Sunday, October 22, 2017

Run your own Web SDR with OpenWebRX on Raspberry Pi

There's quite a few excellent remote receivers running WebSDR but unfortunately the author has decided only to give the software to agree to make their server publicly available. I think it's a pity that this software is not available for people wanting to share their home receiver with, perhaps, a few friends. It's also a pity that this software isn't open source.

An alternative is the excellent OpenWebRX by András Retzler.

In the ARNSW home brew group we have a regular contact on 80 or 40m but often we can't hear each other due to local noise. It's been proposed that we place a remote receiver at a low noise location and all listen over the web. One idea is to have a fixed receiver simply stream the audio, another is to set up a web SDR. I'm investigating running this on a Raspberry Pi.

The software is available from GitHub here.

There's a few dependencies summarised here:

  • git clone
  • sudo apt install rtl-sdr
  • sudo apt install libfftw3-dev
  • sudo apt install libusb-1.0-0-dev
  • sudo apt install cmake

Everything is in the readme to build and install, I did little except follow the instructions and install missing things as they came up. Let me know if you're stuck.

Because I'm currently running an RTL-SDR in direct sampling mode I had to build a fork of rtl-sdr that supports this.

OpenWebRX is a terrific piece of software, easy to build and run, and I want to thank Andras for his contribution. If you do have a fast internet upload and a permanent receiver you can add yours to the list.


The RTL-SDR doesn't work very well on HF like this so I've now switched to using a HackRF One that's working quite nicely.

The AGC is rather savage but it's good to listen to overall.

1 comment:

Cale M. said...

The WebSDR author must get that request constantly. I've also emailed him asking if he had a "personal use" version of the software. No dice. Fortunately, OpenWebRX is becoming a much better alternative.