Digirig How-To’s

Over the last several weeks, I have been trying to get Winlink and VARA HF/FM working with a Digirig on Windows.

Little did I know what a nightmare it would be.

Rigs involved in this experiment include:

    1. Yaesu FT-991A (HF)
    2. Yaesu 891 (HF)
    3. Yaesu FTM-300D (FM)
    4. Yaesu VX-6R  HT (FM)
    5. Yaesu FT-60 HT (FM)
    6.  Anytone DV878 HT (FM)
    7. Baofeng BF-F8HP HT (FM)

To get everything to work – these things must happen:

    • You must have a competent USB cable for the Digirig
    • You must have a Digirig cable for the rig you have
    • You must configure Windows to work with the Digirig
    • You must install and configure Winlink
    • You must install and configure VARA to work with Windows, Winlink, and the Digirig
    • You must configure your rig to work with all of the above.

Is it any wonder new or non-techie Hams get frustrated?

I was able to get all of the above rigs to send Winlink Emails via VARA with a Digirig. Yes – including the Baofeng. I have deep technical experience, but this effort almost landed me in the loony bin. I spent the most time dealing with the incredibly incompetent Windows operating system and figuring out the right rig configuration.

If I struggled with this, then most Hams must too. To ease the pain of others, I am committed to writing very detailed and complete  “How-To” documents. Today, I am releasing the first two “How To’s”.

Both documents describe how to configure a Digirig to work with Windows. One is focused on Windows 10 and the other on Windows 11. There are enough differences between the two releases of Windows to justify separate documents. Trust me – Windows 11 is not an improved version of Windows 10.

Both documents are here for easy downloading.

I hope these documents are useful to the Ham community.

I plan on writing “How-To” Winlink/VARA/Digirig documents for all of the above listed rigs. Stay tuned.






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