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Ethernet Switch, but not conventional hub-type switch?

Old 05-29-2016, 06:01 PM
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Default Ethernet Switch, but not conventional hub-type switch?

I wish to switch a laptop between two very different WiFi devices, one an external WiFi radio running legal unlicensed power (50 milliwatts to 1 watt, depending on antenna gain?) with multiple protocols (Ubiquity Bullet) and external antenna, and the other, an 802.11g-only bridge running a licensed 20 watts and sector antennas at each end (one at home on a tower, the other on the boat, with an antenna rotator. The bridge setup has demonstrated over a 50 mile range, line of sight, in good weather.

I'm trying to switch from one to the other without physically unplugging cables. Any searches naturally return results for the typical ethernet switch, a type of hub that most people are familiar with.

Hope someone understands my explanation of what I'm trying to do, basically an A/B 8P/DT manual switch that switches one CAT6 cable between either of two other CAT6 cables.
Old 05-29-2016, 09:32 PM
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http://www.bdoutdoors.com/forums/thr...d-home.626175/

If you pay shipping and boxing I will send it to you. It is a managed switch. That is my post on a local Washington board.
http://cdn-docs.av-iq.com/datasheet/...t_20121015.pdf
Old 05-29-2016, 10:22 PM
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How's this Karl
A revamp from the older 9 pin serial type.
http://tinyurl.com/zp3ydhm
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Old 05-30-2016, 06:22 AM
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No switch is going to really be set up for that.

One method for accomplishing it would be to have a switch with VLAN support. Then, you could assign each connection to a VLAN and switch the VLAN of the laptop between the two. That will require logging in to the switch each time you want to do it, which will require your laptop to have an IP (not a DHCP-assigned IP from one of the connections unless you have a local router.)

If you are going to have a local router, I believe with DD-WRT or similar you can change the WAN port or the VLAN used for the WAN.
Old 05-30-2016, 08:04 AM
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The bridge is based on two WRT54GL routers (Linux) running Tomato firmware, driving 2.4 gHz 20 watt amps at both ends. I want the cable switching solution to be as simple as possible on the boat end, preferably without being IP or MAC-addressed, just basically a simple toggle switch that maintains the integrity of CAT6 cable, so the managed switch option is out, but I appreciate the offer. I don't know if a mechanical 8PDT switch would degrade the integrity of Ethernet cable, but gigabit speeds are not required, either, as it's just to provide a free backhaul link for browsing and for email on the boat.

A friend will be working on an auto-steering assembly for the boat, probably using an Intel Edison module and a junk-box flux-gate compass (or, output from the chart plotter), to automatically steer the boat's directional 45* antenna to keep it pointing at the 180* sector antenna on the tower. He hasn't even started, though.

The 20-watt amps running on channel 1 of 802.11g WiFi are expected to cause major interference to unlicensed 2.4 WiFi users, but they operate under FCC Part 15 and are required to tolerate interference from licensed users. If it's really bad, they will have to switch to 5gHz WiFi, or possibly to a much higher number channel if they stay with 2.4. I have a marina close to my tower offering free WiFi to customers, and they will probably be the most affected. I'm not looking forward to their reaction. The bridges are completed, and during testing, I heard rumors of "jamming"...
Old 05-30-2016, 03:28 PM
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just use routing. have a router in the boat that can have two separate default gateways.

regarding interference. I think you are definitely violating the unlicensed band. it is not legal to output 20 watts into this band I believe only 500mwatt or 1 watt is he max legal power output.

do it long enough with the enough complaining and you will have the Fcc trying to triangulate your position and giving you a citation or taking your gear.

I looked this up. max power output before the antenna is 1 watt.

http://www.air802.com/fcc-rules-and-regulations.html

Last edited by jmarshall28; 05-30-2016 at 03:55 PM. Reason: looked up the Fcc rules
Old 05-30-2016, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by jmarshall28 View Post
just use routing. have a router in the boat that can have two separate default gateways.

regarding interference. I think you are definitely violating the unlicensed band. it is not legal to output 20 watts into this band I believe only 500mwatt or 1 watt is he max legal power output.

do it long enough with the enough complaining and you will have the Fcc trying to triangulate your position and giving you a citation or taking your gear.

I looked this up. max power output before the antenna is 1 watt.

http://www.air802.com/fcc-rules-and-regulations.html
Not even legal under Part 97. 10 watts driven and 2.5kw EIRP.
Old 05-30-2016, 06:08 PM
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if you are switching your laptop between 2 different wifi devices why do you have cables?... just log out and into other wifi. they would always both be broadcasting and visible in wifi menu.


otherwise the ebay switched posted above looks exactly what you are looking for.
Old 05-30-2016, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by jeremyparr View Post
Not even legal under Part 97. 10 watts driven and 2.5kw EIRP.
it's a real bad attitude. he doesn't mind messing up the band for everyone that is in the shadow of his antenna. the reason it's unlicensed is because it's a low power band.

it's also real risky. won't take hackers more the. 10-20 minutes to find such a big target to use. not that hard to crack wep/wpa/wpa2 keys and then they could launch hacks from his towers IP address.
Old 05-31-2016, 08:06 AM
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I'm planning on using the portion of the band assigned to foreign unlicensed WiFi, just below US 802.11g US channel one. My reading of Part 97 rules was up to 1000 watts ERP on that portion of the 13cm band, with it achieved by any combination of amplification and/or antenna gain. I was going by a print copy of the regulations, so perhaps 10 watts amplification is the current rule, but the chinese amps I purchased do have a 10 watt setting. ERP at base is a calculated 850 watts, and about half that on the boat. Both amps do have low-noise receive pre-amps as well, but most don't work all that well, but they can be turned off if they actually degrade received signal.

Regarding WiFi encryption, it's not allowed under Part 97, but password protection is allowed, and regular callsign ID is required, generally done as the SSID. The interference issue has come up many times on the 900 mHz band, a favorite of unlicensed WISP cable TV operators, and FCC has sided with the licensed services, even when it makes a WISP system unusable, as those operators knew the risks beforehand.

FCC Part 15 is what it is, and much consumer-grade equipment is poorly-designed to reject adjacent-channel interference, much of it the result of the near-universal use of plastic equipment enclosures.

The SSID won't be visible to most WiFi "g" users since it won't be on a US channel, and if hackers do brute-force the PW, it will become an open access-point to anyone willing to transmit illegally on the licensed-only portion of the band. That eliminates about 99% of the population, and with frequent PW changes, will hardly be worth their effort and also committing a federal offense by illegally transmitting on that frequency.

Last edited by Karl in NY; 05-31-2016 at 08:21 AM.
Old 05-31-2016, 09:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Karl in NY View Post
I wish to switch a laptop between two very different WiFi devices, one an external WiFi radio running legal unlicensed power (50 milliwatts to 1 watt, depending on antenna gain?) with multiple protocols (Ubiquity Bullet) and external antenna, and the other, an 802.11g-only bridge running a licensed 20 watts and sector antennas at each end (one at home on a tower, the other on the boat, with an antenna rotator. The bridge setup has demonstrated over a 50 mile range, line of sight, in good weather.

I'm trying to switch from one to the other without physically unplugging cables. Any searches naturally return results for the typical ethernet switch, a type of hub that most people are familiar with.

Hope someone understands my explanation of what I'm trying to do, basically an A/B 8P/DT manual switch that switches one CAT6 cable between either of two other CAT6 cables.

Yeah, sure. Any of the RJ-45 A/B switches will probably work for limited bandwidth, depending on what you've got near it to push in RFI. The higher the Ethernet link speed, the more sensitive twisted pair connections are to "untwist" length in the connections. If the switch box has a good printed circuit design without a lot of untwisted wire inside, it might work reasonably well. YMMV. It's pretty much guaranteed not to meet CAT6 spec...
Old 05-31-2016, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by kidshelleen View Post
Yeah, sure. Any of the RJ-45 A/B switches will probably work for limited bandwidth, depending on what you've got near it to push in RFI. The higher the Ethernet link speed, the more sensitive twisted pair connections are to "untwist" length in the connections. If the switch box has a good printed circuit design without a lot of untwisted wire inside, it might work reasonably well. YMMV. It's pretty much guaranteed not to meet CAT6 spec...
I completely agree, and am quite skeptical of the A/B RJ45 switches on the market for under $10.

I did find a few that were even gigabit-rated, but more like $400. Someone told me there are dual-port Ethernet adapters, but limited to USB speeds.

CAT cables are actually quite a work of art, not just a hunk of wire. Each of the 4 pairs of individual wires are twisted at a different rate of turns-per-inch, to minimize cross-talk between pairs, and I, too, highly doubt the $10 variety could maintain cable specs. At least they're in a metal enclosure, but their design even looks dated, like from 25 years ago, when many networks were 10BASE2 coax rather than Ethernet. Worse-case is $10 wasted.
Old 05-31-2016, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Karl in NY View Post
I completely agree, and am quite skeptical of the A/B RJ45 switches on the market for under $10.

I did find a few that were even gigabit-rated, but more like $400. Someone told me there are dual-port Ethernet adapters, but limited to USB speeds.

CAT cables are actually quite a work of art, not just a hunk of wire. Each of the 4 pairs of individual wires are twisted at a different rate of turns-per-inch, to minimize cross-talk between pairs, and I, too, highly doubt the $10 variety could maintain cable specs. At least they're in a metal enclosure, but their design even looks dated, like from 25 years ago, when many networks were 10BASE2 coax rather than Ethernet. Worse-case is $10 wasted.
UTP cables arent as necessary as you might think to get speed.
I once had to use 100' of 25 pair telco cable to connect a HD camera with no other options. 8 Individual wires using a 66 block on both sides. I got 100mb out of it.

You can easily have 2 different links feeding one host device if you use a decent managed switch. Just log into the switch and disable the port of the link you don't want to use.
Old 05-31-2016, 12:04 PM
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A cheap A/B switch will work fine. Sorry, when you said "ethernet switch" i thought you meant you wanted to continue with a switch but have it be able to split the two.

The category specs are designed to ensure 100% of rated performance at the rated distance. You'll find a lot of cheap short patch cables which just have straight wires in them. They're not really Cat5/Cat6 then as they say, but people use them and they work fine. A switch like that will untwist it for what, 6" of a total of 100 meters if you ran as long as you could? Won't be noticeable.

What you are planning sounds illegal and a pain in the ass for those of us who rely on the spectrum being used legally... it is busy as it can be already.

How far do you plan on running with the boat setup?
Old 05-31-2016, 05:23 PM
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Originally Posted by TheLucille View Post
What you are planning sounds illegal and a pain in the ass for those of us who rely on the spectrum being used legally... it is busy as it can be already.

How far do you plan on running with the boat setup?
I've been doing microwave bridging, usually dish-to-dish, in the licensed portion of the 2.4 gHz band for years, but always between fixed points. This will be my first experiment bridging between a fixed base and a mobile (boat).

The lake I boat on (Champlain) is 130 miles long, and I'm at the northern tip, about 10 miles from the Canadian border, which I seldom cross mostly for bureaucratic and political reasons. My goal is an Internet link from home to the boat, using high-gain antennas, with the one on the boat being auto-steerable, hopefully yielding a range of 40-50 miles. I seldom venture further from home on the boat anyhow, as there is less and less of interest to me south of Burlington, VT.

As to legality, it is routinely done under Part 97 licensing, including on a few of the lower "g" WiFi channels, which by law under Part 15 (unlicensed) must tolerate interference from licensed users (me). In some areas, govt. and satellite licensed users have priority on the band, but not in my locale. Those users are equally disruptive to WiFi unlicensed users as I will be.

Disruption to WiFi is often avoided by moving to an upper channel of the 2.4 band, or to the 5 gHz WiFi band, but it is primarily the result of cheapest-design at lowest-price for consumer WiFi hardware which gets swamped by high-power signals on nearby frequencies. Commercial-grade WiFi, vs. consumer-grade WiFi, seldom experiences the same degree of disruption. Read the mandatory sticker on your wireless router or repeater for an explanation of your limited rights as an unlicensed user of the band...you basically have none, in exchange for being able to use the band at all. You also share with microwave ovens, medical equipment (like diathermy), and industrial wireless controls, all of which can drive cheap WiFi crazy.
Old 06-01-2016, 03:43 AM
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Likely way easier to use a hub and to switch the power for the 2 wifi radios instead.
Old 06-01-2016, 11:48 AM
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Normally I wouldn't care too much about this kind of stuff as I also enjoy getting equipment to work in neat ways and working for me. Since this affects others it bothers me and I am going to call it out.

Sorry but regarding the letter of the law you are doing something that isn't legal.

You are not permitted to bridge your internet service over this channel. People do all the time, it doesn't mean that it is legal.

Secondly it is not possible to password protect 802.11a/b/g/n/AC without enabling encryption which is also illegal. Part 97 says that no encryption of any kind may be used on the link. If you try using a captive browser portal for user authentication, it better run without using the SSL protocol (https) and must authenticate you in clear text(http only) as you are transmitting encrypted packets when using SSL.

Since everything you transmit including your password is in the clear, you have a very insecure setup and are easy prey for any hacker. Regarding the legality of transmitting on carriers below 2412Mhz, well hackers are already doing illegal things, and the FCC may assume its just one of you HAM guys. All commercial hardware can receive these frequencies, directional antennas can be made with Pringles cans, and they are cheap enough just to buy them. Regarding the 802.11 WIFI radio hardware, home units are all that is needed, and it just takes loading DD-WRT or OPEN-WRT so the extra settings are available. You are using Linksys boxes yourself. If it were me up there, instructions on how to connect to your tower would be posted on the wall of the marina. All is fair right?

Its obvious you are a HAM operator but I don't get that you don't care if you step all over other people just so you can read your email. Most HAMs I know are not this way. Maybe its me but I don't get it. You can set this up so you don't step on the lower 802.11 bands by setting your equipment to only be 5Mhz wide instead of the normal 20. Yes it will go slower, but it will still be around 5-10Mbps which is more than enough to read your email. Another way is to use more directional antennas and that fancy antenna aiming mount you are getting built. Put several YAGIs on that tower or good sector antennas and much lower power and you could still span the distance operating in Part 15 mode. (I have gotten link distances of 26 miles. I know it can be done.)

You will also be a good neighbor, which in your case you aren't, you know your not, and you don't care.

It doesn't matter the equipment type, the interference you generate will affect all systems operating from 802.11 channels 1 through 4. I have designed and built several Outdoor Wireless meshes for local governments, and yes I have run a across a few of you guys. In BFE you may get away with this, but if not, what your doing affects all types of 802.11 gear regardless of the quality, expense or who makes it. The city would DF you and knock on your door.

This is my last post on this subject. Enjoy your email at others expense.

Last edited by jmarshall28; 06-01-2016 at 12:05 PM.

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