[Battlemesh] mini-survey towards an FCC-Free "global south" router

George Klissiaris gklis at sarantaporo.gr
Sun Apr 24 11:13:03 CEST 2016

Hi Nicolás,

Your effort looks very similar to ours in Sarantaporo, a rural area in
north of Greece.
We started on 2010 locally from our village deploying open-mesh
<http://www.open-mesh.com/> devices (working on 2,4Ghz) to make a local
mesh network in Sarantaporo village <http://www.sarantaporo.gr/node/98> in
order to give open access to the internet for all. Our first gateway to the
internet was though mobile 3g networks or low bandwidth adsl connections
whenever they were available, even with very low bandwidth in the first
Then, between 2011-2013, we spread our network in 14 villages in the area
deploying also open-mesh devices and making local mesh networks (at the
bottom of the www.sarantaporo.gr web page you can find links to maps for
every working local mesh network in our area). The internet access for
these networks was from another village (even a low bandwidth one)
available though p2p links (ubiquity devices) we deployed for just sharing
the internet access. Those local mesh networks wasn't interconnected with
each other.
Finally we managed through our participation in confine project and
community-lab <https://community-lab.net/>, between 2014-2015, to
build a backbone
network <http://wind.sarantaporo.gr/?page=nodes&session_lang=english> (working
on 5Ghz), following the network architecture of AWMN (every node has its
own subnet/s, the main routing protocol is bgp and some islands also use
olsr, the wireless devices are usually ubiquity or mikrotik working as a
bridge devices or routers and some indoor routers either mikrotik or
openwrt devices). Through this backbone network we managed to interconnect
all the local mesh networks in the same infrastructure and then through
this network to reach the nearest town and from there to connect to the
university, having 1 gigabit symmetrical connection to the internet, but
managing in practice to wirelessly carry to the villages through the
backbone network at about 200Mbps symmetrical bandwidth (our bottleneck is
the max throughput from the p2p links connecting
<http://wind.sarantaporo.gr/?page=nodes&node=18> our area to the nearest
town ~ 30km).

So to finalize:

*1) what's your most common node configuration?*

For the backbone network (the network that interconnects all the villages
in the same infrastructure and shares its internet connection with the
access network) we use:
Multiple bridged wireless devices working on 5 Ghz (ubiquity rocket m5 with
rocket dishes) connected to an indoor router that actually handles routing
(mikrotik router) (total 21 backbones nodes)

For the access network (the local networks of the villages to which end
users connect to in order to have access to the internet and community
network local services):
Open-mesh devices, with openwrt firmware and batman-adv routing protocol
(total 150 mesh devices)

*2) considering your most common node configuration: could a router with
two integrated 5Ghz radios for meshing + one 2.4Ghz radio for local AP
provision cover most cases?*

I think for our case having a plug and play solution that people who
doesn't know a lot about networks and protocols could just plug in and
deploy a backbone node or mesh node and at the same time an access network
node without a lot of configuration and settings would be great. This is
why until now we decided to separate the routing from the radio, because
for the most local people it is easier to turn on two radio devices and
make a wireless connection with each other, but when they had to do routing
and other network settings it was difficult to do. So having different
devices for the routing which where already setup from the coreteam of
Sarantaporo.gr with the appropriate settings and then telling local people
which cable and which device to connect where, worked better for us.
So if we had available an affordable device that could do all these
(integrated radios for p2p links for the backbone with routing capabilities
+ a radio local access point), i think would cover most of our cases.

You can also see photos from network deployments at our gallery bellow:

George Klissiaris
Sarantaporo.gr Non Profit Organization

2016-04-24 9:23 GMT+03:00 Nicolás Echániz <nicoechaniz at altermundi.net>:

> On 04/23/2016 10:40 PM, Dave Taht wrote:
> > I know it is heretical for me to suggest it on this list, but I tend
> > towards thinking that the future holds more multi-channel radios on it
> > in AP/station modes, as ad-hoc is so increasingly hard to use on so
> > many devices, and at higher rates.
> >
> > There's also stuff like this for backhauls:
> > https://www.ubnt.com/airfiber/airfiber24-hd/
> we've been experimenting with the 5Ghz models:
> blog.altermundi.net/article/se-ensancha-el-backbone/
> good result until one chain started acting up. Now it's unstable and the
> ubiquiti people agree the hardware is failing. Too bad because we are
> out of warranty time and there's no way we can buy those again soon...
> I'd say: stay away from expensive equipment with integrated electronics
> & antenna. Withe every other solution where the electronics are a
> separate device, it's quite cheap to replace that and keep the antennas,
> which are the most expensive component most of the time in long shot links.
> > I would love to see people working on deployable versions of this
> > technogy, also: http://kumunetworks.com/
> never heard of it, but it looks really interesting.
> Are there any real world implementations or is it just
> theoretical/experimental at this point?
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