CWTERM was one of the top choices in qrq cw sending software during the DOS computer era.

DOS seemed to be able to take complete control over the serial port and therefore, the timing and accuracy 

was very good when sending qrq cw to your rig via the RTS or DTR serial port pin - TO - cw keying circuits.

Check out the author's(W1HKJ) site where he has a CWTERM download available

Once downloaded you can setup a virtual OS of DOS with VIRTUALBOX or VMware PLAYER, or 

DOSBOX.   I have tested it for qrq with DOSBOX and it is working on my windows 7, 64 bit laptop very well.

I was amazed at how good the qrq timing is when using cwterm/dosbox with a usb2serial port adapter.

The CWTERM manual is included in the download file as a DOC and PDF file.

Views: 1075

Comment by Chuck aa0hw on January 20, 2013 at 3:11pm


NOTE:  this cwterm PDF was made from my own copy of the original CWTERM manual, scanned into a PDF file.  The actual CWTERM DOWNLOD ZIP FILE already contains this same CWTERM MANUAL,  in PDF and MICROSOFT WORD DOC format in its original "perfect" condition.

Comment by Chuck aa0hw on January 22, 2013 at 1:09pm

Here is a video tutorial on how to setup CWTERM on your windows computer using DOSBOX

Comment by Chuck aa0hw on January 29, 2013 at 3:41pm

Here is a video of CWTERM in action sending CW at 75 wpm using DOSBOX


Comment by Chuck aa0hw on October 23, 2017 at 10:31am

Here is a video demo'N CWTERM running on a Raspberry pi2b using DOSBOX and a USB SERIAL PORT adapter.  A test is run from 70 wpm to 140 wpm to test the accuracy of the system:

Comment by Chuck aa0hw on October 24, 2017 at 8:43am

Here is a demo showing CWterm and the PI keying an ELECRAFT K3S using an IPAD as a typing screen:

SOFTWARE: CWterm - a vintage DOS of the best CW KEYBOARDS of that era...
it will run on the Raspberry PI using DOSBOX:

CIRCUITS: to KEY the rig via the SERIAL PORT "RTS" Pin:
(RTS=hot lead, DTR=ground OR ground(PIN5)=ground...both ways work)
(i was using a simple FET optoisolator...the RTS goes positive on keydown and draws about 10 to 20 milliamps of current through the FET's input diode...the FETopto's output ohms - go from HIGH R to low r and keys the rig''s CW JACK)

i was using an IPAD 2, using the ios REALvnc viewer to see the remote pi's desktop screen ...easy to resize to full screen so you can see & type effectively and correct mistakes...etc...

to enable the serial port on the rapsberry pi for DOSBOX to use...go to the DOSBOX config file and change it as below:

serial1=directserial realport:ttyUSB0

NOTE: the number of your serial port may be different from above, it could be USB1 instead of USB(zero) as above...etc...

to automatically load DOSBOX and go directly to the virtual C drive:
go to the DOSBOX config file and change it as below(you can name the new folder in your home directory to contain the CWTERM dos files, in order to install it)..i have named mine "dosdrive"

# Lines in this section will be run at startup.
# You can put your MOUNT lines here.
mount c ~/dosdrive

some other links to videos and articles about CWTERM:

Comment by Chuck aa0hw on February 10, 2020 at 12:39pm

Here is another way to key a K3S using the K3S USB SERIAL PORT function using CWTERM::dosbox

experimental test to key the Elecraft K3S CW jack via its USB SERIAL PORT function using the RTS pin... "PTT-KEY" K3S MENU::config setting=(none-rts)
using a vintage QRQ CW KEYBOARD from the DOS ERA - CWTERM -



RIG AUDIO over ip from the RIG's internal USB SOUND CARD::PI interface to the remote OP's location via Gstreamer RTSP SERVER(ALSA) audio over ip(Ethernet) transmitter... and received by an RTSP CLIENT(jack audio connection kit)

Comment by Chuck aa0hw on February 11, 2020 at 12:20pm

In this video demo, CWTERM is keying the RIG using an external USB TO SERIAL PORT adapter from a Raspberry PI::RIG hardware interface, which is keying an audio derived CW JACK RIG KEYING circuit

- testing a remote CW KEYBOARD keying setup using a Raspberry PI::RIG interface, where the Raspberry PI 2b has a USB to SERIAL Port adapter on it, attaching the RTS and GROUND pins of the db9 connector to an audio-derived CW JACK RIG keying circuit...
which is being "keyed" by the legendary vintage DOS QRQ CW KEYBOARD knowns as "CWTERM"
via DOSBox
running on the PI(the DOSBox CPU cycles were set to 2000) CWTERM uses the RTS pin & GROUND pin, to toggle the positive voltage on the serial port RTS PIN according to the length of the CW elements etc... which in turn provides enough voltage and current to drive a transistor switch that grounds the RIG's CW JACK and keys CW on the RIG as usual...

to hear the RIG(K3S) audio, and control some of the RIG's controls...a 2nd usb port is used on the PI to run a USB CABLE from the PI over to the USB PORT on the K3S(back plate) then FLrig via (ssh -X) is brought up on this remote laptop, dosbox also, via (ssh -X) is brought up on this laptop and CWTERM is loaded up, and finally on the pi itself is running an RTSP SERVER(32 bit uncompressed audio over ip) and on this laptop an RTSP CLIENT receives that audio and is the audio that you are hearing...

NOTE: on CWTERM, there is a compensation setting to allow PLUS or MINUS by 1 ms increments to be adjusted, in order to compensate for the keying of the can make it "lighter" or "heavier" etc...the K3S is known for causing short dits when in QRQ PLUS CWTERM's COMPENSATION adjustment was set to PLUS 4 ms to recover the lost timing of each CW ELEMENT due to the K3S firmware's shortening

Comment by Chuck aa0hw on October 24, 2020 at 12:42pm

some settings on CWTERM.CFG and DOSBOX-0.74.CONF files

for optimum settings and getting near zero latency keying...

for QRQ CW operations - using CWterm inside DOSBOX

- CWTERM.CFG    (set CPU to FAST)  


- DOSBOX-0.74.CONF  look for, and change the default settings in your .conf file to these & test and adjust to your own preferences for best performance of CWterm inside your dosbox:





HERE IS A SHORT VIDEO DEMO of these settings operating in REAL TIME at near zero low latency


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