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Out of range of RADSL? - updated
Friday 11 January 2002 12:28:00 by Andrew Ferguson

Wireless 802.11 networks may be the answer, we are all familiar with the standard PCMCIA wireless ethernet cards now. They have one problem, relatively short range, this can be improved with the addition of external antenna.

Many people will have heard of the gentleman in US, who got his DSL access to run over 802.11 around 10miles away - well that is now possible in the UK. www.solwise.co.uk are now selling the kit you require for this, with potentially a 15km line of sight distance. We wont pretend that it is cheap you are looking at £2000 to get both ends of the link running.

Seems there is more of this kit out there than one expects, www.dabs.com are selling a range of SMC antenna and access points, the cheapest antenna gives a range of 5 miles point to point, and from the data sheet it looks like 1.5miles in all directions, given that 802.11b can cope with the odd wall in a house the line of sight may not need to be perfect. Once advantage is that the SMC2682W is £350 and the SMCANT-DI105 antenna is just £125, i.e. a cost of around £1000 to link two sites.

Do remember to check your local planning laws, suspect it may be classed as a satellite dish.

How does this fit in with RADSL users, well if you have a friend who is willing to share the connection and you have line of sight for the antenna you could get this kit installed - pricing suggests it will appeal more to business users though. Where perhaps you pay another business in a DSL area to allow you to install a PSTN line, and cupboard to hold the hardware and mount point for the antenna.

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