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Old Intel VPN to wireless router


Slapping a wifi card into a pc isn’t very ground breaking, but [Darkside] had to add a PCI header and trace the board just to hook up a keyboard before he could do much with his old intel vpn gateway. In the end, he added m0n0wall and a wireless card to turn it into a nice wireless router.

Comments

  1. SkUrRiEr says:

    Love the eproms in the background of the last photo =)

  2. SU-w/reb_w/root says:

    Holy Cow
    http://edesigns.dk/projects/vpn/full/DSC01699.JPG
    If that is “a few hours soldering”, how much of a soldering noob am I?

    Anyways, I think that this “little” project he’s done there is simply amazing.
    I was impressed to see a VPN run all this stuff.
    It’s just…I’m like 15 :P and I hadn’t thought that you could actually make ir run Gentoo..

    So simple, but I was so sure there would be a big structure difference between a a VPN netstructure and a simple PC..

    It’d be really great if if he had put more details on it.

    Thank you guys, for enlightening us up every day.

  3. ... says:

    The gateway is ‘just’ a normal x86 computer, which was running some custom software (which was probably running on top of DOS or some similarly ancient OS). Although I have to give him points for making his own PCI connector when you can get stuff like that for dirt cheep surplus :p

    I guess it is true that people are never happy with what they have, the people with slimmed down specialised hardware in a normal wifi router try to get full OSes running of them, and the people will full featured computers put the slimmed down specialised software on them…

  4. ziggit says:

    meh, age means nothing I just recently turned 16 now making me a 10 year veteran or something like that. its amazing how lazy hardware designers can be, or rather, how it is soo rare for them to reinvent the wheel, if it can be developed without having to cross compile even better, hey remember the original airport was a 486 box with an orinoco card in it

  5. MRE says:

    I look at that and I see ‘wireless bot brain’ (granted, a rather large bot)

  6. what he needs next is a parallel port so he can turn this into an accesspoint / print server. Most likely the access point will be central to the house so this would help immensely with the lack of other computer to do the print sharing

  7. pragma says:

    Ahh.. there’s nothing quite like cannibalizing old computer parts to breathe new life into something destined to languish forever on some dusty shelf.

    I’m pretty sure that you can buy PCI header adapters that do this job, but then you have to pay/wait for shipping.

    Also, I wonder if anyone has tried booting something like this “blind”? I’m assuming that all you would need is a linux distro with a really agressive autoconf, plus serial console support. Then you wouldn’t even need the video card.

  8. tmasman says:

    That’s great. I always love seeing old hardware getting repurposed to breath new life into it. One less thing in the landfills.

    Also, it looks like he is booting blind now… He’s got the wireless card on the PCI. I guess he had to make sure it was configured for the wireless properly, then boot it up blind to get the actual functionality. But I suppose at that point he could just SSH into the box & candle everything from there. No need for a direct connected monitor after Linux is installed & running.

  9. Per Jensen says:

    Nah, who uses Parallel these days ?!

    I’m a friend of the author, and we have discussed trying to pin out the two USB 1.1 ports the board has, but it’s a bith with BGA chips, it’s only possible to bring out the USB (for an Printer, for example) if there’s some testpads with suggestive writing.

  10. spurious_signals says:

    @#5

    I figure you could boot openbsd with serial support “out of the box”. You’d have to type one command to the bootloader blindly to get the installer to output to serial, but after that you’re laughing.

    @everyone

    I’ve just stumbled upon a bunch of neoware thin clients in a junk box at work. 300Mhz Geode processor and 32M of RAM (upgradable).

    Each has onboard video, sound, usb, ide header, 1 pci and 1 isa slot. These things rule. Think of all the applications for a quick little fanless box.

    They’re a small form factor too, maybe 10″ wide, 8″ deep and 2″ tall. I highly recommend folks keep an eye out for these guys.

  11. Terry says:

    I understand messing with something just for the fun of the project but this seems like quite a bit of work for something that could be outpaced by a $30 Linksys router flashed with dd-WRT.

    nice work though.

  12. DarkSide says:

    9. A decent flashable linksys router is around $80 here in denmark.

  13. al bear says:

    I just want to be on a mailing list for anything cool yall wana tell me about. Im a novice but im hella interested, this shit is facinating.

    thanks al

  14. Putty sees the local connection drop when the VPN pushes down your new internal address. Since it is a secure SSL connection it drops to prevent interception. There is nothing you can do to change this behavior.

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