Logbook View


The Logbook View is essentially the focal point of SWISSLOG. While the QSO entry window provides input and various reports provide output, most interaction with your log is by use of the Logbook View. At first glance, the logbook view in SWISSLOG appears similar to what you might expect to see in a paper log – however, the similarity ends there. The real power of SWISSLOG is the way the program allows you to manipulate the data in your log. You are not limited to a single listing of QSO’s arranged as you entered them sequentially – you can explore and display your log in just about any conceivable form. This section explains the Logbook View and its many amazing features.

When the Logbook View displays your log, you can easily perform several functions to arrange the data as you like. There are two ways to manipulate the appearance of your log. The easiest way to arrange the columns is to use the drag and drop technique; sorting a column is accomplished by clicking on the column heading, and searching can be initiated by clicking on the down-arrow in the column heading. These techniques are quick and convenient – for specific information on customizing the logbook view click here.

Another way to manipulate data within the Logbook View is by using a Query. Initially, this technique requires a little more work; however, once a Query is created and saved, you can implement it repeatedly. If you have a special task that you perform often, consider writing a query to automate the process. For example, if you want to look at your QSO's for just one band – create a simple Query – it only takes a few minutes to create and you can execute it whenever you need it with a just few clicks on the mouse. Advanced users will appreciate the powerful functions that can be included in a query – for complete details on using queries click here.

Please read: The next couple paragraphs should be titled Database 101 – if you are already familiar with database programming and the terminology, you can skip this section. If you are not familiar with the basic terms used to describe a database, please continue...

Your log database consists of a series of records – each time you enter a new QSO in your log, you are adding a new record to the database. If you were keeping a paper log it would probably appear as a list of QSO's – the list would have several columns of information including the Callsign, Band, Frequency, Date, Time, etc. When you added a new QSO to your paper log, it would be equivalent to adding a new record to the database in your computer. Each record in the SWISSLOG database includes the same type of information found in a paper log – actually the computer record contains considerably more data than the paper log.

The data stored in each record is organized into a series of fields – there is a field corresponding to Callsign, Band, Frequency, Date, Time, etc. – just like the paper log. When SWISSLOG displays your log in the Logbook View, the records and fields are displayed as a list with the field data arranged in columns. Each of the columns containing the fields has a heading title that usually corresponds to the name of the field.

Hint: In some instances within the Help files, the words Column and Field are interchanged – depending on the context where they are used – basically, the concept is the same.

Viewing Your Log

In order to display your log in the Logbook View window, your log must be loaded into the window – the loading process is controlled by a function known as a Query. Initially, the query controls which fields are loaded and also the format. If you are just getting started with SWISSLOG, the best method would be to use one of the sample queries provided. Later as you become familiar with the Logbook View functions, you can explore the possibilities of creating your own queries by using the Query editor. The sample queries are usually located in the directory named: ...\SWISSLOG\Queries\Logbooks and these files have a file extension of .SPQ

Using a Query to load the Logbook View Window

If you already created a logbook in SWISSLOG and would like to view it in the Logbook View window, follow the three steps listed below:

The dialog window will close and your log will appear in the View Logbook window. Below is a typical Logbook View and a brief description of the various elements:

Logbook View Functions

The Logbook View allows you to display your QSO's and perform data analysis in real time with a few mouse clicks. Most logbook tasks can be performed without the need to write complicated queries.

The following functions are the foundation of the powerful Logbook View:

Hint: To use some of the powerful logbook functions, all of the QSO’s in the log must be loaded into the computer's memory. As an example, the Grouping function requires all QSO’s to be loaded into memory. By contrast, the standard logbook view only requires the QSO’s that are visible on the screen to be in the computer's memory. As you can appreciate, if the log database is very large it is going to require more computer time to open the logbook. Obviously, this disadvantage is somewhat reduced with a fast computer. However, rather than rely on a faster computer, it's often better to plan your query and load only the fields that are needed to accomplish the work you’re trying to do. For information on queries click here.


Using the Functions in Logbook View

The following sections discuss how the Logbook functions can be used. If you take time to read through these sections, you'll soon discover just how powerful and useful these functions are. Many of these functions are intuitive; however, if you browse through the following sections, you may discover features that are not so obvious.

Filtering (Selecting) QSO's

Logs are commonly created and displayed in chronological order, meaning the QSO data is entered into the log and arranged in order of date and time. However, you may want to find a specific set of QSO's and manually scrolling through the entire log is not always an efficient option. Filtering is the process of finding only the QSO's you are interested in.

Most filtering can be performed directly in the Logbook View with the functions provided. For tasks that are more complex, you may need a combination of specialized Queries and the Logbook View Filtering. This section will only describe Filtering using the Logbook View – to learn about creating custom Queries, click here.

As an example: Assume you want to see all of your QSO's with HB9 Stations. Using a filter, this is very easy – just click on the arrow in the DXCC column heading and select HB9 from the drop-down list. If the DXCC list is extensive, you can navigate very quickly to the HB9 entry by typing HB9 (this is an incremental search). Click on the arrow in the DXCC column heading; when the drop-down list appears type HB9 and press the enter key. The logbook view will display only the HB9 QSO's.

To reset the Logbook View back to displaying all contacts, click on the arrow in the DXCC column heading and select (All) from the drop-down list. The logbook view will display all QSO's.

Hint: The active filter criteria is displayed in the lower left corner of the logbook view window (DXCC=HB9) – notice the X to the left of the filter criteria – by clicking on the X, you are effectively closing the filter and resetting the log to display all QSO's.

Below is an example showing the DXCC filter selecting HB9 – this image is based on the Query named Example logbook.spq which is usually found in the following directory: ...\SWISSLOG\Queries\Logbooks

Fine-tuning a filter example: Using the same DXCC filter example from above, the Logbook View shows all the HB9 contacts. However, you would like to apply an additional filter and see only QSO's with HB9 before the year 2000 and only the ones made on 20m.

Filtering for 20m is the easy part, just click on the arrow in the Band column heading and select 20m from the drop-down list. The Logbook View will now display all HB9 contacts on 20m.

But that didn't completely satisfy the filter requirements we established. The log still shows contacts for the year 2000 and we're only interested in contacts before 2000. To accomplish this last requirement of the filter, we have to use the Custom filter function. (This cannot be done by selecting a single value from the Year column).

Select the Custom entry from the filter list in the Year column and fill in the Custom AutoFilter dialog as follows:

The final result will look like this:

 The EQUAL operator accepts the following wildcards:

You can also mix both wiildcards: ?A* will list all callsigns like EA3GCV, 1A0KM, 3A2AC, etc. As you can see, it offers endless filtering possibilities!

With a few keystrokes and clicks with the mouse, you are able to quickly find a specific group of contacts in your log. Take time to explore the filters in the various columns – while the QSL-sent and QSL-received filter is slightly different, it's works basically the same. For practice, try isolating a group of contacts from one DXCC, select two or three bands, and find which ones you sent or received QSL cards.


Sorting QSO's

Whether you're reviewing your DXCC's for a particular Band or just searching for an old QSO, you may need to sort your log into some form of logical order. In the Logbook View it is possible to sort on one or more columns just by clicking on the column headings. The first step is to choose a column heading as the primary sort key – then as necessary, select another column as a secondary sort key.

Below is an example of sorting by Band and Mode:



As the name implies, the Grouping function allows you to group QSO's by one or more fields (columns). The Grouping function used in combination with sorting and filtering is possibly the most powerful feature in Swisslog. With a minimum amount of user input, grouping allows you perform several types of data analysis. This function is especially useful when selecting QSO's for awards and/or for QSL printing. To appreciate what a powerful function this is, spend a few minutes exploring the possibilities and try a hands-on demo – create an example similar to the one shown below using your own log. Also, please read the Hint in the Logbook View Functions above, click here.

Grouping is very easy to use – there are two straightforward techniques: 

  1. Click on a column heading and drag it to the group panel.

  2. Right-click on a column heading and select Group By This Column from the pop-up menu.

Ungrouping removes a field (column) from the group panel:

  1. Right-click on a column heading and select Un-Group By This Column from the pop-up menu.

    Hint: Method one above is the preferred method because the column heading is automatically reinserted in its previous position. Right-click on the column heading above the field grid, not the heading in the grouping panel.

  2. Click on a column heading in the grouping panel and drag it back to the corresponding heading above the field grid. Note, the column position will change if you do not drag it to the same place where it's currently located – the column is inserted to the right of the green arrows. If you accidentally place the heading in the wrong position, just select it and drag it to the correct position.

Below is an example of QSO's grouped by DXCC and Band. As you can see, this example displays the number of QSO's made for each DXCC entity – it also lists the number of QSO's for each Band. Notice at the left of each line there is a button with a plus or minus symbol; click on the button to expand (+) or collapse (-) the data list. As an example, if you click on the expand (+) button next to the word Band, a list will appear displaying QSO's for the appropriate Band and the corresponding DXCC listed above. It might sound a little confusing, but with a hands-on demo it will be clear.

Hint: If you look at the example above, you might notice a similarity between the way information is organized and the way computer directories are structured. Each time you click on the buttons that expand or collapse the structure, you are requesting either more or less information be displayed. As you expand the display, you are displaying a particular field that is shown in the grouping panel.


Field Tabs and Selection Tabs

Referring to the screen image in the section above, notice there are two rows of tabs running across the bottom of the Logbook View. The bottom row of tabs are the Field Tabs; these correspond to the fields in the Logbook – for each field appearing in the Logbook, there is a matching tab. The upper row of tabs are the Selection Tabs; these are similar to a conventional index; however, the Selection Tabs may change to another format depending on which Field Tab is selected.

The Field Tabs and Selection Tabs are used in combination to filter the Logbook very quickly. As an example, click on the Field Tab labeled Callsign, then click on one of the Selection Tabs such as the letter K. Now the Logbook View displays all Callsigns beginning with the letter K. To reset the logbook view back to all callsigns, click on the Selection Tab with the asterisk (*) symbol – located at the far left.

Hint: After the logbook has been filtered by using a Field Tab and a Selection Tab, the displayed group of QSO's can have additional filtering applied. You might like to sort the Callsign field alphabetically, or sort the displayed group using the Band field, or filter the group to display only one particular band. Most of the Filtering and Sorting functions described in the previous sections can be applied here.

A few of the Field Tabs have a different type of Selection Tab index or table associated with them. For instance, clicking on the Manual tab brings up a dialog window that allows you to manually select the criteria used for filtering the log. You can select a single item from the list of criteria, or any combination of items – this provides a very convenient method for searching your log. The criteria available includes the following items:


Incremental Search

When searching your log for a particular QSO, the Incremental Search function facilitates finding the data quickly. This function is easy to remember and use – follow these steps:

If searching is successful, the first QSO that meets your search criteria will be highlighted. You can continue searching using the Ctrl-Enter key combination or press Shift-Ctrl-Enter to move backward in the search sequence.

Hint: If you have a very large log, you will find that Incremental Search works better on sorted columns.

Below is an example – the search parameter was HB9BJ: If the initial parameter had been HB9, the cursor would have stopped at the first HB9 QSO found; pressing the Ctrl-Enter keys would step the cursor through the log until the last HB9 QSO was found. As you can see, by entering a few more characters you can narrow the search parameters and find the target QSO faster. Note: The image shown below is based on the Query named Example logbook.spq which is usually found in the following directory: ...\SWISSLOG\Queries\Logbooks


Summary Calculation

Using the Summary Calculation function, you can carry out mathematical calculations based on the columns in a log. You can count the number of records in a column; and for some fields, calculate the minimum, maximum, or average values. These calculations can be performed on groups of contacts or for all QSO's in the Logbook View.

Hint: In order to use the Summary Calculation function, at least one column heading must be placed on the group panel. Click on a column heading and drag it to the group panel.

To activate the Summary Calculation pop-up menu, right-click on the footer bar directly below the column you are interested in. The pop-up menu that appears will offer choices which are appropriate for the column you selected – not all summary calculations are applicable to every column. Select the type of calculation you want – or select None to reset the column.

Hint: You can implement summary calculations on more than one column at a time. After you have selected a calculation such as Count, you can apply filtering to the column and the total displayed on the footer bar will automatically update.

In the example shown below, the summary calculation has determined the number of QSL cards received and sent based on the data in the Received QSL and Send QSL columns – the calculation is limited to the DXCC entity 3DA listed a few lines above.

For a hands-on demonstration, try this example with your log:

Notice the totals shown on the footer bar, then change the Band filter to 20m and watch the totals change. For this example to work correctly, it is necessary to select a DXCC and Bands that are represented in your current log.

To reset the log back to the normal condition:


Customizing the Logbook View

When the logbook view displays your log, you can easily perform various functions to arrange the data as you like. The easiest way to arrange the columns is to use the drag and drop technique; you can sort a column by clicking on the column heading, or start a search by clicking on the down-arrow in the column heading.

  1. Click on the column heading and drag it anywhere outside the Logbook View and release it.
  2. Right-click on the column heading that is to be deleted. From the pop-up menu, select Remove This Column.

  3. Right-click on the column heading that is to be deleted. From the pop-up menu, select Column Selector... The Customize pop-up window will appear; click on the column heading to be deleted and drag it into the customize window.

Important Note for Advanced Users: The layout defined in the Logbook View replaces the layout defined by a Query. That means when you customize your Logbook by using any of the functions described above, the customized layout is saved for future use.

The details are a little complex... Actually the original query is not overwritten, what happens is SWISSLOG creates a new file that is based on the original query combined with the customized layout. These files are located in the Swisslog/Queries/Logbooks directory and use the file extension .RPL – the filename is similar to the original query name.

If you need to revert back to the original unmodified query, you can rename or delete the appropriate .RPL file – the query will now work as written.

The example below shows the Column Selector menu and the Customize window:



There are two different printing functions associated with the Logbook View. Please click on the following links for detailed information on these printing functions:

Copyright © 2004 SWISSLOG
Last modified: 18 abr. 2020