Play TechFest 2008: Reliable Wireless Connectivity on the Go
Many people want to stay connected while traveling and commuting, which is driving the demand for network access from moving vehicles. But the reliability and performance of such connectivity today is severely limited by frequent "blackouts" that the vehicle-to-infrastructure backhaul links suffer. We have designed a system that, unlike existing "commuter networks," such as Sound Transit or the Microsoft Connector system, uses multiple backhaul links for added reliability and performance. Our system fuses these links together using novel striping mechanisms that intelligently decide which link individual packets must use, based on current performance and load. We have instantiated our design in the context of providing CorpNet access on Microsoft shuttles and the Connector service. Unlike the current Wi-Fi service on the Connector, our system does not require users to log in via the RAS service to access internal sites. To them, it appears as if they are directly attached to the corporate wireless network, just as they would be from their offices. We have partnered with the Microsoft shuttle service to demonstrate our system on the shuttles that will ferry TechFest attendees.