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Ivybridge_I7
Cyber-Crime Researcher OpSec
Premium
join:2004-06-09
Daytona Beach, FL
kudos:2

1 edit

Wilkes Barre Pennsylvania citywide WIFI access

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The City of Wilkes Barre is installing city wide WIFI and I noticed these odd looking units on overhead light poles.

Can someone on this forum verify that these are WIFI transmitters in some type of mesh network arrangement.

These (Tropos model YA4) unit's are being placed two or three blocks apart within the area of Wilkes Barre that I live in. From what I read in the paper Frontier Communication is providing the bandwidth for the city.

»www.tropos.com/
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LLigetfa

join:2006-05-15
Fort Frances, ON
kudos:1
Yes, they are WIFI mesh.


CaptChas

@verizon.net
reply to Ivybridge_I7
What's that cylindrical black thing directly on the top of the street light?

LLigetfa

join:2006-05-15
Fort Frances, ON
kudos:1
It is the photocell that turns the streetlight on at dusk. They steal their power from it.


Ivybridge_I7
Cyber-Crime Researcher OpSec
Premium
join:2004-06-09
Daytona Beach, FL
kudos:2
said by LLigetfa:

It is the photocell that turns the streetlight on at dusk. They steal their power from it.
That's what I thought after seeing the black cable but if you look at the last photo it says that output voltage is 12 to 48 volts DC. Do you think the black cable from the street light photocell to the Tropos unit real carries 120 volts AC? I was thinking that their is a power supply unit within the street light en-closer.

If you notice that the green LED is on but the unit is not transmitting data. I know this because I can't sign on to the SSID that says 'citywide free access'
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LLigetfa

join:2006-05-15
Fort Frances, ON
kudos:1

1 edit
There may be several hundreds of volts at the base of the photocell. The power unit sits between the photocell and the power source and transforms the voltage down.
Here are a couple of examples:
»www.fisherpierceolc.com/pdf/FP288-ACtoDC.pdf
»www.connector.com/PDF/luminairepowertap.pdf

stevech0

join:2006-09-17
San Diego, CA

2 edits
Those Tropos units automatically change frequency (WiFi channel) to minimize interference *from* in-home WiFi. The Tropos units have high transmitter power, but your home WiFi does not. So the result is lots of wireless air pollution, if you will. Free service will be like 250Kbps or so, as a teaser for a bit faster paid service.

With DSL so low cost, one wonders.

So, expect troubles! In the 2.4GHz band, there are just 3 non-overlapping channels.

Tom Blue

join:2007-09-17
MN, USA

1 edit
reply to Ivybridge_I7
I find it amazing how rapidly the politicians have jumped onto the "free" wifi boondoggle. I predict these networks will be abandoned by users in droves in just a few years, leaving the taxpayers to support an obsolete system, because no such government "benefit" ever actually goes away.

A few sobering facts:

In the 10 years since the adoption of the 802.11a standard, we have gone through 802.11b, 802.11g, and 802.11n (just counting the ones that are most visible to users) plus 802.11i (addressing security issues: TKIP, AES, etc.).

Government technical infrastructure is notoriously slow to upgrade.

City-wide wifi is being introduced at a performance disadvantage to commercial offerings, whether cable or DSL broadband.

Wifi is by definition a party-line (shared bandwidth) that has a very limited total bandwidth to share (compared with cable or fiber.)

I can't believe voters are so easily suckered. Well, yes, I can.


Ivybridge_I7
Cyber-Crime Researcher OpSec
Premium
join:2004-06-09
Daytona Beach, FL
kudos:2
said by Tom Blue:

I find it amazing how rapidly the politicians have jumped onto the "free" wifi boondoggle. I predict these networks will be abandoned by users in droves in just a few years, leaving the taxpayers to support an obsolete system, because no such government "benefit" ever actually goes away.

The highly corrupt city of Wilkes Barre is offering free internet access to the local two colleges (Wilkes and Kings) so that their students can benefit, but they will eventually be asking the taxpayers for outrageous weekly and monthly rates to access the service. The city wants to set up security camera's throughout the city to fight crime and then tie it to the WIFI network. Likewise, the cops want to also use it to further investigations and be better able to communicate.

Like 'stevech0' stated in this forum topic, the WIFI service is not going to be free for full bandwidth access
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