IRC #CQDX Ham Radio Chat Channel

This page provides information on how to access and participate on the IRC #CQDX ham radio chat channel. 

The IRC #CQDX ham radio channel is a great resource for ham radio DXers and SWLs and can provide shared real-time information such as:

  What's on the bands
  DX spotting
  Help identify pileups
  Propagation reports
  Latest information from DXpeditions
  Track pileup listening frequencies
  Arrange and coordinate schedules in real-time
  Obtain QSL information
  Coordinated band opening checks
  Discuss and get help with DXing software
  Socialize and chase DX with other DXers from all around the world!

Over 20,000 different ham radio operators from over 180 different countries have visited #CQDX!

Topics covered:
    What is IRC?
   
Real-time DX spots from DX Summit
   
Access #CQDX using the Java Client
   
Access #CQDX using mIRC
   
Access #CQDX using DX Telnet
   
Common Abbreviations

 


What is IRC, and how does it work?

IRC (Internet Relay Chat) provides a way of communicating in real time with people from all over the world. It consists of various separate networks (or "nets") of IRC servers, machines that allow users to connect together via IRC.

Generally, the user (such as you) runs a program (called a "client") to connect to a server on one of the IRC networks. The server relays information to and from other servers on the same net. Conversations may be public (where everyone in a channel can see what you type) or private (messages between only two people).

For further information, visit the IRC Help Archive site.  There is a large amount of information there, including Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), information on client programs, and much more.


 REAL-TIME DX SPOTS FROM DX Summit!

Get the DX spots before everybody else!  Courtesy of DX Summit, the #CQDX ham radio channel has a direct live feed of all DX spots from DX Summit.  You no longer have to wait several minutes for the web page to reload.  The spots appear on #CQDX as soon as they arrive at DX Summit just as if you were connected to a packet cluster.  You will also receive spots and announcements submitted via the internet (spots from calls ending with -@).  WWV reports and all announcements are also received in real-time.

The DX Summit spotting robot appears on the channel as user dxs.  In addition to viewing spots and other data, you can also interactively send commands to dxs to request data and send DX spots just like on a packetcluster.  The supported commands are listed below.  Normal packetcluster commands do not work.
 

COMMAND

RESULTS

/CTCP dxs sh/dx  <num> Sends you the most recent <num> DX spots.  If no number is specified, the 5 most recent spots are sent.
Example: /CTCP dxs sh/dx 5
/CTCP dxs sh/ann <num> Sends you the most recent <num> announcements.  If no number is specified, the 5 most recent announcements are sent 
Example: /CTCP dxs sh/ann 5
/CTCP dxs sh/wwv <num> Sends you the most recent <num> WWV reports.  If no number is specified, the 5 most recent spots are sent 
Example: /CTCP dxs sh/wwv 5
/CTCP dxs ann <text> Send an announcement to DX Summit
Example: /CTCP dxs ann This is a test announcement
/CTCP dxs dx <freq> <call> [comments] Submit a DX spot to DX Summit
Example: /CTCP dxs dx 14025.2 OH2BUA calling CQ
/CTCP dxs help Sends you a list of currently supported commands
Example: /CTCP dxs help

Many thanks to Martti OH2BH for his help and cooperation with the new DX Summit.  And many thanks to Jukka OH2BUA and Antti OH5TB for their help and cooperation with the original DX Summit which ran for over ten years.

#CQDX also has a robot named SolarMonitor developed by N6RT.  This robot constantly monitors solar flux values and reports in real time when a M1-class or stronger flare occurs.  It also provides WWV numbers and the solar forecast every 3 hours.  You can type !wwv to obtain the latest WWV indicies.  You can also type !flux to get the current solar X-ray flux level.


Visit #CQDX using the Java Client

To take full advantage of #CQDX, I highly recommend using the mIRC or DXTelnet programs described below, but you can also visit #CQDX by using the Java applet below.  The Java applet requires at least Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or Firefox 1.0. 

Please type in your ham radio callsign below and then click on the CHAT button

If a Java "Application Blocked by Java Security" warning screen appears, please visit this page for instructions on how to add dx.qsl.net to the Exception Site List. It is safe.

  Enter Your Callsign:  

If you have problems with this Java applet,
please send me an email at
dxwebmaster@qsl.net


Access #CQDX using mIRC 

Most people use a "traditional" IRC program to access #CQDX.  The most popular one is a program called mIRC.  In addition to monitoring DX spots and chatting with others, mIRC also allows you to transfer files, play sounds, use colors, and much more.  You can download and get more information about mIRC from the mIRC home page which is located at www.mirc.com

Click here for detailed information on configuring mIRC to connect to #CQDX.

Once your mIRC client is properly configured, you are now ready to connect.  Select the Connect entry from the File menu, or press the lightning bolt icon on the toolbar (it is the first one on the left) to connect to irc.radiochat.org.  Once you are connected, you will need to join the #CQDX channel.  Depending on your mIRC configuration, the channels folder screen may be displayed.  #CQDX is not in the default list of channels, so type in #CQDX in the "Enter name of channel to join" area as shown here and click on the Join button.  If the channels folder does not come up, simply type /join #CQDX at the command area at the bottom of the mIRC status screen and press return.

When you enter the #CQDX channel, a greeting message will be sent to you and will alert everybody else that you have connected.  The DX Summit info is displayed with a grey background so it stands out from normal chat activity.

A typical mIRC screen is shown below:

You are encouraged to use your ham radio callsign as your "IRC Nickname" so that other hams can recognize you.  With the mIRC program, you can do this by typing the command "/nick callsign".  If your callsign starts with a number (i.e.: 9K2HN), you should put an underscore before your call (i.e.: _9K2HN) since IRC does not allow nicknames which start with a number. 

Note: You can always download the latest version of mIRC here.

To visit the mIRC Home Page, click here


Access #CQDX using DX Telnet

Version 4.4 or later of DX Telnet written by Fabrizio IK4VYX  supports the #CQDX ham radio channel.  However, you should use the latest which is version 5.2 and can be downloaded from the DX Telnet home page.  This is a very popular and powerful program used by many DXers which can grab DX spots from telnet packetclusters as well as from the #CQDX ham radio channel.  A picture of the DX Telnet program running while connected to #CQDX is shown below.

DX Telnet screen shot

To connect to the #CQDX ham radio channel using DX Telnet, select the Site List entry from the Session menu, click on the CQDX-IRC entry, and then click on OK.  All information on the channel including chat and DX spots is displayed in the lower half of the window.  The DX spots and announcements are extracted and shown isolated in the upper windows.

To display a list of connected users, type /U.
To send a private message to a user, type T CALLSIGN message text
To send a message to all users, simply type your message
To send an announcement, type ANN message text
To spot DX, type DX FREQ CALL [comments]
To show recent DX spots, type ALT-1 and then return
To show recent announcements, type ALT-2 and then return
To show recent WWV info, type ALT-3 and then return
To disconnect, type /Q

You will need to modify the host name and service port entries on the CQDX-IRC site entry as follows:

1) Select the 'Session -> Site List' menu entry
2) Select 'CQDX-Irc' from the site list
3) Press the Edit button
4) Change the "Network Address or Host Name" entry to irc.radiochat.org
5) Make sure the "Service Port" entry is set to Custom with a value of  6667
6) Press OK to Save the changes

A picture of what the modified CQDX-IRC site entry screen should look like is here.


Common Abbreviations

People often use abbreviations to shorten typing time.  Below is a list of popular abbreviations (many of them are normal CW abbreviations) you might see when chatting.

ABT About
BBL I'll Be Back Later
BRB I'll Be Right Back
CUL See you later
FB Fine Business (great!)
FYI For Your Information
GA Good Afternoon
GD Good Day
GM Good Morning
GE Good Evening
GG Going
HR Hear or here
HRD Heard
J/K Just Kidding
LOL Laughing Out Loud
NP No Problem
RR Roger Roger (ok)
RX Receive
SIG Signal
TU Thank You
TX Transmit
WB Welcome Back
WFWL Work First, Worry Later
:) Smile
:( Frown

 


I hope you enjoy this resource!  73 de N6RT