Swecha and the FreedomBox project invite you to learn how to build community Wi-Fi networks with FreedomBox. Community networks spanning entire villages and campuses providing free Internet access and other digital services such as free VOIP calls and radio services are possible for a low cost of about INR 1,00,000 per location. The workshop is meant for volunteers, hacktivists, enthusiasts and entrepreneurs who are interested in understanding all the low level details to replicate the success of Gangadevipally. This is a training session to make the participants feel confident to lead an effort to setup a community network.

Participants will walk away with the knowledge on technical and organization aspects of setting up Wi-Fi networks. Documentation on all of the discussed items will be available. Participants will also get to engage with people involved or looking to get involved in building networks.


Location: Hyderabad, India

Date: 18th and 19th of March, 2017

Time: 10:00 to 17:00

End of registration: 16th March, 2017


You must register for the workshop by sending an email. The workshop is expected to be small with mostly local participants and some from neighboring states. Number of attendees we can accomodate is limited and we will accept registrations on a first come, first serve basis. Send us a registration email with the following details:

Subject should be “Registration for Workshop”. Body should contain Names of the participants Reason for interest Organization name if any


There is no registration fee for the workshop. You are expected to make your arrangements for travel, food and accommodation. Some minimal arrangements may be available, please contact us for more details.


The following are the topics of discussion during the workshop.


Decentralization of networks Why Wi-Fi? Model of ownership


Selecting a village/community to setup Wi-Fi Approaching a community with proposal Identifying suitability for target audience Accumulating funds Financial planning Building a team Training the team Surveying for feasibility Understanding users Timetable for installation Services to be run in the village Planning for Internet connection Planning a support/maintenance team

Wi-Fi network

  • Mapping installation area with Open Street Maps
  • Designing a Wi-Fi network for large areas
  • Creating a bill of materials
  • Purchasing hardware
  • Purchasing tools for installation
  • Comparing Wi-Fi router hardware
  • Choosing the right antenna
  • Configuring OpenWrt Wi-Fi routers
  • Testing and mapping Wi-Fi signals
  • Power-over-Ethernet for Wi-Fi routers
  • Power boxes for Wi-Fi towers
  • Designing towers for Wi-Fi networks
  • Optimal deployment of Wi-Fi routers
  • Erecting Wi-Fi towers
  • Providing power to Wi-Fi towers
  • Outdoor deployment of Ethernet and power cables
  • 100 Mbps Ethernet Backhaul
  • Fibre Optic Backhaul
  • Understanding Wi-Fi roaming
  • Choosing hardware
  • Purchasing hardware
  • Configuring and testing the hardware
  • Choosing frequency/band
  • Link budget calculation
  • Installation of Wi-Fi hardware
  • Antenna alignment
  • Bandwidth measurement
  • Connecting to backhaul


  • Basic set up of FreedomBox
  • Setting up DHCP for entire network
  • Setting up Internet connection
  • Configuring SIP server (repro)
  • Configuring Ampache
  • Configuring NextCloud
  • Automatic security updates
  • Setting up bandwidth control
  • Setting up remote access into FreedomBox
  • Setting up monitoring tool

Post installation

  • Registrations for users
  • Installing apps and configuring mobile phones for all services
  • Launch event
  • Monitoring
  • Building a village support team
  • Planning for computer availability in the village


Siddhartha Malempati +91-9490098016 Sunil Mohan Adapa +91-9848880699