Sharing my wireless - but making people sign up?

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livingfortoday

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Nov 17, 2004
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The Msp
Ok, so I've spent a good deal of time searching the forums, but I can't seem to find the specific answer I'm looking for.. so, sorry, but here's another "networking help needed!" topic.

I've been traveling a lot lately, and I thought to myself, why not leave my wireless network open for people to around me to be able to use while I'm not using it? I don't want a month's worth of internet to go to waste, you know? But then I started worrying that someone might get up to no good on my network, and what if there were a way that I could track who got on the network? Not necessarily what they did or where they went, but just maybe make people set up a user name to get on the network? It'd be free, since I just want to do this every now and then, and can't resell my internet service like that, but I have no clue where to begin. Does anyone have any ideas about how I could set something like this up, or even if it's a good idea?

Edit: The other problem is, I've been looking through my Terms of Service, and I'm not sure, but I feel that doing this (even for free, as I am planning), would violate those terms:

"resell the Service or otherwise make available to anyone outside the Premises the ability to use the Service (i.e. wi-fi, or other methods of networking), in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, or on a bundled or unbundled basis. The Service is for personal and non-commercial use only and you agree not to use the Service for operation as an Internet service provider or for any business enterprise or purpose, or as an end-point on a non-Comcast local area network or wide area network;"
Thoughts, suggestions, profanity, general assistance? Thanks!
 

NATO

macrumors 68000
Feb 14, 2005
1,692
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Northern Ireland
Not sure if this is an option or if it's even workable, but if it's people you know you could set up MAC Address filtering through your router - basically only allowing specific devices to connect, even if they have correct login details. Means you retain a bit of control as to who uses the network.
 

livingfortoday

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Nov 17, 2004
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NATO said:
Not sure if this is an option or if it's even workable, but if it's people you know you could set up MAC Address filtering through your router - basically only allowing specific devices to connect, even if they have correct login details. Means you retain a bit of control as to who uses the network.
Well, I'd want anyone in my building to be able to use it, I just want to be able to see who did, later, in case I ever need to be able to show that numerous people used my connection. I suppose I am still technically at fault since it is *my* connection they're using, it still seems like it might be a little bit of a deterrent.

If I can't do a login page, maybe I could just have a page pop up when people get on that asks them not to do stupid, illegal things? And then has a little "OK" button they'd have to click? Just to shame them into doing the right thing.
 

balamw

Moderator
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Aug 16, 2005
19,368
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New England
livingfortoday said:
That sounds cool, but unfortunately I use Comcast, which apparently won't go along with this.
If they won't allow FON, it's also doubtful they'll allow you to share it when you roll your own sharing solution.

B
 

tabaczka

macrumors member
Sep 5, 2006
59
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Its like sharing cable. Its illegal. They consider Wi-Fi the same thing as a cable. Obviously drilling holes to all of your buildings computers and giving them all ethernet cords is illegal.

Its nice of you to want to help other people. In this case it might be better to just leave the network empty...

If your want to use your internet while you are gone. Try looking for some distributed computing projects (there is a piticularly good one for cancer somewhere on the net). Or maybe download and seed some bittorrent files of interest to you?
 

Allotriophagy

macrumors 6502a
Sep 5, 2006
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tabaczka said:
Its like sharing cable. Its illegal. They consider Wi-Fi the same thing as a cable. Obviously drilling holes to all of your buildings computers and giving them all ethernet cords is illegal.
It is not illegal; it just contravenes the terms of service which he agreed to when signing up with his provider. Which means they would have to discover the breach and terminate the contract, triggering any other clauses (such as demand for full payment of the outstanding subscription).
 

tabaczka

macrumors member
Sep 5, 2006
59
0
Allotriophagy said:
It is not illegal; it just contravenes the terms of service which he agreed to when signing up with his provider. Which means they would have to discover the breach and terminate the contract, triggering any other clauses (such as demand for full payment of the outstanding subscription).
Well.. maybe its just me but getting my internet stripped from me is as bad as getting in trouble with the law, so illegal could be used to discribe a breech of contract. :p
 

BlueRevolution

macrumors 603
Jul 26, 2004
6,054
1
Montreal, QC
tabaczka said:
Its like sharing cable. Its illegal. They consider Wi-Fi the same thing as a cable. Obviously drilling holes to all of your buildings computers and giving them all ethernet cords is illegal.

Its nice of you to want to help other people. In this case it might be better to just leave the network empty...

If your want to use your internet while you are gone. Try looking for some distributed computing projects (there is a piticularly good one for cancer somewhere on the net). Or maybe download and seed some bittorrent files of interest to you?
I'd just like to add that drilling holes for ethernet cables isn't illegal either, although it might really, really tick off your landlord. Also, I think it's funny that you're suggesting downloading off Bittorrent as a legal alternative to breach of contract - not that Bittorrent is by definition piracy, but there is sure a good overlap.

You could think about finding a different ISP. I know for example that there's a freenet in Ottawa that offers ADSL for cheaper than the normal sources, and allows web hosting and sharing and all the goodies to boot.
 

livingfortoday

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Nov 17, 2004
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The Msp
Ok, well, everything aside (I found the Bittorrent thing funny too, btw) - would it be possible to do the starting page that people would see when they got on my network? Even if I don't ever share my network, this would be cool to know how to do.
 

EricNau

Moderator emeritus
Apr 27, 2005
10,648
31
San Francisco, CA
Allotriophagy said:
It is not illegal; it just contravenes the terms of service which he agreed to when signing up with his provider. Which means they would have to discover the breach and terminate the contract, triggering any other clauses (such as demand for full payment of the outstanding subscription).
Stealing or assisting others to steal cable TV/Internet is a Federal crime in the United States.
 

EricNau

Moderator emeritus
Apr 27, 2005
10,648
31
San Francisco, CA
Emphasis mine:
It is not only illegal to steal cable services, it is also illegal to assist others to steal cable services. In fact, federal law provides for criminal penalties and civil remedies against people who willfully, assist others to steal cable services. Such assistance can take the form of distributing "pirate" cable television descrambling equipment, assisting others to make unauthorized connections to cable systems, promoting the free use of one's wireless broadband network, or assisting others to hack into their modems and uncap them.
http://www.twctheft.com/TypeOfTheft.aspx


This is covered under 47 USC 533.
 

richard4339

macrumors 6502a
Sep 6, 2006
862
81
Illinois
What if he asked for payment of 1 cent per month? Then he wouldn't be providing free access to his wireless broadband. Would that be illegal? (I'm honestly curious)
 

EricNau

Moderator emeritus
Apr 27, 2005
10,648
31
San Francisco, CA
richard4339 said:
What if he asked for payment of 1 cent per month? Then he wouldn't be providing free access to his wireless broadband. Would that be illegal? (I'm honestly curious)
Yes. Essentially, it is stealing from the cable company, not the paying subscriber.
 
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