Wi-Fi for the boat

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by Four Suns, Jun 11, 2007.

  1. osd9

    osd9 New Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    MidAtlantic
    2003 410DA
    Caterpillar 3126-TA w/ ZF 80-IV
    Gary:

    How would they know if I just have IE 7.0 with 3 tabs open and IMing under 3 alias...BTW...I'm on an air card now.....works great when I have a REV-A connection...but it likes to switch to national access every so often and then it REALLY slow down...
     
  2. Four Suns

    Four Suns Head Pot Stirrer TECHNICAL Contributor

    Oct 4, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    2003 480 DB
    Zodiac ProJet Dinghy
    Yamaha 110vx WaveRunner
    QSM-11 Diesels
    well... some programs like Yahoo IM only allow you to have 1 instance of the program running with 1 alias...

    I know people that actually write this kind of analysis software and it is easy to figure out how many machines are working behind a firewall. There is so much unencrypted crap coming over the pipe and these geeks write code to see what you are doing... trust me...
     
  3. osd9

    osd9 New Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    MidAtlantic
    2003 410DA
    Caterpillar 3126-TA w/ ZF 80-IV
    Wow!!!....I'll bet their beany props are huge!!!! Skip trusted you and you TP'd his boat...
     
  4. wish2fish

    wish2fish Active Member

    Dec 19, 2006
    Locust Creek, Ohio River mm 433
    2003 220BR
    5.0 MPI
    hope you used the right kind!
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Four Suns

    Four Suns Head Pot Stirrer TECHNICAL Contributor

    Oct 4, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    2003 480 DB
    Zodiac ProJet Dinghy
    Yamaha 110vx WaveRunner
    QSM-11 Diesels
    Actually, you can't really use marine toilet paper for toilet papering a boat... I saw someone try that last year and the high humidity just makes it fall apart.
     
  6. tphinney

    tphinney New Member

    558
    May 25, 2007
    Tampa Bay
    240 Sundancer 2004
    5.0 MPI w/ Bravo III
    Insight into coming technology. Not sure if anyone here has heard of LTE yet. but just as N is replacing A/B/G for capacity and distance LTE is going to be the replacement technology for cellular. don't invest big money in EVDO as the technology is about to be one up'ed. the Traditional Broadband/Cable providers are about to jump on the access bandwagon and with LTE and 802.16E (WIMAX) cell companies are about to be driven to their knees if they don't jump ahead quickly. So as much as EVDO is great it is very dated technology.

    just a freindly note from someone who works for a manufactures that makes all this stuff.
     
  7. Hampton

    Hampton Air Defense Dept TECHNICAL Contributor

    Nov 26, 2006
    Panama City, Fl
    2008 44 Sedan Bridge
    Cummins QSC-500's
    Straight Drives
    I don't know if this is on topic, but I'm anxious to get into a lap top to use the marina's wireless system while on the boat at the dock. We're having a blast tonight with You-tube. Pick any song you know, type it in, and play it fast. Incredible.
     
  8. Mr Salt

    Mr Salt New Member

    632
    Jun 14, 2008
    Cape May, NJ
    Raymarine/Raytheon electronics, Sat TV, Yacht Controller
    2003 Caterpillar C-12s Twin Disc Transmissions
    I installed a Syrens systems a few years ago. It has an external antenna that looks like a short VHF antenna and can be hooked up to the computer via ethernet port or wireless. It amplifies the signal in both directions and requires 12 VDC power. The system is great. One thing you must take into account however is that as more and more people secure their systems you can not get into them. On any of these systems you need an unsecure systems to tap into.

    Mr Salt
    2001 540 CPMY
    Caterpillar C-12s
    Cape May, NJ
     
  9. 370Dancer

    370Dancer Member

    694
    Oct 2, 2006
    Florida - Alabama
    1998 370 Sundancer
    380hp MAG MPI V drives
    Didn't see it mentioned, but the primary difference between EVDO and Wifi (for the moment) for a boater is similar to a cell phone vs. a cordless phone. Wifi is good when you are at rest. EVDO is good when you are mobile.
    I've had Wifi for years on the boat. I just started with a Sprint EVDO/Wifi USB stick with GPS, primarily to bypass Atlanta airport wifi at 10 bucks a day. This addition should get me internet while underway. The first app that would be of benefit is NWS real time weather maps.
     
  10. Presentation

    Presentation Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor

    Oct 3, 2006
    Wisconsin - Winnebago Pool chain of lakes
    280 Sundancer, Westerbeke MPV generator
    twin 5.0's w/BIII drives

    Is this commonly being called “White space?”

    I thought it can not be launched until after the TV stations stop broadcasting their analogue signals.
     
  11. Morpheus

    Morpheus New Member

    May 7, 2007
    Odessa, FL
    2006 SeaRay Sundeck 240
    5.0MPI Mercruiser w/ Bravo III
    Just read about this new product from Netgear.

    http://i.gizmodo.com/5125542/netgea...game-with-the-wwan-3g-mobile-broadband-router

    Netgear Jumps in the Mobile Broadband Game With the WWAN 3G Mobile Broadband Router

    The 3G Mobile Broadband Router is Netgear's first foray into the land of 3G sharing, and shares the connection of any compatible 3G USB dongle.
    The router looks like any other Netgear device in design, but it has a USB port for the dongle and (presumably) you configure all the settings through the router page. There's even an optional car power adapter so you can take your show on the road. The 3G Mobile Broadband router will be available in Q1 of this year for $130.

    Consumers and professionals on-the-go, NETGEAR’s 3G Mobile Broadband Wireless Router
    (MBR624GU) creates an instant WiFi hotspot using 3G mobile broadband access service for broadband
    access virtually anywhere, simply by plugging in any compatible 3G USB modem to the router. Mobile
    users thus have the flexibility to create a WiFi network whether in a satellite office, construction site,
    emergency center, vacation home, at an offsite event or campsite, or even from a moving recreational
    vehicle. The 3G Mobile Broadband Wireless Router features auto detection of compatible 3G USB
    modems and associated mobile carrier networks to have broadband access almost instantly. It supports
    SPI, intrusion logging and reporting, denial-of-service (DoS) protection, up to five IPsec VPN endpoints,
    and NAT. With Push ‘N’ Connect with WPS, energy saving features, and an optional car power adapter
    to power the router while on the move, NETGEAR’s 3G Mobile Broadband Wireless Router is ideal for
    sharing a 3G broadband Internet connection practically anywhere with friends, colleagues and family
    members. More information can be found at
    (http://www.netgear.com/Products/RoutersandGateways/3GMobileBroadband/mbr624gu.aspx).
    3G Mobile Broadband Wireless Router (MBR624GU)

    Compatible with extensive range of 3G USB Modems and networks.

    Four Ethernet ports for LAN connectivity; USB 2.0 Host WAN port.

    SPI, DoS, NAT, and supports up to 5 VPN endpoints.

    “Push ‘N’ Connect” button based on WPS.

    WiFi on/off button and Power on/off button to save energy while not in use.

    Auto detection and installation process for easy setup.

    Repeater configurable and static routing feature.

    Advanced application based on QoS.
     
  12. BobHenry

    BobHenry New Member

    27
    Jan 2, 2009
    Maine coast
    1986 sea ray sundancer, recent restoration, lowrance GPS/depth, fishfinder, lowrance waypoint, digi
    twin merc 170 I/O, 2004
    rebuild, alpha drives recent rebuild on port
    Morpheus,

    I got a new gateway laptop for my boat. The idea being is during the winter, usually do
    my route planning and interface with my lowrance GPS. My wife and I were looking to
    do an onboard wi fi setup that way there, we
    can monitor weather radar and e-mail friends to advise them when and where we can meet etc. Our first idea was to try a cell phone, until someone pointed out the charges would be about $1000 a month then we looked at networks like AT&T and Verizon wireless. We
    did not know say if we were on the horizon whether we could pick up a tower. Obviously, satellite signal is ideal. Well to get to the point it costs $130 for the equipment. Is there
    a monthly fee or another company you go through to get this baby to operate??
     
  13. Nehalennia

    Nehalennia Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2007
    Marysville, WA
    2001 310DA twin 350 MAGs, Westerbeke 4.5KW
    Twin 350 MAG V-drives
    Some of you have more $$$ tied up in electronics than my boat is worth.
    That being said, I have a laptop from work that I take aboard. It has built in wireless capability. I also have a Sprint Wireless (I assume EDVO) card. Does anyone know if I can repeat my signal and offer it to my brother or others on their wireless compatible Laptop through my built in wireless or do I need a router/Base station?
     
  14. wkearney99

    wkearney99 Active Member

    579
    Feb 23, 2006
    Bethesda, MD, USA
    34'
    Twin 6.0L w/ZF inboard V-drives
    I have the Verizon air card and share it using a linksys WRT54S3G router. Pop the card into the router, power it up and it lets several folks use the connection at the same time. It's MUCH easier and MUCH more reliable than trying to get internet sharing working through a PC. It's been well worth the somewhat higher cost of the router. It's literally plug-and-play.

    During the week the card gets used either in my or my wife's laptop for work purposes. I picked up a second router that we take when we travel and need to get some work done at the same time.

    The card itself has a monthly fee (around $50 I think) but it proves it's worth with the time and hassles saved from having to fish around trying to find Wi-Fi. Here on the Chesapeake it's had coverage everywhere we've gone. The same can't be said of AT&T coverage, but this varies widely in different regions. If you get cell coverage then it's likely you'll get at least some amount of data service.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2009
  15. Morpheus

    Morpheus New Member

    May 7, 2007
    Odessa, FL
    2006 SeaRay Sundeck 240
    5.0MPI Mercruiser w/ Bravo III
    Ok first your sentance about "Our first idea was to try a cell phone, until someone pointed out the charges would be about $1000 a month then we looked at networks like AT&T and Verizon wireless." $1000? Who told you that you have my permission to bash them in the skull.

    networks like AT&T and Verizon wireless ARE cell phone networks. Both have a 3G/EVDO network for internet. The costs depend on how you want to use it.

    Some laptops come equiped with built in 3G/EVDO networks cards. Otherwise you have to buy one (usually can get it free cause you have to sign a contract). It's just like getting a cell phone (infact it has a phone number). They come in different types like a PCMCIA or an ExpressCard or a USB type but they are all the same they allow your laptop to connect to their high speed wireless network. Pricing depends on what service plan you get, Verizon Wireless use to offer an unlimited data plan for $50 a mont which is what I have.

    The previose post is like what wkearney99 is talking about. It takes a USB type wirless card from like Verizon Wireless and lets you share it with other computers instead of plugging it into your laptop.

    So it comes down to do you want to just use your laptop on your boat or multiple at the same time which is what wkearney99 router is letting him do but he's using a card instead of a usb type (probably PCMCIA) newer laptops come with express card slots.

    For you to repeat your signal that's exactly what the device I posted above does. BUT it's for usb wireless cards. If yours is not USB then you would need a router like wkearney99 has.

    So You have either wirless via A/B/G/N type networks (stuff you use at home and office, then you have 3G/EVDO via either built in or add on card/usb wireless device from your cell phone provider.

    Another option which is what I use, I have the data plan on my phone via Verizon Wireless. I have a windows mobile phone and I have the tether feature which allows me to connect my phone via usb to my laptop and use it as a wireless modem so I don't have to have the extra card and the contract that they require with th card.

    Finally you need to keep in mind with both the regular wireless networks and the cell phone networks they are not gonna work everywhere. First off the wireless networks you have to find a unsecure router to connect to which is becoming more uncommon because manufactures are starting to ship these secured rather then unsecure for the people that never change anything. The cell phone networks have limited coverage as well. And certaintly depending how far off shore you go you may not get a single for either.

    Now something I've been looking at is at http://www.digitalantenna.com/ they have VHF antenna products that include Cell antenna as well that will boost your cell signal which will also help if you have a 3G/EVDO card.

    Alot of info :smt101 so feel free to ask me any questions.
     
  16. wkearney99

    wkearney99 Active Member

    579
    Feb 23, 2006
    Bethesda, MD, USA
    34'
    Twin 6.0L w/ZF inboard V-drives
    Yes, I'm using a PCMCIA card type cell modem. The two laptops we most often use have PCMCIA slots. So I got a router that also supports using one. This way we can use the card in either laptop or shared via the router. There are routers that support Express Card devices as well as USB dongle-types. I chose not to get the USB type because of how they stick out the side of the laptop. We've had bad luck with the USB ports dying (well, not me, but the admiral tends to break them it seems).

    The PC-card device is essentially a whole separate "phone" on our Verizon account. It's about $50/month and has 'unlimited' use. Contractually there are 'limits' on what they define as 'unlimited' but after more than a year we've never had any trouble. Supposedly they can slow it down if it's seen as consuming too much, or cut it off entirely if usage gets out of hand. But in reality I've had neither occur. Now, I don't use it for download a ton of data but I have used it to make VPN connections back to the office and stream video from home. YMMV, of course.

    There are ways to 'tether' some phones as a modem. This is problematic as many phone will do either phone OR modem, not both simultaneously. So if it's tethered as a modem you can't make or get voice calls. I'm not entirely certain this is still the case with all phones, so you may want to check. I chose not to go the tethering router because it can't easily be shared with a router. Or without wandering through the whole ICS (Internet Connection Sharing) mess. For us it's been worth shelling out the added $50/month and KNOWING it will work, plug-and-play, every time and everywhere we need it.

    I should also point out that my wife's Sony laptop came with a Cingular (AT&T) compatible modem built into it. Around here the coverage was terrible. It just didn't get a reliable connection often enough. This may or may not still be the case as cell providers are always making changes to their coverage (and not always for the better when you're in remote locations like out on the water).

    I have a WiFi antenna on the boat and a router configured to act as a client. I found it was far too tedious 'fishing around' for an open WiFi hotspot to make it worth the effort. That and even with an omnidirectional antenna it was problematic maintaining a connection as the boat bobbed at anchor. Even when tied up at a slip it was tricky. The fundamental problem being WiFi setups are not usually designed to deal with the motion of a boat.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2009
  17. Four Suns

    Four Suns Head Pot Stirrer TECHNICAL Contributor

    Oct 4, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    2003 480 DB
    Zodiac ProJet Dinghy
    Yamaha 110vx WaveRunner
    QSM-11 Diesels
    Wi-fi has trouble with boat motion? Is this a new discovery? Or does your boat "bob around" at 2.4 GHz?
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2009
  18. wkearney99

    wkearney99 Active Member

    579
    Feb 23, 2006
    Bethesda, MD, USA
    34'
    Twin 6.0L w/ZF inboard V-drives
    The short answer is beam coverage. Think of a flashlight shining from a fixed point on the boat toward a fixed point on shore. As the boat bobs around the beam from the flashlight would shift above and below the target location on shore. The pattern from a typical WiFi antenna is roughly donut-shaped, a circular 'beam' from the antenna. The higher the gain antenna, the more narrow a vertical beam width it's likely to have. As the boat bobs around that narrow beam pattern can shift enough to lose reliable contact with the base station. But if you go with an antenna that has a wide vertical beam width it often loses any decent distance coverage.

    Marine satellite TV deals with this by having a motorized base actively re-aiming the dish.

    Oh, and you're still a jackass Gary.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2009
  19. Four Suns

    Four Suns Head Pot Stirrer TECHNICAL Contributor

    Oct 4, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    2003 480 DB
    Zodiac ProJet Dinghy
    Yamaha 110vx WaveRunner
    QSM-11 Diesels
    This just goes to show... I'm reading all this saying to myself "Bill has this router so it's interesting seeing what his experiences are..." and then you go post something that's out in left field like how an antenna beam on a wifi antenna gives you a bad connection by bobbing around at the dock... which shows, as usual, you don't know what the hell you are talking about. But we can't disagree with what you read in "Boating" magazine because if we do, we'll be called a "jackass"... Needless to say I actually have a wifi antenna on my hardtop and zoom down the James River picking up peoples home networks from 1+ miles away and can then read your stupid responses while on the bridge.

    IMO, you don't know crap about antennas... or electronics...

    Look as this crap. I just rotated my laptop sideways and it's still connected... go figure.
     
  20. Four Suns

    Four Suns Head Pot Stirrer TECHNICAL Contributor

    Oct 4, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    2003 480 DB
    Zodiac ProJet Dinghy
    Yamaha 110vx WaveRunner
    QSM-11 Diesels
    OK Bill... I'm standing at my urinal with my laptop under my chin and it's still connected... Let me go downstairs and see if your theory holds up.
     

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