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Requesting a HUB not a node for gmrs group


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I am thinking that the national HUB's are just what's established. 

That being said. For a statewide hub, or group hub, you have a couple options. First is to just use one of your NODES as the 'hub'.  Link all the other repeaters in the group to that NODE and run it that way. 

Second option is to build out a Pi without the audio interface and attached repeater.  You will need to register it as a repeater on the site and then assign it a node number once it's created.  This could also act as a NODE, but I will warn you that you will get people requesting access to it thinking it's a repeater.  I took mine 'down' off the site becasue of that.  I kept getting requests for access since it displays as a repeater.  People will not bother to read the listing first and verify what they are requesting access to. 

Now, if you are a Linux guru and a ASL guru, you can in theory download the image, and load it up on a Pi and then look at the changes to ASL and see what's been done to it and mimic those changes on a Debian instance with ASL loaded on it in a x64 platform.  I have had no luck with that but I am not even versed on either Linux or ASL.  So your mileage may vary.  If you are knowledgeable on both, and get it working I would LOVE to know what the steps are to making that happen. 


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We have looks at doing our own server but as a couple of us have mygmrs nodes we were looking to just have a hub direct with mygmrs and do like PR is doing. Building a hub that's does the auto reg is tricky and the one guy that was tied with gmrs who built the reg server passed away awhile ago and we ourselves haven't been able to find anyone with the knowledge to help build one.

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Well if you are looking to 'do your own thing' I will say this.  It's not as hard as you might think, but there is some knowledge required.

Since no one wants to reinvent the wheel so to speak, it's really going to be easier to use what others have done and adapt it to your own use. 

All that is being done with mygmrs and gmrslive linking is a 'rebranding' and repurposing of something called All Star Link or HAMVoIP. 

The basis of that entire system is a open source IP PBX called Asterisk.  This is a office type phone system that someone wrote to replace his ageing PBX in his office and then decided to put the source code out in the open for others to use.  Another gentleman wrote the 'rpt' part add on for Asterisk that created a manner to connect radios and repeaters into the PBX in what could be defined as a conference call.  So when you link two repeaters or radio's together, it's like two phones, with one calling the other.  THere is a bit more to it but that's the really basic way it can be described.  When you connect a number of radios and repeaters together it's treated as a conference call at that point.  The limitation is the amount of bandwidth available for the traffic being shipped from place to place and the processing power of the computer it's running on to process and ship the audio and telemetry (PTT and COR) from site to site to site.

Now that's established.  ASL or All Star Link is open source.  You can go download the servers, hubs and all the manuals and set about modifying it to do what YOU want it to do.  There are a couple things that you need to know.  First is that the typical downloads are setup for non-computer people to use.  So they are preconfigured for the databases of the HAM nodes out there and the info for them to connect together.  All that needs to be removed or modified to make it work in YOUR specific application.  And although there is no specific requirement for Internet access, linking sites together must be done with IP for this to work.  Now you can use microwave links between towers that have LOS or Line Of Site between them and forego the Internet all together.  But that might not be what you are desiring to do.  But it's going to require someone with significant ASL and Asterisk experience to get this all going.  It's not a plug and play solution.


There is the possibility of using a preexisting system to do the linking where you just create nodes on the system for each repeater and then connect the nodes together.  You do NOT want to create loops while doing this.  So the easiest way is select one node to be the 'hub' and connect all your other repeaters to that node.  Then you are allowing others to do the 'heavy lifting' on the back end so to speak and riding their system.  SO this is a possibility.  Now, I will say this.  There is a way to go into the rpt config files and ONLY allow certain nodes to connect to your node.  So it you want to like 5 repeaters together, with node numbers of 1 thru 5 and node 3 is the 'hub' you set repeaters 1,2,4 and 5 to only allow connection from node 3 and node 3 you limit to the other 4 node ID's. Then if I get to playing around with my node that's numbered 10 and I attempt to connect, I will get rejected because I am not in your allowed node list.  By default, most systems update their node lists every 10 minutes, so that would need turned off or a different node list would need created that was static (not updated) and the rpt.conf file location would need modified to point to that list and and not the master list for the system.  And there are other ways to go about that as well.  If' it's a few repeaters, you can just set the system up to not connect to anything and then go back and individually allow the specific nodes you want in to have access. 

So there are a couple options that are out there and are NOT crazy expensive.  If you want to look at third party hardware, I would advise you to look at the nx2-u units from JPS.  I THINK that those can be configured for point to multipoint connectivity.  which would fit into what you are talking about for a small system but those ain't cheap. 


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