Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Calculating Line-of-sight and the Quest for internet


We currently live in an area not served by cable or DSL, and our internet options are satellite or microwave internet.  Microwave internet is the best choice for us because of the lower latency in the microwave signal - much better for video conferencing and working with distant co-workers in real time.

Microwave internet works by line-of-sight from a dish at the property in question to a microwave tower.  

Right now Ryan and I are in the process of finding a new place to live, and I check line-of-sight from each place we look at to different microwave towers in the Bitterroot Valley, to make sure that we would have internet coverage if we lived there.

How to Calculate Line-of-sight

To calculate line-of-sight, first locate your point (in this case a house) using hillmap.com.  Make sure you're on the Paths tab on Hillmap.

Click on the map at your first location, and then click on the point of your second location (in this case the microwave tower).  Hillmap will draw a line between the two points.


A path drawn between a house and a microwave tower
The Paths tab is circled in purple, the Profile button is circled in red
Click on the Profile button on the upper left hand of the screen, and a path profile window will pop up, similar to the one below.  The blue graph at the top of the window shows the elevation changes between the two points.


If you have a clear line-of-sight, the graph will not have any big bumps between your two points.  An obstructed line-of-sight will have big bumps between the two points, showing that there are hills in the way.  Hills will block the microwave internet signal.  The graph above shows a pretty clear line-of-sight.




This graph above shows an obstructed line-of-sight.  Of course, this analysis only includes topography and not trees, towers or other obstacles that can block your line-of-sight.  You can check the Satellite map on hillmap.com to see if the location you are looking at has thick tree cover, but a site visit is probably necessary to get a true idea of trees and other obstacles.



This Satellite image shows a thick band of trees on the hill just below the house I'm concerned about, indicating a possible blockage to the line-of-sight.  If the tree tops are low enough, the signal may be able to pass.

48 comments:

Gerald said...

How do you enter the height above terrain of the microwave tower?

Jen Gregory said...

The short answer is, there is no way on hillmap to enter the hight of the tower above the terrain.

If you know the area then calculating the line of sight may give you enough information to know if there's a good possibility of the line of site existing and if it's worth your time to gather more info (go in person to see if line of sight exists, etc.)

Unknown said...

Great info - thanks!

Seems I am missing something here. What's the red graph? There is no scale shown on the vertical axis and I can't find anything in any of the help/blog pages. Thanks.

(By the way, the tower problem is fairly easily solved. If you draw a line from start to end on the profile, that's the line of sight - obstructed by anything that is above it of course. If you take that profile and draw a point on it the height of the tower above that end point then draw the line, some of the obstructions will no longer be above that line.)

Sameed said...

I am putting forth is for genuine lenders that not have the cash just, but rather perceive what they are doing, I can help just the individuals who are looking for huge interest in Buildings or Houses, I have great contacts with enormous names in Dubai, for example, ezEstate Dubai and whatever remains of UAE business sector; Designers, Adviser, Service suppliers and Building Material Dealers.
https://ezestate.com/rera-rental-increase-calculator.html

Unknown said...

How do i use line of sight on Google map

Unknown said...

Great information on your site here. I love this post because we can get some useful information from your blog. I expect more post from you guys.
hacking forum

Telephone Engineer said...

Found this blog very useful as I do install line of sight internet (WIMAX) and 3G/4G solutions for rural locations or where people just have slow broadband
Rural Broadband Solutions

Oliver Maurice said...

You need to follow this link for some info on how to write a great paper to even get yourself a sociology major. Good luck wt that

Jay Jonna Jameson said...

You may also view here some more useful information.

Unknown said...

Learn Percentage calculator app, Percent calculator includes: Tip calculator and discount calculator. Install this app and get a lot of calculations. Find out more: percentage change calculator app

Stephine said...

Microwave internet is the great desire for us due to the lower latency within the microwave signal. I take a look at line-of-sight from Purchase Assignment Online each area we take a look at to different microwave towers inside the sour root Valley. The top left hand of the display screen and a direction profile window will pop up similar to the only underneath.

Angel Claudia said...

Students who encounter trouble with completing their nursing assignment writing service and book report writing service can contact our company as we have expert writers in the field.

Richard turner said...

Thanks for all the tips mentioned in this article! it’s always good to read things you have heard before and are implementing, but from a different perspective, always pick up some extra bits of information. Visit@
norton.com/setup
office.com/setup
office.com/setup
mcafee.com/activate

Alisah Wilson said...

Are you facing any problem in any subject, Now Order assignment help and get 40% discount for you coming semesters. we have experts team always there for you.
Assignment Help
Dissertation Writing Services UK

Chris Greenwalty said...

Good calculations. Being a masters dissertation writing services expert, I would like to appreciate you guys for this and I am sure that more things would be provided by you.

HP Printer Support said...

Thanks for all the tips mentioned in this article!

Brother printer support | Lexmark Printer Support | Canon Printer Support | Epson Printer Support | HP printer support

norton.com/setup said...

I really happy found this website eventually. Really informative and inoperative, Thanks for the post and effort! Please keep sharing more such blog.

norton.com/setup

norton.com/setup

mcafee.com/activate

kaspersky activation code

free pogo games

roadrunner email

aol mail

Unknown said...

I gathered more unknown important information from your blog. But I had a problem regarding the internet connection. I have been using an Apple device and using iTunes for file sharing. But when I wanted to share anything with other devices by iTunes at that time 0xe8000065 pop-up notification shown on my device and disconnect the internet.

shyam cj said...

A Voice NOC Technician handles assignments related to the voice application systems and voice network, including designing, planning, developing, testing, deploying, and maintaining them, and supporting their associated hardware and software. It is the responsibility of Voice Network Technicians to ensure that Voice over Internet Protocols (VoIP) are working efficiently 24x7 by troubleshooting issues.

Chris Albert said...

managed router pricing

A wide-area network, or WAN, connects and communicates with multiple local-area networks, or LANs.

Natchi said...


Agenter – First Commission Networking Platform
A platform that creates employment opportunities for everyone who can earn commission as freelancers, agent and common people.

JessicaBritt said...

I work as a marketing specialist and staff author at Externetworks which is a pioneer in Managed Technology Services with over 17+ years of experience in providing end-to-end solutions featuring design, deployment and 24*7 support to top IT companies. We offer world-class managed services for businesses to stay agile & profitable. Our services include 24/7 Network Monitoring, Uptime maintenance, NOC Support, IT Helpdesk services.

Read more at: sd wan

Unknown said...

Writing a professional marketing plan is a quite a challenging and time-consuming task. If you do not want to spend the sleepless nights creating it, do not hesitate to place the order at https://topwritingservice.com/writing-a-marketing-plan/ All you need to do is just to place the order and pay for this services.

Adam n Eve said...

I Enjoyed reading your blog it was amazing keep contribution toward online presence
will come back to read more.

norton.com/setup | www.norton.com/setup | my.norton.com | www.hulu.com/activate | hulu.com/activate

Yejefol said...

This global network of computer networks, largely based nowadays on platforms of wireless communication, provides ubiquitous capacity of multimodal, interactive communication in the chosen time, transcending space.
death stranding jacket

Digits me said...



office.com/setup Each version of the Microsoft Office Setup needs a product code to complete its activation process.
norton.com/setup The world is full of cybercriminals, and various online thefts alongside online data leaks are increasing day by day.
office.com/setup Get Microsoft Office setup from office setup, by entering the product key and logging into your account.
mcafee.com/activate McAfee antivirus offers complete protection to their users for securing their data against malware
norton.com/setup The digital world is communicated through the internet, and it’s the major source of various information circulated on the web
mcafee.com/activate McAfee Antivirus is the world’s highly used Antivirus programs that remove the malware and infection and avoids the chances of security threats



Elon Brown said...

Norton.com/setup - Norton.com/setup offers top-notch features to protect your online data spread across the various devices. The features include timely updates,customized scanning, detection and protection from virus and malware.



Jack Anderson said...

Really very happy to say,your post is very interesting to read.I never stop myself to say something about it.You’re doing a great job.Keep it up .
Webroot.com/Safe | webroot.com/safe | mcafee.com/activate | mcafee.com/activate

Jack Anderson said...

Usually I never comment on blogs but your article is so convincing that I never stop myself to say something about it. You’re doing a great job Man,Keep it up.
mcafee.com/activate | mcafee.com/activate | mcafee.com/activate

denial patel said...

This blog is very helpful for every visitor. I really impressed your written style. I will come back to the website to read your blogs.Beth dutton coat Thanks for sharing and keep sharing.

Eliana Jones said...

Thanks for taking the time to share with us such a great article. I found such a significant number of fascinating stuff with regards to your blog particularly its discussion. Keep doing awesome.
Office.com/Setup | McAfee Activate

nortoncsafe said...

Norton.com/setup - sign in to norton account and enter norton setup product key at www.norton.com/setup to download and install norton in your device.
setup-norton
norton.com/setup/

nortoncsafe said...

steps to find hulu activation code for hulu and activate hulu on roku ,Enter hulu.com/activation code at www.hulu.com/activate to activate hulu device https://wwhulucom-activate.sitey.me/

wcomwebroot said...

www.webroot.com/safe with webroot account . Install a webroot.com/safe with a webroot safe account, create a wcom webroot.com account if you do not have any. In case you have already a webroot safe account login to your webroot account. Inside your webroot.com/safe account, you will find a place to add a new key code.
www.webroot.com/safe
webroot.com/safe
webroot safe

wcomwebroot said...

1.Open the webroot application in your device or at www.webroot.com/safe. 2.Activation wizard screen will appear on the screen. 3.Enter webroot activation code and click on activate button. 4.You have successfully activated webroot on your device.
www.webroot.com/safe
webrootsafe.com
us-webrootsafe product key

Airlines@123 said...

Qatar Airways Booking Thanks for the nice blog. It was very useful for me. I’m happy I found this blog. Thank you for sharing with us,I too always learn something new from your post.

epsonprinter247 said...

Epson Laser Printer Setup Thanks for the information provided by you it’s really great to help from your side but I got the complete solution from the mentioned site

AirLines247 said...

Allegiant Airlines Reservations Thanks for sharing such a nice blog. I really appreciate that please keep on posting more Blogs like this Thank you.

Elon Brown said...

We generally attempt to discover and searching for some best articles who give us extraordinary data and heaps of ideal stuff. Your substance is one of them and I truly welcome this
kick n click
kick n click

lily grace said...

Canon printer that can be downloaded via canon.com/ijsetup page is the best wireless printer that you can connect to your device and print data smoothly. Canon ijsetup CD is not the well-suited technique to use canon.comijsetup setup installation for longer.
canon.com/ijsetup |
ij start canon |
ij.start.canon |
canon ij setup |
canon ij printer setup

lily grace said...

Access the Norton account by going to www.norton.com/enroll webpage and register your subscription. At norton.com/enroll URL, you can enroll Norton product and secure your data, devices, and other online works and network. Sign in to Norton, download, and install Norton.
norton.com/enroll |
www.norton.com/enroll |
webroot.com/secure |
www.webroot.com/secure

lily grace said...

It has become very easy to get your code for the activation process of your Device just you need to follow some single step to unlock and active your Hulu Device
hulu.com/activate |
www.hulu.com/activate |
123.hp.com/setup |
123.hp.com setup

Movie Jackets said...

It was a very good post indeed. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it in my lunch time.
Halloween Leather Jackets

Movie Jackets said...

Amazing .. Will surely come and visit this blog more often. Thanks for sharing.

Cobra Kai Jacket

New American Store said...

Thank you for this great contribution, I find it very interesting and well thought out and put together. I hope to read your work in the future.
Harley Quinn Jacket

Saint Peter said...


Hey, I’m Saint. I’m a web developer living in Chase City, Virginia, United States, 23924. I am a fan of technology, writing, and web development. You can read my blog with a click on the button Below.
Mcafee.com/activate

Saint Peter said...

Hey, I’m Saint. I’m a web developer living in Chase City, Virginia, United States, 23924. I am a fan of technology, writing, and web development. You can read my blog with a click on the button Below.
Mcafee.com/activate

Alizabeth said...

I liked the battva posts in the blog you shared. Every column was so interesting. The features are very much enlightening. I love the work very much. Thanks for sharing this with us.