[CUWiN] FreeNet Router Project

Chase Phillips shepard at ameth.org
Thu Jan 6 23:34:00 CST 2005

On Thu, 6 Jan 2005, Ian White wrote:

> Running my own Locustworld mesh but slightly unhappy about the way the source is
> controlled etc, I've been looking at the other projects around.
> WRT based ones , seasoft... wifidog
> PC based ones like cuwin.

Pebble can be added to your list of open projects.

> Having seen the benefits of a large number of developers working and testing on
> a OS project (xoops/postnuke), I wonder why the wireless mesh world is so
> split.
> People want
> 1) 11b/11g support
> 2) nodes capable of dynamic meshing and routing
> 3) User authorization (nocat in most cases), and vpn support for users
> 4) inter-node security/firewall (vpn or certs)
> 5) traffic control, dianogtics and limits
> and most of the stuff is open source and just needs taping together.
> The only main difference appears to be routing algorithm, and in theory thats a
> pluggable module.

Some things in your list are provided by available software (like
NoCatSplash).  In other cases, though, the parts that don't exist are the
hardest to write.  Wireless drivers and the routing infrastructure to
enable self-forming, scalable networks are being put together by a number
of groups, us one among them.

CUWiN provides 1 via NetBSD (sometimes through drivers written by project
members).  A large part of this project is devoted to taking ideas that
work in the lab and utilizing them in the real world to get 2.  We can get
3 if someone ports NoCatSplash to NetBSD (care to submit a patch?).  4
on a network made up of embedded devices requires that they have built-in
crypto hardware to assist in setting up systems like IPsec, which we'd
like to support in our software.

As for 5, traffic shaping is probably available in NetBSD.  If so, one
just needs an interface to it to make it easily-controlled by the node
owner or network engineers.  If not, port ALTQ from FreeBSD?  We have
identified some initial areas for diagnostic scripts to allow
troubleshooting of nodes.  If you have specific ideas for where to take
this area we would be interested to hear more.

> Thoughts ?

I would like to add to your list.  People want self-configuring nodes
(configuration of the network, services private/site-local/global,
registration).  People want low-cost nodes that are easily-installed and
long-lived (weatherproofed, quality hardware).  People want a solution
that is and will be supported.

> Quoting Dan Flett <conhoolio at hotmail.com>:
> > Hi All,
> >
> > I've started a Wiki page detailing a project I am working on.  I am
> > seeking advice, criticism, or contributions of any sort on this.
> >
> > http://wiki.freenetworks.org/index.cgi/FreeNetRouterProject
> >
> > In short, I'm aiming to create a cheap, dual radio "router-in-a-box"
> > with a user friendly web interface - with the aim of making it
> > mass-producable.  On the wiki page above the various existing hardware
> > and software options are investigated.
> >
> > I'm involved with Melbourne Wireless
> > (http://www.melbournewireless.org.au) where we aim to make a standalone
> > wireless network across the city.  Australian Government regulations
> > restrict the ways in which you can distribute Internet access - hefty
> > licence fees are involved - so our network aims to be a city-wide
> > wireless intranet, not necessarily using landlines or any sort of
> > Internet tunnelling to connect network clusters.  The 'network
> > administrators' are the node owners, most of whom are not network
> > engineers, hence the need for a user friendly web interface on the
> > router.
> >
> > The FreeNet Router Project Wiki page specifies a generic router design,
> > but I would anticipate that the various FreeNet and Community Wireless
> > groups around the world would want to customise it to suit local
> > conditions - both from a hardware and a software perspective.
> >
> > If you're interested in contributing, please email me, or just add your
> > contributions to the Wiki page.
> >
> > Cheers,
> >
> > Dan Flett
> > _______________________________________________
> > CU-Wireless mailing list
> > CU-Wireless at lists.cuwireless.net
> > http://lists.chambana.net/cgi-bin/listinfo/cu-wireless
> > Project Page: http://cuwireless.ucimc.org
> >
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