Instructables
I have always been amazed with wireless technology even before. I remember during our high school days. My friends and I were DREAMING on how to propagate data packets using the VHF radio (145.00 Mhz) and a Commodore 64 computer. It did not materialize though, we haven't had the chance to test it because of money considerations, back then a Commodore 64 PC cost thousands of Dollars. Cassette tapes were still used for file back-ups, no Hard Drives and Floppies yet. Well ..... so much with History.

This project is to make a homebrew wireless ISP in your neighborhood, this is to share your internet connection using wireless technology. Although we have questions about security issues but I won't be touching that topic, my reason for this blog is just to show how powerful this technology is and how it can help bring internet connection to rural areas. I will be using cheap materials you can find anywhere.
 
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Step 1: Materials and Fitting

Materials Needed:
Plastic Transhcan - used as enclosure
Access Point
Homebrew POE Injector and Antenna
Power Supply Regulator

a. Fitting the Access Point and Supply Regulator

Using a plywood, cut the desired size so that it will fit inside the trashcan. The wood will be used as the base for your AP and the Power Supply Regulator. I will be using the regulator I made in my previous blog.(http://www.instructables.com/ex/i/BD1BA19AFB3510289811001143E7E506/)

Look at picture #2 and #3,It would look like this after putting the AP and the Regulator. Take note that there's a bolt near the regulator, this will be used to attach the wood to the plastic trashcan afterwards. The RJ-45 modular box is part of the POE I made. You can make your own POE using this link (http://www.nycwireless.net/poe/) as reference, this is a cheap alternative that works well.
faustin13 years ago
I do not see this antenna booster working to well. WiFi uses Microwave frequencies.. RG-58 cable and Pl259 connectors are not designed for those ranges.

LM400 cabling and sma connections should had been used for max effectiveness
cwiegand faustin16 months ago
For the low power outputs here and short cable runs I wouldn't be too worried. More power might damage the equipment or longer runs would cause more signal loss. I'd keep the cable as short as possible.
Why would you put the access point in the trash can on the pole? could you just have the linksys in the house and run the signal cable up the pole to the antenna instead? Just courious why you did it they way you did..
here's why
100 feet of rg-58 loses 32 dB at 2.4 ghz that's your signal is cut in half 10 times or about 0.1% of the signal gets through.
LMR-400 lose is 5.8 dB/100 feet so you only lose ~3/4 or 75% of your signal.
cat5 cable (Ethernet ) ~300 feet lose of signal zero.
better to run cat5 to location then use 6 " of coax
There's a lot of loss if you just run and extension to the outdoor antenna. That and it would pickup a lot of EMI/RFI interference.
that would be ok for a point to point application
If you want to be an access point though you would need to us an omni directional antenna or construct sector antennas
I have sucessfully established a 40 mile point to point link using 2 parabolic reflectors and 500mw

Something else that helps is using 802.11b
It will easily outdistance 802.11g and 802.11n
Dear Sir/

I am Internet Cable Service Provider, I cover 2 Kilometer area. I have almost 500 Internet Cable coustumers. I want to convert my whole Cable Network into Wireless Network. I would be very thankful to you if you can help me out from this problem and tell me also about your products which will help me to do convertation.

Thanks,
- Mohib
pppd5 years ago
ok, good one, but.. this is not a wisp project, this is more or less access on the net. you need a lot more to make wisp.being N.A.S the first. (not storage but the Network Access Server) to justM: I have build a phased quad antenna reflected by a 90cm parabola & established connection (with the same gear at the other end) in 7Km range and 100mw lasted 3 yrs then i took it down. but still works,
fouaz pppd4 years ago
I'm newbie in this kind of Tech , a 'll be gracefuller if you give us a simple tutorial to built a phased quad antenna reflected by a 90cm parabola. thanks at all
A further enhancement for this project would be to take your wifi router and flash the firmware with dd-wrt which gives you many more bandwidth filtering and other options than the stock Linksys firmware. Also use OpenDNS, which is free, to restrict access to websites that won't get you in trouble with your ISP or the law if someone in your neighborhood wants to go on a questionable website. You can set up a list of website categories such as porn content in your OpenDNS control panel account and block this from being accessed through your open wifi connection. Then point your DNS settings in your wifi router to connect to your OpenDNS account settings to implement the type of content you will allow people to access through your connection.
rsdandy5 years ago
I know this is coming in late, but I could not go without posting a couple of things. Everyone with the idea of providing service for a neighborhood, or similar will be responsible for the actions of the people on the internet. Also, the FCC has some very strict rules about these things, along with the ISP that is providing the originating IP address. Especially if you plan to sell the service. Of course this all pertains to the U.S. Only.
Ya, but if you live in a rural area who cares? If your broadcast does not interfere it is not illegal. (Part 15 of the FCC rules). I wouldn't suggest this in a city, but then it's not as necessary there.
Ok... yes the transmissions are legal, but the data may not be (spam, child porn, etc). And it all points to your IP address.
Not if you split your router. You can have the router give out two different connections. One you broadcast, one you don't. That way you can use one internet connection and have your computer use one IP while everyone else uses the other. This is free to do.
Your modem, be it cable, dsl, or whatever, has one or more ip's assigned to it by the providers servers. The ip that the router gets from the modem, and the ip's that it assigns to users, all go back through this ip, which is associated to your account. If it becomes a serious enough violation, it is simple to determine which account provided the connection that violated the law.
Yes, but the just as the isp is not responsible for you or me, you would be able to know that you did not do it, and you would have lots of other people with the incriminating ip. You would have say 56.78.1.90, and everyone else would have 56.78.1.89.
You are right, but, if it is a serious enough violation it won't matter because the provider will disable your account because of what is passing through it, even if it is someone else doing it. I will give you that in most scenerios, only warnings are issued (guess what I do for a living?), but you are at risk if you don't know who is using your service. Not to mention that some providers have caps on their bandwidth. Thanks for the thread.
NozeDive6 years ago
I was thinking of doing something similar, but on a smaller scale. I have a wired Linksys router, as I originally had no need for WIFI . Now I would like to give some of my WIFI enabled devices access to the internet, but not all of them have an RJ-45 jack to plug into my router.

I also have a WIFI-G USB adapter that I can use to connect a PC to a WIFI network. Is there a way I can use my PC as a bridge? I mean, since my PC is wired to my router, can I use the USB WIFI adapter to let other devices and computers connect to my wired router through the WIFI USB adapter?
Nope. Not unless you have a WiFi G router connected to a computer.
That is EXACTLY what I have been searching and searching this site for and not finding anything. Someone please answer our question!!
It is possible...i will try to search windows help for how to set it up
Derin Derin6 years ago
WINDOWS HELP ABOUT MAKING BRIDGE: To bridge connections You must be logged on as an administrator or a member of the Administrators group in order to complete this procedure. If your computer is connected to a network, network policy settings might also prevent you from completing this procedure. Open Network Connections. Under LAN or High-Speed Internet, hold down the CTRL key and select each of the private network connections that you want to be part of the bridge. Right-click one of the highlighted private network connections, and then click Bridge Connections.
Thanks for trying, but I don't believe that answers the problem, Thanks anyways.
femisez8 years ago
Hello guys. I'm interested in establishing commercial grade wireless service in rural communities. I know little of the radio/wireless world. Ive been researching, and I am looking for pointers, tutorials and the like. Right now I am reading O'Reillys Wireless Community Networks. Anyone willing to be a guide/mentor? It would be greatly appreciated. What would you say the funding requirements are? And I've been reading about 802.16 as been the future, yet I see no implementations yet. Help anyone?
hi femi, my name is kola kolade and i run a company called Proteux technologies here in lagos nigeria, we are into ict support services, i dont know if u are stll interested in this project you can call me on 08088001180 and let see if we can work something out
Hey Kola. I am East Africa. Would you or anyone here be interested in starting a wireless internet provider operation here and in the middle east? let me know if you want to partner. I will provide funds, some tech, some business/marketing help, you provide the knowhow.
static femisez6 years ago
I'm using a WISP rural) and they are using the /\/\otorola Canopy system. A wireless Community Network may not necessarily be a WISP, WISP is being used very loosely here. You might want to exchange email addresses with to pro that checked in to comment.
Talking Electronics (author)  femisez8 years ago
Just post your queries/questions here and will try to answer it. By the way, why "commercial grade", is this for a company or for a business? For funding requirements, it really depends on the brand/model that you'll be using and the current prices of the equipment/materials in your area, so since you have been reading O'Reillys, you can now canvass.
wireless ISP business startup, to offer broadband to businesses as well as residential customers. the main internet feed is going to be via satellite.
Talking Electronics (author)  femisez8 years ago
Oh i see,so that will be a big set-up.
so tell me still , where do i start? im finding info but most point towards hotspots.
Talking Electronics (author)  femisez8 years ago
BiggieX5 years ago
On the router you have two coax pig tails connected. Where did you plug the other two ends into? Isn't it only needed to connect one pig tail to the biquad?
Talking Electronics (author)  BiggieX5 years ago
I was supposed to connect 2 antennas from the router and decided to just connect 1 antenna pigtail to the Biquad then took the picture. You can omit the other pigtail if you intend to connect just 1 antenna.
Bor5 years ago
Nice idea, but isn't this just a router on a stick?
yellowaj5 years ago
i also have been working on some medium scale wireless network deployments in my area-like you said there is very little info on the net for do it yourselfer type wisp's.

i ran across http://www.diy-wirelessisp.com (i think they are still builiding content). it is the perfect guide for diy, easy and cheap wireless networks for rural, city deployments. also they will answer questions about your proposed wisp network.

hope that helps.
Sandisk1duo6 years ago
you should put this in a tall tree, so that no one notices that you are leeching internet
And in Autumn when all the leaves fall off?
spray paint it?
well that could work
pluto6 years ago
Hi folks. I would like to install a WISP as a community project for a village in the far east. I have one internet connection. I need a ready made setup so that folks around my place within 300 feet radius can share the internet. What are the items I need to buy to have this setup.? I have a linksys wireless router. Any expert advise would be appreciated. Thank you so much. John, plutomark@yahoo.com
static pluto6 years ago
You might be interested in these files
http://brainsturbator.com/pdf/wndw-ebook.pdf
http://brainsturbator.com/pdf/OReilly-BuildingWirelessCommunityNetworks.pdf

My source for the files mention the web page was to be shut down "soon", so I woulsn't waste no time in getting the files. However soon wasn't quantiified
pluto static6 years ago
Thanks for your links. John
static pluto6 years ago
Hope they worked for you. I checked last week and there URLs aren't valid anymore. Perhaps your library can help.
static6 years ago
This is more akin to a neighborhood hot spot, than a WISP. Such a set up may or may not violate one's TOS with the ISP the equipment is using to access the internet. Billing like another commenter mentioned surely would, unless prior arrangements where made. An omni-directional antenna would potentially serve more people. Let them use a directional antenna if it's needed. Anyway I didn't pay thousands for my C64. Than again I was using a BW TV and had the data cassette from the Vic 20.
Derin static6 years ago
I would not have to bill them since I pay the ISP(the phone company in my case) the same amount of cash undependant on the usage,so if I use the net for a min,then for the next month I use it 24/7 I pay the same on both months
believe it or not, some people still back up their files on tapes...
just found my SATA tape drive... I think it was used for server management at one point, and found its way into my hands
My college uses 50GB storage tapes to backup the network every night. Pretty cool in my opinion.
hope it has autoreverse or ur in for some problems
sata tape drive?
Derin Derin6 years ago
sata and tape drives dont go together,sata was developed just on the beginning of 2007
justM6 years ago
Niiice...!!! But what range does it have in lets say, metres... Am really intrested!
I've been reading a LOT of this WiFi stuff here on our extraordinary Instructables.com and was wondering if anyone has tested the strainer method against the coffee can or pringles method and also against using an old directv satellite and such. Which one would give me the best reception? I'm guessing the satellite dish but I am new to this. TIA!
Dexxa6 years ago
Looks good. so if I build one of them and hook the net into the box I can start a wisp just like that? What do you use to allow access for your users billing etc? I might build one
jpghiena6 years ago
Hi, nice one :-) How far can you send the wifi signal ? Would the distance be better if sent on water (like from a beach to a boat) ? Thanks for your answer
kakashii6 years ago
als have a qustion about a post called: How-To: Build a WiFi biquad dish antenna. question: I'm curious to know why is it necessary to remove the LNB from the dish? Wouldn't the LNB work like a can?
kakashii6 years ago
is there a way to send all the wireless signals from the Athena( contAthena) to a device, then i can use my wireless laptop any where from my house to pick up signals three mile away, so it will be like Athena( contAthena) going to the device that catches the signal, then i can use all my wireless devices around teh house to use any AP signal picked up by the Athena. so the question is what is that device called that will be the middleman, is it an access point adapter, please help me. also any suggestion's be good, i live in an apartment that is downstairs and have a back porch and rooms with window too. thanks
This is fun. I did the same thing for a while and was able to get internet connecton about a 1/2 mile away. I used a WRT54G router with firmware updated to some version of Sveasoft's release and boosted the power up. (Remember that getting the signal back to the router is another issue.) Anyone looking to do this, should choose a router that can be firmware hacked. I think the best overall firware replacement for these WRT54G routers now is: DD-WRT do a search on google for it.
Zenix7 years ago
What software would you suggest to regulate the amount of bandwidth used? I could use MAC address restriction on the AP (Linksys WRT54G) to only allow access to payers... Could I use some software like ByteOMeter (http://www.byteometer.com/snmp-router-monitor.asp) or PRTG Traffic Grapher (http://www.paessler.com/prtg) to monitor the connections from wireless and the amount of bandwidth they have used?? Does the Linksys WRT54G have SNMP support?

Thanks in advance!
Zenix7 years ago
What is the RPS for? what strengthens the signal from the AP to the antenna so that it is powerful, I see you have two cables coming out of the AP, where does the other one go? (if one goes to the antenna?) Awesome Instructable
If you don't feel comfortable building your own POE (Power over Ethernet) adapter, Linksys, Netgear & other vendors sell 12-V POE adapters for around $30-40. I like the idea of using a Linksys adapter to subvert my DD-WRT firmware-based Linksys router ;)
compudude868 years ago
this is cool!! i remember my middle school days, when wireless network costed lots of cash and there was no standards, and it was slower than the slowest wifi. me and my friends were contemplating a serial-over-FM radio link........that didnt work, because by the time we had jobs wifi was affordable.
Yeah, those were the days
peripatetic7 years ago
Sorry to come late to the party. I recently found an alternative firmware which can be used to flash a Linksys and create a captive portal. I thought it might be useful here for a small scale ISP operation. It uses NoCatSplash integrated into a standard Linksys firmware image. Its called EWRT and you can find it over at portless.net.
Heres the link, thanks for the info:
http://www.portless.net/menu/ewrt/
Azzazal7 years ago
of all the things i have seen on this great site. this has to be the best! Imagine all the great things this low cost set up could do for the 3rd world countrys alone, this should be under world wide patent, :0)
beckman1017 years ago
Web site about starting and running a tiny wireless ISP:

http://wispdiary.com
My friend lives 20 miles away on the top of a mountain. I get t1. Is there any possible way to brodcast the signal to my friends house. I would perfer to build the device my self. We could possibly set a reaspond point half way but sence my friend lives on the top of a mountain it would be possibly harder to trassmit halfway up the mountain vs. at the base with a (almost) clear line of sight. thank you
You can put a repeater halfway( thats if the signal is good enough halfway ), or maybe a series of repeaters if you really want a good signal. More or less you have the same situation as this one.
http://acelere.net/notes/repeater.html
For repeaters -- try the GigaFast / WF719-CAPR / 54Mbps / 802.11g / 4-Port / Cable/DSL / Wireless Router. Tigerdirect has them really cheap. I started using them as Wireless adapters in Wireless ISP mode. They also act as ap's and as a bridge with WDS.

Pretty cheap -- seems to be anything over 3 units makes the shipping cheaper.

The folks at British Columbia Wireless have taken this thing apart.. lots of hidden tricks and tips
http://www.bcwireless.net/moin.cgi/GigaFast_WF719-CAPR
prik4207 years ago
Hi TE, I'm in the same country as you are, where do you buy your N connectors for your wifi antenna? I'm not sure if there's any local reseller of these products.
Talking Electronics (author)  prik4207 years ago
I bought it online,- a lot in Ebay
RedMonday8 years ago
Talking Electronics (author)  RedMonday8 years ago
Nice reading material, thats the kind of stuff technology helps a lot of people.
ArmChairQB8 years ago
Check Out these books for captive portals-- router/repeater designs, etc. Wireless hacks 100 industrial- Stregth Tips & Tools O'reilly by Rob Flickenger isbn 0-596-00559-8 and Wifi Toys ExtremeTech ISBN 0-7645-5894-3 by Mike Outmesguine
DJ Nu2U8 years ago
This is awsome, I did it and am sharing my T3 line with my friends on my block, who each have one also, that they are using as "repeaters".
AltBB8 years ago
I've build a commercial WISP from scratch three years ago. Today the WISP covers a large area and has many customers. A lot of my time has gone into testing technologies and equipment. I now build my own CPE and AP's just because the ones available is either not reliable or too expensive. Some of my links extend over 30 miles between base stations, with clients up to 10 miles away. This project has many merits but if you intend to do anything on a commercial basis I'd suggest have a chat with me first. It will save you a lot of time & money.
nickm AltBB8 years ago
i would like to set up a similar setup in a rural area of australia, would need at least 20-30 km's of range. i would probably put the base station on either a grain silo or machinery shed on our farm. i would be charging for the service, but it would be very good value plans for dirt cheap prices (probably). Approximatley, how much do you think this would cost. Do you have any suggestions or any other help for me? Thanks Nick
navaburo8 years ago
what kind of range do you see with this?
Talking Electronics (author)  navaburo8 years ago
" I tested it in my friends house 1 KM. away with decent signals. Although we had a good LOS (line of sight) and added an external antenna to his Orinoco card.Haven't really tested this beyond that point. "
Kalamets8 years ago
Hey, this will work with 802.11g, right?
Talking Electronics (author)  Kalamets8 years ago
Yes, it will work for "G".
KD7WHQ8 years ago
One note; adding antennas to part 15/90/95 devices makes them no longer complient to the FCC specification. Being as most of those devices transmit/recieve within the ham bands, hams may make modifications legally. If you aren't licensed, which is quite easy in the US these days, you play with such mods at your own risk..
radiohead8 years ago
So, I hope Talking Electronics is still watching, cuz I have some questions. Right now they're mostly about the antennae. 1) What did you put the antennae in? It looks like another plastic bucket (only smaller) I presume this has no affect on the antennae's performance? 2) How did you split your RG58 for the dual Linksys connections? 3) You mentioned that you 'tweaked' the antennea. From what I can see in the pictures, you soldered the lips onto the reflector, and you used a screw-connector to attach the RG58 to the reflector (which it appears that you still soldered). Is there anything else you tweaked? 4) What software recommendations would you have for testing/diagnostics of this setup, as I go along? Thanks. I'll be in touch.
I found that the 2.4GHz biquad was a perfect size to put into one of those old double-thickness CD cases, if you still have any sitting around. They're hard to weatherproof unless you have a shrinkwrap machine or are fearless with the silicone caulk, but for an indoor antenna they're the cutest I've found. Change the liner notes every few days... (Wardrivers take note: This thing doesn't even look conspicuous perched on your car's rear deck!) The Linksys will automatically use whichever antenna connector is providing the best signal at the moment. I'm not sure how smart its logic is, but I've heard of good luck using a pair of back-to-back sector antennae (slotted waveguides work well, as they cover nearly 180 degrees of horizon) and letting the AP pick between them. If you just have one good antenna, leave the other connector open, or toss the stock rubber duck on there just in case. Kismet or Netstumbler make a fine place to start with diagnostics. For doing site surveys and tracking down interference, pick up a Wi-Spy spectrum analyzer. Take a look at TomsNetworking and see the test setups they use. For painting the bucket, try a bright white or silver color. You want to reflect as much sunlight as possible, to keep the guts from overheating. Put a long-wire thermometer in there and see how hot it gets on a sunny day -- you might find your Linksys getting flaky as the final overheats. There's a simple heatsink hack that involves prying off the RF shield, adding a tiny snail of copper foil tape to the top of the chip as a transfer pad, and replacing the shield. Optionally throwing a "ramsink" style heatsink on top of the shield might further improve disspation, but only if the surrounding air is cool.
Talking Electronics (author)  radiohead8 years ago
2. Since 1 Bi-quad will suffice my intended application, I did not make use of the other antenna connector in the Linksys Access point but if you want to make use of 2 antennas,you can make 2 bi-quads and connect each to your access point. 3. That's the only thing that I tweaked. Connecting an SO-239 connector in the center of the antenna instead of the copper tubing that was used in Trevor Marshall's design. It would be even better if you use TNC bulkhead connectors since it can handle higher frequencies compared to my SO- 239,I just used that connector because their was no available TNC's in my area. 4. Try using Network Stumbler to test your signal propagation.
Talking Electronics (author)  radiohead8 years ago
1. The antenna casing is just ordinary plastic enclosure, just make sure the plastic material is microwave friendly so that the signal from your access point can propagate. To test the plastic if its microwave friendly, cut a small piece and try putting it in the microwave oven for a few seconds, if its hot, its not suitable a suitable enclosure for the antenna.
Talking Electronics (author)  radiohead8 years ago
Hey Radiohead, I'll answer your questions in 2 days, I'm still on the road and doesnt have a good internet connection yet, keep in touch.
kordless8 years ago
(removed by author or community request)
Talking Electronics (author)  kordless8 years ago
To all you guys in the USA, here's a good alternative enclosure from kordless..
uberjeep8 years ago
how high was the pole holding up your rig? i have seen smiliar projects like this, not just so exstensive. I like the idea, though.
Talking Electronics (author)  uberjeep8 years ago
just 10 feet, its not very high actually
radiohead8 years ago
Here's a question regarding the WISP. You've got the entire assembly attached to a piece of conduit (metal pipe), which I presume is stuck in the the ground, creating a natural ground or Earth connection. I'm going to do the same thing, except instead of sticking the pipe in the ground, I'm going to attach it to a wooden deck on the 2nd floor of a house. What are my grounding concerns in this situation? I think that I should be connecting the post to ground somehow, right?
Talking Electronics (author)  radiohead8 years ago
It would be advisable to run a Ground wire from the antenna post straight to the sticking pipe in the ground, since wood is not a very good conductor.
radiohead8 years ago
Hey TE, it's good to know your around, as I suspect I'll be picking your brain a lot. While I consider this project within the realm of my capability, I am neither an electronics or antennae hobbyist, although I guess I'm about to become one. Next question: the regulator project. I presume the regulator is necessary to power the bi-quad's additional power needs? Si? Non? Also, I can't quite make it out from the pictures, but I presumeThe DC connector from the POE in the trash can is connected to the regulator, which in turn is connected to the access point. Good to hear from you, TE. I'll be in touch.
Talking Electronics (author)  radiohead8 years ago
1. The regulator only powers the Linksys Access Point, the Bi-Quad does not need any power. 2. The DC output from the POE goes to the input of the Regulator, the output of the regulator goes to the Access Point.
radiohead8 years ago
This is a really cool project. In fact, I'd recently been thinking about trying to increase the range (signal strength?) of my AP, so I'm fortunate to have found this link. The way I see it, there are actually 4 projects: 1- Power Over Ethernet, 2- Biquad Antennae, 3- Power Supply Regulator, 4- Homebrew WISP (assemble results of 1, 2, and 3). I am curious if anyone else has attempted this project, and what their experiences may have been. I will try to add my results as I go along. However, be warned. I am going to try to do this as cheaply as possible; not that it looks very expesive to begin with.
femisez8 years ago
Clearwire is the new wireless isp in the Daytona Beach Area. I want to know how their network is implemented. Anyone know what they use?
Talking Electronics (author)  femisez8 years ago
Sorry i'm not familiar with their system
femisez femisez8 years ago
as i read on, theres too many technologies it seems. OFDM, MDS ? Hard to understand some of these. Help?
LOTTARO8 years ago
Excelent project! i like to see more details of the antenna construction, i have one, a dualbiquad, IMHO is the best option to do at home.
Talking Electronics (author)  LOTTARO8 years ago
I'll try posting it this weekend, just check it out. Thanks
myWIFIzone8 years ago
Really cool grass-roots WISP ! If you want some captive portal software to work with this may we suggest myWIFIzone? It's a free service while it's in Beta test phase.
Talking Electronics (author)  myWIFIzone8 years ago
I'm gotta test it out.The link for this is here.
http://www.mywifizone.com/
I'm trying to help refugees in Louisville, KY set up a free / low cost broadband wireless. Any suggestions?
I'm also willing to help, and I live in Louisville. Email me if you need help with labor, etc.
Ill be willing to help you if you want, just email be if you have questions
sc00bs8 years ago
Public IP is an awesome way to authenitcate your users thate are using the WISP service.You can then leave the Ap open for people to associate with but they will be redirected to a captive portal as soon as they try tpo access any sites. It is free of charge and all you need is an old pc with a cd-rom drive and 2 x NICs. Runs on a Linux ISO. Works like a bomb as long as the pc doesn't go down. there are also great reports on bandwidth used by the users etc.
Talking Electronics (author)  sc00bs8 years ago
This is the way hotspots here operate but I haven't had the idea to do this. Didn't really know its that simple....gotta try it myself.. very cool suggestion.
ivi8 years ago
There's a group in Australia doing WiFi networking, & their site has a lot of useful into on the bits you might need to do what you're doing. Have a look:

http://www.Air-Stream.org/

You're obviously a Radio Amateur (or were in your Packet Radio days).
Have you seen or done anything with ICOM's ID-1 data radio? (Results?)

73
Talking Electronics (author)  ivi8 years ago
Yeah, I'm a radio amateur before, the last project I had before with 2Meter radios we're repeater systems,haven't touched those ID-1's yet but I'll check with my friends here.
ralph.glatt8 years ago
WTF? A Commodore 64 only cost $100 for a stock machine back in the day. Might cost you $200 to get it to where it was usable. Then again, that was a lot of money back in the early 80's. Anyway, cool project, but I imagine I'd have to check FCC regs around here before trying anything like this.
Yeah, you should check FCC regulations first, as I have read in other post, US regulations just require a 20/23 dB maximum ERP otherwise its illegal already
A Commodore 64 cost $800 new the first year, and the second year they cost $400 and the year my parents bought me one it cost $200. The 5 1/4 floppy drive cost the same . My friend had a vic 20 and a drive and after I got the 64, we would trade, meaning he would hold my 64 at his house for a weeek and an then I would get the 64 and the drive for the next week. But we were poor and had to walk 80 miles uphill through the snow to school every day.
conglacio8 years ago
what sort of distances are we looking at?
Talking Electronics (author)  conglacio8 years ago
I tested it in my friends house 1 KM. away with decent signals. Although we had a good LOS (line of sight) and added an external antenna to his Orinoco card.Haven't really tested this beyond that point.
Talking Electronics (author) 8 years ago
I need design ideas for my can... post it here.
You should paint the logo for AOL with a giant X on it.. or maybe "The RIAA <3's you! (and your little dog too!)"
something like " AOL no more" would be nice
Awesome. Totally awesome. Really clean looking use of available components. Make a logo for your WISP and spray it on the can! You reminded me of back in the day we were reading about slow scan image transmission via shortwave while hacking our Vic-20s and Comodore 64s.
Painting the can would be a great idea, I'll do that and post it here when its done.