[IAEP] "Mesh" Dreams = OLSR

Mike Dawson mikeofmanchester at gmail.com
Thu Sep 2 18:36:21 EDT 2010


Sorry for my late reply to this.  Actually we use OLSR in Afghanistan
to do our school networking like so:

1. An OLSR router (running openwrt Freifunk ; see freifunk.net )
connects to the other routers in the school - that forms the backbone
on one network (e.g. channel 6)

2. A vanilla OpenWRT router actually connects to the XOs in the class.
 We reduce the transmit power on that and run it on a different
channel (e.g. 1 or 11)

The plus side is that you get a pure wireless system that does not
need network cabling / does not have cables getting killed by the
environment.  The down side is you use more routers.  I think
financially the costs are pretty similar.  Also you can now use
802.11n to get good speeds on the backbone.

Seems to scale pretty nicely - we have 500 XOs in most schools.  Note
though by design we are not using the collaboration on the school
server but rather just through the AP - teachers are not that enthused
by the prospect of kids being able to chat with anyone anytime.

This has practically made doing the deployment in the field a bit
easier - though the firmware is not always perfect and not always
working out of the box with all hardware options.



On 25/08/2010, Martin Langhoff <martin.langhoff at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Tue, Aug 24, 2010 at 11:13 AM, Reuben K. Caron <reuben at laptop.org> wrote:
>> Where Mesh != 802.11s but rather an adhoc, self healing, self
>> organizing routable network.
> Cerebro gave a great working demo of what you describe. Don't know how
> they compare.
> I think it is perfectly feasible to achieve what you want...
>  - to do it seamlessly and with polish will take a ton of work
>  - very few users will actually benefit because the "under a tree"
> scenario covers IMHO most of our interesting use cases.
> People do talk about having a mesh that covers their whole town, and
> it's great dream but not achievable with our current constraints
>  - town-wide meshes are made of stationary nodes
>  - the "mesh" approaches we're discussing burn CPU / battery...
>  - perennially power-starved users will focus on use, not on
> maintaining the communal mesh up
>> Imagine a world where Sugar on a Stick machines can communicate on the
>> same network as an XO laptop
> We have that now with ad-hoc and infra. Limited but we have it.
>> A world where mesh capabilities are
>> hardware agnostic allowing anyone to bring up a mesh network by
>> booting a live cd.
> Mesh is pixie dust for most people. Your 'imagine' lines will make the
> imagine things that cannot be made to work _in the way people
> imagine_. Some meshy things can be made to work in a lab. Others just
> involve tradeoffs no sane user would take on...
> We've had bazillion threads about this, because mesh stokes passion.
> Problem is... even if you had the magical code right now working
> seamlessly... the cost/benefit ratio isn't good.
> cheers,
> m
> --
>  martin.langhoff at gmail.com
>  martin at laptop.org -- School Server Architect
>  - ask interesting questions
>  - don't get distracted with shiny stuff  - working code first
>  - http://wiki.laptop.org/go/User:Martinlanghoff
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