How Does Best Buy Do It

Are you sure it's the DFW airport? If so, DFW might have WiMAX which has a range of 30 miles (Aprox.) but I don't think standard 802.11 equipment can pick up the signal. I might be wrong but I dont think so since WiMAX uses

802.16.

I have no idea how standard WiFi routers in hotspots in Airports could go beyond 400 Ft, much less 10 miles

Reply to
KH
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The forums here might offer some clues: Beyond me though.

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Reply to
Jbob

Best Buy here in Hurst Tx can recieve the free wireless internet signal from Dallas Ft Worth Airport (DFW) located 10 miles or so away.....they show this off on desk top systems installed with wireless and some notebooks.....I live about 6 miles away and cant recieve that signal from even my back yard ....just a wondering ....

Reply to
Phil Darnell

Either its not WiFi but some other wireless comms protocol (WiMax maybe) or they have a couple of big directional antennae.

You'd need the right kit.

Reply to
Mark McIntyre

Best Buy?

They probably have an AP hidden somewhere in the store, using the same SSID as the "airport wisp".

Same principle as how the TV's that they want to push out the door are on display using component connections to the cable source, while TV's that they don't want to push are using composite. For comparing cables, two of the same TV's sit side-by-side; one with a Mobster component cable and the other with a no-name composite...

Yep, I'm cynical. Almost have to be with "Best Buy" though. God, I hate that store...

Reply to
Eric

Even if you did pick it up how would you transmit back to acknowledge packets? It would be a one way connection.

Reply to
Nog

I didn't know that DFW had a free wireless system. 3 years ago, they had a contract with Waypoint to supply Wi-Fi access. It wasn't free. Oh well.

It's easy enough to do with a repeater and if you don't care about speed. Here's how I would do it:

Big 24dBi dish antenna on top of nearby tall building pointed at DFW airport. SSID is same as DFW system. 10 miles is no problem with proper antennas, although it's a stretch with an omni at one end. My guess is DFW has a sector antenna, which will help considerably. An RF amplifier might also help at either or both ends. Calculations if you really want them.

Some kind of repeater at the big dish antenna. It can be a single store and foreward repeater in a single box. However, those have the irritating habit of chip vendor specific, so I wouldn't do it that way. Instead, I would take a client radio that can handle multiple MAC addresses and connect it to any access point. For best performance, these should be on different channels but can have the same SSID. The access point would have another antenna pointing down into the store. Additional repeaters can be added or WDS can be used to create the link. If copper wire is available, the 2nd access point can be located inside the store.

To the average customer with a laptop or desktop, it would appear that they were connected directly to DFW. The repeaters in between would not be visible at the IP level. This may sound like a mess, but it's not really that difficult to impliment. However, it does require a big dish, a tall building, possibly an RF amplifier, and a clear line of sight to DFW. If you don't have all of those, forget it.

In my distant past, I worked in a large hi-fi store in Smog Angeles. The building was like a RF shield room where AM, FM, and TV reception was terrible inside. I helped setup an amplified antenna coax system, which worked well enough for the shelf mounted receivers, but didn't do anything for the portables. So, I build a rather elaborate wire loop radiator that fit under the glass case demonstration counters. As long as the portable radio was within a few feet of the counter, you could hear stations from all over the area. Eventually, the customers started asking why reception inside the store was so good, but was only tolerable outside the building. Some newspaper columnist caught the story and declared the practice to be "deceptive". The FTC later agreed and labeled it as a form of fraud. I don't think that Best Buy is intentionally trying to deceive the customer in a similar manner. I suspect they simply don't understand, or can't explain how it works.

Reply to
Jeff Liebermann

They don't. Tmobile has the contract for public access wifi. That doesn't preclude the numerous private nets on airport property.

Reply to
Clark W. Griswold, Jr.

I've never been to DFW but I'm told it's huge. Might be some generous private party in a hangar somewhere. Also, I thought Wayport (not WayPoint) had the contract but I guess that changes regularly:

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like they still have some of the hotel contracts at DFW:
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Reply to
Jeff Liebermann

Reply to
frankdowling1

Well, have someone pay me for a round trip ticket to DFW with my pile of test equipment. I get to spend a thrilling day or two playing with direction finders, Netstumbler, and such. It won't take long to figure out how it works. Oh, wait a minute. It's summer and it's hot. Never mind. I like it here by the left coast and the fog.

Probably an easier way would be to pickup the telephone and call the computer department at the Best Buy store in Hurst TX. Googling... (817) 595-4737 Then, just ask them what they're doing and how. I'm just guessing and have a good chance of being totally wrong. I know I can make the derangement I outlined work if there's line of sight. Whether Best Buy or some individual has done something similar is dubious.

I did some more googling looking for free wireless networks at DFW. Nothing listed. Like most governments, they are considering a municipal wireless system.

Incidentally, Pete Sessions, the member of the house from the Dallas area and former SBC executive, was the congress-critter that proposed the PITA as a ban on municipal wireless.

What will we do when we run out of metaphors?

Chuckle. I don't gamble. My father's garment factory in Smog Angeles was a short walk away from the Olympic Auditorium, the home of professional wrestling long before the WWF/WWE choreographed it into its present form. My spare time was equally divided between the local electronic surplus stores and hanging around with the strange people that ran the Olympic. The best lecture I ever received on probability and game theory was from a sympathetic bookmaker. Once a wrestler obtained a professional manager, picking the winner was simply a matter of asking who was scheduled to win the match. Since then, I don't gamble.

Reply to
Jeff Liebermann

He did say the "experts" at best buy told him....

Reply to
George

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