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Apr. 19th, 2006

The past two days at work have been all the good that Monday was not.

Yesterday I finally whipped my terminal emulation program problems and got the second of two routers at the new Breakthrough Magnet School up and running. The network at the school is as complete as its going to get for now. I’m going to hold off on installing all of the wireless gear until the construction trades are out of the building. Why tempt fate with union hardhats when the schedule will allow you to simply wait them out?

I had a couple of meetings later in the day having to do with the City's municipal wireless project. The meeting with IBM and Cisco was interesting, and that will have to do for now. The meeting I had with one of the City's contracted lawyers was actually enjoyable -- he came to me looking for a primer on how the network is actually going to work, and how the technology and the contract language need to fit together. The result was a nearly two-hour Q&A session where I got to talk at length about some of my favorite subjects.

Today had its moments (like the hour spent wrangling invoices), but on the whole was a good day. I cleaved off several hours to play with our new wireless system that we have running in test in the office. (It's AireSpace gear, with a Nortel paint job but running the current Cisco code. Acquisitions by one vendor that upset another vendor's OEM arrangement can make for some interesting things.) I got beyond the basics today -- I went from having one wireless network (WLAN) configured to two WLANs mapping to different IP subnets, with different security settings (WEP on one, the other open). The best part about this model (having an intelligent central controller running dumb access points), is that when I want to bring up a new AP I just take it out of the box and plug it in. It gets its marching orders from the controller, and away it goes.

Tomorrow I want to flip the WLAN that's running WEP to something more secure, and setup a third WLAN to try out one of the Cisco WiFi phones we have. Time permitting I'd also like to get back out to Breakthrough to spin-up their new wireless controller and maybe one AP.

Tonight I'm rebuilding a pair of Dell's -- one for us, one for a friend -- we're in the long dark slog through Windows Update right now.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
also_huey
Apr. 22nd, 2006 07:17 pm (UTC)
I had a couple of meetings later in the day having to do with the City's municipal wireless project...

I can't wait to hear more about this. My cousin is (or was, anyways - he seems to change jobs pretty often) on the engineering team that built some pretty insane wireless routers, and it's fascinating to hear him talk about this stuff. Like: when you're testing your Mother Of All Wireless Routers, how do you simulate hundreds of thousands of simultaneous wireless connections, without creating enough RF to cook you like you were in a microwave? Answer: remove antennas, drop gain, and connect together with coax. Wireless-over-10b2! It's genius!
netcurmudgeon
Apr. 22nd, 2006 09:14 pm (UTC)
Wireless over coax. Hmm, wired-wireless. Yes, I see now. Jesus had tentacles and Jerusalem sank benieth the waves.

...Actually, that makes a heck of a lot of sense. Even with the uncertainty over low-level microwave exposure, the effects of high-level exposure are pretty well known. "And another great perk of working at WiFi-World is access to our staff oncologist!"

Re: Trapeze – We're using the competition for indoor wireless (AireSpace -- in Nortel livery originally, and now in Cisco blue). What we're going to use for outdoor WiFi is still undecided.
also_huey
Apr. 22nd, 2006 10:11 pm (UTC)
If you need an inside line at Trapeze to actual no-bullshit technical people instead of salesweasels, I can rattle him for you if you like.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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