Maestro Public WiFi

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  • Idea
  • Updated 3 years ago
  • Planned
I'm wondering if you are planning to accommodate public WiFi in the Maestro.  These are the type of WiFi found at most hotels, Starbucks & McDonald's?

When connecting to these type of facilities, they always ask that one agree to their terms before permitting access to the Internet and this invariably requires a browser.

I'm hoping that the Maestro will include a minimum capability for those of us who want to use these locations.  My hotel in Dayton comes to mind.

Thanks.
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Bob W7KWS

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Posted 4 years ago

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Walt - KZ1F

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As Howard has stated to the other question regarding maestro, it is far too early in the development process to tell. It is WAY too early in the development cycle of smartsdr 2.x to know how well its going to work at all on a bad wifi system. If I guessed, 1900AC shared WiFi, probably pretty well, 802.11g shared, not so much.
(Edited)
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Bob W7KWS

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Walt,

Maybe your speculation helps you but doesn't work well for me.  What I saw at Dayton was  virtually complete operating software according to Gerald Youngblood as of two days ago (July 10, 2015).

Gerald's quote follows:

"Virtually all of the main operating code was in the demo.  Most of what we are doing now has to do with setup, software update process, stripping down Windows and creating images.".

This doesn't connote "early in the development cycle" to me. Maybe he held back on what 2.0 will include but he sounds pretty candid.
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Jay / NO5J

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Gerald's qoute with highlights follows:
"Virtually all of the main operating code was in the demo.  Most of what we are doing now has to do with ..."
73, Jay - NO5J
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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As I stated before it is still far too early in the development cycle to tell what is going to be in the final product as far as how WiFi and WAN are going to happen.

The working demo was SSDR running under Windows on the Maestro as a client that gives basic functionality for the device as far as controlling the radio

AFIK it is too early to define the WIFI, WAN, Bluetooth, etc, etc, etc which are add on features to the basic functionality.
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Bob - W7KWS -

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Time isn't in question here. It was a question or, possibly a feature request and I will be happy to get a knowledgeable answer when one exists.

For the moment it sounds as though the above respondents don't have the answer. I look forward to knowledgeable information when it is available. Until the information exists posts like those above are of little value.
(Edited)
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Bob

Perhaps you would be best served by reposting this as a Feature Request...

BTW.. I think it would be very useful to have this feature when traveling with V2.0 WAN enabled.
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Bob - W7KWS -

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Will do, Howard. I clicked idea when I posted it as I thought that was the place. I'll look into other options.

Thanks for the suggestion.

Follow up.

Howard, FYI...

I looked into it and I guess it's best left here.  Tim indicated this in a post one year ago.

https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/how_to_i_propose_an_enhancement_feature_request
(Edited)
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Walt - KZ1F

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This is really pretty simple sh*t. I'll repeat what someone said to me recently, "dont get your panties in a twist" . I've spent a lot of time in upscale hotels and inns featuring shared WiFi. It wasn't an N- type router right outside the room. It was a G-type router God knows where that could bearly deliver a consistent signal. Doing ftp is one thing, passing VOIP is quite another. The problem isn't where Flex is in their schedule its the infrastructure you'll be trying to use.

So my best advice to people is arrange an appointment with your shrink now to help you through the nervous breakdown when world peace and reversal of global warming don't occur when FRS ships 2.0. Geese!
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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@Walt

I have recently been in several hotels in Ireland, France, Germany and the Czech Republic.  They were very late coming to the table with Free WiFi (I once paid €52/day for crap WiFi in Germany).  But since they were late to the party, their new WiFi systems seems to have skipped the usual crap Hotel WiFi we find in the USA. 

I was getting typically anywhere from 5Mb/s up/down to 50Mb/s up/down in most hotels.  More than adequate for WAN Remote.  The sole exception was the US Chain - The Marriott in Pilsen which offered Free 2Mb/s up/down and Paid 10Mb/s up/down... a simple Hack.. got you the 10Mb/s (if you know how to find the hack)    BTW....found similar results in Thailand, Bali, China and Japan and even a couple of place in the Caribbean

I might note also that Many International Countries were late to the table with 3G so they skipped straight to 4G LTE which is more than adequate for WAN Remote...

You might want to read my paper on "How to Save a Lot of Money on International Roaming"

https://db.tt/vUXgteRU
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Walt - KZ1F

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Howard, most of us are non-jetsetting retirees. My thesis is people will buy a Maestro with highly inflated expectation s of working remote and be severely disappointed. That has nothing to do with FRS. It's what an CEO I used to work for called "happy ears", people hear what they want to hear.

4th quarter doesn't start until Oct, ending Dec, and some are already getting moist over it...makes me 'smile', I'll leave the giggling to the...
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Walt are you meaning, remote will be dependent on lan performance or WiFi? In that case many will be disappointed?
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Walt - KZ1F

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WIFI performance from 'your backyard' is 100% within the operator's control. If you are at the local no-tell mo-tell and counting on THEIR wifi the operator will likely be very disappointed. As that relates to 2.x (which was implicit at the start of this thread) this implies you are not in your backyard using your wifi or, for that matter, a neighbor's using THEIR wifi. When you're at Motel-6 or Holiday Inn or Days Inn or <fill in the blank> you are not only using their wifi your are using it with every other guest they have. In your backyard if you don't like the performance you can upgrade, from G class to N or AC class. You can reposition the router to have better coverage from the backyard shed (or whatever). If you are in a hotel or inn you don't control where their wireless router is and chances are almost certain it won't be outside your room.

I am not in a position to speak for FRS but I believe they aren't using 'from some unknown motel room', as the use case , favoring, in your back yard, on your deck, in your family room, your kid's house, your neighbors etc. In short, environments with limited demands that can be more easily 'controlled'.

This is a recurring theme here, people build their expectations way too early and expect way too much, which the quite predictable outcome, people will be angry with FRS, when it's perceived as being 'late',  when it doesn't work, perceived as  it's too complicated, or it's too brittle, etc etc. In this case, short of it escaped the lab too early, it is not FRS's fault. As 2.0 comes closer to release, they still haven't hit anyone up for $200 and 1.5 and 1.5.x aren't released, it would be nice if they set expectations as the weak link will be someone else's wifi with uncertain load already on it. 

The good news is most people aren't 'on the road' but for those that are, how many times does your cell drop out and the mobile providers have spent billions on trying to make sure that doesn't happen. WIFI isn't the same power, range, or capacity.
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Bob W7KWS

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Like Howard, I run my station remotely a lot but it's all within the U.S.  Many WiFi systems in hotels aren't very good but many others work fine.  I've found that the places that cater to business travelers like Holiday Inn Express do pretty well.  Even the Super 8 in Dayton works OK.

To operate I run a Remote Desktop connection back home for controlling my TS-590, KPA500 Linear, SteppIR and rotor plus a SIP audio connection using a G711u codec.  All from an Android tablet or from an AT&T Note 3 phone  If the bandwidth is marginal I don't run the audio and just place a free cell phone call back to the TS-590. The phone call isn't high fidelity but it is adequate for SSB.  The G711 SIP connection over WiFi or the Verizon Hotspot is toll quality audio.  Remote CW is not an option unless I run my RemoteRig. 

By the way, a Verizon cell phone call back to the station for audio is very poor.  It's amazing how good their data can be but how terrible their voice calls are for radio.  It seems that their codec for voice calls can not operate in the presence of band noise.

The spectrum scope from HDSDR and my Perseus usually want too much bandwidth for adequate operation.  Of course it was never intended for this type of circuit.

If I want to run a spectrum scope or if I'm mobile or in a location with poor or no public WiFi, I fire up my Straight Talk over Verizon hotspot.  I had to return the Straight Talk AT&T hotspot due to long ping times preventing SIP from working in many areas.  The Verizon works very well gives me LTE data on Verizon with sub 50-MSec. ping times and runs everything quite nicely. 

The HDSDR spectrum scope and waterfall take some bandwidth and can become a bit pricy to run all the time on cellular so I'll take a look at the scope and then turn it off during a QSO leaving everything else showing on the screen.  It works surprising well this way.

Straight Talk data is only $10 a Gig on the $40, 60-day card and I've never used the four Gigs up before the end date.  Straight Talk does have a habit of turning it off half way through at the end of  30-days.  A quick phone call shows them the error of their ways and they turn it back on.

It will be great to see what happens when Flex puts 2.0 together in their usual state-of-the-art manner, particularly with the Maestro.  It has been unusual for them to miss a stated target by enough time to concern me.  Even if it only works over my hotspot with reasonable bandwidth costs it will be far from disappointing.
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Robert -- N5IKD, Elmer

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Has anyone heard if the Maestro will be capable of connecting to an L2TP/IPSec VPN?
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Too EARLY TO TELL
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Gerald - K5SDR, Employee

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Official Response
With WiFI, your mileage (i.e. performance) WILL vary.  FlexRadio has no control over WiFi performance either in your home or in the future on the road.  Others have commented on the variability of hotel WiFi performance.  Our position is and must be, if it works, it works - if it doesn't it doesn't.  We cannot and will not guarantee WiFi performance.  Remember that WiFi is like a party line in the early days of telephone.  In a hotel, you and everyone else in the hotel are on the same frequency.
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Peter K1PGV, Elmer

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Not only are you likely on the same frequency, you're sharing the same endpoint bandwidth. So, there are lots of permutations: signal good, bandwidth bad, latency good... Signal bad, bandwidth good, latency bad. Etc...

WiFi in general sucks. Hotel wifi sucks worse. "If it works, it works" is good counsel and you should be thrilled. If it doesn't work, don't be surprised. That's my advice..

Peter
K1PGV
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Kevin Va3KGS

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Will Maestro be capable of working below the 2.4Ghz public band, at 2.397Ghz? (Which is in the Ham Band)?

I have been running the AREDN software in the UBIQUITY WiFi routers for a year now without any issues.  The units are setup to operate on Channel -2, which is below the public band with great success.  I live in a hi traffic area neighbourhood, and this is where I found the AREDN works for me.  I remote 700 meters to the other house to run my 6500.  Running the private network this way is just another option.  Running an outdoor antenna off the side of the tower will get me to the next city!!Just asking if Maestro will be built to cover the HAM Frequency's in the 2.4Ghz band.

Cheers

Kevin, Va3KGS

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Steve - N5AC, VP Engineering / CTO

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We are using a commercial WiFi module that doesn't allow adjusting the frequency.  If you want to operate at a different frequency, the only way I can think of is to use a wired-to-wireless device that has the operating frequency you want to use already set in it.
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Kevin Va3KGS

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Thanks Steve for this info.

I will look into it more when I pick-up my Maestro.

Regards

Kevin, Va3KGS