Frequently Asked Questions

General questions

Q: Is OGN an open source project ?

A: OGN is a community project. Most parts (excluding the FLARM decoder) will be open sourced (although no decision has yet been taken on the license). The form of making OGN open source is now under discussion within our community.

Q: I want to join, what shall I do ?

A: Great! Although not absolutely required, we strongly recommend that you start by contacting us and requesting subscription to the OGN mailing list. That will give you access to all our knowledge-base, posts,etc.. We will also assist you with your receivers installations, software configuration etc..

You can contribute to the project in several ways:

  • First of all, you can set-up a new receiver at your location! Every new receiver improves the coverage of our system, making it closer to complete.
  • If you are skilled in programming you can help us improving our GUI applications or build new ones.
  • You can share your ideas with us, propose new features you would like that OGN delivers and finally you can participate in their implementation and testing.

Q: Is OGN cooperating with other projects ?

A: Yes! OGN real-time data is forwarded to FR24 so that aircraft with FLARM (but without ADS-B) can also be seen there. Some of the colleagues from FR24 are also active members of the OGN project.

Q: I want to install a receiver, will the OGN community participate in the costs ?

A: We are a non profit community project and as such we don't have any common budget. What we all bring to the project is our free time, enthusiasm and sometimes also some $. But reasonably. With the solution we propose building a new receiver is not expensive. Sometimes we organize collective orders (e.g. of antennas, pc boards, cables), which we announce through our mailing list, so that we can get the best price possible and share the costs of the shipment.

Q: I want to be able to edit this WIKI, what shall I do ?

A: See howto edit OGN wiki.

Configuration and Privacy

Q: I don't want to be displayed on OGN-compatible websites?

A: That's a shame… But we do offer the option to do so. Please read this page to know how.

Q: My device is not recognized in system. I want it to be. What shall I do ?

A: If your FLARM's / OGN tracker's identifier is displayed with a leading "_" (underscore) it means the system did not find a record on you in the OGN devices database. If you want to be recognizable, please register yourself in the database.
For more details refer to the Opt In / Opt Out page.

Q: How can I find out what my FLARM-ID is ?

A: See this page for answer.

Q: I want to add my airfield to OGN FlightLog. How do I do that ?

A: You could either send your request at moc.spuorgelgoog|krowtenredilgnepo#moc.spuorgelgoog|krowtenredilgnepo or create a Pull Request for

Q: I want to move the receiver from A to B. How can I do that?

A: Just change the latitude and longitude (and altitude) in the configurations file (e.g. /home/ogn/rtlsdr-ogn.conf)

OGN Status

Q: All the stations on the list-of-receivers are red. Is the OGN down?

A: No. Sometimes the list-of-receivers has got a problem. But the "core of OGN" are the 4 redundant APRS servers.

The OGN APRS servers form the backbone of the OGN infrastructure tier. By clicking on the following links you can see all OGN receivers presently connected to the selected server.

The servers run the APRSC software, which receives all messages from the different OGN receivers and relay this information on request to the client tier. Due to load balancing and better redundancy in case of a failure there are currently three servers. They constantly exchange all received messages in order to keep the available data consistent. OGN APRS servers cache packets in memory (for few seconds) to prevent duplicates.

For more information about the APRS server software please visit following link.

Also see OGN infrastructure details.

Q: All (or most of) the stations on the range tool are red. Is the OGN down?

A: No. See the answer for list-of-receivers above.

Build a receiver

Q: Is OGN receiver expensive ?

A: Short answer: No!. However, it really depends on the hardware you choose. And here you have a choice. The role of our community is to assist you in case of technical problems or if you have any questions. With a cheap mini pc board (e.g. Raspberry Pi) and a simple DVB-T-Stick 50€ EUR (all included). Maybe at the place where you want to install your receiver there already is a running PC with linux, which you might use ? Then it would even be cheaper, however we strongly recommend to invest in a small pc board, because it runs quietly, it is portable and does not consume much energy (and you want your receiver to be on 24/24 or at least 12/24).

Q: I want to install a receiver at my location, how to start ?

A: Please follow the receiver installation instructions.

Q: Which pc-board should I choose for my receiver ?

A: Short answer: get a Raspberry Pi 3. The raspberry community is by far the biggest "mini pc" community, and the Raspberry Pi 3 is cheap and powerfull. Long answer: We've tested a few. They vary in terms of the performance and price. The main requirement is: your PC must run linux with USB support. It is recommended that it has at least 512Mb of RAM and you must have access to the Internet (although it is not required that you have a public IP address). If you choose the hardware we've tested already, you will have it run almost "out of the box". Therefore we recommend doing so. We have successful installation with Raspberry Pi v.B, Cubieboard2 and ODROID U3 mini boards. Please have a look here for some specs and performance comparison of the three boards mentioned.

Q: Which DVB-T dongle should I buy ?

A: DVB-T dongles

Q: Where do I get the latest receiver software from ?

A:Go to the downloads section

Q: How do I configure my receiver ?

A: Follow the Installation instructions. There's a section on receiver's configuration file.


Q: What does the data mean ?

A: See Decoding the data for a basic explanation of the telnet and server raw data.

Q: I want to subscribe to OGN tracking data to build my own app. How do I do that ?

A: Refer to subcribe to OGN data section.

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