Up About Me Amateur Radio APRS - Ontario IRLP VA3PMO IRLP Changes FREE STAR* 2012_Contest dextra XRF004 XRF005 XRF018 XRF020 XRF021 XRF038 XRF044 XRF069 XRF073 XRF905 ISO-Images Vulnerability

NEW:  March 2013:  The FREE STAR* team now supports the Canadian manufactured DVRPTR board ( with the v1.10e and v1.80k firmware.
August 2012:  The FREE STAR* team now supports the BeagleBone (single board computer with an ARM processor) running Debian.  An image will be added as soon as we have completed testing and documentation.
June 2012:  The FREE STAR* team now supports the Raspberry Pi (single board computer with an ARM processor) running Debian. 
FREE STAR* is an experimental approach to the implementation of a vendor neutral, and open source, digital communication network.

FREE STAR* enables existing (FM) repeater owners to establish a D STAR repeater with a choice of interface hardware (GMSK modem or sound card), software and radio hardware.   FREE STAR* currently does not bypass the need for an end-user to own/use a D-STAR radio to access DV enabled repeaters!

FREE STAR* reflectors are open to ICOM and non-ICOM gateways, DVAR, DVAP, and DVTool clients.  Our reflectors re-generate the RF header every 21 packets allowing users with marginal coverage of the local repeater immune to signal drop-out aiding in the immediate recovery of lost audio; similarly, DVAR, DVAP, and DVTool clients connecting to a busy reflector will copy audio immediately (without the need to wait until the next 'over').  Further, our reflectors support multi-linking allowing repeater systems that support this feature to connect 2 or more RF modules to a single (common) reflector module.


A variety of GMSK modems are available.  We have tested several of them.  The following modem passed all of our qualification tests (see the v7 page):

We also support the DSP based modem from the dvrptr team - this new addition provides superior front-end sensitivity at a very competitive price point. Thanks to Pierre, VE2PF for uploading this video:

Additionally, we support the DVAP device, which can be added to a FREE STAR* system either as the principal RF access point or a secondary access point (RF module).

We offer a complete ISO image allowing prospective clients to build a complete system in about one hour.  We also offer an install script allowing for the FREE STAR* software components to be added to an existing CENTOS 5.x box, such as an existing Asterisk / app_rpt (ACID) installation. Hence we enable Allstar node owners / administrators the capability to operate a FREE STAR* system with next to no additional hardware and investment.

September 4,2011:  FREE STAR* Appliance now available.  A HP thin client (T5710) has been successfully converted running CENTOS off a 4GB microdrive.  This client is running the full complement of FREE STAR* software, 2 RF modules (one half duplex and the second a full-duplex repeater).  The HP Thin Client is an extremely cost effective solution, used devices can be found for as little as $28USD.  The conversion cost is an additional ~ $16.  The HP Thin Client can operate off a 13.8VDC supply, it has no moving parts, draws about 600mA @ 13.8VDC and makes an excellent appliance for installation at remote repeater sites.

Please refer to the ISO page to download the above images / install scripts / Quick Install Guides.

October 22, 2011:  FREE STAR* Dual Mode DV and FM solution refined.  We have refined our dual mode (DV and FM) repeater solution.  Yes! - we have a solution that allows an existing FM repeater to be used as a DV repeater as well.  There are many benefits of using Digital Voice.  We feel that the following recordings will 'speak for themselves'.  Thanks to Reg, VA3JQA, for assisting with these tests and providing consent for these to be posted on this website.  The recordings compare a portable station running 1W on FM versus 1W on DV from the exact same location into the same dual mode repeater:

FM Recording

DV Recording


The table below is a work-in-progress attempt to provide the user community with a view of FREE STAR* repeater presence and access information:

(Please note that Half Duplex Access Points require the user's radio to be in duplex mode (+/- DUP enabled with a 0MHz offset), set RPT1=Callsign as shown, and RPT2 = Access Point Callsign with a 'G' in the 8th position - so for example for VE3FSR, set RPT1 = VE3FSR B, RPT2 = VE3FSR G).


Callsign Location TX Frequency RX Frequency Area Served ircDDB Notes
VK3RCE B Bendigo, Victoria 438.9125 438.9125 Bendigo, Victoria Yes Half Duplex - on-air
VK5RMK B Renmark 438.0750 432.6750 Renmark, South Australia Yes Full Duplex - on-air
Callsign Location TX Frequency RX Frequency Area Served ircDDB Notes
VE2PUK B Montreal, QC TBD TBD Montreal Yes Full Duplex (dvrptr) - on test
VE3FSR B Ottawa, ON 445.860 445.860 Kanata South Yes Half Duplex - on-air
VA3HOA B Ottawa, ON 443.600 448.600 Stittsville Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VA3MCU B Toronto, ON 446.825 446.825 Toronto Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VA3ODH B Cumberland, ON 445.850 445.850 Cumberland Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VA3ODH C Cumberland, ON 145.610 145.610 Cumberland Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VA3PMO B Mississauga, ON 444.250 449.250 Halton, Peel, Niagara, Toronto Yes

Full-Duplex; Mixed Mode (analog / digital repeater:  FM - CTCSS:  103.5Hz)

VA3WAJ B Niagara Falls, ON 442.425 447.425 Golden Horseshoe Yes Pending Installation
VE3BFH C Stewartville, ON 145.640 145.640 Madawaska / White Lake Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VE3KKA B Timmins, ON 443.925 443.925 The Great North (Travelling Demo) Yes Alix 3d3 - Travelling Demo System
VE3OBP B Oakville, ON 445.0125 445.0125 Oakville, Burlington, Hamilton Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VE3QSB B Thornhill, ON 442.000 447.000 Thornhill, Richmond Hill, SE Markham Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VE3RSD B Mississauga, ON 443.8125 448.8125 Halton, Peel Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VE3RSD C Mississauga, ON 147.540 147.540 Halton, Peel Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VE3WVU C Mindemoya, ON 144.900 144.900 Mindemoya, M'Chigeeng, Spring Bay Yes Half-Duplex - on-air
VA5DR B Saskatoon, SK 448.125 443.125 Saskatoon, Warman, Martensville Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VE5MBX B Martensville, SK 449.500 444.500 Martensville Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VE5RAD C Battleford, SK 147.120 147.720 North Battleford Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VE6BHX B Edmonton, AB 440.750 445.750 Edmonton, AB Yes Full-Duplex - DVRPTR, Ras Pi - on-air
VE6DXD B Sherwood Park, AB 444.300 448.300 Sherwood Park Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VE7SUN B Delta, BC 440.725 445.725 Delta, Surrey, Richmond Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VA7GQ B Delta, BC 445.775 440.775 Delta (Minimal Coverage) Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VE7XNR B Saltspring Isl., BC 444.850 449.850 Saltspring Island Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
VE7MDN B Saltspring Isl., BC 440.950 445.950 Ganges, Saltspring Island Yes Full-Duplex  - on-air
Callsign Location TX Frequency RX Frequency Area Served ircDDB Notes
SZ1A B Agrinio 439.375 431.775


Yes Half Duplex on-air
ED2YAE B Sestao 438.400 438.400 Bilbao, North Spain Yes Half-Duplex on-air (Full-Duplex pending)
ED2YAN B Bilbao 430.600 438.200 Bilbao, North Spain Yes Full Duplex (Installation pending)
Callsign Location TX Frequency RX Frequency Area Served ircDDB Notes
KB1UAP B Hudson, NH 449.975 444.975 Southern NH / Northern MA Yes Full-Duplex on-air; Mixed Mode (analog / digital repeater:  FM - CTCSS:  88.5Hz)
KB1UAP C Hudson, NH 145.690 145.690 Southern NH / Northern MA Yes Under Test
KC9URF C Sandoval, IL 145.6375 145.6375 Sandoval, IL Yes Half-Duplex on-air
KF5LOG B Fort Worth, TX 446.075 446.075 NW Fort Worth, TX Yes Half-Duplex on-air (pending full-duplex)
KK4GEI C Fort Belvoir, VA 145.650 145.650 Southern Fairfax County, VA Yes Half-Duplex on-air
W0BFD B Fort Collins, CO TBD TBD Fort Collins, CO Yes Under Test
Callsign Location TX Frequency RX Frequency Area Served ircDDB Notes
GB7BD B Dundry 430.450 439.450 Bristol and surrounding area Yes Full-Duplex - on-air
GB7NU B Sheringham, North Norfolk 439.6625 (test) 430.6625 (test) North Norfolk, Coastal Area Yes Collocated with GB3NU
MB6DE C Dereham, Norfolk 144.825 144.825 Dereham & Surrounding villages Yes Half-Duplex on-air
MB6INN B Sheringham, North Norfolk 434.5000 434.5000 North Norfolk, Coastal Area Yes Collocated with GB3NU
MB6SB C Holbeach Lincolnshire 144.8250 144.8250 North West Norfolk, South Lincolnshire, The Wash Sea Area Yes Dual Module System, on-air
MB6SB B Holbeach Lincolnshire 434.025 434.025 North West Norfolk, South Lincolnshire, The Wash Sea Area Yes Dual Module System, on-air
MB6AD C Alford, Lincolnshire 144.8375 144.8375 East Coast Lincolnshire Yes Half-Duplex on-air
MB6NH C Newhaven 144.8375 144.8375 South Coast England Yes Half-Duplex, on-air
MB6LS C Banningham Norfolk 144.875 144.875 North Norfolk Yes Half-Duplex, on-air
MB6PE C Doddington Cambridgeshire 144.8625 144.8625 March & Chatteris, A141 area Yes Half-Duplex, on-air

D STAR repeaters associated with a third-party production Trust server, will not be able to connect to FREE STAR* systems using dplus.    ICOM repeater systems can add dextra_srv on top of their ICOM G2 and dplus installation without risk of repercussion from their Trust team.  Once this add-on software has been added to your ICOM system, you can then access FREE STAR* repeaters and XRF reflectors using dextra_srv *regardless of the Trust server that either system might be associated with.*

The database on FREE STAR* Reflectors is a hybrid database merging the USroot, Multi-Trust and NATRUST databases into a single database.  The sync and merge process takes place automatically.  This approach enables our reflectors to be open to all. 

If you are having difficulty connecting to any of our reflectors, please contact us at dextra {at}

Regular D STAR repeater owners (connected to a production Trust server) may connect to XRF reflectors to participate in testing and assessment.  This requires some add-on software to be installed on your G2 gateway PC.  The software is independent of other add-on software (such as dplus) and does not interfere with dplus operation; there is no cross-connectivity.  The following ICOM D STAR repeaters in Canada have been configured to access dextra enabled repeaters and reflectors:



VO1ILP - St. Johns

VO1TZ - St. Johns



VE2FCT - Sorel-Tracy;

VE2LKL - Trois-Rivières;

VE2RIO - Montreal;

VE2RMF - Quebec City;

VE2RQT - Quebec City;

VE2RTO - Mont-Orford;

VE2RVR - Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu.



VA3ARE - Almonte;

VA3ODG - Ottawa;

VA3SDG - Cornwall;

VA3SRG - Sudbury;

VA3YYZ - Demo System;

VE3LSR - Edgar;

VE3RPT - Uxbridge;

VE3TIR - Timmins;

VE3TTT - London;

VE3WIK - Carlisle;

VE3RXR - Little Current;

VE3YYZ - Toronto.



VE6WRO - Banff National Park, Jasper;

VE6WRN - Calgary;

VE6KM - Edmonton;

VE6IPG - Calgary.


British Columbia:

VA7DSR - Victoria;

VA7ICM - Surrey;

VE7VIC - Victoria.


Should you wish to explore having your ICOM D STAR repeater configured to access dextra enabled repeaters and reflectors, please contact us at the above address.

If you would like to setup your own FREE STAR* half or full-duplex (repeater) system please contact us for information.  Help is also available with system setup, software installation, system security and configuration and testing.