NRAPRS

NRAPRS – Tracking for Network Radios

Our very own version of APRS but dedicated to Network Radios. Our respected ZRB Mod – Marc ZRB003/ON3PHP – provided us with this up to date functionality. Here’s a little manual on how to install and use this great tool.

If you want to update your location or have other support questions regarding NRAPRS, please use the “Contact Us” link on the NRAPRS menu.

There is a lot to say about this functionality and i’ve tried to keep it as straight forward as possible. If something isn’t well explained or incomplete. Please let me know! Cheers NR515

For those who are not up to date with NRAPRS : on www.nraprs.be you can see a map where you can find, locate and track other Network Radio Users around the globe.

NRAPRS Map

The map on NRAPRS.be has two main funtions: Show the home (QTH) location of Network Radio users and keep track of position and movement of mobile or handheld stations. I will explain both in detail below.

A few important things to know about the map an tracking:

  • QTH stations are always visible on the map. (unless you toggle them in menu)
  • Mobile and handheld stations are visible as long as you are connected with the app on your device. Once you set the app to inactive, your device will be visible for the next 25 min. After you disappear from the map, together with your current track.
    Track history is kept for 12 hours (but after 25 min you are not visible anymore and so is your Track History).
    If you come back online the track history is also visible again for the previous 12 hours.

Setting your Home/QTH location on the map

Setting your home location on the map is done by a request form that is linked on the website. This form is sent to the admins of NRAPRS, they will check the information manually, filter the commercial & indecent content out and they do quality control on the request so everything stays clean, correct and uniform for all users. A QTH location is always shown with a house. Concerning privacy and security you can either put your exact location in or, like I did, choose the center of your town as location. That’s up to you. NRAPRS Home/QTH Request form

Most of the fields are self-explanatory, to find your Latitude and Longitude, please use “Get Coordinates” link to retrieve the the coordinates of your address.
Mind that all commercial and indecent information & text will result in deleting the request.

Tracking your Mobile or Handheld device via NRAPRS

The request to put your QTH/Home location on the map is via the webform. This request is permanent and continuous, untill you mail the admins to remove that location.

A mobile/handheld device does not need a request because you can toggle your visibility yourself at anytime. So you are in control of your visibility on the map at any given moment. You are not for the QTH/Home visibility.

NRAPRS – App Installation

To track your Mobile and/or Handheld device on NRAPRS – you actually just need one app to be installed on your Network Radio or Smartphone. The app is called Traccar. You can download Traccar on the following sites:

You can add as many devices on the map as you wish. You can only have one Traccar client per device. As long as you don’t turn of the app, it will keep running. When you turn of the device and the app wasn’t manually shut down, the app will auto start on your device boot!

NRAPRS – APP configuration

After installation there are several fields that need your attention:

SSID options
  • Service Status: after filling all other fields, toggle the switch until it turns green. This also where you cab turn off the location sending and thus turn off the app.
  • Device Identifier: “Your Call sign-Device Type”
    Only Letters, Numbers, underscore and dash sign are allowed. All others symbols will result in a rejection of your online presence.
    For Example:
    NR515_Niko-7 is a good format
    NR515 Niko-7 is a bad format
    Enter your call sign here followed by a dash, no spaces. After the dash you can fill in a number that identifies your type of your device (SSID) on the map. The list of available device types can be found here: SSID List.
    Selecting no SSID is not possible.
    For example: for my device the Device identifier is set up like this:
    NR515-5 where NR515 is my call sign and -5 is SSID of a smartphone.
  • Server URL: https://zrb.nraprs.be (https !!)
  • Location Accuracy: Set to HIGH, if not set to high your device will not use the GPS data but the network location, which is not that accurate as GPS location. Setting not to accurate will result in incorrect tracks. Important is to set your device Location settings in preferences also to High!
  • Frequency: 600 – Once your are moving, the update time in seconds of your location. Depending on the accuracy and the type of movement you are doing you can lower or raise this number. Cars are faster then pedestrians, jet planes outrun everybody….
  • Distance: 25 – What the change of location distance minimum should be to start tracking. If this is to low your device will constantly sent updates even while you are just at home watching the game.
  • Angle: 45 – same as distance but watches if your are moving in upwards or downwards movement.

Once all the settings are filled in correctly, you can toggle the “Service Status” slider to the right: it will turn green. Go to the Status page by pressing the word “Status” on the upper right corner and check that it at least states: Service Started – Network online & Location Update!
You are up and running and you can see yourself on the map!

Validation checks are done:

  • Against the NR database
  • Against the ZRB database
  • Other resources

If your ID is not found in these databases, you will be automatically blocked from the map.
If you fail to use a proper SSID, you will be automatically blocked from the map.
These auto blocks can be undone, however if we set a manual block on an account this can’t be undone, and this is done only when we suspect and have reasons to believe the system is being abused.
If you are new to this or want to test the system, contact us, let us know what you would like to try and we will try to help you.
Getting a call sign for the sole reason of (ab)using the system will result in a block. You must a a active Network Radio user!

NRAPRS MAP Tutorial

The map on www.nraprs.be shows you both the QTH locations and all mobile and handheld devices. The map refreshes every 10 seconds and the location of the moving devices will be updated.
On the homepage your will see in the top corners of the map buttons with some option configured when you click on them.

This menu is a work in progress for the moment, actual menu may differ from current image above. Once the Menu is final I’ll update this section together with Marc – ZRB003 (2019-08-19)

In the left upper corner there are two buttons:
A grey button with a house on it.
If you press that one, you will be set to the default view of the map.

The red square icon with the 3 stripes opens a menu with different options:

  • Close: closes the pop-up menu
  • Clear Tracks: Full refresh of the page and get rid of all tracks.
  • SSID Legend: List of all types of stations and there code to fill in your Device Identifier in Traccar after your call sign.
  • Station List: Non-Linkable list of all active users on the map.
  • QTH/Home request: Link to a web form where you can request to put your home location in the map.
  • Contact us: If you want to update your location or have other support questions regarding NRAPRS, please use the “Contact Us” link on the NRAPRS menu.

In the upper right corner you see a layered icon, when hoovered over, a drop down menu is shown with several options linked to toggle visible items on the map:
High – NPAPRS – Real View : are different map lay outs that you can select based on your preference. Traffic show the current traffic on the selected map location.
I prefer the option “High” because you can see the terrain as well.

  • QTH: Toggles the visibility of all QTH/Home stations
  • Moving Stations: Toggles the visibility of all Mobile/Handheld devices
  • Trackline: Toggles the visibility of tracklines.
  • Traffic – Google Map – Public transport are different layers with optional extra info.

The information of a QTH/Home location is only shown when you click on the house icon of a station. A pop up with its specification is shown.

On the map self you see a call out above every Mobile/Handheld station, this states
the Call sign and last seen timestamp.
And two links to see a track of the route the device is travelling.
If the call out label has the Call sign in Red, that means the station is moving.
If the Call sign is black, the station isn’t moving.

  • Show track: Shows the current track of the device for the last hour.
  • Show track history: Shows the recent tracks a user did the last 12 hours (under construction). Between sessions of an hour. (coming soon)
Tracking of a Handheld/Mobile device
Track History – Under construction

Download Screen shot

You can create a screenshot with the current view of the map.

Station Search:

If you want to search for a specific mobile station you can click on the Looking Glass in the upper left side of your browser. A pop up will appear where you can enter the specific call sign you are looking for. Enter only the Call Sign. The search field is not case sensitive.
The search will result in a zoomed view of that location. Only that station will be visible on the map. You can also direct access this by using http://nraprs.be/trackmap.php?Call=XXXX where you replace XXXX with the callsign you want to display.

That’s it for now!