Olivia MFSK HowTo - New Hybrid MFSK - MFSKpj

Olivia MFSK - New Hybrid MFSK

Fast Data over HF SSB

A Quick How-To for Olivia MFSK by Jason Buchanan - N1SU

Latest version: OliviaAid-13-jan-05.zip - unzip the OliviaAid.exe file into the same location as where 8-jan-05 is installed
Previous version: OliviaAid-8-jan-05.zip - Install this first before installing 13-jan-05 version.

OliviaAid documentation: Olivia-Aidhelp.doc

Online Finder

The key to finding others on Olivia MFSK is to use the Online Finder for Olivia MFSK. Using this online tool allows others to find you on the bands. It's similar to sending a DX Spot but viewable via your web browser.


If you have installed Cygwin already, skip Steps 2, 3 and 5.

Step 1: Download the software and open the .ZIP file. Inside the .ZIP file is a file named OliviaAidsetup.exe - double click this file to run it. Click Next, install to the destination of your choice.

Step 2: When the installation is complete you need to go to the directory where you installed the software, typically C:\Program Files\OliviaAid, then run CYGWIN.exe in the CYGFIX directory. Double click CYGWIN.EXE - install/unzip to C:\. Do not extract to C:\temp, Unzip to folder C:\.

Step 3: Double click on CYGWIN.REG - a window will open and ask if you wish to proceed with the registry entry, click Yes.

Step 4 (Windows XP users): Now would be a good time for Windows XP users to right-click on OliviaAid.exe and Pin to Start Menu for easy access to the software. Go to the directory where you installed OliviaAid, C:\Program Files\OliviaAid, and right-click on OliviaAid.exe, then select Pin to Start menu. OliviaAid will appear in your list of programs when you click the Start button in Windows XP.

Step 5: Reboot your computer. With Windows XP you might not have to do this but for the sake of avoiding problems, reboot your computer. You may need to download mscomm32.ocx and copy this file to C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32 directory if OliviaAid refuses to start.


Start OliviaAid.exe and a window will open similar to the one below:

The default values use 32 tones at a bandwidth of 1000 Hz and a tuning tolerance of 16. Most people these days seem to be using 16 tones and 500Hz bandwidth - so when you open Olivia-Aid you will need to change the 32 value to 16 and 1000 value to 500.

The value next to the "M" provides room for sloppy tuning - increase this value to enable the software to accomodate for not being perfectly tuned to the other station. This is done at the expense of CPU - if you have a slower computer you might have to lower this value to 8 - if you have a faster computer computer you can set this to 64 or higher. It's best to stick with 16 if possible, however I usually use 64 on my 450MHz Pentium without problems.

The TX button serves two purposes - left click starts mfsk_tx.exe to transmit, right click opens a window so you can enter the COM port that triggers PTT. The RX button opens mfsk_rx.exe to receive. TRX button opens a split-screen receive/transmit version with the received text on the top half of the screen and transmitted text on the lower half.

Click the TX button to open the Transmit window; click the RX button to open the receive window. Normally you will only need to click the RX button once and will leave the receive window open all the time. You will need to click the TX button each time you want to transmit. Press Control-R in the TX window to stop transmitting.

The TRX button is for use with a VOX setup - I am unsure what the S and R buttons do.

Important tip

If you right-click (the mouse button on the right) on the "T" a "txbuf" window will open as a type-ahead buffer. Type the text you wish to send to the other station (this will work while you are receiving the other station) and when your message is complete, click the "SEND READY FOR TX" button in the window. Once you do this, you will notice that the "M" in the small Olivia-Aid window will turn purple indicating that there is text ready to be sent from the "txbuf" - click the "TX" button and your text will be sent. After all of your text has been sent the transmission will stop and you will begin receiving again.

Some basic macro capabilities are in the "txbuf" window - press Control-F2 to load text into the F2 buffer. Press F2 to print this text into the TX buffer. This is handy for sending CQ without having to type CQ every time. Here's how:

1. Right click on "T" to open the "txbuf" window
2. Press Control-F2 to update the F2 buffer (the txbuf window will turn yellow)
3. Type your text into the buffer - "CQ CQ CQ de N1SU N1SU N1SU". When finished, press the ESC key
4. Press F2 (or click F2 with your mouse) to put the text into your send buffer, then press "SEND READY FOR TX" button, then press TX button on Olivia-Aid window to transmit your text.

I am still working on this documentation - it is not complete at the moment - keep checking back.

Olivia MFSK - 12-Aug-05
(C) 2005 jsb@digistar.com

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