This evening I created a new HSMM-Pi node with the latest Raspbian Wheezy build dated 2013-09-10. I installed HSMM-Pi v0.3.0 without any issues. As always, please file any issues in the Issues area of the Github project. Thanks all!
Today I created the v0.3.0 release tag of the HSMM-Pi project. The upgrade steps from v0.2.0 are pretty straightforward:
- cd ~pi/hsmm-pi
- git pull
- git checkout v0.3.0
- sh install.sh
Here are a few of the changes in the release:
- Advertise mesh services when the wired adapter is in WAN & LAN mode (previously only in LAN mode).
- Use raw sockets to retrieve OLSRD mesh statistics instead of using CURL (the OLSRD plugin does not produce HTTP 1.0/1.1 responses, so CURL is not the right tool for the job).
- Added a WiFi scanning action (Issue 8) to show nearby wireless networks.
- Derive the default WiFi IP address from the wireless adapter MAC address in a fresh installation similar to the behavior in Broadband-Hamnet.
- Better support for installation on the Ubuntu 12.04 on the Beaglebone.
Please file any defects or features requests in the Issues section of the Github project. Thanks!
I’ve received a lot of great requests for features and feedback from folks posting comments to this blog – thank you so much! There’s also an Issues area of the project on Github where you can post feature requests or defects. Please create an issue whenever you find a problem with the project or have an idea for how it can be improved. There are so many great ways that we can make HSMM-Pi ever better!
I will be hosting an HSMM-Pi booth at the East Bay Mini Maker Faire in Oakland, California on October 20, 2013. The event is associated with Make magazine, and will be a smaller regional version of the grandaddy Maker Faire held in San Mateo, California each year. I plan on producing a field demo video that can played on loop on a display in the booth. I’ll also have some HSMM-Pi nodes and large 15 dbi omnidirectional antennas present for visual effect. This is a great opportunity to introduce HSMM mesh networking to a lot of people who might still think of HAM radio as being just CW & phone.
Are there any aspects of HSMM mesh networking that you think would be helpful to share with the general public (not necessarily just HAMs)?
UPDATE (9/16/2014): I encourage people to read Bruce Schneier’s post regarding surreptitious tampering of computer chips, which includes hardware random number generators. It’s nearly impossible to know that a hardware RNG hasn’t been tampered with at the time of manufacture to facilitate a backdoor. Therefore, it might be worth sticking with a software RNG, as is the default behavior in Raspbian.
The Broadcom System on a Chip (SoC) in the Raspberry Pi features a hardware random number generator that can be used as a high-quality source of random numbers. This might be worth enabling if you’re using OLSRD in a secure mode. The secure mode causes the node to exchange cryptographic messages with other nodes in the mesh network. Strong cryptography benefits greatly from the use of a high quality random number generator. Also, the system load should decrease since the task of producing random numbers is offloaded to a dedicated hardware device.
Here’s a link to a quick how-to with the steps for enabling the hardware random number generator on the Raspberry Pi:
UPDATE (2013/09/02): I found that the wireless adapters were no longer able to run in Ad-Hoc mode due to recent changes to support the Beaglebone Black device. The installation steps on the Github project page have been updated to specify a commit tag (v0.2.0) when checking out the HSMM-Pi project to ensure you’re getting a stable copy of the code.
My initial recommendation for USB WiFi adapters was an inexpensive model that could be found on Amazon for about $7. They worked fairly well initially, but in the last week I’ve been unable to get the 3 that I own to work at all. I am no longer recommending them for use with Raspberry Pi models because of their instability.
I purchased the USB WiFi adapter sold by Adafruit which is advertised as being compatible with the Raspberry Pi. These adapters work flawlessly, and use a different chipset from the model I recommended earlier. The Adafruit adapter costs about $11 and does not accommodate an external antenna; but these negatives are offset by the adapter being stable.
My apologies to anyone who has had problems with the Amazon no-name adapter. And it would be great to hear from anyone who has had problems but managed to get the adapters to be stable.