Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

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thebeline
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Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

Post by thebeline » Mon Apr 10, 2017 2:30 pm

I am not even sure this will work, but I am willing to experiment.

I have recently acquired a few dozen Paradyne ADSL 4-port wireless switches. They have TNETW1130GVF mini pci wireless cards. I want to set up point-to-point networks with them, but as I understand it, the 1130's don't support WDS or any point-to-point connectivity (as best my research can tell). What I did find is that the TNETW1350A chipsets do.

So, my question is two parts.

One: Is it generally possible to replace the PCI wireless cards in devices such as these, and, after a flash, have a working device with the functionality of the new card? As I understand it, the drivers in the Firmware would be the deciding factor in the support and functionality supported, so I am hoping the answer is a general "yes".

Two: In todays day and age, where would one find a wholesale lot of these cards? More spcifically, I suppose, what cards would I be looking for? I know wrt the cards currently installed, the chipsets are TNET1130GVFs, but it would seem the cards themselves are G-650s (unsure of the brand).

After a lot of looking, I did come accross one device using the 1350's that I could get a card name from. the ZyXEL P-660HW-D1, which uses a ZyXEL G-663 mini-pci radio with the TNET1350A chipset. I can not seem to find any more, however. And further, I would not know where to look to get a lot of these (or any) cards. I know eBay, obviously, but there don't seem to be many/any there that I can make heads or tails of.

I suppose a third question could be: Do I need the 1350 explicitly? Or are there other chipsets/cards I could use? Can you mix and match chipset manufacturers? What kind of constraints am I looking at?

I imagine the consensus for what I want to do (a network with a few distributed backhauls, and two of these devices working together, one as a downlink to the backhaul, and one as an AP), is going to be forget it and go with something newer all together. Which I am considering, but I have a handfull of these devices, they aren't "terrible," and comparing what I want to do (breaking out the SMA connectors, and making enclosures for two boards and external antennas) with what I would either need to do, or need to pay to get equivalent weather-resistant COTS equipment, it is looking to be about even (with this having the added bennifit of being neat...).

Any and All help appreciated. Even if it's to tell me to give up.

FWIW (and I should probably have started with this) I have successfully gotten RT FW on these devices (ar7wrd-pspboot-firmware-4ports) and everything works, I just need the point-to-point functionality. I considered OpenWRT, but their images lack the checksum, and i can't get past that point... :-( *shrugs*

Thanks again.
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thechief
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Re: Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

Post by thechief » Mon Apr 10, 2017 3:56 pm

Your idea could work, but you would be advised to run a pilot first. Have a look at this thread for a list of devices that are listed as having the 1350A wireless chip (just look for "1350A" on all the pages) and see if you can get any of them cheaply on ebay. I doubt that you will find many - but you should find at least one. Then you can use that as an experiment. Note that you will need to check the bootloaders, etc, for compatibility ...

As for where you will get a bulk purchase, it will be China/Taiwan.
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thebeline
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Re: Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

Post by thebeline » Mon Apr 10, 2017 4:06 pm

Few to none available. I am thinking i may need to not try and fix a square peg in a round hole..
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Re: Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

Post by thechief » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:43 pm

Well, a quick search found these:
142331229810
232232225964
232283889979
192086538333

And (possibly) this: 322477113912
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Re: Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

Post by thebeline » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:52 pm

Maybe should have mentioned I am US-based. :lol:

I also found these: 112280967329

Which have dual radios and mesh networking built in... Only issue is they are not weatherproof. That said, they are only $4usd per. I would still need an enclosure, and (potentially) antennas (we'll see), but it eliminates some unknowns, gets me wireless N, and (should) be more plug-and-play.

I wish I could have just pulled it off with the kit I just picked up, but alas... :(
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Re: Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

Post by thebeline » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:53 pm

Would also need POE injectors, but I have a few of those from another project, so that is a wash.
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Re: Where to get wholesale lots of mini pci cards

Post by thechief » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:58 pm

Good luck!
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