In the days long before Brandmeister, DMR+, and just about every network other than DMR-MARC, KS-DMR was born. In October of 2010, K0USY Group placed the first permanent Kansas DMR repeater in service in Lawrence. Shortly thereafter, K0USY Group purchased a c-Bridge in order to enable networking on their own, without dependency on a national network or the baggage associated with national networks. K0USY kept the network in Kansas, but retained upstream feeds from DMR-MARC and later the newer networks.
Immediately, the c-Bridge showed its limitations and the group became increasingly dissatisfied with its lack of reliability and inflexibility. In mid-2013, Cort Buffington, N0MJS began a project to reverse engineer the Motorola IPSC network protocol. Again, the group won its independence; this time from commercial networking products never intended for amateur use and from the networks who built networking tools, but refused to release them to the community. By late 2013, K0USY Group was operating on its own IPSC networking/call routing software called DMRlink – which it released as open source.
When MMDVM became stable and introduced the “HomeBrew Repeater Protocol”, again K0USY Group responded with HBlink, another open source software suite for networking MMDVM repeaters. With help from co-developers Steve, N4IRS and Mike, N4IRR, DMRlink and HBlink gained the ability to intercommunicate – creating another first for amateur DMR: An open source solution to connect MMDVM and Motorola repeaters with each other.
As the K0USY Group grew and began collaborating with other repeater owners, it eventually started using the name KS-DMR for its networking operations. This was to separate its own group of repeaters from a statewide network it hoped would evolve based on the open source tools it had provided to the world.