Di-Fax Community Contributions
With the end of current difax transmission imminent, we are considering alternatives
to address the needs of the community currently desiring difax type products.
- Unidata Redbook Graphics:
These products can be viewed online or downloaded in .gif format for viewing.
These can be converted to postscript and piped to a printer if desired.
- University of Wisconsin:
- These graphics are "zipped" (.gz) postscript (.ps) files available for
download and viewing (via xv or similar software) or printing on postscript
- University of Wisconsin's GEMPAK
scripts used for generating above graphics.
- Plymouth State College:
Unix scripts for downloading and printing NWS DIFAX charts. They work on the
majority of the products (but not all). One is for a single or double panel
chart download and the other combines two 2-panel charts into a 4-panel chart.
Scripts and information can be found at:
- Cornell University:
Has developed a program for downloading NWS faxes. Kinda rough around the
edges. This program is for LINUX (RH6.2), and, most Unix OS's, if you have
some ancillary files listed in the program. Tried to keep it portable... No
executable, there are some compile time config that need to be done, before
building. (This is a copy of the first non-beta) ( file wfax.tgz)
Comments from the community regarding implementation of these options:
- ...we ftp the difax charts in tiff format from the nws site. We do this
from a vax system, but using cron would give the same results. I have a separate
file for each time, retrieving only the charts that should be ready at that
time. These are then stuck on a shared directory on an nt machine and we use
an image viewer to look at them. We archive them on the vax in case we want
to go back. The viewer allows printing if needed, and magnification -- the
images are pretty sharp.
- DIFAX images in GIF format are available from the NWS HPC site at http://www.hpc.ncep.noaa.gov.
I don't find the quality as good as the TIFF's on the main NWS site but they
also have some regional charts that are nice.
- From my understanding, even though the Difax feeds will be going away, charts
will be available via this FTP server-http://weather.noaa.gov/fax/graph.shtml-for
at least 2-3 years. I have rigged up a simple Perl script to download the
charts and convert them to PNG format. I don't see any reason why someone
out there couldn't do much the same and push Difax charts through IDD. You
don't need to cover all 245 charts. You only need to cover the 100+ charts
the universities commonly plaster on their walls.
National Weather Service Options
At some point in time this service will no longer be offered, however it currently
offers a wide array of Di-Fax type products. These can be downloaded individually
or, more conveniently, placed in a cron process and directed to your printer
for output. These products are in .tiff format and can be viewed online or downloaded.
For any additional help please contact