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2.4.4 Function Key Examples

There are sample function key files on the web site at Sample Function Key Files. There are three sub-galleries, one for each mode (CW, SSB ande Digital). Open the gallery for the mode you are interested in and download the files for the contests you are interested in. To use them, you can name these files when you set up for a new contest, or you can import them into the function key editor. You can examine them either in the function key editor or simply from a text editor like Notepad.

The program comes preloaded with standard generic function key message files for all three modes, called CW Default Messages.mc, SSB Default Messages.mc and Digi Default Messages.mc . These work for contests with simple exchanges (like CQ WW or CQ WPX), and basically for all SSB contests.

If you are using the Default Messages.mc file for a given mode and use the function key editor to make changes, those changes will be permanent, i.e. they will apply to all future contests where you use that file. Therefore if you make changes for a particular contest but you don't want those changes to apply to other contests, you should use a contest-specific mc file instead of the generic default file. You can create or download contest-specific files and use the Associated Files tab in the Contest Setup dialog to name the file you want to use for that contest. Once you have done that, future contests of the same type will automatically use the same message files as the previous contest of that type.

In message files, # starts a comment line. Any line not starting with # is used as a function key definition, regardless of whether it looks like one or not.

Each active (non-comment) line contains a button label (appears on the button in the Entry window), then a comma, then the contents. If you want to put an ampersand in a label (as in S&P), you must type in two ampersands (as in S&&P).

The label is arbitrary. It is suggested that you put the fkey name (F1, F2, etc.) and a very brief description in the label, because this makes the button labels in the EW act as visible documentation for the fkeys even if you never use the mouse. However, putting F3 in a label DOES NOT automatically mean that this message will go into F3.

The association between lines in the mc file and the function keys is strictly positional. The first non-comment line (starting with any character other than #) is the F1 message regardless of what the label says. The second line is the F2 message. And so on.

There are up to 24 active lines in a file. The first 12 are for Run mode, the second 12 are for S&P. If there are fewer than 12 active lines, function keys after the last one will be empty, and S&P keys will be identical to Run. If there are exactly 12 active lines, S&P will be identical to Run. If there are between 12 and 24 active lines, the S&P lines after the last one will be identical to their Run counterparts. So for example, if there are 15 active lines, the first 12 are Run F1-F12. The next 3 are S&P F1-F3, and S&P F4-F12 will be identical to Run F4-F12.

There may not be any skipped lines in the file. If you leave a line out, all the following lines will effectively be shifted up by one.

1. SSB

SSB files contain wav file names. wav files are assumed to be in the wav subdirectory of the N1MM Logger+ user files area. If an {OPERATOR}\ macro appears in the file name, the file will be found in a sub-subdirectory named with the current operator's call sign. It is possible for !, # and @ macros to appear as well, but only if a complete set of individual wav files for each letter and number is found in the wav\LettersFiles sub-subdirectory (or a sub-sub-subdirectory named in the Configurer under the Other tab, DVK Letters File Path box). There is one sample SSB file on the web site (Generic-SSB-Plus.mc). The differences between different contests are mainly in the contents of the recorded wav files, not in the contents of the function key messages.

Basic example file illustrating the use of the {OPERATOR} macro:
F1 CQ,{OPERATOR}\CQ.wav
F2 Exch,{OPERATOR}\Exchange.wav
F3 TNX,{OPERATOR}\Thanks.wav
F4 {MYCALL},{OPERATOR}\Mycall.WAV
F5 His Call,empty.wav
F6 Spare,empty.wav
F7 QRZ?,{OPERATOR}\QRZ.wav
F8 Agn?,{OPERATOR}\AllAgain.wav
F9 Exchg?,{OPERATOR}\Exchange query.wav
F10 Spare,empty.wav
F11 Spare,empty.wav
F12 Wipe,{WIPE}
F1 CQ,{OPERATOR}\CQ.wav
F2 S&&P Exch,{OPERATOR}\S&P Exchange.wav
F3 Spare,empty.wav
F4 {MYCALL},{OPERATOR}\Mycall.WAV
F5 His Call,empty.wav
F6 {MYCALL},{OPERATOR}\Mycall.wav
F7 Rpt Exch,{OPERATOR}\Repeat Exchange.wav
F8 Agn?,{OPERATOR}\AllAgain.wav
F9 Spare,empty.wav
F10 Spare,empty.wav
F11 Spare,empty.wav
F12 Wipe,{WIPE}

Make sure your wav directory contains a subdirectory named with your call sign, and that that directory contains all of the filenames listed in the file except for "empty.wav", which is installed with the program.

2. CW

CW files contain the actual text that is to be sent, possibly intermixed with substitution macros (like {MYCALL}, !, #, {EXCH}) and control macros (like {WIPE}, {CLEARRIT}). Note that if the {EXCH} macro is used, you must enter the correct exchange in the Sent Exchange box in the Contest Setup dialog - consult the Contest Setup instructions for the contest. There are CW files on the web site in the Sample Function Key Files gallery for most major contest types.

2.1. Generic CW example

F1 Cq,cq test {MYCALL} {MYCALL} test
F2 Exch, {SENTRSTCUT} {EXCH}
F3 Tu,tu {MYCALL} test
F4 {MYCALL},{MYCALL}
F5 His Call,!
F6 Repeat, {SENTRSTCUT} {EXCH} {EXCH}
F7 Empty,
F8 Agn?,agn?
F9 Nr?,nr?
F10 Call?,cl?
F11 Empty,
F12 Wipe,{WIPE}
F1 Qrl?,qrl? de {MYCALL}
F2 Exch,{SENTRSTCUT} {EXCH}
F3 Tu,tu
F4 {MYCALL},{MYCALL}
F5 His Call,!
F6 Repeat,{SENTRSTCUT} {EXCH} {EXCH}
F7 Empty,
F8 Agn?,agn?
F9 Nr?,nr?
F10 Call?,cl?
F11 Empty,
F12 Wipe,{WIPE}

2.2. Sprint CW examples

Whether you operate the NA Sprint or not, these examples will illustrate the use of various macros in combination with text in function key definitions.

2.2.1. Example 1

This Function key set is based on a set posted by Kenny, K2KW
F1 CQ,* * <<<NA>>>
F2 Exch, * {EXCH}
F3 TU,EE{S&P}
F4 {MYCALL},*
F5 His Call,!
F6 QSO B4,B4 E E
F7 ?,?
F8 Agn,AGN
F9,
F10,
F11,
F12,
F1 CQ,**<<<NA>>>
F2 Exch,! {EXCH} *
F3 TU,EE{RUN}
F4{MYCALL},*
F5 His Call,!
F6 QSO B4,B4 E E
F7 ?,?
F8 Agn,AGN
F9,
F10,
F11,
F12,

Running Message Notes

  • For F2, there is a space before the *; E.G. "<space> * {EXCH}"
  • For F3, "EE" is there to confirm the QSO. You could easily use "TU".
  • After the "EE" is sent on the F3 message, the {S&P} macro puts you into the S&P mode. Then just hit your UP/DOWN arrow to QSY.
  • Personally I have F6 programmed as {EXCH} to send a repeat on the exchange


S&P Message Notes

  • Note the difference in the sequence for the F2 message compared to the Running F2 message
  • For the F3 message, the {RUN} macro puts you in the running mode, ready to work a tail ender and send him the correct QSO sequence
  • Personally I have F6 programmed as {EXCH} to send a repeat on the exchange

2.2.2. Example 2

This function key set is based on one posted by Pete, N4ZR.
F1CQ,* * NA{CLEARRIT}
F2 Exch, * {EXCH}|
F3 TU,E~E {CLEARRIT}
F4 {MYCALL},*
F5 His Call,!
F6 QSO B4,B4 *
F7 Rpt Exch,{EXCH}
F8 ?,?
F9,
F10,
F11,
F12,
F1 CQ,* * NA{CLEARRIT}
F2 Exch,! {EXCH} * {RUN}
F3 NR,#
F4 {MYCALL},*
F5 His Call,!
F6 Name,PETE
F7 State,WV
F8 ?,?
F9,
F10,
F11,
F12,

Note two things about this set:

1. The {RUN} macro is in S&P F2, not F3. This worked great for me - when I pressed Enter to send the S&P exchange, the exchange was sent, the QSO was logged, and the mode changed to {RUN} with the cursor in the call sign box. Therefore I did not have to press F3 to get from S&P to Run. The main problem with this is that if anyone asks for a repeat of the serial number, the Run keys are already active, so you have to either remember how to get the serial number from the S&P set (Shift+F3), or else just use the paddle, which is what I did.

2. There is no {S&P} macro in this set. At the end of a Run QSO, you switch to S&P mode by just QSYing. This also worked OK for me; since you are going to have to QSY anyway, there seems to be no real need to force a change to S&P mode. I also had the "QSYing wipes the call & spots QSO in bandmap" option selected, which may have helped ensure that the cursor was in the right place after QSYing by wiping the entry window. Of course I did not actually have the band map open, and I just ignored any call signs that showed up in the frame in the entry window.

2.2.3. Example 3

Customizing N1MM Logger for the North American CW Sprint by Steve, N2IC

I'm not going to try to explain how to operate the Sprint - for this, there is an excellent writeup at: http://www.kkn.net/~n2ic/sprint.html
What I will do is describe how to get the most out of N1MM Logger in the Sprint. My operation is SO2R, and my configuration is optimized for that mode. However,I'm sure you SO1R guys will pick up a few tricks from what I have done for SO2R.The most important thing is to get your options, windows and function keys setup correctly before the Sprint starts.

The Options...

Start up N1MM Logger+, and create a new SPRINTCW contest.

In the Config menu, select the following options:

  • Enter sends message (ESM)
  • QSYing wipes the call & spots QSO in bandmap
  • Do not automatically switch to run on CQ frequency
  • Show non-workable spots
  • SO2R->Toggle CTRLFx Macro


Note: SO2R->Focus on Other Radio is NOT turned on

The Windows...these are the only windows I have on my screen and all fit nicely on my small monitor

  • Entry Window (one for each radio)
  • Visible Dupesheet (one for each radio)
  • Info
  • Log
  • Score Summary



Classic FunctionKeys1


The Visible Dupesheet is really nice once you get used to it. To see if a station is a dupe, you just scan the dupesheet with your eyes, rather than frantically type a call into the Entry Window. You can change the font size in the Visible Dupesheet by dragging it wider, so that there is white space past right-most column. Then right-click in the white space for a choice of a small font or a large font.

Notice that I do NOT have the "Available Mults & Q's" window open. Open the Bandmap window, but size it to a very small size. It's needs to be open, even though it is of no use in Sprint.
Open the Telnet window. Select the Filters tab. Change the Bandmap DX spot timeout to 1 minute. That's right....1 minute. Press Update. Now close the Telnet window. Don't reopen it. It is of no value in Sprint, but it is important to change the bandmap DX spot timeout value to 1 minute. This controls how long calls stay on the bandmap and the appearance of calls in the "on deck" frame of the Entry Window. We're obviously not using packet in the Sprint.

Function Keys ....

Here are my function key definitions. I'll explain a few that aren't obvious.

F1 CQ,{JUMPRX}cq na cq na * na
F2 Exch,* # steve nm
F3 TU,{CLEARRIT}T{END}{CONDJUMP}{STOPTX}
F4 (MYCALL},*
F5 His Call,!
F6 QSO B4,! QSO B4 * NA
F7 Other Short,{CTRLF10}
F8 Other Long,{CTRLF11}
F9 Go S&&P,{S&P}
F10 CQ,CQ NA * * NA {RUN}
F11 Long CQ,CQ NA CQ NA * * NA {RUN}
F12 ,-
F1 S&&P CQ,{JUMPRX}CQ NA CQ NA * NA
F2 S&&P Exch,! # STEVE NM *{RUN}
F3 S&&P TU,TU
F4 S&&P{MYCALL},*
F5 S&&P His Call,!
F6 S&&P Name,-
F7 S&&P Other Short,{CTRLF10}
F8 S&&P Other Long,{CTRLF11}
F9 Go Run,{RUN}
F10 CQ,CQ NA * * NA {RUN}
F11 Long CQ,CQ NA CQ NA * * NA {RUN}
F12,


With the CQ F3 key, my "thank you" message is sent. When you QSY, you will automatically be changed to the S&P mode. Do not include the {S&P} macro here -it will cause the last station worked to get "stuck" in the on-call fame of the Entry Window.

With the S&P F2 key, as soon as I send my exchange, it immediate switches to Run mode.
I can also force myself into Run and S&P modes with the F9 key.

The F7 and F8 keys send CQ's on the "other" radio. This is very useful when the other station is sending his exchange, and you are going to lose the frequency (i.e. it will become "his" frequency). You can send a CQ on the other radio, while he is sending his exchange. Then, when he finishes sending his exchange and you need to send your "thank you" message to finish the QSO, all you have to do is hit Enter, which will stop the CQ on the other radio, and send your CQ F3 message on the active radio. However, you had better be ready to copy a new caller on the "other" radio. You also need to be sharp with the Pause key to jump between the two radios when this happens. The {CONDJUMP} macro in the Run F3 message will move your entry focus to the "other" radio, so that you will be ready to copy a new caller.

When I'm CQing on the active radio, but simultaneously doing S&P on the other radio, and hear a new station, I can just hit the Enter key. This will stop the CQ, and send my call on the other radio.

One thing you need to do is keep an eye on where your transmit and receive focus is (the red and green dots on the Entry Window). When you're doing SO2R in the Sprint, there will be times where your focus is not where you might expect it, or want it. Always be ready with the \ and Pause keys to jump between radios. Yes, this takes lots of practice, and you will make mistakes. The Thursday night NCCC Sprints are good practice for this.

73 and see you in the Sprint !
Steve, N2IC

3. RTTY

Digital file messages generally begin with {TX} and end with {RX}, except for program control macros.

3.1. General RTTY example

The way the keys below are designed, they will work in many RTTY contests without any changes. Whether these particular ones suit your situation will depend on your antennas, your power, QTH, etc.; but maybe these will give you some ideas to work with.
F1 CQ,{TX} CQ TEST * * CQ {RX}
F2 EXCH,599 {EXCH} ! {RX}
F3 TU,{TX}{ENTERLF} ! TU * QRZ? {RX}
F4 {MYCALL},{TX} * {RX}
F5 His Call{TX}{ENTERLF}!
F6 QSO B4, {TX} QSO B4 * CQ {RX}
F7 Rpt Exch,{TX} {EXCH} {EXCH} {EXCH} {RX}
F8,{TX} AGN AGN * {RX}
F9,
F10,
F11,
F12,
F1 CQ,{TX} CQ TEST * * CQ {RX}
F2 EXCH,{TX}{ENTERLF} ! TU 599 {EXCH} {EXCH} {RX}
F3 TU,{TX} ! TU {RX}
F4 Call Him,{TX} * * {RX}
F5 1x1,{TX} ! * {RX}
F6 0x1,{TX} * {RX}
F7 Rpt Exch,{TX} {EXCH} {EXCH} {EXCH} {EXCH} {RX}
F8 Agn,{TX} AGN AGN {RX}
F9,
F10,
F11,
F12,

When using the above keys it is assumed that ESM is on. The Run mode keys F5, F6 and F7 are not very useful when you are S&Ping, this is why I put those keys to better use by programming them differently from the Run mode keys.
Note also that you can use up to 24 additional buttons (mouse only, no keyboard access) on the digital interface window. For example, you can set up 0x1, 0x2, 0x3 and 0x4 calls, single, double and triple exchanges, separate requests for his zone and state and repeats for your zone only and for your state only, and so on.

3.2. Example RTTY where the time is part of the exchange (like BARTG).

In the following table only the keys that are different from the general example above are shown

F2 Exch,{TX}599 {EXCH} {EXCH} {TIME2} {TIME2} ! {RX}
F7 Rpt Exch,{TX} 599 {EXCH} {EXCH} {TIME2} {TIME2} {RX}


Last Modification: 24 March 2016 11:10:02 EDT by VE3KI.