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I would like to wirelessly network two buildings together that are about 1,000 ft. apart. The purpose for this connection is to bring basic Internet connectivity to the second building, so super high bandwidth is not necessary. I have yet to do a rooftop inspection but I am hoping that I have line of sight between the buildings.

What equipment would you recommend for this task?

Thank you,

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Good question. I'm thinking you can use a directional antenna but hopefully someone will have more than a guess for you! – JNK Sep 8 '10 at 18:25
I asked a very similar question before and ended up putting it on Serverfault because I got much better answers.… This is also another related:… – Troggy Sep 8 '10 at 18:50
up vote 5 down vote accepted

This should do the job pretty well:

It's a line-of-sight system, but with a 1 mile range and you going only about 1/5 of that I would expect it to work even with a few trees in the way (probably not if there's other buildings, though). The cost is $400 and you still have to mount it, but if you're expecting a quality, stable connection this is really a bargain. They also have a 5Ghz system that might be more appropriate depending on the potential interference, but it costs about twice as much.

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You don't mention budget, but you might be able to build something on the cheap - apparently, pringles cans aren't ideal, but slightly larger cans work pretty well.

Edit: This was actually inspired by an old Cringely column - not sure if any of the links are still valid, but apparently 10km is doable, and it's legal.

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+1 In my city there was a project with objective to create city-wide wireless network. Unfortunately, government decided not to support is, so many unusual solutions were used. I remember that they managed to get more 400m range with homemade cantennas. Also, take a look at what this guy says: – AndrejaKo Sep 8 '10 at 19:03
I'm not sure on the legality of that (at least in the USA) in regards to building your own parts for what's ultimately FCC certified equipment. I'm thinking that the power output is probably a little too high to get away with any of the low power device exemptions. Perhaps if you do it under Part 97? Anyone know for certain? – Brian Knoblauch Sep 8 '10 at 19:04
And a little warning: In cases where MIMO equipment is used, extra care is necessary. Some pieces of equipment will need multiple cantennas while other work fine with one. Some will even work fine with cantenna used as directional antenna and use their own antennas and non-directional antennas. – AndrejaKo Sep 8 '10 at 19:06
@Brian Knoblauch Interesting point. There are commercial cantenna manufacturers, but I'm not familiar enough with FCC's procedures to know if it would be legal to use them. – AndrejaKo Sep 8 '10 at 19:09
Does the 802.11 spec even allow for that sort of propagation distance? I'm pretty certain the relevant component of the IFS only allows for circa 300meters.. – Remy Sep 9 '10 at 0:23
  • You can use bi-directional antenna which should reach atleast 3 miles

  • Outdoor bridges can reach out upto 200 feet

Try a CISCO Aironet 350 wireless outdoor bridge. ($400-$500)

  • High-speed (11-Mbps), high-power (100-mW) radios, delivering building-to-building links of up to 25 miles (40.2 km)
  • A metal case for durability and plenum rating and an extended operating temperature rating for harsh environments
  • Supports both point-to-point and point-to-multipoint configurations
  • Broad range of supported antennas
  • Simplified installation, improved performance, and upgradeable firmware, ensuring investment protection

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Maybe overkill for your exact application, but others with higher data rate needs might consider free air laser ethernet bridges.

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My uni uses that :D hihihihihi – Algific Sep 8 '10 at 19:04

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