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Spot Wi-Fi Range extender

To-Do

  • Setup mesh network
  • Test mesh network performance 

Parts list

Topology

Single node

In the single node topology you can see we have one WAP that is mounted to Spot. This outdoor AP has a much greater range than Spots regular Wi-Fi allowing for the user to control him at much longer distances.

Multinode (mesh)

In a multinode topology we have multiple WAP's that connect together wirelessly to form a mesh network that cover a much larger area. In the case above we could cover the entire outside of the building without ever losing connection. This setup does include the WAP that is attached to Spot from the signal node topology because Spot will still benefit from the extra range. 

This setup may not be compatible with all standard WAP's as a mesh network is often an extra feature.

Setup

Spot 

To configure a Spot to support either of the two setups above there is not much you need to do, however, here are a few suggested actions:

Stop spot from broadcasting his onboard network.

One way you can stop Spot from broadcasting is to change his Wi-Fi settings in the admin web portal at one of these addressees:

  • https://10.0.0.3 (This is the Spot network for the rear RJ45 port)
  • https://192.168.80.3 (This is Spot built in access point network)
  • https://192.168.50.3 (This is the payload network address for spot. You will only use this one if you are connected to a network port on a Spot payload)

Once you have opened up the admin portal and logged in you should then navigate to the Network Setup page and then WI-FI. You will want to change the Wi-Fi Network Type to Client mode.

Password is provided but somebody else

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CORE I/O

  1. To prepare the CORE I/O for either of the two setups above you need physical access to the CORE I/O. You also need to have the CORE I/O mounted to Spot. You need to remove the wire cover plate to gain access to the RJ45 jacks inside. You can use either of the two ports inside.1121231512a.jpg
  2. The second thing you need to setup is power for the WAP. You have two options:
Male Barrel Jack

If your WAP has a DC power input this would be the simplest method to power it from the CORE I/O. 

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You then need to locate the CN3 and CN4 terminal blocks under the CORE I/O cover. You will use one of these to connect the WAP to the regulated power that the CORE I/O provides.

When you connect anything to the CORE I/O power outputs make sure you read the documentation!!

You will need to find the correct power outputs based on your WAP requirements. Here is a table of the connectors and their pinouts:

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Using a POE injector

To use a POE based WAP you need determine the type of POE your your device takes. You can either have Passive or Active POE.

Passive POE

Passive POE works by inputting a specific voltage across 1 or 2 pairs of the 4 pairs of wire that make up a CATX wire. Below you can see the specification of the WAP we choose, which is 24v. There are 3 common standards for passive POE which are 24v, 48v, and 54v.

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After you determine what your requirements you need to find a passive POE injector such as this one that takes a male barrel jack input. 

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You will to then need to provide power from the CORE I/O to the male barrel jack. 

rtaImage.jpg

You then need to locate the CN3 and CN4 terminal blocks under the CORE I/O cover. You will use one of these to connect the POE injector to the regulated power that the CORE I/O provides.

When you connect anything to the CORE I/O power outputs make sure you read the documentation!!

You will need to find the correct power outputs based on your WAP requirements. Here is a table of the connectors and their pinouts:

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Active POE (Not Tested)

Active POE works by negotiating with client device, in our case the WAP, to determine what voltage and power the client needs. This is great because you can plug in any device that supports the standard used by your power device and it will automatically configure and power on. There are now multiple IEEE standards for POE.

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You will need to find a device that takes DC input and provides at least the standard you need.

Wireless Access Point (WAP) setup

Going forward this setup will assume you have connected your WAP to power and connected the data cable to your laptop.

  1. You will need to determine the IP address of you WAP. To do this you need will need to find the default IP address of your brand of device. 
  2. Once you have powered up your WAP for the first time you will want to log into the management portal. Most WAP's have a web portal located at the IP address of the device. This will be defined by default in most cases for each manufacturer, The default IP used by our device is 192.168.1.254. 
    • Change the SSID of your network/s
      • This is so you can easily determine the in the future.
      • If you have a 5Ghz network and are using the Galaxy Tab 3 active tablet you will want to disable this or name the network separately as the Tab 3 active does not support 5Ghz and it may cause connection issues.
    • Change the default password for each SSID
      • Please do this for security and easy of use later. 
    • Turn off any Band Steering functionality
      • Band steering can cause connection issues when in tries to force a device to the other network band and this can occur at any time.
    • Change the IP assignment settings so that the WAP has a static IP in the 192.168.50.0/24 range
      • You will need to change this to fit in the range of the payload network and spot uses the 192.168.50.0/24 range for payloads.
      • To leave room for actual payloads and their networked devices you will want to pick a Valid IP which includes 192.168.50.10 - 192.168.50.254 Once you have logged into the WAP you want to change a few settings to make it work with Spot:
Optional WAP setting Changes
  • Turn off SSID broadcasting
    • This provides an extra basic level of security.
    • This will require you to do a little more configuration on the Controller and other devices you want to wirelessly connect to Spot.
  1. After Changing the IP of the WAP you will lose connection and most likely have to navigate to the new assigned address