Software FAQ

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What is StarOS?[edit]

Q: What is StarOS?

A: Put simply, it's a software product made by Valemount Networks which does a very good job of running wireless backbone and customer distribution points using Atheros radios. There is also a "server edition" which can act as a standard wired router and run some basic services. It runs primarily on hardware products obtained via Valemount Networks though it can be run on x86 PCs and a couple of other embedded systems that aren't obtained from Valemount Networks or their distributors.

How does the StarV3 DHCP client affect the default route?[edit]

Q: How does the StarV3 DHCP client affect the default route?

A: The default route obtained from the DHCP server will always replace the default static route.

The firewall rules and/or NAT aren't working[edit]

Q: The firewall rules and/or NAT aren't working.

A: Connection tracking is required to be enabled in order to use the firewall rules and/or NAT.

What are the channel attributes in the channel list under StarV3?[edit]

Q: What are the channel attributes in the channel list under StarV3?

A: See the following example/explanation:

36 : 5180 20
40 : 5200 20 dynamic
42 : 5210 40 turbo
Channel 42 is only usable for turbo, or a cloaked operation.
Channel 40 is a dynamic turbo channel, and can be used for either standard connections, or
(in the near future), dynamic turbo connections. Dynamic turbo allows the AP to switch
between Turbo (ch: 42) and standard (ch: 40) on the fly based on throughput and signal levels
between the clients.
Channel 36 is a standard channel.

Why does my throughput test seem higher or lower than it should be?[edit]

Q: Why does my throughput test seem higher or lower than it should be?

A: The built-in throughput test in StarV3 can be used to get a general idea of how well your radio link is performing, but you should be aware of a few things.

  • The throughput test is displaying KB/sec. That means KiloBytes, like what web browsers and FTP clients generally display. 1500 KB/sec, for example, would be around 12 megabits.
  • The payload used in the throughput test is unrealistically compressible. Coupled with Atheros SuperAG features like compression, this means that the throughput test is usually quite a bit higher than your radio link is capable of. A lot of data on The Internet is already compressed (JPEGs, zip archives, etc.) and will not benefit from Atheros compression. Other common types of traffic will benefit, such as usenet data, email and HTML documents.
  • Often, due to the above (compression), you can run out of "CPU horsepower" long before you run out of link capability. For example, the WAR1/MIPS-COMPEX platform has a 175MHz CPU and the throughput test directly to or from this device will generally cap out at under 1500K/sec. The WAR1/MIPS-COMPEX platform is still capable of passing around 25mbit worth of traffic through it, but not directly to or from it using a CPU-hungry throughput testing application. You should do throughput tests to and from PC systems on either side of your link if you always want to see the maximum, though I do usually find throughput tests from 533MHz XSCALE (WAR4) systems to be adequate for testing out most of my radio links. I usually use the throughput test as a quick assurance that the radio link is performing about as expected, not as an exact measure of anything.