• Effective immediately we will be deleting, without notice, any negative threads or posts that deal with the use of encryption and streaming of scanner audio.

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How do I get a system key?

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Grog

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If you go to the hardware store, they have a machine that makes whatever keys you need :D



















































Ok, Just fooling with ya'

It sounds like you are trying to hack onto a system that you have no business being on, which has several problems that I'm sure someone else will fill you in on. I'm too tired to type all of it, but it's best to sell the radio and buy a scanner so you don't break the law.
 
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kd7rto

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mrwilmoth said:
Im getting a radio programed as a scanner (mtx8000 b7) and they say they need the system key? How can I obtain this key?
If the service shop you're using does not have it, you're only option is to find a service shop which does. System keys are a ridiculous Motorola idea, with the intent that only radios authorized by the trunked system owner can be programmed onto that trunked system.
 

Grog

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n6orz said:
If the service shop you're using does not have it, you're only option is to find a service shop which does. System keys are a ridiculous Motorola idea, with the intent that only radios authorized by the trunked system owner can be programmed onto that trunked system.
Do you have any idea what you're talking about :lol:
 

kd7rto

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Grog said:
It sounds like you are trying to hack onto a system that you have no business being on, which has several problems that I'm sure someone else will fill you in on. I'm too tired to type all of it, but it's best to sell the radio and buy a scanner so you don't break the law.
He said programmed as a scanner, ie. rx only. If no unlicensed signal is transmitted, no law is broken. Scanners have inferior rx performance when compared to commercial radios. I see nothing nefarious about someone wanting a receiver which performs half way decent.
 

Grog

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To quote just a few who have commented about using a moto rig to monitor a trunked system....

fireboy said:
Most people dont seem to grasp the concept that these systems are managed and operated by a central controller. (computer). and by simply turning on your radio and causing it to affilliate on a system that you are not authorized for. you would have instantly accessed that computer illeagally... hence "Computer Tresspass" and it is a serious offense. which is investigated by the F.B.I. You can go out and pretty much spend as much money on a scanner as you would on a radio and get more features out of your scanner than you could out of a radio anyday. Plus.. what would a police officer think if he saw your radio sitting in your cup holder during a traffic stop and better yet scrolling through the channells on the radio and seeing his own dispatch channel in there..... Just some food for thought....

KCChiefs9690 said:
And once it affilliates, it can be inhibited, meaning the computer basically zaps your radio so you can't use it. At that point it is useless.

More in this thread.

http://www.radioreference.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39686&highlight=system+key
 

Grog

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n6orz said:
He said programmed as a scanner, ie. rx only. If no unlicensed signal is transmitted, no law is broken. Scanners have inferior rx performance when compared to commercial radios. I see nothing nefarious about someone wanting a receiver which performs half way decent.
What happends when his radio tries to affilate with the system? That's transmitting, and against the law.
 

Grog

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n6orz said:
Do you? Having spent 11 years as a two-way tech, I've programmed my share of Motorola trunked radios.
So how often do you put people on others systems without permission?
 

kd7rto

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Grog said:
So how often do you put people on others systems without permission?
RX only, plenty. Back when I was in the industry, local Public Safety had not yet gone to 800. If a customer was on a 461-465 MHz community repeater, I would give him all the 460 MHz public safety -again I say rx only- that he wanted.

And If someone presented a badge, or a letter on PD letterhead, I'd give him any public safety he wanted, rx and tx.

Let me repeat a third time, as you don't seem to get it, we are talking about rx only. If tx is inhibited, no illegal signal is transmitted. The PA module could further be removed to insure this guy's radio does not affiliate.
 

Grog

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n6orz said:
RX only, plenty. Back when I was in the industry, local Public Safety had not yet gone to 800. If a customer was on a 461-465 MHz community repeater, I would give him all the 460 MHz public safety -again I say rx only- that he wanted.
We're not talking about UHF, but 800. Stick to the discussion.

n6orz said:
And If someone presented a badge, or a letter on PD letterhead, I'd give him any public safety he wanted, rx and tx.
Well you're just special :D

n6orz said:
Let me repeat a third time, as you don't seem to get it, we are talking about rx only. If tx is inhibited, no illegal signal is transmitted. The PA module could further be removed to insure this guy's radio does not affiliate.
There are plenty of people who had their radios programmed as "tx is inhibited", but they still tried to affilate with the system. What will you tell this guy if (when) that happens?


To the OP, I guess I should add other reason....The MTX8000 will not be support rebanding anyway, so depending on how long it takes for your area, it will only last a couple years at the most.
 

Grog

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RolnCode3 said:
OK. You both win. Has the OP's question been answered?
I thought I did, but then again I'm at work, and tired, so I might have just wasted the last 20 minutes of my life for nothing :lol:
 

kd7rto

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Grog said:
There are plenty of people who had their radios programmed as "tx is inhibited", but they still tried to affilate with the system. What will you tell this guy if (when) that happens?.
I'm out of that industry. I cannot confirm or refute your claim that a tx inhibited radio will still try to affililate. But if there is any question, just remove the PA module.

And since you think system keys are such a great idea, why don't any of the other manufacturers use them? (The answer is that Motorola is uniquely unreasonable when it comes to programming).
 
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Grog

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n6orz said:
And since you think system keys are such a great idea, why don't any of the other manufacturers use them? (The answer is that Motorola is uniquely unreasonable when it comes to programming).
Que? I never said anything for or against system keys, but they are an issue to be delt with when it comes to moto systems.

I agree 110% on the BS that moto pushes on it's subjects when it comes to software. I'd rather buy reasionablly priced software from the other companies (which are beating moto in many ways) than pay large sums of money for software that will only program one type of radio. I'll be surprised if moto has the same market share in ten years that they do now. Just the service depots closing, and going to mexico has sent many to Kenwood as Vertex for new gear.

I'm still not sure why software for a Saber (a 20 year old design) has to cost 10x what the radios cost, but that's another story :roll:
 

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n6orz said:
Let me repeat a third time, as you don't seem to get it, we are talking about rx only.
Unfortunately, Motorola considers that system key as proprietary and will take people to court who use it to program unauthorized radios up on a trunking system.

Doesn't matter if it's receive only. The only people who should possess that system key are shops authorized by the system owner to program radios for that system.

Even possession of the program used to generate system keys will land you in hot water with Motorola. Here's an article from way back when:

Toronto man settles with Motorola Ronen Katz, a Toronto resident, has settled a lawsuit brought against him by Schaumburg, IL-based Motorola for copyright and trademark infringement.

As part of the settlement, the Federal Court of Canada in Toronto entered a permanent injunction barring Katz from any unauthorized reproduction, use, sale or distribution of Motorola's proprietary, copyrighted or trademarked materials, including copyrighted computer programs. The court also prohibited the defendant from aiding or abetting any other person or entity from engaging in any prohibited acts.

Neither Motorola nor Katz's attorney, Samuel S. Marr, would disclose the settlement's financial terms.Motorola claimed that Katz infringed on its copyrights and trademarks by possessing and using unauthorized copies of Motorola's Radio Service software, which is used to reprogram the operating characteristics of Motorola's microprocessor-controlled two-way radios.

Claims against Katz included the illegal possession and use of software system keys to program radios to operate on specific radio systems. Motorola also alleged that software was used illegally to duplicate the identifications of Motorola's legitimate customers to obtain access to and use of trunked radio frequencies that are restricted to law enforcement, fire and related public service uses. It also claimed that, in his dealings with others, Katz used Motorola's registered trademarks to create the false impression that the radios originated with or were approved and authorized by Motorola.

"The defendant in the suit programmed radios to operate on public safety and other shared radio systems and provided them to users who were not authorized to have access to these networks," said Anthony J. Biell, software protection manager. "This action is part of a continuing effort to protect Motorola's intellectual property rights against their unauthorized, illegal and illegitimate use. The unauthorized use of software and system keys can result in serious problems for our customers."
 

kd7rto

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Mike_Oxlong said:
Unfortunately, Motorola considers that system key as proprietary and will take people to court who use it to program unauthorized radios up on a trunking system.

Doesn't matter if it's receive only. The only people who should possess that system key are shops authorized by the system owner to program radios for that system.
My advice to mrwilmoth was to find a shop which had the key, not to obtain a bootleg key. In retrospect, forgetting the idea of using the MTX is probably better advice, as the shop would probably just turn him down flat.

If he were able to get it programmed, I still think that removing the PA would eliminate the issue of accessing the controller.

At any rate, it looks like the monitoring hobbyist is stuck with the crappy performance of wideband receivers, at least for Motorola trunked systems.

Mike_Oxlong said:
It also claimed that, in his dealings with others, Katz used Motorola's registered trademarks to create the false impression that the radios originated with or were approved and authorized by Motorola.
It sounds like Mr. Katz was involved with a lot more than what mrwilmoth is intending. I have heard of the big "M" going after people who sell pieced together salvaged radios.
 

glradio

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System Key

#1: If we find someone with our system key, we'll work with Motorola to sue the pants off them.

#2: Motorola's trunked radios can't be programmed for tx inhibit, and they need to affiliate on the system. The only way to make the radio RX only is to damage the board, thus disabling the transmitter, but that destroys half the radio.

#3: Since the radio needs to affiliate, thus transmit, it is illegal to program it inder 47CFR90 (can't remember the exact section).

#4: We issue hunderds of scanners to our local government users so they can monitor the PD, and they work just fine.
 

swest90

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Scanners would work just fine on most of the sites. Unfortunately not on Pomona's fortress site. So far in my monitoring just one talk group is not encrypted. The other routine patrol channels are encrypted and last night they used traffic-1 and traffic-2 for the first time that I have noticed, of course both encrypted. I sure hope they have given the local media a tx inhibited radio.

On another note, the fancy encryption and trunking system has not yet led to any greater interoperability. During a shooting where the victim fled to San Dimas, there was no direct communication between agencies. The sheriffs office was trying to obtain all kinds of information on the incident that could have been handled very effectively if the Pomona unit handling the call would have been asked to switch to MA-3 so that they could talk to each other. Instead over 20 minutes goes by as both agencies play phone tag with each other and the units. Another instance had the Fire dept flying out a victim of a shooting, the fire captain requested to talk to pd and if they could switch to blue-6 for a status report. Of course the fire dept was told that wasnt possible and that a unit would be sent over instead, 15 minutes later... Instead of keeping the VHF fully patched for mutual aid and those officers in cities around Pomona that do not have digital scanners yet, they half patch just the dispatch side. Last night the Ontario PD air unit was called to assist, They apparently didnt have the uhf radio, so they were talking on the VHF side. None of the units could hear the air unit and the air unit could not hear any of the units, just dispatch.

Been listening to Pomona since I had my first scanner at 7years old. I have heard support from mutiple air units, LASO, CHP, SBSO 40-King and even Pasadena's air unit trying to find a lojack it, aswell as other agencies like the US Marshalls office when they had a shoot out on the East side of town. I beg to ask the question, Can they communicate now? Have we given them all nifty (expensive) trunked radios w/ encryption keys? The massive over emphasis on security of this site, in my opinion has really dealt a big blow to interoperability in this area. The only problems of the old vhf system (minus the narrowbanding orders by 2013) were that the units couldnt talk to each other across the city (Something a single repeater could have fixed) and that they couldnt talk to other agencies on UHF. Well they have resolved the first issue (with overkill), and now that they have the capability they dont even make the effort to communicate with the other agencies on UHF. I am going to try and get some opinions from the city leaders and the Lt's at the dept that setup the fortress system. Once I get some more information I am going to write an article for the papers & local businesses. As a homeowner resident whose family owns over 25 houses in Pomona, I will no longer be sending in my annual donation to the police officers association and I am going to suggest that none of the other businesses and interested scanner listeners do either. I really enjoy the concept of the ICIS system and was very pleased when I heard several years ago that Pomona would be one of the members. I however think that the way Pomona has setup their fortress site, is a huge waste of money and is a danger to both the officers of this city, officers of the sorrounding cities and finally the average at home scanner user.

Listening to the scanner as a child gave me a unique interest in law enforcement. I couldnt wait until I was 15, so that I could volunteer as an explorer. I stayed off drugs and kept away from gangs. In my 25 years, the only law enforcement trouble I have had was a ticket for no front license plate.. I credit the scanner for keeping my interest in law enforcement and helping me avoid trouble.

Anyway sorry for the rant, A more nicely formatted document with a few more details will be released shortly. I would appreciate any comments or experiences that I could share in my letter to the city council, papers, and business owners.

Thanks
Shawn West
 
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