ToDo List

Hardware and Software Acquisition and Testing ToDo List

This document is intended to outline the actions to complete hardware, software and knowledge needed to start building community networks infrastructure.

It is based on the same structure as “Hardware and Software List”, only focused on actions to be taken. As such, it will be periodically updated, following the changes of status. The order of items reflects current priority levels.

Major Hardware

Name App. Cost Acquired? Tested? Mastered? In operation?
2 * TP-Link WDR4310 router 60 Eur Not Yes1 Not Yes2
3 * GL-AR300M 90 Eur Not Yes Not Not
2 * Raspi 3 Kit 80 Eur Not Not Not Not
1 * Prototyping kit3 25 Eur Not Not Not Not
1 * Banana Pi R2 80 Eur Not Not Not Not

Major Software

Name

Purpose

Acquired?

Tested?

Mastered?

In operation?

OpenWRT Routing

Yes

Yes

Partly

Yes4

LibreMesh Routing

Not

Yes5

Not

Not

Ubuntu Server/desktop

Yes

Yes

Partly

Yes

LibreRouter firmware6 Routing

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

FreeSide ISP management

Not

Not

Not

Not

How-to List7

Scenario
to test

Notes

External
support needed

Ring
topology with one or more uplinks.
For small ethernet networks, where one or more master routers provide
uplinks and access points are daisy-chained to avoid single point
of failure.
To be determined
WiFi
mesh
Standard implementation of LibreMesh topology based on mixed hardware. LibreMesh community.
Wearable
WiFi mesh
LibreMesh topology implemented on wearable Level 2 hardware, with dynamic uplink seek (existing hotspots) and PAN (Personal Area Network) support. To be determined
Longhaul
UHF/VHF network
Point-to-Point and mesh topology implemented via USB SDR modules and Freifunk WhiteSpace TV converter. The topic is in desk research phase and Freifunk HW is not available.
This research is hardware-intensive and will need additional funding.
SDR Hardware recommendationsCustom coding

Additional funding.

Custom Hardware Development List

Item

Notes

External
support needed

Multisource
Charger/controller
We will need a small unit to control a 6/12 V lead acid battery (most probable source of power for autonomous nodes), charged by some unspecified AC/DC source (low quality grid, gensets, small turbines, solar panels etc.). I imagine that it would be (custom or ready made) HW add-on, connecting through GPIO with a router or raspi, controlled by the software running on the main module (Ubuntu or OpenWRT).

The goal is to have some basic messaging done through the network, like emails to the network admin if the battery gets too low or the charging does not occur at for a while. Also, automated low power mode and such.

IC and schematics recommendation Coding.
Antennas For the field installations we will need simple designs of  antennas, for WiFi (2 & 5 GHz band) and UHF/VHF. There is a need for constructions that can be made, maintained and fixed locally, possibly from repurposed materials.Narrow beam directional

120* sector

Omnidirectional, also for mobile (car etc) units, especially UHF/VHF band.

Design recommendationsDIY consulting

 


1 Recommended and provided by LibreMesh community people.

2 Works as a master router in Prosfygika Community network in Athens, Greece. Very stable.

4 Standard environment in Prosfygika community network.

5 One of de facto standards for mesh networking.

6 In development.

7 Once we have appropriate hardware and software acquired and installed, several network configurations and operating scenarios will be tested. The list will be extended as the needs grow. Tested scenarios will be documented and published as open resources.