Version 31 (Tom Hayward, 04/13/2012 11:33 am)

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h2. What is it?
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CHIRP is a FREE cross-platform, cross-radio programming tool. It works on Windows and Linux (and MacOSX with a little work). It supports a growing list of radios across several manufacturers and allows transferring of memory contents between them.  The current list of supported models is:
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h2. Getting Started
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1. [[Download]] Chirp
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2. Go to the [[Beginners_Guide|beginner's guide]] for a brief overview of basic usage and functionality.
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h2. Will this replace the OEM software?
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Maybe. CHIRP's focus is to support reading and writing the memory channels of as many radio models as possible. This provides the ability to exchange your programming information between dissimilar radios. It does not focus on supporting every single knob and setting that each radio supports. Doing so would severely limit the amount of developer time available to supporting a wider-range of models.
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h2. Where can I get a cable?
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There are several ways to obtain a cable to program your radio with CHIRP.  Obviously, your manufacturer probably sells a high-quality cable for your radio, although this is generally the most expensive route.
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I recommend looking on "eBay": for cables.  I have purchased several cables from various vendors and have never had a problem.  Look for the sellers that are regular merchants, and that have fixed price items and full stores of merchandise.  Here are some recommended common cables:
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    * "Yaesu VX-7R cable": (works for VX-6R, ICOM IC-Q7A) - $18
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    * "Yaesu VX-8R/DR cable": - $23
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    * "Yaesu FT-7800 cable": (works for 7900, 8800, 8900, etc) - $14
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    * "OPC-478 clone cable": (most ICOM, some Alinco radios) - $14
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Check "KawaMall": and "Valley Enterprises": for other options. See the [[CableGuide]] for more information about which cable to use for your radio.
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h2. What if I have a question or problem?
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First, check out the [[FAQ]] page to see if your question is already answered. Also, join the CHIRP "mailing list": for the latest discussions and news about CHIRP. This is where you should ask questions about using chirp.
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If you need to contact the author for specific questions about getting your radios supported, helping out with development or donating, use the "contact":/contact page. NOTE: Please do not report bugs or ask questions about how to use CHIRP via this form. Use the issue tracker or the mailing list for those types of questions!
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The "issue tracker":/projects/chirp/issues provides a way for users to report bugs, generic issues, and request features. Please read [[How_To_Report_Issues|How to report issues]] first!
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h2. How can I help?
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If you are developer, please see the [[Developers]] page for details on how you can contribute. If you're not a developer, but are good at breaking things, then please file bugs and submit reports.  If you can write documentation, please volunteer to help with that as well. Many folks have loaned their radios for the purposes of getting support for them added to CHIRP. Please see the [[Honor_Roll|Honor Roll]] for that list of people and be sure to thank them if their generosity resulted in support for a model you use!
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If you are multi-lingual, please consider translating CHIRP into another language. No developer skills are required for this and it helps make CHIRP accessible to more people around the world. If you are interested in helping with this, please use the "contact page":/contact.
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h2. Can I donate some money?
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Of course, developing and maintaining the CHIRP software and website is not free. Monetary donations are always appreciated and can be made via the "Donate" link on the [[download|download]] page. These donations go towards hosting costs of the website, as well as to purchasing new radios, programming cables, etc. for the furtherance of the software.
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h2. How can I get my radio supported by CHIRP?
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In order to add support for a new radio model to CHIRP, a developer needs to reverse engineer the clone protocol and memory format of the radio.  This can often be done in a relatively short period of time, but requires physical access to the radio itself.  If you're interested in loaning your radio for this process, please use the "contact":/contact page.