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Old 03-20-2015, 12:51 PM   #1
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Connectivity when on the road

We are just beginning our full-time adventure. Our first RV park has great wi-fi signal and good speed...SOOOOOOO...how do we best take advantage of this? To use this, it requires you to login to one of many routers scattered throughout the park. Easy peasy IF you are able to use a browser, like when using a phone or computer. HOWEVER, I also would like to use the Chromecast and/or Apple TV...both of which require that they be connected to the same wireless network as the computer they will work with. Since these don't have the ability to use a "browser" to connect to the wi-fi network, I can't see how we can use these...UNLESS there is someone out there who understands the whole wireless Internet better than I do. I know there are things like bridges, range extenders, etc, but not sure if there is a solution using any of these. I do have a hot spot (T-mobile phone) and also a Verizon jet pack. IF I can figure out how to use one of these as a solution, would this "use" my limited data if I stream something from my computer to the TV using either Apple TV or Chromecast? Anyone know how to make use of the wi-fi for items that can't browse to an actual connection. At home, I had a wireless router that I could hardwire connect to our Internet service using an ethernet cable...and then the Chromecast and Apple TV wireless connected to my router using the password....but they didn't have to do this via a browser. So, hoping there is someone out there who has figured this out and wouldn't mind at least pointing me toward a specific type of device I should be researching...any help would be great.
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Old 03-20-2015, 01:48 PM   #2
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I use an Alfa networks AWUS036 Booster and R36 Router, with a Yagi antenna. Doing this allows me to use an available wifi signal and create my own network for everything else. We use Apple TV and the DVD player for Netflix. Works well, only have to set up one device when we move campgrounds.

Cale
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Old 03-20-2015, 01:49 PM   #3
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I asked this same question a week or so back on another forum, no answer yet! I did read somewhere that you can turn on WIFI on your IPhone then activate the hotspot. Once thats up connect Apple TV to your phone. I did this last week and I'm pretty sure it worked, downloaded a movie and watched it no problem. However, now when I go in and activate my HotSpot it shuts off WIFI automatically? Not sure if there is a way to bypass that?
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Old 03-20-2015, 02:18 PM   #4
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I asked this same question a week or so back on another forum, no answer yet! I did read somewhere that you can turn on WIFI on your IPhone then activate the hotspot. Once thats up connect Apple TV to your phone. I did this last week and I'm pretty sure it worked, downloaded a movie and watched it no problem. However, now when I go in and activate my HotSpot it shuts off WIFI automatically? Not sure if there is a way to bypass that?
The hotspot capability on your iPhone requires wifi to be turned on...however, the signal you are using for your hotspot is your carriers data. Be careful, you will blow through your data pretty quick. It seems as though apple movies are about 3.5GB and Netflix is about 2ish GB.

If you have an iPad or Mac, you could have movies pre-downloaded to those devices, connect a router to the Apple TV and use the AirPlay function. There will be no internet, but you could watch movies on your TV.

Our Voltage has a router built in, I found it too cumbersome to use, but I utilize it as an access point so all the kids in the area can use it as a hub to play Mine Craft. There is no internet, so it is safe for them, and they can build different worlds as a group.

Cale
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Old 03-20-2015, 02:25 PM   #5
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Here is my wifi information, along with a roof mount I made for the antenna. I can usurp internet signals nearly 1 mile away, albeit, there is a lot of line loss and is only good for email...otherwise, we almost always have campground internet piped though the trailer.

Look at post 381.
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Cale
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Old 03-20-2015, 04:28 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by calewjohnson View Post
Here is my wifi information, along with a roof mount I made for the antenna. I can usurp internet signals nearly 1 mile away, albeit, there is a lot of line loss and is only good for email...otherwise, we almost always have campground internet piped though the trailer.

Look at post 381.
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Cale
Cale, thank you very much for this info. It sounds like this might be an affordable solution (versus the WiFi Ranger...another option some have mentioned). I have some more questions if you don't mind, but would you rather me post them here...or on the mods site? Also, where is the "Ranger" site you mention?
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Old 03-20-2015, 05:24 PM   #7
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Cale, thank you very much for this info. It sounds like this might be an affordable solution (versus the WiFi Ranger...another option some have mentioned). I have some more questions if you don't mind, but would you rather me post them here...or on the mods site? Also, where is the "Ranger" site you mention?
Feel free to post them here, it is your thread.

The WIFI Ranger came installed on my trailer...I personally would not go out of my way to purchase it, but it is there. With that being said, the folks are very nice and helpful with the questions I have had. I am technically savvy, but I have found that the setup has been a little onerous at times. Also, having to pull a fuse to reset the system is a pain. In my eyes, the major weakness for the WIFI Ranger is the antenna. It is a 2dB gain antenna, pretty worthless, but will work if you within a couple hundred yards of the wifi source. My Yagi has a 24dB advertised gain, with an actual 19dB gain, tested in our school lab.

I went with the setup noted before because of price and its ability to be used in other countries. When I deploy, I take the setup with me and turn on, after I reset the bios for the country I am in. You can purchase from Rockland.com, they are great folks to work with and very knowledgable.

When on the road, I have a single piece of hardware to setup, everything else in the trailer only has to connect to my router. With the Apple TV, Blue Rae DVD, DirecTV DVR, iPads, iPhones, Kindles, etc....trying to get those onto a network that only allows for a single pay item to be logged on is difficult. Once I have the Internet piped in, the campground network sees the MAC address for my router and that's it...

The nice thing about this setup is that I don't have to futz with putting the router into bridge mode. A good fall back is to find an older Linksys G band router and install DD-WRT. That is pretty powerful and very easy to use firmware with a nice user interface.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Cale
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Old 03-20-2015, 06:16 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by calewjohnson View Post
Feel free to post them here, it is your thread.

The WIFI Ranger came installed on my trailer...I personally would not go out of my way to purchase it, but it is there. With that being said, the folks are very nice and helpful with the questions I have had. I am technically savvy, but I have found that the setup has been a little onerous at times. Also, having to pull a fuse to reset the system is a pain. In my eyes, the major weakness for the WIFI Ranger is the antenna. It is a 2dB gain antenna, pretty worthless, but will work if you within a couple hundred yards of the wifi source. My Yagi has a 24dB advertised gain, with an actual 19dB gain, tested in our school lab.

I went with the setup noted before because of price and its ability to be used in other countries. When I deploy, I take the setup with me and turn on, after I reset the bios for the country I am in. You can purchase from Rockland.com, they are great folks to work with and very knowledgable.

When on the road, I have a single piece of hardware to setup, everything else in the trailer only has to connect to my router. With the Apple TV, Blue Rae DVD, DirecTV DVR, iPads, iPhones, Kindles, etc....trying to get those onto a network that only allows for a single pay item to be logged on is difficult. Once I have the Internet piped in, the campground network sees the MAC address for my router and that's it...

The nice thing about this setup is that I don't have to futz with putting the router into bridge mode. A good fall back is to find an older Linksys G band router and install DD-WRT. That is pretty powerful and very easy to use firmware with a nice user interface.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Cale
I'll start with your very last statement..."oh, you will wish you hadn't said that". Hopefully, I'm just kidding (LOL). First, you make it sound so easy. If I get all the equipment you mention, will it remain easy for someone who is NOT so savvy?

The Yagi appears to be directional...if so, how do you aim it? Could you attach it to the existing TV antenna (which is not being used by me as I have a DirecTV setup)? That would allow easy rotation without having to go up top to manually point it. Assuming you would have to go "up top" to manually aim it, how do you know when it is properly aimed?

And you say your Voltage came with the WiFi Ranger? Nice upgrade from the 2013 models. Wish I had held off for a year.

I couldn't find rockland.com...might that be this? Rokland Even if this isn't the same site you were referring to, it seems they might have everything needed...and a bit cheaper than Amazon. You said "when you deploy"...are you military? What branch?
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Old 03-20-2015, 11:42 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by PNGento View Post
I'll start with your very last statement..."oh, you will wish you hadn't said that". Hopefully, I'm just kidding (LOL). First, you make it sound so easy. If I get all the equipment you mention, will it remain easy for someone who is NOT so savvy?

The Yagi appears to be directional...if so, how do you aim it? Could you attach it to the existing TV antenna (which is not being used by me as I have a DirecTV setup)? That would allow easy rotation without having to go up top to manually point it. Assuming you would have to go "up top" to manually aim it, how do you know when it is properly aimed?

And you say your Voltage came with the WiFi Ranger? Nice upgrade from the 2013 models. Wish I had held off for a year.

I couldn't find rockland.com...might that be this? Rokland Even if this isn't the same site you were referring to, it seems they might have everything needed...and a bit cheaper than Amazon. You said "when you deploy"...are you military? What branch?
I called Rokland and talked to them and they were very helpful and verified all you said and filled in some questions I hadn't even thought of yet...so, I ordered the items you recommended and a Yagi antenna and 16' of cable. I haven't figured out yet how I will handle a mast...I like the way you have yours rigged...just not sure how it would be aimed. It would appear you would have to go topside to do the aiming. I don't use the ladder so I may look at rigging something up that will attach to the ladder. Anyway, I'll work that out after I have a chance to see how everything actually works...so, thanks again very much for the directions and recommendations. I also like that I should be able to take some of this with me when traveling away from the RV.
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Old 03-21-2015, 10:52 AM   #10
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Cale I wish we could set up side by side a for a day or two! I don't mind using the wifi ranger when there is what I refer to as a direct point of entry signal. Works great. But when I have to log into a network in a campground thru a website it don't work as I can't get to the site thru the Ranger to connect. Not totally lost on networking but I am if that makes any sense. Plug and play truly isn't...
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