Written by Administrator   
Monday, 07 July 2014 00:00

November 20 2014

Broadband-Hamnet Expands to Include Yet Another Ham Band

11/20/2014 Austin, TX & San Diego CA
Jim Kinter, Jr. K5KTF
BBHN Webmaster

Broadband-Hamnet is proud to announce a new firmware release, the most recent in a series of advancements that build on the Ubiquiti firmware released for the 2.4GHz and 5.8 GHz Ham bands earlier this year.

With this BBHN 3.0.0 release, Broadband-Hamnet now includes the Ubiquiti M9-series airMAX devices, giving Hams use of the 900 MHz band for mesh networking.

Broadband-Hamnet Currently Supported Devices:

Please visit for more information.

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 November 2014 00:23
Welcome to the Broadband-Hamnet™ web site PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jim Kinter, K5KTF   
Monday, 18 January 2010 23:34

Broadband-Hamnet™ (formerly called HSMM-Mesh™)  is a high speed, self discovering, self configuring, fault tolerant, wireless computer network that can run for days from a fully charged car battery, or indefinitely with the addition of a modest solar array or other supplemental power source. The focus is on emergency communications.

In its current form it is built using the Linksys WRT54G/GL/GS wireless routers and operates on channels 1-6 of the 2.4GHz ISM band, which overlaps with the upper portion of the 13cm amateur radio band. Other platforms and bands are in development at this time. Next will be Ubiquiti equipment with others supported as development resources permit.

OLSR is used for auto linking of the mesh node radios.

OpenWRT firmware tools are used for firmware development.

Broadband-Hamnet™ is currently being designed, developed and deployed as an amateur radio broadband communications system. It originated in Austin, Texas but has spread all across the USA and many other countries around the world.

Glenn KD5MFW, David AD5OO, Bob WB5AOH and Rick NG5V are the gents spearheading the efforts, while yours truly, Jim K5KTF keeps the website up and running to provide information about the project. Conrad KG6JEI and Andre K6AH of the San Diego Working Group lead the Ubiquiti firmware development. There is a distributed development community with users in a number of areas of the USA and other continents.

If you have questions, our forums would be a great place to research and ask questions. You will need to register and login to post to them.

Last Updated on Saturday, 01 February 2014 09:05
Linksys end of support PDF Print E-mail
Written by administrator   
Friday, 31 October 2014 22:29

The Broadband-Hamnet Core Team announces the end of support for the Linksys WRT54G series of firmware effective April 30, 2015.  The version of firmware that is then current for use on WRT54G series will remain on the website and may continue to be used, but there will be no further updates, bug fixes, or support after April 30, 2015. This means is that a WRT can still be used well after this date, but likely will not be able to connect to any newer firmware for newer devices.

This has not been an easy decision to reach, but there are some very compelling reasons to stop creating new firmware for the WRT54G series.

· The firmware for the WRT54G has grown to the point that we are out of memory.

· The OpenWRT software, upon which the Broadband-Hamnet firmware is based, has dropped support for the WRT54G series.

· The hardware design itself is showing its age and not lending itself to implementing features found in the newer hardware designs.

· It takes much more time and effort to implement features on the WRT54.  In many cases kernel modifications and code from newer versions of OpenWRT must be incorporated into the older code to maintain compatibility between the WRT54G and the Ubiquiti products.

Given that a working node can be deployed much easier, less expensively, and with significantly better performance with a Ubiquiti node, it only makes sense to move in that direction for the future.

The WRT54G has served us well for a number of years and will likely continue to be used for several more.   The Broadband-Hamnet Core team sees the benefit in offering multiple hardware platforms, so we are exploring options and expect to offer hardware alternatives in the future.

Last Updated on Sunday, 16 November 2014 08:02
First time visitor? PDF Print E-mail

This technology is amazingly popular, having a true Worked all Continents, (including Antarctica) thousands of users overseas, and a huge number of users in the USA. Anyone can read from the site. If you want to see how many users have registered to post on the forums, click the forums link in the main menu and scroll all the way to the bottom. As of 4/15/2014, there are over 3500 registered users for the site. In the upper left corner of the home page, logged in users and guests are shown. These numbers regularly run between 50 and many hundreds of concurrent guests.

Regardless of your experience level, please take a moment to learn a bit about how our firmware works. The biggest source of confusion is the notion that our project is application software. It is not an application, but rather a network. As a network, it can transport data or use application software residing at another location just like your home or office network The page linked above contains a significant list of what it is/is not and will give you a good overview of Broadband-Hamnet™ operations. Mesh networks are different than normal WiFi. Microwave networks are different than UHF/VHF or HF networks. Different rules apply concerning propagation and RF safety. Adding an amplifier rarely improves communications and is never your first choice. You may want to read the linked page completely, do some exploring around the web site and then go back to re-read info on the link above to lock in your understanding. As you begin to think about how a network can be used, your options for employing Broadband-Hamnet™ will continue to expand.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 April 2014 20:00
When will you add support for xxxx hardware? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Rick Kirchhof, NG5V   
Tuesday, 29 April 2014 20:17
The process to get a different brand of WiFi hardware to become a Broadband-Hamnet mesh node is pretty simple, AND, pretty complex. The basics are obviously needed. Start with your hardware and a compatible load of firmware like DD-WRT, Open-WRT, or some other small version of Linux. To that add, OLSR, the correct SSID, and ensure that it comes up on the right channel. Easy, right?  

Well, almost....   
Last Updated on Wednesday, 30 April 2014 21:14
Get on the map PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jim Kinter, K5KTF   
Tuesday, 03 April 2012 10:59

If you have a mesh node (or 3) installed, and would like to have it put on our Googlemap (viewable by registered and logged in users), fill out the form.

That way, any nearby meshers (or potential meshers) will have an idea which way to point.

Last Updated on Thursday, 06 February 2014 00:15
Legal Information regarding Broadband-Hamnet™ PDF Print E-mail
Written by Glenn Currie, KD5MFW   
Saturday, 29 December 2012 08:44

Broadband-Hamnet™ is intended for amateur radio use and passing amateur radio traffic. It is NOT intended to replace your personal Internet connection. It is a “feature” that Broadband-Hamnet™ can be connected to the Internet. General Internet access is not its primary purpose. Use your personal Internet connection under Part-15 FCC rules, to serve that purpose.

There are many ways to use Broadband-Hamnet™, in compliance with Amateur Radio Part-97 FCC rules - without connecting to the Internet. The system is designed to be a robust, stand alone wireless network - that CAN be connected to the Internet.

If an operator connects their mesh network to the Internet, here are some ways, under FCC Part-97 rules, that it can be used: Echolink, Winlink/RMS Packet, tunnel meshing, remote control of radios/equipment, video relay, VoIP connections, APRS.

 The operator of a mesh node has to make an active software configuration selection to pass Internet traffic onto the mesh network. Providing an Internet link is NOT the default mode in the Broadband-Hamnet™ software. Additionally, the operator must attach a live Internet connection to the mesh node to pass Internet traffic.

 If an operator takes these multiple active steps to connect their radio to the Internet, then they will need to understand what traffic is being passed and that it is covered by their Amateur Radio license.

 If they join a mesh that has Internet access, each radio operator should do what is needed to keep operations legal.

 If you need help operating your radio correctly, others can try to help, but ultimately, it is your license and your responsibility to operate legally.

As with ANY piece of Ham radio gear, Broadband-Hamnet™ COULD be used illegally, and it is the control operator's duty to make sure it is being used in accordance with FCC Part-97 Amateur Radio rules.

 This website is not in a position to offer any definitive legal advice. Only a duly appointed person, empowered to interpret the rules and regulations, can do that. That means that for most of us, our opinion has no legal standing – no more than any personal opinion on tax law.

 Since we cannot offer any definitive legal advice, we wish to avoid the fruitless legal arguments that have raged in multiple ham radio forums, and  only served to get people upset. To do so, would be to expend resources that cost real money, for no useful purpose.

The moderators and administrators of the website will limit non-productive lines of discussion, and/or may pull postings of such nature. Rulings made by a moderator/administrator of this website are final.

Last Updated on Monday, 05 August 2013 15:36
General Disclaimer PDF Print E-mail
Written by David Rivenburg, AD5OO   
Saturday, 13 February 2010 14:18

In order to gain benefit from this system you must be fluent in TCP/IP networking or be a highly motivated self-starter who can independently acquire that fluency. At this stage there are relatively few developers and users, and they are already stretched thin with their current contributions. While we have made the system as easy to use as possible, it can still be a complex system and we cannot offer any basic network training. As our user and developer base grows we may collectively be able to offer such support but at this time you are responsible for your own education in the fundamentals of computer networking.

HSMM-MESH™ is not a fully mature, time tested, finished product. However, its basic functionality is proven and it is quite useful in its current state. It provides a network infrastructure upon which numerous applications can be built. This project is in its infancy and requires contributions from its users and developers before it will be suitable for a wider audience. If you have a specific application in mind, hop on board and help us grow the capabilities of the mesh.

HSMM-MESH™ is not a one-size-fits-all solution. It may or may not be suitable for your application. You will be better served by changing your application to fit the mesh than the other way around. Using a mesh node is relatively easy. Setting up its internal structure and services to create the mesh is not easy, but it is very easy to break if not done correctly. While it is essential to have an understanding of general networking principles to use the mesh effectively, the mesh is not a conventional network. You will have to learn some new ways of thinking about networking. I strongly recommend reading the HSMM-MESH Design Philosophy article for an overview of how the system is designed.

All that being said, this is a new way to HAVE FUN with ham radio! For $60 you will not be able to find a more capable radio than that contained in a WRT54G. If you have grown weary of the colossally slow pace of digital communications with HF and VHF radio, give HSMM-MESH™ a try!

Unfortunately, all this needs to be said as well:


Last Updated on Thursday, 22 September 2011 22:14
Developer Mail List PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 23 February 2010 21:49

Are you an HSMM-MESH™ experimenter?

We have a mail list for people assisting in the development of  HSMM-MESH™. It was formed as the original developers launched the project. If you want to share your user experiences, help/get help from other users, or submit ideas and requests to

Last Updated on Wednesday, 06 July 2011 21:23