MESH NETWORK HAMNET

Discussion in 'Echolink/IRLP Tech Board' started by KD4YSH, Nov 22, 2014.

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  1. KB3VWG

    KB3VWG Ham Member QRZ Page

    You do know it's quite difficult to make a point-to-point link with most Part 15 equipment unless it was manufactured for that purpose. Since Amateurs may modify equipment and antennas, it's actually the Part 15 user who has the constraint. Part 15 users must buy (often more expensive) equipment that was made specifically for point-to-point, high power, directional and/or high gain connections; and may not modify it in any way.

    I think you're using the phrase "Mesh" in the in definition of multiple interconnected points (which is by definition is a many/one-to-many LINKING); but it's also a routing protocol...meaning that a point-to-point (one-to-one link) can be used to interconnect two islands of Mesh nodes (e.g. across hilly terrain) by simply establishing a signal link and setting the channel and SSID. And, with no further configuration necessary, two islands of Mesh nodes instantly can reach one another.

    Also, please elaborate on the "constraints" you envision with using an Amateur-based Mesh Network.
     
  2. KK4YWN

    KK4YWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    constraints were covered earlier in the thread.

    this thread has in its title the word "mesh".

    building large pieces of the internet was my job for many years. some of the attempts at arguments here are beyond embarrassing.
     
  3. KB3VWG

    KB3VWG Ham Member QRZ Page

    That's excellent then! We're both on the same page, I do that for a living now.

    Notwithstanding, I'll RE-READ the thread again and look for your "constraints." Your response still doesn't expound on the consumer equipment portion of your statement.

    Let me bring this into perspective to end the "embarrassment," then...a Part 15 user...to establish an outdoor point-to-point would have to purchase something like a Cisco AIR-BR1310G-A-K9...used, that costs about $1,000...

    A Part 97 user can modify a WRT54G (or similar) router by changing out the antennas and placing the board in a waterproof enclosure (maybe even adding a amplifier)...this would cost the Amateur...less than $200.00 (amplifier not included). This is the same for any outdoor scenario, whether it be point-to-point, or MESHing multipoint nodes (since you consider them to be different).

    I was highlighting the cost constraint of using "consumer equipment," as you put it (under Part 15 rules, that is).
     
  4. KK4YWN

    KK4YWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    please do tell me what networks you build for a living. i can't tell you how curious i am about your career.
     
  5. K0RGR

    K0RGR XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I did 33 years with IBM, the last 15 doing TCP/IP and networking support for major products and international corporations. I think HSMM Mesh has great promise, particularly if we do it on bands that we don't share with consumer WiFi, like 902 MHz, which is possible with the inexpensive Ubiquiti gear now. The content will be amateur and non-commercial in nature. Some people think it's OK to extend the Internet for web browsing this way. I don't agree, and I suspect eventually FCC will smite those that do that. On the other hand, I can see it being a portal to the Internet for countless ham-related applications.

    It's not Mesh, but in the Twin Cities, they have a remarkable network using high speed DSTAR connections on 1.2 GHz.. http://www.14567.org/ They use this great network for a number of events every year, but they're also set to provide emergency communications, if needed. Each ICOM 1.2 GHz DSTAR radio acts as a terminal server for a number of workstations. These workstations can access a central, redundant database via DSTAR. Multiple servers are linked together over Part 15 802.11 (Ubiquiti I think). They have a number of 'canned' web applications on the servers and some people who can quickly gen up some database apps if needed. In one drill, they registered a large number of 'epidemic victims' using the system.

    I think much the same thing could be done using Mesh. A 128 kB DSTAR link can support a lot of terminals. An HSMM link should be able to handle many more.

    If I set up the network I'm contemplating on 902, I plan to use horizontal antennas, which might share time with a SSB rig someday.

    Mesh has been used successfully to support some big public service events. http://www.hotarc.org/mesh.html http://www.bvarc.org/pdf/BLT-26_HS-MM_backgroud.pdf

    Besides which, we're hams, and we tend to do things just for the challenge of doing them, practical or not. What's practical about sitting in a dripping wet tent in June, trying to work distant people through thunderstorm static? Nothing, but we enjoy it anyway...
     
  6. KB3VWG

    KB3VWG Ham Member QRZ Page

    I think this has went into the realm of personal piques...which I'm totally lost as to what I said to set it off. I chat on these forums because I enjoy having good and hearty conversation of those KNOWLEDGEABLE, not to play swords...and I still have no clue what you mean by "consumer equipment," which was the whole point in the first place. Stating you have knowledge because of your work experience, then saying my response was embarrassing doesn't relieve one actually expounding on a question.

    - I'm currently the Systems/Network Administrator for a government owned and operated ISP in the Washington, DC area, we maintain 1000+ miles of fiber optics, and peer with 3 other Autonomous Systems, and privately with approximately 27 other neighboring jurisdictions, and growing.

    - As my profile says, I used to be an educator, I have taught kindergarten through college during that portion of my career; from hardware, protocols to applications.

    - I run a private laboratory with interns, college students, partners and others; we primarily assist those in the Washington, DC, area who have been the victim of an online scam or who have been hacked, had data stolen (personal pictures, tax records, etc.), etc. We also study trends, possible e-targets, etc. We maintain over 10 honeypot subnets (with hosts) around the world. Our most well-known paper predicted the VoIP hacking that took place in the early 2010's, 24 hours before the major hit and 72 hours before it was in any major news paper. We tend to offer our services to those who wouldn't otherwise be able to afford it, and we do it simply because we enjoy it.

    - I tutor youth seeking their A+ and network certifications...those who may need help with programming, or learning to count/add in decimal or hex.

    - I assist on a task force in the MDC section to Mesh the Washington, DC area and our served ARES/RACES agencies, in addition to establishing a means to provide them with IP-based services during emergencies.

    - I consult for non-profit and religious organizations in Washington, DC; many of whom couldn't afford to pay for IT services otherwise.
     
  7. KK4YWN

    KK4YWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    How can you have that kind of background and think that a hacked up linksys has any value? I'm not here to devalue you in any way. I'm just trying to understand how in earth you can believe that a linksys router is not only worthy of a production environment, but robust enough to be used for emcomm.

    I honestly have a hard time believing that a professional would advocate the hackery of that type of equipment.

    And to remove the encryption? Really?

    And I still don't understand what value a hammy net has. Unless you folk have secured a source of content, it seems all you've accomplished is created a mostly useless data network.

    Again in not here to pick on you. I'm really and truly confounded by this really bizarre marriage of technology that seems to have no possible use.

    And for the record: when I first discovered the ham mesh net I was excited. My enthusiasm quickly dissipated once I thought about it. I can't find a single use for it.
     
  8. KC2UGV

    KC2UGV Ham Member QRZ Page

    I currently maintain a corporate network spanning ~7 cities internationally, with datacenters in each one. Each DC has ~1000 servers operating, that serve tens of millions of hits per day.

    I am also heading up a group that is in the process of building a city-wide mesh network, much like the Berlin Freifunk network and the Redhook Community Network.

    In the past, I've built and designed many networks, for many clients. Many of which had wireless links, and one even employed mesh networking topology to service the last mile.

    What, exactly, is it you do again for a living?
     
  9. KK4YWN

    KK4YWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    And in the interest of being balanced: I spent 13 years at a very large ISP. Internet was our business. We did not function as support for a business that made widgets. We terminated fiber at customer perms. Core distribution and access meant nothing to my team because those perspectives only matter when you're working a single side of a link. I converged LANs WANs and all manner of transport into a coast-to-coast network. A very big hairy network at the.

    Fiber back haul. Fiber rings. Hell we even had a wireless fiber extension. It was mostly junk by the way.

    At one time I commanded control of several thousand next gen firewalls.

    My favorite was working with the fiber crews though. Sitting in the woods with an oc192 in each hand waiting for the splicers to finish. Knowing you're about to light up another hundred thousand customers. Man that's living right there.

    We built networks for cash. Not to support the production of a widget.

    So my mindset is build it with a purpose. And I get that this mindset is vastly different than most in the industry, as thier whole career exists as a lowest-cost solution to a peripheral problem.

    I've no interest in belittling anyone. I just don't understand what purpose ham nets serve and I'll be darned if I can find a single way that it advances the hobby.
     
  10. KD0WHU

    KD0WHU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Been done long before the amateurs found it. Hell, there's a couple guys in south america who went almost 150Km with 10 foot old satellite dishes and 10mW USB radios at the focal point. Yes, it was slow, but it did work. Was it on the ham bands? Nope, part 15 gear commonly purchased at Amazon... And they did this in 2003.
     

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