Public Internet Access via FON

I picked up a FON router when they were offering them for free a little while back. It’s a pretty nice little device and I like the idea behind it (trade some of your bandwidth to use other’s bandwidth).

It creates 2 wireless networks: a private network that is password protected and a public network that is available to all “foneros” – with access restricted using the sort of landing page you see at hotels. I also created a guest login that I can give folks that come over and need access, without having to go through the hassle of digging up the network password, etc.

In theory you can throttle the bandwidth consumed on the public network, but a bug apparently makes that setting not so useful at the moment.

Installation Tip

The install was a little tricky. I connected it to my hub and it came up OK, but it couldn’t see the internet for some reason. After trying a bunch of things, I connected it directly to the DSL modem on Steve O’Grady‘s advice. Sure enough, it immediately “foned” home and started working.

If you’re having trouble getting the FON to activate/work for the first time – try getting it a direct internet connection. After that initial connection to “activate” it, I connected it through the hub and it works fine there. Go figure.