FAQs: Setting Up a New Node

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What is an EchoLink Node?

Every station logged into the EchoLink system is considered a node, including RF gateways (also called Sysop nodes), conference servers, and individual users who are running software using a microphone and speakers. Even EchoLink running on an iPhone is considered a node.

Each node on the system must have its own unique callsign. Some callsigns have a -L or -R suffix; these indicate RF links to simplex frequencies or repeaters. Each of these combinations is considered a separate callsign, so W1XYZ, W1XYZ-L, and W1XYZ-R are considered to be three separate callsigns.

What is a node number?

Each EchoLink node also has a node number. The node number is assigned to the node when it is initially registered. Node numbers have no special significance; they exist to make it easier to connect using DTMF digits. Each callsign has one node number, and each node number has one callsign. You can look up the node number for any validated EchoLink callsign on the Validation page at echolink.org/validation.

Can you please issue me a node number?

EchoLink does not dispense node numbers. To set up a new node, please set up your hardware and software, configure it with the correct callsign, and start it up to register the new node with the system. Then, proceed to Validation. When the callsign is validated, a node number will be assigned to it. Node numbers are managed by the EchoLink servers and do not need to be stored in your node's local configuration.

How many different Sysop nodes can I run?

The only suffixes available for Sysop nodes are -L and -R. Some link operators have a need to run more than two Sysop nodes. If you are already using the -L and -R suffixes for active nodes and have a need to run additional nodes, the only option is to run the additional nodes under another base callsign. Radio clubs often use the repeater trustee's callsign for one of their nodes, and another club member's callsign for additional nodes.

I've set up the hardware and software for a new node. How do I register it with EchoLink?

Regardless of which software package you are using on the EchoLink network, the procedure for setting up a new node is the same:

  1. Configure the software with the correct callsign.
  2. Start up the software.
  3. Go to echolink.org/validation to proceeed with validation.

Especially if you are setting up a Sysop node, please be sure that the correct port forwarding rules are set up in your Internet router. UDP ports 5198 and 5199 must be forwarded to the PC on which the node is running. Otherwise, your node will be logged into the EchoLink system, but others will not be able to connect to it. You can test this using the Inbound Router Test Page.

Can I run more than one node under the same callsign, or two nodes on the same Internet connection?

Please keep in mind these rules regarding the EchoLink network:

  • Each node logged into the system must have a separate callsign; you cannot run two instances of W1XYZ at the same time.
  • Each node must be running behind its own distinct public IP address. This means that you cannot run W1XYZ and W1XYZ-L on the same shared Internet connection at the same time, unless you have made special arrangements with your ISP to be allocated more than one public address.


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