Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Discussions about Internet service providers (ISPs), the Meetinghouse Firewall, wired and wireless networking, usage, management, and support of Meetinghouse Internet
User avatar
aaronrturner
New Member
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2014 6:25 pm

Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby aaronrturner » Mon Aug 25, 2014 6:41 pm

Just got called to be a tech specialist - BEST CALLING EVER!

It sort of boggles my mind that the church doesn't have some sort of master plan around WiFi for chapels... but in my stake, it is an absolute mess. (if there is some grand, master-plan for WiFi, please do share it!)

So, I'm designing something to better manage WiFi for the buildings in our stake, looking for features like a splash screen for all people logging in, Acceptable Use acknowledgement, etc., Quality of Service management to keep social networking fiends under control.

I'm about to setup a test lab with SputnikNet Express

http://docs.sputnik.com/m/express/l/405 ... et-express

It's basically a bunch of custom ROM's that you can deploy on LinkSys hardware that is very low cost and gives some sort of manageability around a larger WiFi implementation.

Has anyone tested it out before? Are we supposed to use something else?

Any suggestions appreciated.

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 20777
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby russellhltn » Mon Aug 25, 2014 6:52 pm

You may have something that was deployed when everyone was on their own. Today, most installs either have or are migrating to a WiFi system based on Cisco 1041 and Cisco 881W firewalls supplied by the church. Not much to manage. They might need a little help "calling home" but they set themselves up. You can find out more detail over at Clerksupport.lds.org.

Just as a note, if you have a FHC, you'll want to get that isolated from the rest of the public system. Likewise, internet devices (sprinkler timers, A/C systems) that are managed by the FM group need to be on it's own segment as well.
Have you searched the Wiki?
Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

User avatar
aebrown
Community Administrator
Posts: 14693
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:48 pm
Location: Sandy, Utah

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby aebrown » Mon Aug 25, 2014 7:11 pm

I would certainly encourage you to work with your FM group to get the approved current Wireless hardware. The Church definitely has a plan for wireless. It starts with the Cisco 881 (or 891) firewall and is extended for most buildings with Cisco 1041N WAPs.

But if you choose to stick with your old hardware, you need to be aware of the requirements for using Commodity Wireless Access Points.

User avatar
aaronrturner
New Member
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Aug 25, 2014 6:25 pm

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby aaronrturner » Mon Aug 25, 2014 8:31 pm

Thanks all for the quick responses. FM group is MIA on this. Absolutely no help at all.

It looks like there is a Cisco 800-series firewall in the building, but not setup at present. Each ward has contracted their own service and setup their own WAP. The mandate from my Stake Pres. is to make it so that every teacher can use LDS.org content during their lessons every Sunday in every classroom in the building.

From the clerksupport link, it appears that the QoS management is not exposed? (which is what I need to have to assure that lesson-related LDS.org content is available while other traffic gets shunted off).

My current plan exceeds what is outlined in the stuff you guys linked to... so am I just being a bad technology guy if I build something that works better? Or do I downgrade my plan to 'just follow the rules'?

eblood66
Senior Member
Posts: 2030
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 8:17 am
Location: Cumming, GA, USA

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby eblood66 » Mon Aug 25, 2014 8:55 pm

aaronrturner wrote:Thanks all for the quick responses. FM group is MIA on this. Absolutely no help at all.

It looks like there is a Cisco 800-series firewall in the building, but not setup at present. Each ward has contracted their own service and setup their own WAP. The mandate from my Stake Pres. is to make it so that every teacher can use LDS.org content during their lessons every Sunday in every classroom in the building.

A church supplied firewall is absolutely mandatory. So unless there is an older approved firewall (generally a Cisco Aironet router) you must get the Cisco 800-series firewall installed.

aaronrturner wrote:From the clerksupport link, it appears that the QoS management is not exposed? (which is what I need to have to assure that lesson-related LDS.org content is available while other traffic gets shunted off).

Unfortunately, even if you had Qos at the local firewall, the church does not guarantee that the church servers and bandwidth will be able to handle all streaming for all units on Sundays. So the strong recommendation is to download media to local devices beforehand whenever possible. And streaming is likely to be the biggest source of traffic anyway so if multiple classes are streaming at the same time you may still have problems even with QoS.

So it may be a better use of your time and effort to help users get access to locally downloaded resources. There are multiple threads on the forums here with various suggestions and discussions about how that can or could be done.

aaronrturner wrote:My current plan exceeds what is outlined in the stuff you guys linked to... so am I just being a bad technology guy if I build something that works better? Or do I downgrade my plan to 'just follow the rules'?

Nobody likes to discourage anybody from trying to excel at their calling. But another thing to consider is that when you are released and the next person is called, will they be able to support what you've done. By following the rules the next person has better documentation and support from the church.

russellhltn
Community Administrator
Posts: 20777
Joined: Sat Jan 20, 2007 2:53 pm
Location: U.S.

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby russellhltn » Tue Aug 26, 2014 1:15 am

aaronrturner wrote:FM group is MIA on this. Absolutely no help at all.

I've seen FM groups range from being little more than equipment providers to ones that do the whole thing.

You'll want to get the stake president after them to supply what's needed to install a proper church system. Their catalog includes switches (unmanaged) and Cisco WAPs. They should also know of contractors that can properly run the cable where needed. However one major constraint is their budget. They may not have the money to do the whole thing this year, but right now is the time to get them to add it to next year's budget.


aaronrturner wrote:It looks like there is a Cisco 800-series firewall in the building, but not setup at present.

It's required. I thought checking the filter was part of a ward audit, but I've had reason to question that.


aaronrturner wrote:The mandate from my Stake Pres. is to make it so that every teacher can use LDS.org content during their lessons every Sunday in every classroom in the building.

That could be difficult as the church has not made any promise that their servers can handle the load. Some people download the videos that are available onto a flash drive that can be played. Some more adventurous types have built media servers. But at any rate, I'd suggest you focus on getting teachers to be able to play videos from stored content rather than building a super network that can handle the streaming load.
Have you searched the Wiki?

Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

User avatar
aebrown
Community Administrator
Posts: 14693
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:48 pm
Location: Sandy, Utah

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby aebrown » Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:36 am

russellhltn wrote:
aaronrturner wrote:It looks like there is a Cisco 800-series firewall in the building, but not setup at present.

It's required. I thought checking the filter was part of a ward audit, but I've had reason to question that.

There's no reason to question that. Question 30 on the current Ward Financial Audit is:
30. Is the ward’s computer protected from unauthorized and harmful Internet access in accordance with Church policy?
Open the Internet browser on the ward’s computer, enter filter.lds.org in the address field, and wait for the system to respond.
Mark “Yes” if the screen displays a check image.
Mark “No” if the screen displays a cross image.
The cross image indicates a warning that the computer might not be protected from unauthorized and harmful Internet access and therefore might not comply with Church policy. To correct this, the bishop should contact the person responsible for managing Church computers in the stake (generally the stake technology specialist or stake clerk) and ask him to enable the required Internet filtering.

If that is not being checked on every audit, with exceptions reported to the stake audit committee and up the chain to the Church audit committee, then someone on the audit side is really dropping the ball. There should be corrective action plans in each ward and for the stake every six months where the bishops and stake president affirm that they will take steps to make sure that the problem is corrected.

drepouille
Senior Member
Posts: 1230
Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 5:06 pm
Location: Plattsmouth, NE
Contact:

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby drepouille » Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:57 am

aaronrturner wrote:It looks like there is a Cisco 800-series firewall in the building, but not setup at present. Each ward has contracted their own service and setup their own WAP.


How many firewalls can you see when you login to https://tm.lds.org?

aaronrturner wrote:The mandate from my Stake Pres. is to make it so that every teacher can use LDS.org content during their lessons every Sunday in every classroom in the building.


That is a very bad idea. No teacher should ever depend upon a resource as fickle as streaming video. Teachers should ensure that all lesson content will be available during class, both by downloading it before class, and by having a backup plan for *when* techonology goes wrong.
Dana Repouille, Plattsmouth, Nebraska

lryangray
New Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2014 4:03 pm

Re: Anyone ever tried SputnikNet Express for WiFi?

Postby lryangray » Mon Sep 01, 2014 4:38 pm

The 1041 AP's I've found to be excellent. The 881W's can have their issues from time to time but like others have said, we don't have a choice there. It's encouraging that the Church IT department is continually adding new features and on a good trajectory. Also nice that you can get the equipment from your local FMG. I did the installs myself (IT is my day job as well and also have a construction background) and I'm now besties with FMG :).

I inherited a kludge of stuff when I was called with no documentation and it took a lot of time to figure out when there were issues. Using standard equipment and configs is great for both your successor as well as the FMG.


Return to “Meetinghouse Internet”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest