Latest.img.xz
DVMEGA Cast

This is the official and custom-built disk image specific to the DVMEGA Cast Radio / Device.
WPSD_DVMega-Cast_Latest.img.xz
DVMEGA EuroNode

This is the official and custom-built disk image specific to the DVMEGA EuroNode Hotspot.
WPSD_EuroNode_Latest.img.xz
ZUMSpot Elite 3.5

This is the official and custom-built disk image specific to the ZUMspot Elite 3.5 Hotspot.
WPSD_ZUMspot-Elite_Latest.img.xz
ZUMSpot Mini 1.3

This is the official and custom-built disk image specific to the ZUMspot Mini 1.3 Hotspot.
WPSD_ZUMspot-Mini_Latest.img.xz
ZUMSpot USB Stick

This is the official and custom-built disk image specific to the ZUMspot USB Stick Hotspot for use on a Raspberry Pi. A Raspberry Pi computer is required.
WPSD_ZUMspot-USB_Latest.img.xz
ZUMSpot MMDVM-Pi Repeater Board

This is the official and custom-built disk image specific to the ZUMspot MMDVM-Pi Repeater Board. A Raspberry Pi computer is required.
WPSD_ZUM_MMDVM-Pi_Latest.img.xz
File Integrity Check
SHA-256 Checksums for the Disk Image Files: WPSD_SHA256-SUMS.txt

Getting Help/Support

Updating WPSD

Once you install WPSD, it will automatically be kept up-to-date with any new features/versions/etc. This is made possible via the native, nightly updating process.1

If you do not leave your hotspot powered on during the night, you can also manually invoke the update process via the dashboard admin section (Admin -> Update).

It is highly recommended that you simply leave your hotspot(s) powered on at night, since WPSD is rolling release/continuous delivery software - updates are rapid and frequent!

Features, Enhancements and Omissions

Although WPSD began as a derivative of the original Pi-Star software and shares some minor similarities, WPSD is vastly different and is its own software. Expect to learn about these differences and nuances to become familiar with WPSD…

The following lists describe the features, enhancements and omissions as compared to the original Pi-Star software…

Note that this is not an exhaustive list.

Functionality Features

  • Unlimited Profiles: save and switch to profiles instantly, for different mode uses, configurations, different users/callsigns, etc.
  • Full APRSGateway Support: Selectable APRS Data Sharing with specific modes.
  • Full DGId Support.
  • “Live Caller” screen; similar to a “virtual Nextion screen”; displays current caller information in real-time.
  • Current/Last Caller Details on Main Dashboard (name/location, when available).
  • Talkgroup Names display in target fields (Brandmeister DMR, NXDN and P25 support only).
  • YSF/NXDN/P25/M17 link managers gives the ability to change links/rooms/reflectors/TGs on-the-fly, rather than going through the configuration page.
  • DMR Network Manager allows instant disabling/enabling of configured DMR networks/masters; and fast switching of XLX reflectors and modules. Handy for “pausing” busy networks, talkgroups, timeslots, etc.
  • Full M17 Protocol Support. (See M17 Notes below…)
  • BrandMeister Manager revamps galore:
    • Now displays connected actual talk group names.
    • Connected dynamic talk groups now display idle-timeout time (due to no TX).
    • Added ability to mass-drop your static talk groups; and mass re-add the previously linked static talk groups.
    • Added ability to batch add/delete up to 10 static talk groups at a time.
  • “Instant Mode Manager” added to admin page; allows you to instantly pause or resume selected radio modes. Handy for attending nets, quieting a busy mode, to temporarily eliminate “mode monopolization”, etc.
  • “System Manager” added to admin page; allows you to instantly:
    • Disable / Enable OS Firewall (handy if you are already behind a good one).
    • Disable / Enable Cron, in order to prevent updates and WPSD services restarting during middle-of-the-night/early AM operation.
  • Ability to configure POCSAG hang-time from the config page.
  • Native Nextion screen support built-in; no futzing around with Nextion drivers/scripts.
  • Selectable DMR Roaming Beacon Support: Network or Interval Mode (or disabled) - for actual repeaters only.

User Interface / Design Features

  • Updated user interface elements galore, styling, wider, bigger, updated fonts, etc.
  • Optional “Simple View”; shows only activity: no mode status, hardware status, etc. Just activity data. Accessed via http://your-hotspot-url/simple/
  • Country-of-origin flags for callsigns.
  • Improved and graphical CSS/color styling configuration page; easily change the look and feel of the dashboard.
  • User-Configurable number of displayed Last Heard dashboard rows (defaults to 40, and 100 is the maximum).
  • User-Configurable font size for most of the pertinent dashboard information.
  • Reorganized and sectioned configuration page for better usability.
  • System process status reorganized into clean grid pattern, with more core service status being displayed.
  • User-Configurable 24 or 12 hour time display across the dashboard.
  • Connected FCS and YSF reflector names and numerical ID both displayed in dashboard left panel.
  • Additional hardware, radio and system information displayed in top header; which can be toggled.
  • Admin page split up into logical sub-sections/sub-pages, in order to present better feedback messages when making changes.
    • Note: Last-Heard and other dynamic tables are hidden in the admin sections by default, allowing users to focus on the tasks-at-hand and their outputs. The Last-Heard data can be toggled in these areas, however.
  • Enhanced mobile device view/layout

Features in Pi-Star Which are Deliberately Omitted in WPSD

  • DSTARrepeater mode/controller type removed: WPSD operates in the more modern and updated/supported MMDVM mode only, and the legacy DSTARrepeater functionality is gone. You can still run WPSD as a D-Star hotspot/repeater, of course.
  • Upgrade notice/nag in header (unnecessary and a hacky implementation). This has been replaced by my own unobtrusive and configurable dashboard update notifier; displayed in the upper-right hand side of the top header.
  • “Upgrade” feature via the dashboard and command line is removed. The “Update” feature via the dashboard and command line (wpsd-update) takes care of all upgrades/updates.
  • Custom BannerH2 (etc.) text options have been removed (added clutter and I never used it). Instead, the hostname is displayed in the browser title.
  • “GPS” link in Call Sign column of dashboard (superfluous and unreliable).
  • CPU Temp. in header; when CPU is running “cool” or “normal” recommended temps, the cell background is no longer colored green. Only when the CPU is running beyond recommended temps, is the cell colored orange or red.
  • No reboot/shutdown nag screen/warning from admin page (Superfluous; you click it, it will reboot/shutdown without warning.).
  • Yellow DMR Mode cell in left panel when there’s a DMR network password/login issue (poor/inaccurate and taxing implementation, and can confuse power users that utilize my Instant Mode Manager, where the default cell is amber colored for paused modes [color is user-configurable].). Instead, the actual network name is highlighted in red when there’s a login issue.
  • BER column: BER is only valid from RF-to-hotspot/repeater, so there’s no BER column in the last heard data table. BER is displayed only in the Local RF data table when transmissions => 10 seconds (for accuracy); where it makes more technical and logical sense.

Screenshots

To help keep this web page small/quick, the WPSD screenshots are on their own page.

Notes about M17 Protocol Support

M17 protocol support requires updated MMDVM Modem Firmware or MMDVM_HS HotSpot Firmware of at least v1.6. Ergo, you may need to update your firmware using the included MMDVM_HS (etc.) firmware flash/update programs in WPSD.

Here are the relevant device firmware upgrade commands.

Known Issues & Incompatibilities

Raspberry Pi Zero-W, v1.x (1st Gen., single-core CPU)

If you have a first-generation Raspberry Pi Zero2 (Pi Zero (W) Rev.1.1 armv6l) with the single-core processor*, and have installed the RPi WPSD disk image, you need to do a couple of things before you can access it:

  1. Install a WiFi config file before you boot the image, or connect it to Ethernet. Network connectivity is required for first boot-up.
  2. Let the image boot and configure for about 30 minutes, otherwise you will not be able to access the dashboard.

If you fail to do these things, you will get a “502 Bad Gateway” error when attempting to access the dashboard.

If 30 minutes passes, and you still cannot access the dashboard, simply SSH into the hotspot and run:

sudo wpsd-update

* Note: The official ZUMSpot Mini 1.3 Disk Image (below) does not have this issue, since I built the disk image for that specific hardware.

TGIF Spots with Nextion Displays

WPSD disk image installations do work, however, you may lose some of the superfluous TGIF Spot Nextion Display functionality. If you install WPSD on TGIF Spots with Nextion displays, and the displays don’t work the way you want, don’t complain about it or ask us about it; as their strange software hacks3 are not a part of WPSD.

You can always load a different and stable Nextion layout file which requires no software hacks, however. But you’re on your own with these hotspot displays.

Restoring and/or Using Configurations/Settings from “OG” Pi-Star Software

Because WPSD uses much more modern and updated backend software, configuration backup/restores from the original Pi-Star software is incompatible for the most part, and is unsupported. It is always recommended that you use an appropriate WPSD disk image for your hardware, and setup/configure from scratch.

How to Contribute to the WPSD Project

There is a dedicated document explaining how to contribute to the WPSD project.

Credits

WPSD used to be a one-man show (me), but many people have contributed code, etc. to the project; and we also have an official WPSD Core Dev. Team. Thank you all! With the exponential growth, doing this alone would have sucked. I am grateful for all of you!

Of course, lots of credit goes to the venerable and skilled, Andy Taylor, MW0MWZ, for creating the wonderful Pi-Star software in the first place. Pi-Star was foundational to the creation of The WPSD Project.

The USA callsign lookup fallback function uses a terrific API, callook.info, provided by Josh Dick, W1JDD.

The callsign-to-country flag GeoLookup code was adopted from xlxd… authored by Jean-Luc Deltombe, LX3JL; and Luc Engelmann, LX1IQ. I run an XLX(d) reflector, plus, I was able to adopt some of its code for WPSD, ergo, I am very grateful. The excellent country flag images are courtesy of Hampus Joakim Borgos.

A big “thank you” goes to the amazing people/devs/sysadmins from the wonderful M17 Project for hosting the WPSD disk image mirror server!

Credit must also be given to to Kim Heinz Hübel; DG9VH, and Hans-Juergen Barthen; DL5DI, both of whom arguably created the very first MMDVM and ircDDBGateway dashboards (respectively); of which, spawned the entire Pi-Star concept.

So much credit goes toward the venerable José Uribe (“Andy”), CA6JAU, for his amazing work and providing the game-changing MMDVM_HS hotspot firmware suite, as well as his MMDVM_CM cross-mode suite.

Lastly, but certainly not least; I owe an enormous amount of gratitude toward a true gentleman, scholar and incredibly talented hacker…Jonathan Naylor, G4KLX; for the suite of MMDVM and related client tools. WPSD would have no reason to exist, without Jonathan’s incredible and prolific contributions and gifts to the ham community.

Project Name & Etymology

When WPSD was first released in late 2020, I named it “W0CHP-PiStar-Dash”, since it was a major fork to the popular Pi-Star software (the “OG Red Software”).

Over time, the project diverged and evolved exponentially from its humble beginnings. During this time, I, as well as other users simply called the software “WPSD” as an acronym, or shorthand for “W0CHP-PiStar-Dash”.

However, more time had passed, and the popularity plus the user install base had increased exponentially. This growth in popularity also garnered WPSD contributors, developers, volunteers and fans. By this time, many were already calling the software “WPSD”, so it stuck.

At the same token, the developers/volunteers and I had agreed that since the software is now truly its own; and that removing “Pi-Star” references from code, “branding”, etc. would behoove the project (and the users). By removing the old Pi-Star references, we thought that it would be fair to the original Pi-Star project, and help users understand that WPSD is in fact, very, very different.

Of course. WPSD is a now a recursive acronym! 😆

So, here we are today - WPSD is the name of the software suite and project. And WPSD is a completely and deliberately different acronym from what it started as; it is now a much-adorned recursive acronym:

WPSD = WPSD Plausibly Stands for Divergence

That’s right; WPSD stands for “WPSD Plausibly Stands for Divergence”. With the Keyword being ‘divergence’, because the project has, and continues to diverge, improve, and evolve from the “OG Red Software”.


  1. WPSD occasionally queries our servers in order to determine if updates are available. Our servers log these transactions, and the data is used for web server traffic capacity planning/analytics, as well as for troubleshooting user issues and bugs. This data is used internally, exclusively; and is not shared. If you do not want this data collected, simply do not install or use WPSD. 

  2. WPSD was not created for single-core and low-powered hardware; such as the first generation RPi Zero, etc. (armv6l). The dashboard will run slowly on under-powered hardware at times. Please consider yourself warned. Also, please ignore all of the hams on various support mediums saying, “anything more than a Pi Zero is overkill”. These ignoramuses have no idea what goes on under the hood in order to display meaningful info on the dashboard. Hint: it’s a lot, and it’s very resource-intensive. Ignore them…they have no idea what they are talking about. 

  3. TGIFspots with Nextion displays are shipped with customizations; and this custom code is what makes some of the superflous functions of the TGIFspot displays operate the way they do. These customizations are not a part of, nor are they supported with WPSD; as some of it replaces and/or modifies core and crucial system software. 

Document Version: 9bb3a7b -- Last Revision: 6/10/2024
Permanent Link: <https://w0chp.radio/wpsd/>