Welcome to the CSIR Meraka Institute's "COIN" Blog

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Mobile Ad-hoc Networks home page at the IETF

Mobile Ad-hoc Networks (manet) Charter

All COINers should study these protocols

The Dynamic Source Routing Protocol for Mobile Ad Hoc Networks (DSR)

Request For Comments:
Mobile Ad hoc Networking (MANET): Routing Protocol Performance Issues and Evaluation Considerations (RFC 2501)
Ad Hoc On Demand Distance Vector (AODV) Routing (RFC 3561)
Optimized Link State Routing Protocol (OLSR) (RFC 3626)
Topology Dissemination Based on Reverse-Path Forwarding (TBRPF) (RFC 3684)

Detailed info on the Linksys Wrt54g

Info on LinksysWrt54g - SeattleWireless

Hardware onboard V 1.0

RAM: 2 x IC42S16400, 64Mbit (4M X 16) RAM chips (16MB)
Flash: [WWW]AMD AM29LV320DB-90EI, a 32Mbit chip (4MB)
CPU: [WWW]Broadcom BCM4702KPB, with a 125MHz MIPS and two 10/100 Ethernet controllers
Ethernet: [WWW]ADMtek ADM6996 5 port 10/100 switch
version 1.0: Mini PCI slot with Linksys/Broadcom radio FCC ID PKW-WM54G, dual Hirose antenna connectors
version 1.1: has the wireless integrated on the mainboard

Version 2.0:

RAM: 2 x IC42S16400, 64Mbit (4M X 16) RAM chips (16MB)
Flash: Intel TE28F320 C3 flash 32Mbit chip (4MB)
CPU: Broadcom [WWW]BCM4712KPB, running at 200MHz
Ethernet: [WWW]ADMtek ADM6996 5 port 10/100 switch
Wireless: On board; Broadcom BCM2050KWL

Some alternative operating systems available


Talk of installing this mesh protocol on OpenWrt

Good comparison of Linksys WRT54G, Soekris and Meshcube

Slashdot | Meshcube: A New Mesh-Routing Wireless Device: "http://www.olsr.org"

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Fwd: Patch Antenna?

This may be useful to COIN, not sure....


- Kim

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.
MailScanner thanks transtec Computers for their support.

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

detail of fishbone antenna as part of experimental wifi installation in building 43c
Posted by Hello

edna experimental wifi installation in building 43c
Posted by Hello

Good contact made with Champaign-Urbana community wireless network

Here's their home page

This organisation has also been funded by the IDRC and Johann has made contact with them

On Sat, 10 Jul 2004, Johann Hugo wrote:
> On Wednesday 07 July 2004 23:16, you wrote:
> > tell us something about your background and skillset.
> Hi Chase
> I am working for the CSIR in South Africa (www.csir.co.za). The CSIR is
> the premier technology and research organisation in Africa.
> My area of expertise is mainly in outdoor wifi networks and FreeBSD and
> I've been involved with it since 2000. Most of our projects are around
> bettering the lives of people in rural areas, using state of the art
> technologies. We've won a Stockholm award in both 2000 and 2004 for some of
> the work that we have done. Here are some links of the stuff I've been
> involved with: http://www.cda.co.za
> http://www.cda.co.za/Media%20Cache/2000/Technobrief%20June%202000/Technobri
>ef% 20June%202000.htm
> http://www.digitaldoorway.co.za
> http://www.challenge.stockholm.se/feature_index.asp
> Our unit started with wireless Lans in about 1998 using Lucent wireless
> cards and Karl Brug software. Later we started using FreeBSD (One of the
> group members are a FreeBSD developer and we are also a mirror site for
> FreeBSD in South Africa). Our current wifi systems are mostly green soekris
> boxes running FreeBSD (I think we were one of soekris first clients). We've
> set up a couple of wifi networks and we are running voice, video and data
> over these networks.

Excellent! It would appear our groups have much in common.

> One of our latest activities is to change our current network and to set up
> an experimental wifi mesh network with about 25 nodes in the Pretoria area.
> Once this is up and running there will be followups where we install mesh
> networks (+ training ) into some rural areas.
> Our group are currently looking at mobilemesh that runs on Linux. Some of
> members of the team are busy trying to port it to FreeBSD. See link to our
> blog spot (some of the team ony use our wifi):
> http://CSIRCOIN.BlogSpot.com/

Interesting. I'll make sure people on our team see this.

> I had a look on your website and are very interested in your system. I've
> downloaded your images and made a bootable CD + burnt a flash for a soekris
> box. I can boot the images, but I cannot log in as root and change
> settings.
> Some questions:
> May we know the root password for your images ?

From what I understand, the root password in the images on the website is
currently nothing which locks the system from root logins. If you
download the upgrade tarball you can take a look at the system image

At this time we recommend you set up a development environment and build
an ISO image if you wish to preconfigure it with a specific root password.
We plan to add some scripts which makes configuring aspects of an image
possible without a complete development environment.

I'll be happy to help you in setting up that development environment, as

> Are your source code open source ?

Yes. Our code is covered by a BSD-variant license. You can find a sample
of that license at:


> Are HSLS and ETX running on your current system ?

A three-part answer:

* Not in the images on the website taken on May 11, 2004.

* Yes in the images on our source code trunk, but HSLS and ETX are not
affecting the route tables, only running to measure that they are
working as expected.

* Yes in our next release, tentatively scheduled for the fourth week of
July, but, again not affecting the route tables.

Until HSLS and ETX are completely turned on, we are using OSPF.

> May we try to port your code to FreeBSD ?
> (We prefer FreeBSD to NetBSD because of our expertise with FreeBSD)

We welcome ports! I hear that a port to FreeBSD should be easy compared
to some other platforms.

> Do you plan a Linux port as well ?
> (Some of the group are Linux users)

Porting the software to run on Linux would probably take some work. We're
not certain if/when we'll get around to it. The biggest API differences
are, from what I understand, in the IPv4/IPv6 parts of the networking

We think that the first step for CUWiN on Linux is to build the software
with NetBSD as the target platform. I, for one, am interested in doing
this as my main systems are all Linux. No ETA on when it will happen,
though. Of course, we'd welcome any assistance you or your team has to

We're very excited about the prospect of working together, especially in
light of the recent IDRC grants given to wireless groups in Africa.


Some more useful mesh info

Complete list of mesh protocols - Wiki site

Desciprion of protcols being used at CU wireless

To sustain the scalability of its infrastructure, Community
Wireless Network needs software that implements an uncomplicated,
extensible routing protocol that will support a network of
hundreds of nodes, and a routing path metric that "prefers"
reliable, high-capacity routes to spotty, low-capacity routes.

Based on a review of the wireless networking literature, BBN
Technologies' Hazy Sighted Link State (HSLS) routing algorithm
will support growth to thousands of nodes, which will more than
meet our requirements. HSLS also admits a parsimonious
implementation that will be far easier for a grassroots project
to debug and extend than more complicated algorithms whose
scalability is comparatively poor. The Expected Transmission
Count (ETX) path metric is a simple, proven routing path metric
that favors high-capacity, reliable links. The Community
Wireless Network will develop a UNIX routing daemon implementing
HSLS and ETX. The major functional units of the daemon are
described below.

CWN will leverage existing open source software whenever that
is possible. For example, the Zebra routing software suite
will provide our Routing Information Base (RIB) and kernel
abstraction. Because we will re-use Zebra, we will save tens
of hours of development and debugging, we will gain some
inter-operating system portability (*BSD, Linux, Solaris), and
we will have the capability to extend our HSLS daemon to share
routes with other routing protocols (BGP, OSPF, and RIP) in
the future.

More detailed description of HSLS

More detailed descrtiption of ETX

Monday, July 12, 2004

Fwd: ZDNet UK: Open-source Wi-Fi links remote communities

> Open-source Wi-Fi links remote communities
> Andrew Donoghue
> European wireless and open-source specialists have embarked on an
> international tour to spread the benefits of the technology to
> developing
> countries from Tajikistan to Ghana.
> The team, known as Informal, claims its wireless roadshow is an
> attempt to
> empower non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in the developing world

> to own,
> operate and grow their own Internet infrastructure using wireless
> technology
> such as mesh networking. The aim is to allow remote communities in
> developing
> countries without traditional telecoms infrastructure to communicate

> more
> effectively.
> "We support these kinds of activities because we believe that the
> benefits of
> the Internet should be available globally," said Informal lead team

> member
> Simon Crab.
> While a lot of attention has been focused on bridging the digital
> divide and
> providing Internet access to remote areas, Informal claims to be
> concerned with allowing local communities to exchange information
> each
> other -- spreading local knowledge. "In each country, we will work
> primarily
> with local NGOs to assist them in building, maintaining and extending

> their
> own networks in areas that are under-served by telecommunication
> infrastructure," said Crab.
> The Informal team recently arrived in Tajikistan where it will remain

> for
> next three months before moving onto Ghana, Nepal, the Philippines,

> China and
> finally India.
> Existing examples of wireless technology projects in the developing

> world
> include DakNet and First Mile Solutions in Cambodia and the Jhai
> Foundation's
> Remote IT Village Project in Laos.
> Informal plans to use emerging wireless mesh technology to create
> cheap,
> robust connections in remote areas that do not have an established
> telecoms
> infrastructure. Each device on a mesh network receives and transmits

> its own
> traffic, while acting as a router for other devices; intelligence in

> each
> device allows it to automatically configure an efficient network, and

> to
> adjust if, for example, a node becomes overloaded or unavailable.
> advantages include ease of set-up, the ability to spread wireless
> access over
> a wide area from a single central wired connection, and the inherent
> toughness of such networks.
> Key to the Informal project is the development of a blueprint for a

> low-cost,
> wireless, rugged computing device which Informal will encourage the

> NGOs to
> develop and build. The so-called Autonokit will essentially be a
> low-cost
> computer that can work on non-standard power sources such as solar,

> wind,
> micro-hydro or even bicycle power.
> The Autonokit will run an open-source Linux or BSD distribution
> optimised for
> networking and auto configuration. It will be equipped with a 12V
> battery in
> case of power cuts, low wind or a fuel shortage.
> In an article written for CNET, UN secretary-general Kofi Annan
> spelled out
> the potential benefits that wireless and other technologies could
> bring to
> the developing world.
> "We need to think of ways to bring wireless fidelity (Wi-Fi)
> applications to
> the developing world, so as to make use of unlicensed radio spectrum
> deliver cheap and fast Internet access," he said.
> While providing developing communities with access to information is

> one of
> the main motivations behind the road-show, Crab -- whose
> job is
> at digital consultancy Lateral -- claims Informal's
> motivations are
> not purely altruistic. "A side effect of these projects is that it
> keeps us
> in touch with technical and creative developments in areas most
> companies
> don't look at, it keeps our roots in the real world," he said.
> Crab admitted that providing open access to information in some
> countries
> could be politically sensitive but he claimed that there is a lot of
> misleading information circulated about some countries approach
> controlling
> Internet access. "You have to be very careful about how you approach

> it but
> there are a lot of myths about countries such as China -- they
> actually have
> very free access compared to some places," he said.
> China has been heavily criticised by organisations such as Amnesty
> International for its attempts to censor Internet traffic and
> imprisoning
> several individuals for Internet-related crimes.

> -

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.
MailScanner thanks transtec Computers for their support.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

15 dBi antenna with 10m Mil-spec co-ax before installation at Site no. 1, Lynnwood Glen (Andrew)
Posted by Hello

15dBi antenna (below TV antenna) mounted at Site no. 1 in Lynnwood Glen (Andrew). Directed to twshane access point in Menlo Park.
Posted by Hello

coin: testing image TX

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.
MailScanner thanks transtec Computers for their support.

Test email function [PLEASE IGNORE]

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.
MailScanner thanks transtec Computers for their support.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

I sent this using an email address...

You can too, by going to www.blogger.com , selecting Community Owned...,
going to the settings...emails and entering an email address for u to
use for your posts!

This message has been scanned for viruses and
dangerous content by MailScanner, and is
believed to be clean.
MailScanner thanks transtec Computers for their support.

WirelessAnarchy has arrived - hide the kids......another link by Johan

WirelessAnarchy has arrived - hide the kids.

Brismesh Inc. FAQ...link supplied by Johan

Brismesh Inc. FAQ