Philly Mesh aspires to be a community-owned mesh network in the Greater Philadelphia Area (including Philly’s suburbs, parts of New Jersey, and Delaware). Appealing to networking enthusiasts, cypherpunks, programmers, and general tinkerers, Philly Mesh hopes to create a volunteer-run mesh network built from the ground up. We aim to use off-the shelf hardware and open source-source software to create a robust network for hobbyists, communities, or those in need of network access.

Since 2013, the ultimate goal of Philly Mesh has been to devise a strong, secure network within the city limits to provide wireless coverage. A mesh network follows a peer-to-peer, decentralized structure. Routers, referred to as “nodes,” link together wirelessly, avoiding the centrality of ISPs. With mesh, anyone could run their own node and join the network!

As of March 2020, Philly Mesh is looking for leadership and volunteers to build the mesh network. We currently have no active infrastructure, we are looking for people willing to get their hands dirty and try things out!

Discussions and tests in 2019 to build upon the bmx7 protocol, implemented on commodity hardware running OpenWRT or Linux/BSD proved to be popular, but nothing has been concretely implemented. Additional talks occurred regarding the experimental Yggdrasil protocol for an end-to-end encrypted IPv6 networking on top of the network.

Previously, Philly Mesh was running cjdns and allowed connection to Hyperboria, a global decentralized meshnet and internetwork of nodes.

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