5g explained by ILSR



This book is a practical guide to designing and building wireless networks in local communities written by subject matter experts who have vast experience in deploying wireless networks in the field and connecting communities to the global Internet.


Wireless internet 101

The Institute for Local Self Reliance has made this over view on the basics of wireless:

Tower Climbing safety videos

Here you can find some tower safety videos on how to insure your tower technicians are working safely. For more videos on tower safety, click here.

Tower inspection
Tower climbing safety
PPE inspection
Remote tower climbing safety
Night time tower climbing

Roof installation safety video

Here you can find a short video on rooftop installation safety.

Wireless Networking in the Developing World

“This book is a practical guide to designing and building wireless networks in local communities, enhancing lives through improved communication, access to information for educational, social and economic growth. Its primary goal is to help expand access to the Internet and to expand the deployment of community networks where there is currently no infrastructure to enable this to happen. Written by subject matter experts who have vast experience in deploying wireless networks in the field and connecting communities to the global Internet.” For more information you can find the free book here:


DIY Wireless ISP (WISP)

This guide is focused on the very earliest stages of starting a WISP - determining feasibility up through connecting the first few customers. It includes step by step information.


Neighborhood Network Construction Kit Do-it-ourselves Guide to Community Networks

The Neighborhood Network Construction Kit is a set of documentation resources from the Open Technology Institute. Open Technology has used these tools in workshops around the world and in the United States. It is a “diy” guide to building community wireless networks.

Wi-Fi and wireless networking for community anchor institutions

The Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition suggests that supporting Wi-Fi and wireless networking for community anchor institutions is crucial. Community anchors include tribal government buildings, community centers, schools, libraries and casinos. According to the SHLB doing this will improve education, learning, and medical care. This action plan provides a series of strategies and recommendations curated by the coalition.

2021 Tribal Wireless Bootcamp (Session 6)

This session discusses LTE basics.

2021 Tribal Wireless Bootcamp Network Planning (Session 3)

This session discusses wired and wireless networks, frequencies, antenna patterns, and basic networks builds.

2021 Tribal Wireless Bootcamp (Session 2)

This session discusses wireless and wired networks.

2021 Tribal Wireless Bootcamp Wired vs. Wireless

2022 Tribal Broadband Bootcamp (Session 2)

This session discusses digital literacy, the NDIA (The National Digital Inclusion Alliance), digital navigators, best practices for wireless and open source LTE, and business models.

Supporting links\videos:

2022 Tribal Broadband Bootcamp: LTE 2.5 GHz (Session 3)

This session discusses wireless and 2.5 GHz LTE.

2022 Tribal Broadband Bootcamp virtual training: LTE & Wireless

Example of wireless BOM (bill of materials)


Broadband technology relates to a high-speed, higher bandwidth connection to the internet used to transmit data, voice, and video across long distances.

The greater bandwidth of a broadband connection, the more data can be transmitted at higher speeds.  The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ruled in 2015 that, to be considered broadband internet, the service must offer download and upload speeds of at least 25 and 3 megabits per second. The six main types of broadband technologies are digital subscriber line (DSL), cable modem, fiber, wireless, satellite, and broadband over power lines (BPL).

Digital subscriber line (DSL)

DSL technology uses copper telephone lines to deliver a high-bandwidth connection to the Internet, with typical data transmission speeds ranging from 512 Kbps to 1.5 Mbps (millions of bits per second). DSL service requires a certain proximity to the DSL provider's central office. There are two main types of DSL technologies: asymmetrical digital subscriber line (ADSL) and symmetrical digital subscriber line (SDSL). ADSL is asymmetrical because its users receive a lot of data but do not send a lot of data. SDSL is primarily used by businesses that require fast speeds for both sending and receiving large amounts of data. 

Cable Modem

Cable modems use the coaxial cables used by cable companies to send pictures and sound to your television and allow for data transmission. Cable modems are external devices that provide speeds of 1.5 Mbps or more. Speeds vary depending on the option selected from your cable provider, the cable modem, and internet traffic.


Fiber broadband uses fiber optic technology that converts electrical signals to light. These electrical signals carry the data and are sent through transparent glass fibers. Fiber transmits data significantly faster than DSL and cable modems, usually by tens or hundreds of Mbps. Fiber connections can also deliver voice and video and can be an alternative to traditional cable connections.


Wireless broadband is either mobile or fixed, it transmits data using radio signals from ISP's facility to the customer's location. Wireless can provide long-range transmissions to areas that are remote and do not have access to DSL, cable, or fiber. The speed of wireless is similar to DSL and cable.


Satellite broadband is a form of wireless broadband that uses satellites in the earth's orbit to transmit data. Satellite provide broadband connectivity to remote areas. Satellite broadband speeds vary depending on many factors, but are generally 500 Kbps for downloads and 80 Kbps for uploads.

Broadband Over Powerlines (BPL)

BPL transmits data over existing power lines, it can be set up using a building's existing electrical system. Bpl supplies speeds similar to DSL and cable. BPL is a relatively new technology and is only available in select areas. However, using existing power lines reduces the need to build new costly infrastructure.

For more information, click here.