FlightAware Discussions

Accessing Dongle (AirSpy) through TCP/IP

I was wondering if anyone had attempted to run dump1090-fa on a virtual machine running on an ESXi server and accessing the Dongle through the USB/IP Project. According to the documentation,

For Linux, the source code of usbip was merged into the staging tree, and finally has been moved to the mainline since Linux-3.17. Development is ongoing in the kernel community, not here. Linux distributions will provide binary packages of usbip.

So my thinking was you could have an AirSpy connected to a RPi and install the dump1090-fa on the VM and access the AirSpy through the Ethernet.

Any thoughts?

You could access the data using beastsplitter, vrs etc or simply have the airspy_adsb app send the data to the virtual machine.
Keep it simple and it will be reliable, generally speaking.

My ESXi server has CPU cycles to spare, and one of the things I have read in the various AirSpy posts was the CPU on the RPi was a limiting factor. So this would allow for a small footprint device “hosting” the dongle and the VM would have the horsepower to fully utilize the features of the AirSpy dongle.

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The network isn’t fast enough for that.

airspy_adsb at 20 MHz basically uses the full USB2 bandwidth.
It’s quite a lot of data.

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Well, I guess it is a good thing I asked rather than spending all the time necessary to do this only to be disappointed.

You just want to do ADS-B or other stuff with the Airspy?

Which RPi are you using?

RPi4 can use the Airspy to its full potential without issues in regards to ADS-B decoding.

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At the moment, I’m just interested in ADS-B. I was planning on using a RPi 3B+, but I did order a RPi 4 B 4GB just last week. Maybe I’ll use that instead. But if I do, I may require a lot of hand holding as so far I’ve only used the PiAware image and from my understanding the PiAware image does not work on the RPi 4.

That is true, but installing the piaware addon version isn’t really difficult.
There is an instruction on the FA website and I am pretty sure @abcd567 has written something useful as well.

Installing Raspbian Buster Lite on the Pi4 isn’t an issue, download the image, put it on the sd-card, enable ssh access, and plug it in.
Oh the WiFi setup is a bit different if it’s required, but not a problem either.

Following that you just install the piaware stuff: https://flightaware.com/adsb/piaware/install

Then you run airspy-conf and you are done with the setup: https://github.com/wiedehopf/airspy-conf#airspy-conf

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My AirSpy Mini and Filter Preamp is on order, I’ll give it a go when it arrives.

I may put Raspbian Buster Lite on the Pi 4 this week in preparation of receiving the AirSpy.

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Well, my Airspy mini and Uputronics LNA finally arrived. Installed on my RPi 4 as per @wiedehopf instructions above, and other than a labelling error on the LNA, everything worked perfectly. I am currently running the Airspy mini at 20 MHz and don’t see any issues. Thank you wiedehopf for your excellent instructions.