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Standard User LostOne
(newbie) Sun 17-Jul-11 03:42:34
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Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this?


[link to this post]
 
Hello,

I think our wireless broadband carrier is using our "antenna" (not to mention our electricity) to give services to people around us. Does anybody know what kind of set-up this is? We are a place of healing and compassion, but unfortunately mismanagement in the past has led entities to take advantage of us and us newbies are trying to fix this so we don't go broke and have to give up all the services we provide to the homeless and recovering (12 steps)

Here are the pics:
http://s1141.photobucket.com/albums/n581/hlavoe/

Any help would be truly appreciated!!!

Edited by LostOne (Sun 17-Jul-11 03:45:59)

Standard User 5km
(knowledge is power) Sun 17-Jul-11 13:18:28
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
Take a better pic and I'd be able to help.

O2 Broadband Premium LLU
Now on twitter @timmay2
Standard User john2007
(legend) Sun 17-Jul-11 15:19:59
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
Why not switch it off when no one internally is using your service. You'll soon find out if others are using it. If it's powered off a socketed plug you can get a plug in meter to measure the wattage.


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Standard User eckiedoo
(newbie) Sun 17-Jul-11 17:18:44
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: john2007] [link to this post]
 
I would also suggest that you monitor the WiFi transmissions in that area, using a program such as inSSIDer - normally it would have to be installed on a laptop or similar which has WiFi facilities built-in.

With that size of aerial/antenna and being in close proximity, it should swamp most other WiFi circuits in the area, then totally disappear when switched off.

It will also provide other information that may prove to be of use..
Standard User LostOne
(newbie) Mon 18-Jul-11 05:11:09
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: eckiedoo] [link to this post]
 
THANK YOU everyone for reading my post and trying to help. I am a volunteer so I am normally there at the end of the week, but I will try to go on Monday to take better close-up pictures.

I truly appreciate it!
Anonymous
(Unregistered)Mon 18-Jul-11 06:54:51
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
You should also check your the Centre's Accounts for the name of the company that supplies it with the Centre's Broadband.

Additionally, if that aerial is being used to allow other Users to piggy-back, they will be frustrated if you leave the aerial unpowered, as suggested by others, for a significant period; and will contact the company to complain.

It may be that the earlier Centre "management" made an arrangement with the company, to allow the use of the premises and the siting of the aerial, in return for the Centre having free Broadband.

------------------------------

The actual siting seems strange, as the building will attenuate/reduce signals considerably to the left in the photo,so any potential piggy-back users "behind" the building would have difficulty in connecting.

I would expect such an aerial to be mounted high on a chimney or similar so as to minimise such signal loss.

In your mind, think of a simple tubular fluorescent lamp similarly positioned, there would be practically no light observable to the left, behind the building, only being visible to the more-open right, which may be a clue as to where the potential piggy-back users are located.

Interesting!
Standard User LostOne
(newbie) Mon 18-Jul-11 17:24:59
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: Anonymous] [link to this post]
 
Interesting - when I take the pictures today, I will take a picture of where it is facing. We are definitely getting no benefit of having the antenna. They use our electricity AND we are paying $1000 a month ($550 internet, $450 voice) which is outrageous given what other providers are charging for much faster speed. In theory, if they are pushing signals to other subscribers, then they must re-amplify them, using more electricity, correct?

Pulling the plug is a great idea, which I will probably threaten to do when we approach the carrier about it, but I wanted to get as much feedback as possible in terms of the probability that they are indeed giving other service from our antenna.

There is actually another part to this Soap Opera. One of their "Site Acquisition Managers" has approached our facilities manager because they want to move the antenna further up the hill (near the top) and place it on an old, unused, water tower. The "new" set-up would have three antennas. I could post their proposal (minus identifying information so I don't get in trouble) if that would give you any ideas - but I am pretty sure they are using us on this one. Our service is perfectly fine, and they want to put up two additional antennas...? How dumb do they think we are.....

Thank you again for the feedback!!!
Standard User 5km
(knowledge is power) Mon 18-Jul-11 21:02:09
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
It'll only use a few watts (less than 10 watts I would expect) ... lol!

$1000 a month sounds a lot but really that is out of context without knowing where you are and what alternatives you have!

Thing is you'd most likely need two antennas; one directional antenna for the back-haul link and another omni directional or sector antenna to 'repeat' the signal. Unless using WDS peering.

If it is repeating the signal then turning it off risks 'up setting' the provider which would likely re-locate the antenna, cut you off and black list you never to provide you with service again.

O2 Broadband Premium LLU
Now on twitter @timmay2
Standard User LostOne
(newbie) Tue 19-Jul-11 05:29:06
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: 5km] [link to this post]
 
Ok - I've updated the pictures at the link below. You can see the entire set up, as well as the direction the pad is facing, and 90 degrees to the south.

So, is this antenna providing us broadband service as well as other customers further down the hill or around us, or just us? Any input would be greatly appreciated.

http://s1141.photobucket.com/albums/n581/hlavoe/

The manufacturer of the antenna-square thingy is MTI Wireless Edge (MT 45600 - 5.15-5.875 GHz or something).

Thanks again!!!!
Standard User 5km
(knowledge is power) Tue 19-Jul-11 07:34:08
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
Hi

Can't seem to find the exact model but it looks like a subscriber antenna and would only be suitable for providing service to you and not repeating to others.

Found:- http://www.mtiwe.com/uploads/product/221.pdf

Which is probably a new version of the same thing.

You should really just contact your Wireless ISP and ask them.

Let us know what they say!

O2 Broadband Premium LLU
Now on twitter @timmay2
Standard User wirelesspacman
(fountain of knowledge) Tue 19-Jul-11 15:18:48
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
If that is all there is, then I would say with 99% certainty that it is just a "receive" antenna and thus only you are getting a service from it.

Peter

Loop Scorpio Ltd
Ledbury; Highnam; Newent; Painswick; Arlingham, Cranham
===============================================

Symmetric Pro
Now also offering 20 Mbps symmetric broadband!
Standard User LostOne
(newbie) Tue 19-Jul-11 16:54:59
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: wirelesspacman] [link to this post]
 
The reason why we questioned our original antenna is because of the dicey way they came to us and proposed an "upgrade". I have uploaded a picture of the plan. Further up the hill is an unused water tank with nothing in its line of site. They want to put three antennas up there. Our service has been solid with our existing antenna, but they said this will "improve" our service. I have never heard of a company spending $15,000+ to improve one customer's service. In addition, he didn't approach management, he only approached the maintenance manager. The person's official title is "site acquisition manager", which in the cell tower world, are the guys that offer to lease out your land for a cell tower.

Now, would you say this proposal is going to serve only our site? They told the maintenance guy that they wanted to improve our voice communications........?

This is the last question and thank you so much for your time and help. After what has happened at the center over the years, it is hard to trust anybody......

They have not indicated what would be on the pipes, but with its triangle shape, it will become an endpoint to their network and will expand service.

http://i1141.photobucket.com/albums/n581/hlavoe/Prop...
Standard User 5km
(knowledge is power) Tue 19-Jul-11 19:53:54
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
I am amazed how little grasp you seem to have on the whole situation.

1) is the water tower your property?
2) is the water tower even connected to your property?
3) are they actually proposing to install additional antennas on your property?

If you answer no to all of the above why were you even asking the question in the first place? What does it have to do with you?

The reason they would have told you that you would be able to upgrade is because if the water tower base station was installed they would be able to re-location your antenna to connect to that. You would then only need a small (short distance) antenna and would likely see a very real boots in speed, unless you are already rate limited down to the service level you are paying for.

Even with a base station on the water tower you (your property) would not be a 'repeater'.

Understand yet?

3 poles likely means they plan to have 3 sector antennas. Going by the fact that these are all one side I expect they are only planning 180 degree coverage using 3 x 60 degree antennas. Which if there is a hill or no properties behind this would make sense

O2 Broadband Premium LLU
Now on twitter @timmay2
Anonymous
(Unregistered)Tue 19-Jul-11 20:00:51
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: 5km] [link to this post]
 
I agree and found an earlier but generally similar spec.

If you look at the top of its second sheet, it states-

Broadband Subscriber Antenna

It would appear that the site has either no phone lines or very long ones, so degrading Broadband/ADSL performance; and that this antenna with another at the other end, acts as a substitute.

It has a relatively narrow beam-width, 4.5 degrees, so any significant movement from the direct "line-of-sight" is liable to degrade performance or cut off totally.

In that respect similar to satellite receiving antenna - BUT both ways.

It is probably a planar multi-dipole array.

It may be that it has surplus capacity and thus the installer may wish to use it as a Repeater to give others in the locality similar access, hence his request regarding three other antennae, as the location generally looks good for such purposes.

You would need to read the original contract carefully - I suspect that the hardware remains the property of the installer; and that there may be a clause allowing such use - although access to the proposed site for those additional antennae may be negotiable, especially if the center owns the property.

If you have any members with a legal background, get them to check.
Standard User LostOne
(newbie) Tue 19-Jul-11 20:12:42
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: 5km] [link to this post]
 
I AM ASKING THESE QUESTIONS BECAUSE:

1) YES - the water tower IS OUR PROPERTY
2) YES - the water tower IS CONNECTED TO OUR PROPERTY
3) YES - THEY ARE PROPOSING IT!!


But as I previously mentioned, they are doing it in such a dicey fashion. One, they didn't contact the person on the account, but the "Site Acquisition Manager" randomly contacted the maintenance guy. Two, they weren't trying to get the director's permission, just the maintenance guy's permission (are you seeing why I am concerned). Three, they are claiming it will give us better "phone service", well our phone service is just fine. Why else would they spend tens of thousands of dollars to throw up three new antennas? To make us happy? I SERIOUSLY doubt it. Not to mention they are going to tear up 300 feet of our beautiful land to bring up cable and electricity (20 amps) for their "cabinet" that requires them to put in a 4 x 6 concrete slab.

Why so much trouble for ONE customer? Why tens of thousands of dollars for ONE customer? I just want someone familiar with how these things are set-up to validate my conclusion that they are going to be using our property and these new antennas to service additional customers, so we can make them sign a lease. These companies LOVE to take advantage of charities and non-profits, because they know that they are not familiar with leases or technology.

Now, do you understand yet?
Standard User john2007
(legend) Tue 19-Jul-11 20:45:16
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
I think your best bet would be to get your organization to write to their organization and request clarification as to why the kit is needed and what it will be used for. I'd be suspicious in your circumstances.
Standard User 5km
(knowledge is power) Tue 19-Jul-11 21:55:39
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
Now, do you understand yet?
Yes.

So have you actually spoken to them yet?

O2 Broadband Premium LLU
Now on twitter @timmay2
Standard User wirelesspacman
(fountain of knowledge) Wed 20-Jul-11 13:44:41
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: LostOne] [link to this post]
 
The proposal diagram only shows the poles and not the antenna. They could be aiming to put quite a lot on there (though perhaps not all at once).

I fully agree with your concerns as they seem to be going about things in quite a sly fashion. I would suggest you arrange a direct head-to-head between the bosses of both organisations to thrash out exactly what they want to do and why. That then could give you a view on what (a) you might wish to charge and (b) they might be able/prepared to pay.

On the one hand, if they will be making as much money from it as a mobile phone operator might, then you could expect quite a lot in rental (UK sites can attract rentals of £10k to £20k per annum).

On the other hand, if they are pretty much "just" a small rural wireless ISP then there might not be much margin at all for them to play with and they are just trying to improve coverage to get a few more customers on board.

Hope that helps.

Peter

Loop Scorpio Ltd
Ledbury; Highnam; Newent; Painswick; Arlingham, Cranham
===============================================

Symmetric Pro
Now also offering 20 Mbps symmetric broadband!
Standard User LostOne
(newbie) Wed 20-Jul-11 16:33:03
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Re: Help!!! What kind of Wireless Broadband Antenna is this


[re: wirelesspacman] [link to this post]
 
Thank you! That is a great approach where we can get them to sign paperwork indicating their intentions, and if they start changing things on the water tower, then a re-evaluation needs to occur.

We knew we would end up talking to them, but we just wanted to have as much info as possible to determine how to move forward carefully and not screwing ourselves. In addition, we are considering a wireless tower as well, so if they aren't straight with us, we have another avenue forward to "balance the budget" which everybody in the world seems to be trying to do these days blush)

Thanks again!
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