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  #1  
Old 21 December 2019, 22:23
bobmueller bobmueller is offline
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Post-disaster Internet Access

This article at CNN is much more focused on the deliberate interruption of internet access by government forces, but it did make me wonder about post-disaster comms. Not much you can do if the .gov pulls the plug though.
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Old 21 December 2019, 22:49
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Originally Posted by bobmueller View Post
Not much you can do if the .gov pulls the plug though.
If that was the case, I'd start here before the kill switch was thrown: https://winlink.org/

With some prep time, you could also set up your own radio internet gateway without much trouble
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Old 21 December 2019, 23:01
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I’m pretty intrigued by the HAM side of this. I know Sixgun has talked a bit about it too.
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Old 22 December 2019, 10:01
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I guess this complicates the HAM thing a bit if it takes hold elsewhere.

https://wzogo.wordpress.com/2019/12/...in-california/

Of course, the article is discussing just repeaters. No need for a repeater with an HF rig
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Old 22 December 2019, 11:34
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Hell. I live in WV. It’s already a disaster. You wouldn’t have any idea how many times I drop comms.
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Old 22 December 2019, 12:26
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Originally Posted by HighDragLowSpeed View Post
I guess this complicates the HAM thing a bit if it takes hold elsewhere.

https://wzogo.wordpress.com/2019/12/...in-california/

Of course, the article is discussing just repeaters. No need for a repeater with an HF rig
And it's repeaters only on public lands. Put one on your roof and you're fine, if I understand it correctly.
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Old 22 December 2019, 14:17
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And it's repeaters only on public lands. Put one on your roof and you're fine, if I understand it correctly.
You "might" stay functional with your own repeater in a SHTF scenario, but likely not... Lots of variables there, the biggest that "legally" your repeater needs to be approved and registered...

Of course, no one is worried about the "legally" in a SHTF scenario, but you are then the "low hanging fruit" - a repeater is easy to locate, etc.

HF comms are better, can be more difficult to locate if you are using an NVIS architecture, and can be coupled to a remote set-up that physically removes you from the xmitter :)

Couple that with some microwave point-to-point comms and your own home-brewed mesh network and your comms will be robust, redundant, and almost nobody is going to be able to DF you... You can text, talk, and do internet.

All of this is easily home-built - which avoids the Chinese AND American made stuff with embed chips that are going to tattle tail on you...

HF work is no harder than VHF repeater work. The learning curve is not steep, and it is enjoyable tinkering...
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Old 22 December 2019, 21:47
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HF comms are better, can be more difficult to locate if you are using an NVIS architecture, and can be coupled to a remote set-up that physically removes you from the xmitter :).
Internet via HF is useless. I know this first-hand. My Fed Gov employer insisting I have HF email when working on a remote-as-fuck location on Guadalcanal, then they'd send a PDF attachment that would take a day to download!
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Old 22 December 2019, 22:41
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Sixgun, what is your opinion on this?

http://tarpn.net/t/packet_radio_networking.html
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Old 22 December 2019, 23:02
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Sixgun, what is your opinion on this?

http://tarpn.net/t/packet_radio_networking.html

I like it. There are other options, but this type of low-tech home brewed solution is what I advocate.
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Old 22 December 2019, 23:04
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Internet via HF is useless. I know this first-hand. My Fed Gov employer insisting I have HF email when working on a remote-as-fuck location on Guadalcanal, then they'd send a PDF attachment that would take a day to download!
I get full colour digital wx maps every day via HF ...

There are lots of solutions out there...
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Old 23 December 2019, 11:06
bobmueller bobmueller is offline
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Hell. I live in WV. It’s already a disaster. You wouldn’t have any idea how many times I drop comms.
Yes I would. Got a HS friend who's in Gilmer County who regularly rants about how useless Frontier is.
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Old 23 December 2019, 11:25
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Originally Posted by sixgun View Post
HF comms are better, can be more difficult to locate if you are using an NVIS architecture, and can be coupled to a remote set-up that physically removes you from the xmitter :)

Couple that with some microwave point-to-point comms and your own home-brewed mesh network and your comms will be robust, redundant, and almost nobody is going to be able to DF you... You can text, talk, and do internet.
Agreed. I'm a huge fan of NVIS.The key in a non-permissive or semi permissive environments is controlling your ground wave. That essentially means learning how ground waves propagate and then ignoring every bit of advice you'll find on how to make good comms. All you want to travel outside your controlled area is your sky wave. Everything else should be purposefully attenuated.

What also could be helpful in such environments is understanding that most man-made sources of propagated energy are vertically polarized. Adjust location, antenna choices, and power accordingly to help hide your signal.
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Old 23 December 2019, 21:31
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Thinking through this as a SHTF scenario, seems that standard voice comms via ham radio would be much more helpful than a packet switched/ham solution.

Networks are only good for transporting data. I'm wondering how much data will be available for transport if the world goes to hell in a handbasket.

I'm thinking it's better to just hone up on ham radio technology. You can always add data over (ham or whatever) but getting the basic comms up would be the first priority. Then you could determine if there's any Internet left to work with.

VOIP over whatever may also be useful since the commercial phone system uses the same basic infrastructure as the Internet. If Internet transport goes down it may be helpful to have a backup, assuming any phone infrastructure (and your interface to it) survives the crisis.
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Old 23 December 2019, 22:07
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Speaking for the telecoms... the individual circumstances of the disaster, and the telecom provider's infrastructure (at your particular location) make a huge impact on survivability.

At my company, there's a pretty good mix of traditional POTS (plain old telephone system) lines that are traditionally delivered over TDM/SONET, and newer VOIP switched by routers. Also, depending on your address, you could be fed directly from a Central Office, or from a remote DLC (node in the neighborhood).

Central Offices are by nature pretty robust, with batteries and generator backup. Remote DLC's have batteries. Remotes typically last 8-16 hours in the best of circumstances.

Assuming you are serviced by an actual telephone company, and not a cable company, the line power is provided by the Central Office, or the Remote DLC. All you need is a corded phone to work when the power is out. Of course this assumes that the copper/fiber themselves are intact. The Central Offices do the switching, the Remotes are slaves off the Central Office. If the lines to the Remotes are severed, they cannot switch independently.

If your provider is a cable company, or you are on a fiber (GPON) connection at the house, of course you need local power for the phones/internet to work.

As for cell phones... The towers are fed via fiber (usually ethernet) from Central Offices, or via T-1's (TDM) via copper/fiber. If the Central Offices go down, cell towers are dead.

As for Amateur voice being more important than data- sure, maybe, depending on the circumstances. There are certainly circumstances that even slow data is better than voice (weather data comes to mind).

Also, just a thought... any joe with a scanner can listen into voice comms on ham radios... takes a little more knowledge and equipment to listen in on data transmissions. While certainly possible, the pool of entities that can intercept data is vastly smaller than those who can intercept voice.
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  #16  
Old 23 December 2019, 22:47
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In general, I prefer to send data (text messages) for many of the reasons HDLS was getting at - time on the air = increased vulnerability. Burst of data are short... Concise. .. Encryption is simple...
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Old 24 December 2019, 01:06
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I get full colour digital wx maps every day via HF ...

There are lots of solutions out there...
*crying quietly into my Corona*
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Old 25 December 2019, 00:52
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So, this Merry Christmas comes to you via an old desktop with sound card, connected to an Icom 706 MK-II ham radio, on 40 meter band, via an NVIS antenna, on a cabin in northeast Washington, to a house 90 miles south of me, with a reverse of that set up, to a Rasberry Pi hot spot in the house on town, to a Comcast internet connection...

I'm not at the cabin, I'm in a town in mid-Idaho, remote controlling the radio via the internet, but I could remote control it via HF as well from my truck...

So, my IP will show up as in town. Using a Proton VPN, I could confuse it all more.

My current foray is into building my own microwave horns - then shit gets real hard forvthe fox hunters :)

My set up is pretty basic - I know guys that remote control an tennas and radios to do sat work, or EME work (earth moon earth bounce vhf)...

It's a hobby, but not that hard to learn or resource.

Merry Christmas :)
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