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CHIRP is a free, open-source tool for programming frequencies and settings into your amateur radio. It supports a large number of make and models.

It is really easy to use and makes it extremely simple to copy frequencies between different radios (of different makes). Not all radios are supported by CHIRP however, so it's a good idea to make sure CHIRP can program a specific radio before buying it.

See the Radio Programming page to download VA7FI's Chirp list.

Windows Baofeng Drivers

Baofeng radios can be a bit tricky to program with CHRIP the first time around because of the Windows Driver. If you're trying to use CHIRP on Windows with a Baofeng radio, see this page first.


Now that the appropriate drivers are installed:

  1. Connect your radio to your computer and open CHIRP.
  2. Under Radio, select Download From Radio:
  3. Select the right Port (which is probably wrong by default), Vendor and Model and press ok. It's good to download what's already on your radio even if you don't have anything because in addition to frequencies, it also downloads settings specific to your radio.
  4. Before you go and program frequencies, have a look at the Settings to see if you can configure anything there. See below for screenshots of VA7FI's Baofeng settings:
  5. To enter frequencies, you can either type them manually, or copy and paste from another CHIRP file. Never upload someone else's CHIRP file directly though because the radios might have different firmware that can cause issues. It's pretty easy to open a second CHIRP file in a second tab, and copy and paste the frequencies you want into your tab. See VA7FI's CHIRP files for example.

Baofeng Settings

Baofeng Settings

Basic Settings
Carrier Squelch Level 3
Battery Saver: 1:2
Backlight Timeout: 3
Beep: Not Enabled
Timeout Timer: 600 sec
Display Mode (A): Frequency
Display Mode (B): Name
Standby LED Color: Orange
RX LED Color: Purple
TX LED Color: Orange
Roger Beep: Not Enabled1)
Advanced Settings
Vox Sensitivity: OFF
Dual Watch: Enabled
Dual Watch TX Priority A
Alarm Mode: Site
Voice: Off
Scan Resume: CO
Busy Channel Lockout: Not Enabled
Automatic Key Lock: Not Enabled
Broadcast FM Radio: Enabled
Squelch Tail Eliminate (HT to HT) Enabled
Squelch Tail Eliminate (repeater) 5
STE Repeater Delay: Not Enabled
All Menus: Enabled
Other Settings
6+Power-On Message 1: (Left as default)
6+Power-On Message 2: (Left as default)
Power-On Message 1: VA7FI
Power-On Message 2: (empty)
Power-On Message: Message
VHF Lower Limit (MHz) 130
VHF Upper Limit (MHz) 176
VHF TX Enabled: Enabled
UHF Lower Limit (MHz) 400
UHF Upper Limit (MHz) 520
UHF TX Enabled: Enabled
Work Mode Settings
Display: A
VFO/MR Mode: Frequency
Keypad Lock: Not Enabled
MR A Channel: 2
MR B Channel: 2
VFO A Frequency: 146.565
VFO B Frequency: 446.100
VFO A Shift: Off
VFO B Shift: Off
VFO A Offset: 0.6
VFO B Offset: 5.0
VFO A Power: High
VFO B Power: High
VFO A Bandwidth: Wide
VFO B Bandwidth: Wide
VFO A Tuning Step: 5.0
VFO B Tuning Step: 5.0
Service Settings
VHF Squech 0: 0
VHF Squech 1: 12
VHF Squech 2: 24
VHF Squech 3: 36
VHF Squech 4: 48
VHF Squech 5: 60
VHF Squech 6: 72
VHF Squech 7: 84
VHF Squech 8: 96
VHF Squech 9: 108
Same for UHF

Chirp Problems with Ubuntu

I just finished updating my laptop to the latest Linux Mint 20 (based on Ubuntu 20.04) and once I tried re-installing Chirp, I got this error message:

The following packages have unmet dependencies:
 chirp-daily : Depends: python-libxslt1 which is a virtual package and is not provided by
                        any available package

               Depends: python-gtk2 which is a virtual package and is not provided by
                        any available package

               Depends: python-serial which is a virtual package and is not provided by
                        any available package

               Depends: python-suds which is a virtual package and is not provided by
                        any available package

A little Googling led me to this work around, which is basically to:

  1. point the repository to xenial instead of focal
  2. install the dependencies manually
  3. try the install again:
    sudo aptitude install chirp-daily

  4. Add your username to the dial out user otherwise you won't be able to write to the radio:

    sudo usermod -aG dialout YOURUSERNAME
Please, Please, Please, do not enable the roger beep
howto/chirp.txt · Last modified: 2021/07/09 20:31 by va7fi