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Old 06-05-2014, 06:45   #31
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

It may not be a capacity issue on the marina's side, or the quality of their router. It might be the surrounding environment in terms of competing signals from other sources as well as the access points that are connecting to the router.

At my marina in Annapolis, they have a professional installation with powered antennas on the individual docks. The antenna on my dock is just 50' away, but a connection using the built-in wifi antenna of my laptop or iPhone is usually very spotty.

It's a very crowded wifi environment, with a number of other providers in the area. In addition, and probably more to blame, is the fact that many boaters have powered antennas on their boats to cope specifically with this issue, which in fact makes the situation even worse. High power wifi antennas can "crowd out" other weaker units that are connected to the same source.

Before you start paying through the nose for cellular data, consider trying an external powered antenna:

Amazon.com: Alfa 1000mW 1W 802.11b/g USB Wireless WiFi Network Adapter With Original Alfa Screw-On Swivel 9dBi Rubber Antenna: Computers & Accessories

It's a $35 experiment to see if it solves your issue, and could save you a bunch of coin over the outrageous data charges of cellular data carriers.

If you go this route, and it works, experiment with the output power level, slowly decreasing it until you find the lowest level that gives you a reliable signal. That way you're not contributing to the problem any more than you have to.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:16   #32
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

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Before you start paying through the nose for cellular data, consider trying an external powered antenna:

West her you pay throughout the nose depends on the provider. I've got a flat fee everything included all you can eat contract. Of course this is only valid within my home country. However, reasonably priced Europe wide flat fee contracts are on the horizon...
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:40   #33
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

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I very rarely see any good reason to pay for software these days.
Ahem. cough Open SSL , cough cough


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Old 06-05-2014, 21:32   #34
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

I've had Verizon 4g wireless. If your marina is in the center of a major city, you may get 4g. Otherwise 3G or worse. Verizon doesn't want high use subscribers. They had a 6gb limit and you could pay for extra use. Meaning more than whatever their base price is now. I only saw 4g once. They made it plain - Verzion didn't want high use wireless subscribers. Sprint appears to be like Verizon. I also used one of three companies licensed by Sprint to sell time on their system under other names. They advertize unlimited, but it's limited by Sprint. You don't get cut off, but your internet speed go to 0.4kbs or even less. When you call your provider the speed my go back up for a day. Then back to 0.4kbs. 2-300kbs is high speed.
If you use internet like you do at a house, send pictures, videos and maybe Youtube, you'll go over 6gb. Satellite is many times faster than wireless, but not as fast as broadband. If you stay in one place it' easy and costs $40+ a month depending on use. Big use plans are about $120. The antenna is like a small tv satellite antenna, fixed in one direction. It won't work at anchor. It's possible to to link with a your own automatic antenna.
Mobile broadband like ships use is very expensive. An antenna is about $4000+. Last time I checked, something like unlimited was $30 grand a month.

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Old 07-05-2014, 07:58   #35
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

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Ahem. cough Open SSL , cough cough


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How is a bug that was fixed on day 0 on free operating systems, but probably still exists on many proprietary systems an argument against free software?
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Old 07-05-2014, 08:06   #36
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

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Ahem. cough Open SSL , cough cough
How is that an argument against open source software?
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:03   #37
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

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Originally Posted by Suijin View Post
It may not be a capacity issue on the marina's side, or the quality of their router. ...It's a very crowded wifi environment, with a number of other providers in the area. In addition, and probably more to blame, is the fact that many boaters have powered antennas on their boats to cope specifically with this issue, which in fact makes the situation even worse. High power wifi antennas can "crowd out" other weaker units that are connected to the same source......If you go this route, and it works, experiment with the output power level, slowly decreasing it until you find the lowest level that gives you a reliable signal. That way you're not contributing to the problem any more than you have to.
Good advice. ActiveCaptain recently wrote a newsletter on this, called, IIRC, something like the responsibilities of wifi users. Pretty good ideas on turning down your units. We have the Alfa and it works great on our laptop in our marina - no signal with the built-in, but even with the Alfa on its short cord, insterad of the powered USB extension I bought, too, it works great even down below.
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Old 08-05-2014, 10:53   #38
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

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West her you pay throughout the nose depends on the provider. I've got a flat fee everything included all you can eat contract. Of course this is only valid within my home country. However, reasonably priced Europe wide flat fee contracts are on the horizon...
The OP and I are in the US. There are no flat-rate cellular data plans here in the US, other than perhaps very high-end, very expensive plans.
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Old 08-05-2014, 11:00   #39
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Re: Slow internet in a marina - can it be augmented?

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The OP and I are in the US. There are no flat-rate cellular data plans here in the US, other than perhaps very high-end, very expensive plans.
Actually there are but the service is horrible.

We tried Boost Mobile for a month. They had a $60/month smart phone with tethering included. Sounded great but even in a built up urban area, we could never keep connected when tethered and the phone was constantly dropping calls.
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