[Dprglist] another wireless networking issue - headless Raspberry Pi

Carl Ott carl.ott.jr at gmail.com
Wed May 16 04:21:48 PDT 2018

Yup - I agree - 5 GHz seems the best & easiest bet - at least for indoors
e.g. at the Makerspace.  Every time I've sniffed at DMS, I've seen some
open 5 GHz channels, while at the same time every 2.4 GHz channel has at
least 9 co-channel interfering networks and in many cases 1 or more
overlapping networks.  It's a good recipe for "no workie".  I'll share my
findings after trying an open source driver with a dual band dongle on an
rPi Zero W...

Meanwhile - y'all might like this approach which I've stumbled on -



Not sure if it would have enough bandwith for video, even low-res video,
but it does offer a nice looking solution also for outdoors...

Also, Mary found some links that suggest it's possible to run Wi-Fi
protocols over HAM radio frequencies - could be a very nice option for
those of us with HAM licenses...


On Tue, May 15, 2018 at 1:07 PM, James LeRoy via DPRGlist <
dprglist at lists.dprg.org> wrote:

> I think your own 5Ghz Access Point network is the best way to go.  It
> keeps the Pi and your laptop in a simpler configuration.  Some access
> points, I believe, can then be a client of another wireless network to get
> you internet access.
> The physical cable should work with static IPs and just a hub.  A router
> would not be required unless you wanted to use it to handle DHCP instead of
> static addresses.
> On 5/14/18 6:13 PM, Clayton Timmons via DPRGlist wrote:
> RoboRama was great!   So much fun talking with fellow robot enthusiasts
> and seeing cool robots in action.
> I cobbled together my Raspberry Eye robot right before the contest and ran
> into a wireless networking issue.    My robot uses a Raspberry Pi however
> it is "headless"  with no onboard keyboard, screen, or buttons of any
> type.    It was pre-programmed to connect to my home WiFi and then I would
> use a laptop also connected to my home WiFi to sever as the interface to
> the robot.   I connect via VNC.
> The setup worked great at my house but when I brought the robot to the
> Makerspace the problem was obvious.   My robot would try to connect to my
> home WiFi which is not available at the Makerspace and being totally
> headless there is no easy way to re-program it to do anything different.
> I had anticipated this problem and tried one solution but it was not
> reliable.   I spoke with Ron Grant and he said - just bring your own access
> point.   Thankfully Ron let me use his access point and I was able to get
> things running.
> I'm seeking the wisdom of the club for solutions to this problem.    Here
> are some ideas I have.
> 1)  Setup Raspberry Pi as an access point -  Then anyone can login to my
> robot with correct password.  I saw this as an option but it looked tricky
> to setup.
> 2) Setup Laptop as access point -  I tried this and it worked, sort of.
>  Windows 10 was easy to setup as an access point.   It worked but for some
> reason was flakey.   Really hard to debug why robot would connect sometimes
> and not others to the laptop but reliable connect to my home WiFi.
> 3) Use Ethernet cable.    I tried to run a cable from robot to hub and
> another from laptop to hub.   Hoping I could VNC directly to static IP
> address of robot.   This did not work.   I suspect it would work if I
> plugged both into a router (not just a hub).   This would give me temporary
> remote access via cable rather than wireless.  With cabled remote access I
> could re-program the robot to use any available WiFi.   Adafruit sells a
> USB to serial interface that is supposed to provide a back door to SSH into
> the Raspberry Pi - will have to try that also.
> 4) add keyboard / screen to robot -   The headless robot is really not a
> robust setup since robot is pretty much dead in the water if you can't
> connect to it.
> 5)  Pull microSD card and re-program it.  -   This is what I ended up
> doing.   I plugged the microSD card from the robot into a backup Raspberry
> Pi with screen and keyboard.   Then I switched the WiFi network name from
> my home WiFi to one that was available (Ron's access point).
> Any ideas / comments on a solution?
> Thanks,
> -Clay Timmons-
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