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Amateur radio APRS daemon which listens for messages and responds

Project description

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APRSD is a Ham radio APRS message command gateway built on python.

APRSD listens on amateur radio aprs-is network for messages and respond to them. It has a plugin architecture for extensibility. Users of APRSD can write their own plugins that can respond to APRS-IS messages.

You must have an amateur radio callsign to use this software. APRSD gets messages for the configured HAM callsign, and sends those messages to a list of plugins for processing. There are a set of core plugins that provide responding to messages to check email, get location, ping, time of day, get weather, and fortune telling as well as version information of aprsd itself.

Please read the docs to learn more!

APRSD Overview Diagram

Typical use case

Ham radio operator using an APRS enabled HAM radio sends a message to check the weather. An APRS message is sent, and then picked up by APRSD. The APRS packet is decoded, and the message is sent through the list of plugins for processing. For example, the WeatherPlugin picks up the message, fetches the weather for the area around the user who sent the request, and then responds with the weather conditions in that area. Also includes a watch list of HAM callsigns to look out for. The watch list can notify you when a HAM callsign in the list is seen and now available to message on the APRS network.

List of core server plugins

Plugins function by specifying a regex that is searched for in the APRS message. If it matches, the plugin runs. IF the regex doesn’t match, the plugin is skipped.

  • EmailPlugin - Check email and reply with contents. Have to configure IMAP and SMTP settings in aprs.yml
  • FortunePlugin - Replies with old unix fortune random fortune!
  • LocationPlugin - Checks location of ham operator
  • PingPlugin - Sends pong with timestamp
  • QueryPlugin - Allows querying the list of delayed messages that were not ACK’d by radio
  • TimePlugin - Current time of day
  • WeatherPlugin - Get weather conditions for current location of HAM callsign
  • VersionPlugin - Reports the version information for aprsd
  • NotifySeenPlugin - Send a message when a message is seen from a callsign in
    the watch list. This is helpful when you want to know when a friend is online in the ARPS network, but haven’t been seen in a while.

Current messages this will respond to:

APRS messages:
 l(ocation) [callsign]  = descriptive current location of your radio
                          8 Miles E Auburn CA 1673' 39.92150,-120.93950 0.1h ago
 w(eather)              = weather forecast for your radio's current position
                          58F(58F/46F) Partly Cloudy. Tonight, Heavy Rain.
 t(ime)                 = respond with the current time
 f(ortune)              = respond with a short fortune
 -email_addr email text = send an email, say "mapme" to send a current position/map
 -2                     = resend the last 2 emails from your imap inbox to this radio
 p(ing)                 = respond with Pong!/time
 v(ersion)              = Respond with current APRSD Version string
 anything else          = respond with usage

Meanwhile this code will monitor a single imap mailbox and forward email to your BASECALLSIGN over the air. Only radios using the BASECALLSIGN are allowed to send email, so consider this security risk before using this (or Amatuer radio in general). Email is single user at this time.

There are additional parameters in the code (sorry), so be sure to set your email server, and associated logins, passwords. search for “yourdomain”, “password”. Search for “shortcuts” to setup email aliases as well.


pip install aprsd

Example usage:

aprsd -h


└─[$] > aprsd -h
Usage: aprsd [OPTIONS] COMMAND [ARGS]...

  Shell completion for click-completion-command Available shell types:
  bash         Bourne again shell   fish         Friendly interactive shell
  powershell   Windows PowerShell   zsh          Z shell Default type: auto

  --version   Show the version and exit.
  -h, --help  Show this message and exit.

  install        Install the click-completion-command completion
  sample-config  This dumps the config to stdout.
  send-message   Send a message to a callsign via APRS_IS.
  server         Start the aprsd server process.
  show           Show the click-completion-command completion code


This command outputs a sample config yml formatted block that you can edit and use to pass in to aprsd with -c. By default aprsd looks in ~/.config/aprsd/aprsd.yml

aprsd sample-config


└─> aprsd sample-config
    # Get the passcode for your callsign here:
    login: CALLSIGN
    password: '00000'
    port: 14580
    dateformat: '%m/%d/%Y %I:%M:%S %p'
        enabled: true
            debug: false
            login: IMAP_USERNAME
            password: IMAP_PASSWORD
            port: 993
            use_ssl: true
            debug: false
            login: SMTP_USERNAME
            password: SMTP_PASSWORD
            port: 465
            use_ssl: false
    - aprsd.plugins.fortune.FortunePlugin
    - aprsd.plugins.location.LocationPlugin
    - aprsd.plugins.query.QueryPlugin
    - aprsd.plugins.stock.StockPlugin
    - aprsd.plugins.time.TimePlugin
    - aprsd.plugins.version.VersionPlugin
    logfile: /tmp/aprsd.log
    logformat: '[%(asctime)s] [%(threadName)-12s] [%(levelname)-5.5s] %(message)s - [%(pathname)s:%(lineno)d]'
    trace: false
    units: imperial
        enabled: true
        logging_enabled: true
        port: 8001
            admin: aprsd
    callsign: CALLSIGN
        # Get the apiKey from your account here:
        apiKey: APIKEYVALUE
        # (Optional for AVWXWeatherPlugin)
        # Use hosted avwx-api here:
        # or deploy your own from here:
        apiKey: APIKEYVALUE
        base_url: http://host:port
        # (Optional for TimeOpenCageDataPlugin)
        # Get the apiKey from your opencagedata account here:
        apiKey: APIKEYVALUE
        # (Optional for OWMWeatherPlugin)
        # Get the apiKey from your
        # openweathermap account here:
        apiKey: APIKEYVALUE


This is the main server command that will listen to APRS-IS servers and look for incomming commands to the callsign configured in the config file

└─[$] > aprsd server --help
Usage: aprsd server [OPTIONS]

  Start the aprsd server process.

                                  The log level to use for aprsd.log
                                  [default: INFO]

  --quiet                         Don't log to stdout
  --disable-validation            Disable email shortcut validation.  Bad
                                  email addresses can result in broken email

  -c, --config TEXT               The aprsd config file to use for options.

  -f, --flush                     Flush out all old aged messages on disk.
                                  [default: False]

  -h, --help                      Show this message and exit.

  $ aprsd server
Load config
[02/13/2021 09:22:09 AM] [MainThread  ] [INFO ] APRSD Started version: 1.6.0
[02/13/2021 09:22:09 AM] [MainThread  ] [INFO ] Checking IMAP configuration
[02/13/2021 09:22:09 AM] [MainThread  ] [INFO ] Checking SMTP configuration
[02/13/2021 09:22:10 AM] [MainThread  ] [INFO ] Validating 2 Email shortcuts. This can take up to 10 seconds per shortcut


This command is typically used for development to send another aprsd instance test messages

└─[$] > aprsd send-message -h
Usage: aprsd send-message [OPTIONS] TOCALLSIGN [COMMAND]...

  Send a message to a callsign via APRS_IS.

                                  The log level to use for aprsd.log
                                  [default: DEBUG]

  --quiet                         Don't log to stdout
  -c, --config TEXT               The aprsd config file to use for options.
                                  [default: ~/.config/aprsd/aprsd.yml]

  --aprs-login TEXT               What callsign to send the message from.
                                  [env var: APRS_LOGIN]

  --aprs-password TEXT            the APRS-IS password for APRS_LOGIN  [env
                                  var: APRS_PASSWORD]

  -h, --help                      Show this message and exit.

SEND EMAIL (radio to smtp server)

Received message______________
Raw         : KM6XXX>APY400,WIDE1-1,qAO,KM6XXX-1::KM6XXX-9 test new shortcuts global, radio to pc{29
From        : KM6XXX
Message     : test new shortcuts global, radio to pc
Msg number  : 29

Sending Email_________________
To          :
Subject     : KM6XXX
Body        : test new shortcuts global, radio to pc

Sending ack __________________ Tx(3)
Raw         : KM6XXX-9>APRS::KM6XXX   :ack29
To          : KM6XXX
Ack number  : 29

RECEIVE EMAIL (imap server to radio)

Sending message_______________ 6(Tx3)
Raw         : KM6XXX-9>APRS::KM6XXX email from internet to radio{6
To          : KM6XXX
Message     : email from internet to radio

Received message______________
Raw         : KM6XXX>APY400,WIDE1-1,qAO,KM6XXX-1::KM6XXX-9 :ack6
From        : KM6XXX
Message     : ack6
Msg number  : 0


Received Message _______________
Raw         : KM6XXX-6>APRS,TCPIP*,qAC,T2CAEAST::KM6XXX-14:location{2
From        : KM6XXX-6
Message     : location
Msg number  : 2
Received Message _______________ Complete

Sending Message _______________
Raw         : KM6XXX-14>APRS::KM6XXX-6 :KM6XXX-6: 8 Miles E Auburn CA 0' 0,-120.93584 1873.7h ago{2
To          : KM6XXX-6
Message     : KM6XXX-6: 8 Miles E Auburn CA 0' 0,-120.93584 1873.7h ago
Msg number  : 2
Sending Message _______________ Complete

Sending ack _______________
Raw         : KM6XXX-14>APRS::KM6XXX-6 :ack2
To          : KM6XXX-6
Ack         : 2
Sending ack _______________ Complete

AND… ping, fortune, time…..



While working aprsd, The workflow is as follows

  • checkout a new branch to work on
  • git checkout -b mybranch
  • Edit code
  • run tox -epep8
  • run tox -efmt
  • run tox -p
  • git commit ( This will run the pre-commit hooks which does checks too )
  • Once you are done with all of your commits, then push up the branch to github
  • git push -u origin mybranch
  • Create a pull request from your branch so github tests can run and we can do a code review.


To do release to pypi:

  • Tag release with

    git tag -v1.XX -m “New release”

  • push release tag up

    git push origin master –tags

  • Do a test build and verify build is valid

    make build

  • Once twine is happy, upload release to pypi

    make upload


There are 2 versions of the container Dockerfile that can be used. The main Dockerfile, which is for building the official release container based off of the pip install version of aprsd and the Dockerfile-dev, which is used for building a container based off of a git branch of the repo.

Official Build

docker build -t hemna6969/aprsd:latest .

Development Build

docker build -t hemna6969/aprsd:latest -f Dockerfile-dev .

Running the container

There is a docker-compose.yml file that can be used to run your container. There are 2 volumes defined that can be used to store your configuration and the plugins directory: /config and /plugins

If you want to install plugins at container start time, then use the environment var in docker-compose.yml specified as APRS_PLUGINS Provide a csv list of pypi installable plugins. Then make sure the plugin python file is in your /plugins volume and the plugin will be installed at container startup. The plugin may have dependencies that are required. The plugin file should be copied to /plugins for loading by aprsd

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