Broadband Network Aboard

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The broadband network aboard Island Spirit:

What the goals were:
1. Have two or three laptops online on the boat.
2. Have access to a printer from the laptops.
3. Have broadband speeds via wireless in the boat to the network.
4. Use ONE Verizon broadband card! (no way)






Readings:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evdo (what is EVDO)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pcmcia (PCMCIA)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ExpressCard Express Cards)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB (USB)

Resources:
http://www.evdoinfo.com/
(great source for all info on EVDO)
http://3gstore.com/
(their store where I bought all the gear)
http://verizonwireless.com/
(my connection / ISP, look for PLANS…BROADBAND $59.00/mo)
http://www.kyocera-wireless.com/kr1-router/
(The EVDO router, FANTASTIC)
http://3gstore.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=292
(The trucker antenna)
http://www.wilsonelectronics.com/ViewProductB.php?ID=1 (Wilson Electronics the source for the antenna)
http://www.shopping.hp.com/product/storefronts/photosmart_printers/1/storefronts/Q8220A%2523ABA;HHOJSID=HcnJGWMJ1n38JT2Zb1F4v2vsHJRClfmgtbpf1qJ3GJmKTyYPsyrT!1752868021
(HPPhotosmart C5180 all All-in-one printer)

Speed Test for your Network:
http://SpeedTest.net

How it works:
GREAT….nuff said!

OK, How it really works….
Since we have two laptops with different card slots I needed to buy the Verizon USB720 Broadband card. Card are available in PCMCIA (old school) PC Express (new school) and USB universal (all computers.) Since I needed the USB Verizon card, then I had to go with the Kyocera KR1 EVDO router since it is the only one that accepts a USB modem/broadband card. The KR1 will also accept a PCMCI card as well. FYI: Linksys also makes an EVDO / broadband router, but that one only takes PCMCIA cards. The problem is that we are stuck between a card slot computer change, changing from PCMCIA to PC Express slots. If you only have new laptops, then PC express is the answer.

With the Verizon USB720 broadband modem plugged into the KR1 EVDO router, you simply turn on your laptops and connect to the router which is connecting to Verizon’s broadband network. If you are in range of a cell tower and if you can make a phone call, then you will have internet delivered to the laptops via the KR1 router. The external antenna is not amplified (yet) and it is simply run to the USB720 Verizon card down in the router. Right now I have a range of about 15 miles, and if I amplify the antenna I will be able to get 25+ miles. Overall, this has worked out way better than expected. We seem to have speeds of 1100 kbps download and 500kbps uploads. Check your speed right now. Use http://www.speakeasy.net/speedtest/ and pick a large city nearby to check your speeds. I am on the east coast and I use Chicago as my speed tests. If you are international, then use http://speedtest.net/ and pick a country.

Thanks for reading about our network, it does work and we are proud of the setup!

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