Difference between revisions of "VO Requirements & Functionality Questions"

From WirelessAfrica
Jump to navigation Jump to search
(New page: == Understanding the bigger picture == The development on this project is done in phases. New functionalities/features are added with each phase until we reach our target system. All deve...)
(No difference)

Revision as of 09:13, 15 October 2009

Understanding the bigger picture

The development on this project is done in phases. New functionalities/features are added with each phase until we reach our target system. All development work of every phase should be aligned with our end system in mind. In order for developers to make the right design choices that will not limit future functionality, they need to have a clear end target that they are working towards.

This page is here to help the developers to get a better understanding of the bigger picture and to make sure the target we design for is clearly defined and does not move around.

Please add any project related questions/thoughts on this page so that we can sort them and see what information is still missing.

VO (village operator) in action

Lets assume the the new VO has all the kit installed. The gateway (WISP) box is connected to the Internet and he is now ready to commission his new business. His first customers are three Dinaledi schools, the local Municipality and two owners of a local Spaza shop who wants a mesh connection at the shop and at both their homes. The two shop owners are very excited and they want to put a web server at their shop and they are thinking about opening a little Internet cafe very soon.

Definitions

  • User - An accounting entity with a user name and password. Typically represents an individual or an organisation.
  • Edge device - A device that is part of the mesh network (talk mesh protocol) and allows other devices to connect through the mesh. HPNs and Basic Mesh Nodes are edge devices.
  • HPN - High Performance Node
  • BN - Basic Node

Random questions / thoughts

  • What Internet contract packages are available from the VO - prepaid, contract, SA local, gov sites only ???
1 - Access to government sites (incl. educational network) for free - e.g. see P.I.T. (http://www.pit.co.za)
2 - Access to other Internet services to be similar to SA ISP - ADSL offerings (e.g. http://www.broadbanddeals.co.za/index.php?mode=cat&id=ADSL).
3 - A complete and complex model (like mobile offerings) could include:
I - Setup/joining fee + monthly fee + usage fee + cancellation fee
II - Different usage fees for mesh + education/gov + SA peers + international
III - Different fees at different time of day / time of week
IV - Different fees for different ports at the gateway
V - Different fees for quality of service being offered
VI - Different fees for (near-) real-time traffic than for potential store-and-forward traffic
VII - Fees for additional services (VoIP, local hosting, local e-mail, etc.), each with its own fee structure
4 - In an ideal world, everyone on the mesh should get unlimited access with fixed monthly fee. Other users to be serviced by downstream providers (e.g. Internet Cafés).
  • Is data traffic on the mesh free / flat fee / pay per usage
1 - Local traffic is free. Acceptable use policy to be applied (e.g. http://www.is.co.za/legal/Acceptable+Use+Policy+(continued).htm).
  • must a user do some login before he can use the mesh
1 - Specific edge devices can be vetted as flat-fee, requiring no login for attached devices
2 - All others will require user login (e.g. following captive portal instructions)
  • must the mesh be able to log all user traffic between mesh users
1 - Amount of traffic entering and exiting at edge devices should be logged and categorised
2 - Amount of traffic on specific radio links within the mesh should be logged and categorised
3 - Amount of traffic entering and exiting at gateway should be logged and categorised
4 - Traffic required for billing purposes should be logged
  • can a user use the mesh without buying prepaid/account from the VO
1 - Yes, assuming the edge device have been approved beforehand.
  • How must a prepaid package be activated / deactivated
1 - The user or the edge device to be given time, capacity, or flat approval.
2 - Village Operator can deactivate a user account or edge device in case of abuse.
3 - New users and new devices, not yet approved, and deactivated devices, to present captive portal with activation instructions.
  • Are there any bandwidth limits tied to a Internet package
1 - Preferably no capacity limits.
2 - Prioritisation of traffic according to device type (HPN higher pri than BN), and/or service (VoIP higher pri than HTTP)?
3 - No bandwidth limits.
  • Are there any data caps associated with the different package
1 - Preferably no, unless it is forced by on-sell of upstream ISP offering (see first question about Internet packages)
  • Must a prepaid user login before he can use the Internet
1 - User based prepaid will require login. Edge device based accounting require no login.
  • Must a prepaid user login before he can send data on the mesh (no Internet)
1 - No, assuming the edge device has been approved for use on the mesh.
  • How about a gaming server on the mesh, does it need to login some where
1 - Depends on the administrator of the gaming server. (Or any other local online content/facility/service provider).
  • Can more than one user share the same prepaid account, and at the same time
1 - Yes
  • If a school uses prepaid, do they share the same account, or each user in school
1 - General Internet access at school can be user (individuals or groups) based or edge device based. Depends on school policy.
  • How will someone running an Internet cafe resell his prepaid bandwidth
1 - Internet café business offerings outside immediate scope of the WISP software. Depending on Café owner, and Café management software, access could be provided on a time basis or capacity basis.
  • Is a prepaid account tied to certain time duration
1 - Yes. And those that are capacity based may also expire after 3(?) months.
  • How does a person get onto the network?
1 - Activation instructions presented on captive portal. Village Operator to provide login details and/or device approval.
  • If login is necessary, how do peripherals like printers and ATAs authenticate?
1 - Local traffic don't need login.
2 - Edge devices can be the basis for accounting, in which case further connected devices don't need login.
  • What devices should be 'approved' for use on the network
1 - Edge devices

The VO

A VO is a person or an entity whose primary objective is running (at a profit) a wireless network. To this end, the following describes the needs or requirements of the VO to meet his objective.

The VO needs:

1. A healthy and working network

2. Diagnostic tools for the network

3. To manage users or subscribers to the network

4. Service management of the network

5. A view of the usage of the network

6. To manage (activate/deactivate) edge devices on the network


1. A healthy and working network

-> Each network element MUST handle all routing and communications other network elements.

-> Each network element MUST require of the VO as minimum as possible configuration without compromising its usability or effectiveness.


2. Diagnostic tools for the network

At a minimum, the VO is provided with a web based diagnostic tools.

-> The diagnostic tools are enough for the VO to establish any problem that may be there.

-> The diagnostic tools can interface with other systems, e.g SMS, email.


3. To manage users or subscribers to the network

-> VO will be able create and modify user accounts

-> VO provides a number of service options for different users

-> VO can monitor usage of the internet connection

-> VO can monitor usage of the local network

-> VO can block access to the network for certain users


4. Service management of the network

-> The VO is able to prioritise certain services within the network

-> The VO is able to block or enable certain services


5. A view of the usage of the network

-> The VO is able to see the usage of the whole network

-> The VO is able to see the usage of each network element


6. To manage (activate/deactivate) edge devices in the network

-> VO can allow (new) edge devices to join the network

-> VO can block edge devices from accessing the mesh network