That is a very good point. And one of the reasons that I'm trying so hard to stick with Trango. Using something else other than Trango for me, is almost like cheating on my wife.
But there is a slight difference in modifying each of the two.

Modifing a Trango unit, also may infringe on patent rights with the manufacturer, or cause unrealised RF emmissions that would cause a radio to fail FCC tests. There are also risks involved in damaging the radio due to more detailed soldering, compromising things like field repairabilty.

A StarOS system is likely a certifiable system, if it is decided to in the future to go through the beaurocracy of the certification process.

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

----- Original Message ----- From: "Travis Johnson" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "WISPA General List" <>
Sent: Friday, September 22, 2006 1:20 PM
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Alvarion VL Fixes Problems with Backhaul Links


You won't customize a Fox unit because it's not FCC compliant, yet you are running StarOS on WAR boards which is also not FCC compliant. ;)


Tom DeReggi wrote:

The answer to your question is that there is not a preferred option. In some cases I don't have an option and just lose the prospect (as unservable). The industry is in a stagnet state, where manufacturers are not delivering an ideal product that WISPs need. (At least that I want). Any product that I choose as an alternative has a trade off. Understand that there are also cost justification barriers not just technical. When I can keep the prospect, its often because I have cost justified installing a dedicated PTP for them. (I don;t have that option for every one based on lease fees for roof access and available spectrum). Trying to customize the FOX for external antenna is a major pain in the neck, not to mention illegal, or Non-FCC compliant. However, out of desperation, I have on occassion been able to successfully customize a FOX 5580, to use an ext connector, and paired it up with a MTI dual Pol antenna or Gabriel Dual Pol. The fun in this industry goes away, when the only way to get the job done, is to illegally hack a CPE, for jobs. Its not my job to be the manufacturer.

The good news is that manufacturers are comming closer and closer to offering equivellent value propositions. The most promising products of Fall 2006, I feel is StarOS V3 on WAR, because of their low cost, and recent addition of true Bridging and Large MTU for adequate VLAN support. I also think, Alvarion has a winner with its new V4 firmware products, but I need to improve my finance options, to be able to use Alvarion network wide.

What I'd rather have happen, is Trango fix the problem. It would only cost them a few thousand to fix the problem on their end, and will cost me a million to rebuild my network (which isn't going to happen).

Thats the problem... What do you do when the product line you want fixed, is still the best choice in many cases overall ? There is no leverage to effect change.

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

----- Original Message ----- From: "Gino A. Villarini" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "'WISPA General List'" <>
Sent: Thursday, September 21, 2006 9:00 PM
Subject: RE: [WISPA] Alvarion VL Fixes Problems with Backhaul Links

Tom, so what you are changing the Trangos to ?

Also, you can hack yourself a EXT Fox ...

Gino A. Villarini
Aeronet Wireless Broadband Corp.
tel  787.273.4143   fax   787.273.4145

-----Original Message-----
Behalf Of Tom DeReggi
Sent: Thursday, September 21, 2006 8:25 PM
To: WISPA General List
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Alvarion VL Fixes Problems with Backhaul Links

Because, over the years I lost 100% of my high ARPU subs that used 5830-ext
in these areas. Yes that REALLY hurt the financials of my business.  The
reason, is that its a high noise environment where we're attempting to
deploy, and its impossible to offer zero packet loss solutions with TDD
unless ARQ is available, in these situations. It makes it worse with all
the WiFi gear going up, because you don;t know its there half the time,
until its starts transmiting. (darn I hate contention based). Yes, of
course, Beta ARQ firmware exists for the 5830-ext, but it can't be used
reliably. One of the big mistakes I made is I tried to use it, and learned that it locks up the SU radios every couple of days, when under heavy load. I did my testing of it on about 10 links. I started on 4 low use links, and it appeared to be stable, with only a random lockup every couple of weeks
that I thought was something else. But after I installed it on the high
volume links (other 6), they started locking up like crazy. (yes used most recent supposedly fixed firmware). Auto-Reboot devices causing two minutes of downtime for a reboot, is not adequate for High ARPU large office T1s and

VOIP services. I'd rather not have the business, than to get my reputation
tarnished by installing links the subscriber ends up cancelling and
complaining about.  Evey T1 that gets cancelled means there is a MTU
property owner involved that got the word (they make the referals) and a
trusted advisor Computer guy (agents that give stamp of approval) that gets scared off, when they learn about the failure. Deals with partners that took

months to build get thrown away over night, with a couple reboots from buggy

ARQ firmware.

What you can't forget is that in PtMP, you can't encrease the antenna side
of the AP. Not everything can be solved with the big antenna on SU side.
Without ARQ one is toast.

Trango gave me so much hope when they developed ARQ for the 5800 Foxes,
which works fantastically. I'd select the Fox over a 5830-ext any day
because of ARQ. But thats not good enough, I need ARQ and EXT connectors. Last year, I made Trango aware that we needed ARQ on 5830-EXT and Link-10s more than anything, and a year later, we still don't have it, and its not on

their priority list. That is frustrating for my business. Customers don't wait in Urban Tier1 markets. When the Link doesn't go up in a few days, or
their were a couple of noise issues that scare them, they have already
placed their order with someone else.

What it has forced me to do, is slowly start swapping out my Trango APs, to
make room (spectrum and antenna lease fees) for radios that can deliver
packetlossless links. Even Wifi gear can offer packetlossless links. And its forced me to go back and re-negotiate my contracts with property owners to try and not pay per antenna, so I can get more antennas of larger size (PtP) for less money on the roofs. Its a BIG waste of time, that I wouldn't

have to do, if Trango added ARQ reliable ARQ to 5830-ext.

I'm still a Big Trango fan, and still am basing my business around its
product, because of its value proposition, but I am loosing sales and
getting more black eyes than I have to, because Trango does not have a EXT
antenna product line that delivers reliable ARQ.  I haven't bought a new
Trango 5830 AP in ages, I have to many pulls on the shelf waiting, when I need one. If Trango never released ARQ for the FOX, I would have never kown

what I was missing. But now that I have experienced it, I can't live without


The two biggest reasons, for lack of progress in my company is, 1) Waiting for technology, and 2) Waiting for finance to come through. I can't count how much money I burned just waiting. I don't want to wait any more. I'm tired of waiting. I don't have the energy to keep waiting. I want it now. I

need it now.  This is a time to market business, where there is a domino
effect of disaster tied to waiting.

So when a company like Alvarion or Valemont come out with a product that
will do the job, and I no longer have to wait, I see no reason to wait.

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

----- Original Message ----- From: "Travis Johnson" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "WISPA General List" <>
Sent: Thursday, September 21, 2006 1:25 PM
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Alvarion VL Fixes Problems with Backhaul Links


I hate to say this, but I think you missed the boat on your three $500/mo
subs. Trango still offers a 5830-EXT unit for $729 (retail) that would
have allowed you the external antenna that was so critical for these
links. Why did you not spend the $700 and have them paid for in less than
two months?


Tom DeReggi wrote:

I'm glad to hear that John found success with Alvarion.
However, his post does leave out technical detail on why the equipment
had helped, which may be misleading to a reader.
I have found great success with Trango for many reasons, and will
continue to in comming years, and the fact that Alvarion shines in some
areas now, does not conclude that Trango is not a good platform for
WISPs, as Trango products still offers one of the best value propositions

on the market today. There are many factors to influence what choice is
best for you and when.

As far as Alvarion, they are definately back in the game as a leader in
reliabilty for WISPs.
We also have been very please with our live testing results of their

I'd like to point out that Alvarion not only provides top engineering
behind their product (so you don;t have to be one your self), but also
empowers the WISP to take advantage of their own engineering capabilties.

In other words they give the engineering control back to the WISP. All
Alvarion radio products are connectorized, allowing seperate antennas.
Every radio product shows Signal-to-Nosie ratios in real time while live.

What this allows is for a WISP operator to accurately predict in advance
of a truck roll, what a problem is, and will be required to fix it.
Although it takes a truck roll, the WISP is empowered to make what ever antenna changes are necessary to fix such link, in the shortest amount of

time, because no Radio reconfigurations or internal documentations are
needed, just the replacement of desired antenna. I'm an engineer and
don;t want to be limited. And when their is engineering over my head,
their is a solid engineering staff at Alvarion that is available.

What is a fact, is that I had three > $500 ARPU new subs, in the last two

weeks, that were not successfully installed, because they were teatering
right on the edge of the readios capabilty to get around environmental
conditions that were causing minor packet loss. $500 ARPU subs don't keep

service even with MINOR packet loss. I attempted to get these with our Trango product line, because that is what is instaleld at the CellSite,
taking the spectrum, with other live clients on the sectors.  As a
result, I lost all three, The reason is that Wireless scares prospects,
and every little bit of confidence that we could pull out of them was
required to get the sale in the first place, and the first hint of
difficulty, they get scared and pull the plug, before it starts.  They
ask themselves, "What If?". Had I had an external antenna option, and
not been limited, I would be $1500 a month richer this week.

What I'm learning is that as my business grows, the abilty to change and
move (channel options) is becoming less important that the abilty to
effectively battle it out. The reason is that if every time I hiot noise,

I move away from the channel, eventually others take those channels.,
until they are all gone, and their is no where else to move to. Sometimes

its better to claim the space and say, "I'm here first", "go find another

channel to play on". And keep fighting back with better antennas. As the

antenna grows, you over power the interference, but the important point
is, you reduce the interference to you and them, by restricting the
beamwidth. The high power via antenna you go, the more courtious it is to

the other player to attempt avoidence of signals interfering. Alvarion
gives that advantage.

The point I'm making is that Alvarion "gets it", when providing ext
antenna options, and why its necessary for.

Until Trango puts out an external connector SU, with strong reliable ARQ
feature (required for TDD in noisy environments), they are at a severe
disadvantage in PtMP to competitor vendors. Because without it, we just loose to many High ARPU prospects. The problem that we have with Trango

right now, is they are making great accomplishments in their technology
for low ARPU markets, but they have forgotten about taking care of the
need of the High ARPU clients in PtMP in recent years.  We don't want
minimum engineering for our high ARPU clients, they don't want the risk, and neither do we. I am still a big supporter of Trango's value, I just
have recognized that this hole MUST be filled by them soon, for their
product to stay a viable option.

Alvarion on the other hand has managed to solve the current day problems.

But this comes at a price, and the step left for the provider, is to run the numbers to see if it all works financially. Alvarion's numbers don't

work everywhere, but after the fact, we are finding that they actually
would have worked in more places than we originally thought.

Now in fairness, I have made some cross comparison between PtMP and PTP products. The Trango Atlas has an external antenna option also if doing

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc

----- Original Message ----- From: "Mario Pommier"
To: "WISPA General List" <>
Sent: Thursday, September 21, 2006 11:36 AM
Subject: Re: [WISPA] Alvarion VL Fixes Problems with Backhaul Links

   Good to hear you got issues fixed, independent of the
manufacturer/vendor you used.
   Regarding the radios you're using now.
   Some of us, like our company, started with Alvarion and never
switched out.
It's hard to try other technologies that appear less expensive, when the one you already have proves itself year after year after year. And
when you can talk to really good engineering support.
   OK, so we haven't found a way to use Alvarion equipment on
residential markets except where we don't have to compete with $30/mo
dsl.  But I know some folks, even on this list, who somehow have done
But on the business side, our transition from Alvarion BAII or 900 to

VL has had the same response from our customers that you describe "wow,
that is fast".  Mind you, these customers are still limited on our
bandwidth manager to the same 1Mbps symmetrical speeds.  But the VL
network just seems to fly compared to the previous, 4 or more year old
technologies now.
   It's also hard to try out other technologies when someone like you
give a report like this one: I was thinking about using Trango for a
link, but I do not want headaches, not today and not 5 years from today.


John Scrivner wrote:

As you guys know my company was having some serious speed and
reliability issues with our existing Trango backhaul some time back. We

have about 25 tower locations in Southern Illinois which until recently

were all fed from these Trango radios. We had countless short outages,
signal irregularities, bandwidth crunches, etc. The Trangos used to
work just fine. In the last year or so the Trango links have become a big problem for us. We tried several things to fix these problems but the Trangos were simply being pushed to do more than they were designed

to do. The amount of packet counts, speed, etc. we needed to reliably
serve the towers simply was too much for these radios and they were
buckling under the strain.

I have always thought highly of Alvarion and knew we could probably
find a good place for their equipment in our network someday.
Previously the trouble with choosing Alvarion had always been that we either needed something they did not offer at the time needed ( as was the case when we selected Trango for multi-point 5 GHz backhaul back in

the day) or that they were too expensive. Alvarion finally has a place
in our network.

In the case of our troubled backhaul links Alvarion's VL product seemed

to fit the bill to help us now. We had seen reports of 50,000 packet
per second throughput and up to 35 megabit per second capacity with the

new Version 4 of the VL firmware. When I asked about the product I was directed to a guy named Mike Cowan of Wireless Connections who is a RF
engineer and sells Alvarion VL.

Mike spent an incredible amount of time with our staff to look over the

issues we were having and help us find ways of correcting it. He never charged us a dime for what I consider to be thousands of dollars worth
of support and training. Mike Cowan and Alvarion did more for us to
help us build a better WISP network than any vendor ever has since the
day I became a WISP.

We also had some serious peer to peer traffic issues on our network
which were resolved with a Mikrotik box running to slow down that
traffic. The combination of this box and the new more robust Alvarion
VL backhaul has led customers to remark, "It's like the difference
between night and day". We have zero downtime on our backhaul now. We were getting countless reports of downtime from our network monitoring
system before. Now it just works.

I don't think I can overstate the impact Alvarion VL has had on my
network. If you are having problems with your network then you need to at least call Alvarion and give them a shot. In the last three months or so we have migrated about 40% of our backhaul links over to Alvarion

VL. Since that time outages on those most troubled links have vanished.

Throughput has tripled. People have gone from screaming and yelling to
sending their friends to us to hookup.

If you guys want to compare the numbers out there I am sure you will
find a few different systems that will give comparable umbers to what we are seeing with Alvarion VL. What you do not see in those numbers is

the quality and the reliability of the system. I have always been a
tinkerer and I will continue to tinker. What I believe though is that
there is something to be said for buying a high-quality, engineered
system and that is what you get with Alvarion VL. If you have tower
locations and/or enterprise customers who cannot afford to be a test
subject for your tinkering then consider calling Alvarion for those
links. There is no shame in admitting you cannot possibly build a
system as reliable as a company who has spent millions of dollars and hired countless designers to research and build a better data radio. I
am certainly not ashamed to admit it.

For the record, I publicly announced that I would report these findings

after I bought some Alvarion VL some time back. This was prior to
Alvarion joining WISPA as a vendor. While my report here is almost like

reading an Alvarion advertisement I can tell you that it is not. I have

not been paid to give this shining recommendation and Alvarion has
earned my personal support outside of my relationship with them through

WISPA. Thank you, Alvarion, for giving me a better network.

WISPA Wireless List:



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