Friday, March 03, 2006

Broadband In The Boonies

Notes on setting up shop far from good internet access.

Navini networks has some wimax deployed in the field. A base station near an internet connection pointed at the remote wimax modem can provide a connection. Craft a reflecting antenna around the back side to direct the beam. Navinia sells the base station with either omni or sectional antenna. The sectional antenna base station may peform better.

The Junxion Box takes a PC Card and shares the connection via Ethernet or wifi. This is useful with Verizon BroadbandAccess wireless data service, and could be used to back up the primary connection.

Lumin makes a portable wifi repeater with solar cell and battery. This could be a nice package to squat on a ridgeline that has line of site between the source and destination. A backup link such as IDSL or Verizon wireless broadband would be useful as a fall back.

FCC and FAA allow towers up to 200 feet without paperwork / flashing red light. If this could provide line of sight, then it might even be possible to sell tower space to a wifi provider or Verizon. Remember to ground the tower and consider wind loads and power supply.
Consider a used tower.

Speakeasy can provide DSL, IDSL for those further away from a central office, and T1. Speakeasy has a reputation for good reliability and low ping times. They provide quotes via email by submitting a service address and service phone number.
IDSL is usually more expensive than ordinary DSL and bandwidth is about 130K. With bandwidth prioritization/shaping, this could be used for interactive command line work or as a backup link.

Bandwidth prioritization can make a small pipe feel more snappy.
Hawking sells an inexpensive appliance named Broadband Booster that can provide traffic prioritization, though it is not configurable. This would be useful if running VOIP in a home office. You can also roll your own with an old PC, linux, and bandwidth shaping software. More expensive enterprise class products are available.

For power outages, install a large UPS with a generator or solar cells. Or get a tiny (10 minute capacity) UPS with a whole house generator. A 10kW Cummins Onan generator (natural gas or propane) with automatic transfer switch is nearly $5000 (including shipping, plus installation).
This wind turbine looks interesting. This would require large UPSs for times when there is less wind.

1 comment:


    Stores power accumulated during off peak. Could be used as UPS for a house.