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Thread: Wi-Fi Over Several Miles?

  1. #1
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    Wi-Fi Over Several Miles?

    Thanks in advance for any help. I live in an area that does not currently provide any form of high speed internet, yet just a few miles down the road there is a town that is provided with high-speed internet by way of cable access. I have relatives that live in the town with access, and I spoke with them about either getting dual cable internet accounts at there house or just sharing there internet access with me by way of a Point to Point Wi-Fi link. The distance between both houses is around a straight 7 miles. My question is has anyone here tried this, or know of anyone who has and have they been very successful with it? Also, what equipment would everyone recommend? This is the equipment that I was considering buying, and trying it out. For the router, I was thinking a standard Linksys WRT54G hooked direct to the cable modem with one of the router antennas connected directly to a 24dBi Parabolic Grid Antenna shooting the signal to another 24dBi Parabolic Grid Antenna hooked direct to a Senao 200mw 802.11b PCMCIA card into my laptop. I have heard the the Parabolic Grid antennas are a pain to aline, but I am not sure what other kind of antenna to look into. I have also read of people sending Wi-Fi signals over uhf, but have not been able to find much information on it. If anyone has any suggestions on equipment or on the matter in general please feel free to post, and thanks for the help.

  2. #2
    Variable Bitrate kmcniece's Avatar
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    At 7 miles, you will need a couple of towers.......the speed would be low as well, mainly because of the distance and the number of retries necesary to maintain communication between the 2 points. Check www.wlanparts.com for idas and hardware for longer distance wifi links. Obvioulsy this has nothing to do with mobile technology, but it may get you started....

    One other option is the wireless network from the cell providers.... You can purchase a PCMCIA card from T-Mobile ($200.00US) that has tri-band and Wireless protocols, all-in-one. You could utilize the cellular network a lot easier that trying to shoot a 7 mile wifi link...

    We currently shoot a signal from Vancouver Washington to Portland Oregon for a community based internet non-profit. It works pretty well. We service about 30 units in one location and anther link is going in for about 30+ more. The link is probably close to a 4 miles "as the bird flies" and we get pretty good speed across.... (www.qorvus.com)(www.netequality.org)

    Personally, if you have the cellular signal in your area, try out the service on your cell phone and see.... it will be cheaper than all the equipment to set up a 7 mile link. The Senao doesn't seem to have the "oomph" at 200mW that the SMC card does. Either one will work if you get the external antenna. I would put a unit at each end and then branch off from there..... that way you have a static spot for each TX,RX point....

    But hey, that's just my 2 cents.....(on a side note, where the hell is the cents character?)
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    Thanks For The Help.

    Quote Originally Posted by kmcniece
    At 7 miles, you will need a couple of towers.......the speed would be low as well, mainly because of the distance and the number of retries necesary to maintain communication between the 2 points. Check www.wlanparts.com for idas and hardware for longer distance wifi links. Obvioulsy this has nothing to do with mobile technology, but it may get you started....

    One other option is the wireless network from the cell providers.... You can purchase a PCMCIA card from T-Mobile ($200.00US) that has tri-band and Wireless protocols, all-in-one. You could utilize the cellular network a lot easier that trying to shoot a 7 mile wifi link...

    We currently shoot a signal from Vancouver Washington to Portland Oregon for a community based internet non-profit. It works pretty well. We service about 30 units in one location and anther link is going in for about 30+ more. The link is probably close to a 4 miles "as the bird flies" and we get pretty good speed across.... (www.qorvus.com)(www.netequality.org)

    Personally, if you have the cellular signal in your area, try out the service on your cell phone and see.... it will be cheaper than all the equipment to set up a 7 mile link. The Senao doesn't seem to have the "oomph" at 200mW that the SMC card does. Either one will work if you get the external antenna. I would put a unit at each end and then branch off from there..... that way you have a static spot for each TX,RX point....

    But hey, that's just my 2 cents.....(on a side note, where the hell is the cents character?)

    Thanks for the reply, and help. When you say the SMC card would work better, are you talking about a SMC brand Wi-Fi Card? If so, which model in particuler could it be this model http://tinyurl.com/9zncg Also, what do you mean exactly when you say branch of from there? Thanks for the help.

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  6. #6
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    Are you sure there's NO high speed service in your area?

    check your zip code here: http://www.broadbandreports.com/prequal

    Peace,

    Rafster

  7. #7
    Variable Bitrate kmcniece's Avatar
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    SMC2532W-B (approx. $50.00)
    Branch from there.....
    Don't try to get the connection going using your PC and the antenna. Use a device between the PC and the 7 mile link.

    At one end....
    Device A (with an internet connection)
    Sending the signal to you....

    At the other end...
    Device B (your house)
    Receiving the signal with a switch attached....
    Attach your computer to the switch....

    This will be more reliable, in my opinion... The traffic is handled by the two devices, not your onboard wireless manager....

    You could try to get the signal straight to the PC using Netstumbler to monitor the signal strength and adjust your antenna until it is in the best position.

    Once again, I would Seriously think about other options at this point. Once you are absolutley sure you cannot get any other type of service.....

    DSL, Cable, Sattelite, GPRS, something....

    Now, if you don't have any service in your area, and you live in a community of some sort....

    You could go to the community and offer to help with a Cooperative WISP service. That way you get the town to help pay for the connection to the nearest location using wireless. Then you could up the signal to a 5Ghz vs. a 2.4Ghz, provide wireless mesh services and the school, library, and municipal areas could utilize the Wireless Blanket, heck they might even pay for it.....
    Lookup Stevenson, WA.... we did it for them....

    If you live in the middle of the country with no options...... well, build a tower, or even better, build a cell tower, lease some spaceon the tower to the cell companies, mount your antenna and surf......

    But I would bet you ahve some sort of service wherever you are..... unless you are the middle of wyoming..... that area is pretty sparse...
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  8. #8
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    satellite broadband? would seem to be a bit easier to do
    I have found you an argument; I am not obliged to find you an understanding.

  9. #9
    Variable Bitrate kmcniece's Avatar
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    A lot of things are easier than a 7 mile WiFi link..... in my opinion....
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  10. #10
    Maximum Bitrate Psychobiker's Avatar
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    Hi,

    We're about to move (parents separated etc), but this house has ADSL, and our new one may or may not...but either way it's going to be four weeks before the phone line even gets connected. This, like anything else regarding customer service in Ireland, is an absolute ******* comedy.

    The house is only 200-500m away...dish? If so, how to connect?
    Is there a site for such things?

    Was browsing on wlanparts.com - is it really that simple...unamplified?


    L
    1996 Volvo 850 T5 CD - Eventually I'll start....

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