October 6, 2016
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Another local ham, KB5ZCS, has setup a HSMM node and will be ready to test it this weekend. His QTH is 2.2 miles from mine and he will have the node up about 30 feet. I have dusted off my two nodes and updated the configuration to my new call sign. This should go without saying but don’t forget your password info when setting up your nodes! I did. Turns out there is a procedure for resetting it using “fail-safe” mode. Fortunately that worked!
I have ordered for overnight delivery two 9dBi antennas, a pair of PoE splitters and 50ft of cat 5 coax. The plan on my end is to hand the node up a 20 ft painters pole and see if we can make contact and measure signal strengths. If this works I can mount the node out side permanently on my VHF mast.I am looking to setup a linux server on a virtual machine so there is something to hook up to during the test.
April 16, 2016
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I just got back from a business trip and decided to spend this afternoon dusting off some old Linksys routers to setup Broadband-HamNET firmware on them. I had to make a quick run to Home Depot for a couple of Ethernet patch cables but lucky I had everything else on-hand. I followed the instructions at broadband-hamnet.org and the setup was quick and uneventful. The routers I am using are Linksys WRT54GS version 1. I had played around sometime back with DD-WRT and found that this firmware was still on them. The new firmware installed without a problem. Once installed you just have to setup your call sign and new password. Just be sure to disable your current LAN when doing the setup so your PC doesn’t get confused. I did this on both routers and had them each connected to separate computers. At this point I can’t do much else but I was able to ping across the wireless link.
What I have now is basically a short range two node wireless network. Each node finds any others in range automatically and creates a mesh network. Imagine the first two computers on the internet…that is essentially what I have here now. A wireless network with no content. So to make this interesting I am going to install VMware Player which will allow me to run virtual machines. I will then install Linux as one of the virtual machines which I will configure to provide some familiar internet services such as web pages, FTP, IRC etc. This will allow all mesh nodes to access these services over the wireless link.
Longer range (no pun intended) plans are to get these mounted outside and try some distance link tests. Interesting way to get involved with the microwave portion of the ham bands.
April 11, 2016
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I have discovered the ham activities with High Speed Multimedia (HSMM) and am very interested in playing with this. I have ordered the new ARRL book on the subject and meanwhile have been scouring the internet for more info.It turns out that I have two of the Linksys routers needed for this gathering dust in my “obsolete” box. In my case these are Linksys WRT54GS v1 routers.I also have an old wireless access point that I can bring into service. My thinking is to try and get a couple of nodes working here at the QTH to test the system out. Stock antennas should be good to about a 300ft range. If I can get this all to work then I can look at getting a longer range, portable system in place and seeing if I can find another local ham who would be interested in playing with this technology. I like the idea of working in the microwave range as there are a lot of fun antenna projects that can be brought to bear.This may also have some application in EMCOMM which would be interesting to explore as well.
So many new things to try in this hobby!