NODE # 1 - VE7RHS
The Vancouver and Vernon nodes were tested for a few weeks before being installed. The Vancouver IRLP node was first installed on November 12th, 1998. On that day, Micheal Illingby, VE7TFD and I, David Cameron, VE7LTD were on top of Gage Towers fighting with our wireless LAN cards for close to 4 hours trying to get a reliable connection.
Once the connection was established, we return home to test it from there. Things were working great, minus the audio which was unbearably loud.
Once the Vernon node was placed online a few days later, I trekked back to Gage Towers and adjusted the audio. The first IRLP connection had been made.
Since that point, there have been no problems with the Vancouver node, except for the one time I firewalled myself out of it!
NODE # 2 - VE7RVN
The machine was built in Vancouver during original testing of the system. The computer was causing problems at first, but we finally got it to respond on the net. These are reasons why I hate DHCP.
The first tests were done using simplex on 446.000. The audio was very overbearing and seemed to have a small amount of AGC to it. We adjusted some levels, and before we knew it, we had a perfect sounding link between Vancouver and Vernon.
The only problems we have ever had with the Vernon node occurred when the wiring was attacked by something and was shorting out. This gave us intermittent connections, and was solved shortly after.
This machine will be moved and hosted by the Internet Junction in Vernon BC.
NODE # 3 - VE7RGF
This machine is located at the repeater site on Rhoderick Dhu, and gets its internet connection via wireless LAN from the valley below. The original install was in the valley floor, and the node ran for close to three weeks without severe problems. Due to some minor issues, the node had to be removed.
The node was re-installed in early September on the mountaintop. The RGF system links into the UHF hub on Granite Mountain in Trail, which gives access into the West Kootenays, and eventually into the East Kootenays.
The internet connection for this node is being donated and supplied by Sunshine Communications.
NODE # 4 - VE6RPT
I vividly remember the numerous phone calls made between Dave VE6DJJ, Dale VE6CPK, Walter VE6ANI, Wilfried VE7OHM and myself trying to get the Calgary computer to respond on the internet. The problem ended up being a blown 3Com Network card... Once replaced, we were back in buisiness! The software install has a few problems, but once all that was solved we were on the air and the initial testing was done.
Since the original install, the node radio has been changed over to a HTX 242. I made a trip to Calgary to help the folks there "tweak" up the node a little bit, and before we knew it... The node was operating perfectly... I will never forget driving through snow in July.
NODE # 5 - VE7FFF
Randy VE7AMS and Andy VE7EQU are responsible for the setup of this node. Some hours were spent on the phone working on the COS input line, but the final result was the same... a perfectly working node (as always).
This node was originally set up on simplex, and took the award for the best sounding node on the system. The node was then moved to the VE7RES linking system which allowed continuous coverage of most of the northern interior of British Columbia. The node was removed from VE7RES after an executive decision was made that the node was creating too much traffic on an already busy system. The node was relocated to the VE7FFF autopatch repeater just outside of Prince George.
NODE # 6 - VE9BSQ
The first of the eastern Canadian nodes was easy to set up. Don Trynor and I had had a previous link going between Vancouver and Saint John back in the Iphone days. I phoned him up to tell him all about the new IRLP system, and he could hardly wait to give it a try. I met up with Don in Vancouver for the first time in the summer of 1999 while he was here in Vancouver for a stopover.
The node runs into a small UHF link system that links Saint John to Fredericton. The node was down for a long period of time while Don was moving to a new residence at the base of his favourite Mt. Champlain.
NODE # 7 - VE5CMR
The Saskatoon node was a fun one to install. I will let the rantings of Chris Morgan VE5BAR explain it best: The following are emails that Chris sent during my trip to Saskatoon.
As you can all see... A fun bunch of guys!
NODE # 8 - VE6SAR
This node took a while to set up. The problem was that we could not find a suitable place in the radio (an ICOM IC28A) to pull the COS from. This was eventually solved, and all was working. After a new power supply and a few other things, the first test went very successfully.
The node was moved from Sean, VE6SAR's house to Randy's house. This node continues to run on simplex.
NODE # 9 - VY1RW
This node was easy to set up. Richard, like myself, is a little bit of a LINUX guru, and happens to run several LINUX machines from his house. Although the system requirements mention RedHat LINUX, he seemed to think that Slackware would not be a problem.... well.... We won't go on about the LINUX flavour debate.
Richard and I did a few preliminary tests on the connectivity by having him connect from his PC (on a microphone and speaker) directly to the VE7RHS node in Vancouver. I then dazzled him with the audio quality and functionality of the system. I had him sold :)
The total time elapsed between me emailing Richard and the node operating was two weeks... Definitely a record.
Following the node in Whitehorse, the advent of a set of software scripts for installation, the new interface boards, and the detailed instruction manual, the node stories were not quite as interesting. If you wish to write a "node story" for your node, please email it to me and I will be very willing to add it to the list!