Oregonian writer tries out nascent network: Mike Rogoway has spent a lot of time writing about and looking at the MetroFi network that launched in parts of Portland last week, and his tests after the wire cutting are all over the board in terms of access and performance. It's far too early to draw any long-term judgments about the network, but they did launch it, which means critique is fair game at locations that are considered inside the current service area. Some early users are already grumbling loudly; no reports on early satisfied users, who tend to be much quieter.
Rogoway notes that interior coverage has always been described as perhaps requiring a wireless bridge, although he was able to get great coverage in his newspaper's office. (Intentional network design? Probably dumb luck.) The reporter bought a Buffalo AirStation unit recommended by MetroFi among other choices, although Buffalo's tech support told Rogoway it's not really designed for the purpose MetroFi recommends. Nonetheless, he got it working.
I would suspect a Ruckus or PepLink bridge would work better and be vastly simpler to configure. MetroFi links to a installation and equipment sales partner who is offering a Ruckus bridge for just $100 until Dec. 31. That includes the software upgrade that allows the Ruckus MetroFlex to have two virtual network interfaces, using one to connect to the metro-scale network and the other to provide Wi-Fi service as a wireless LAN using lower power.