Meshtastic

OpenThread, Useful? Pratical?

While reading another post I noticed this gem:

OpenThread

Thread® is an IPv6-based networking protocol designed for low-power Internet of Things devices in an IEEE 802.15.4-2006 wireless mesh network, commonly called a Wireless Personal Area Network (WPAN). Thread is independent of other 802.15 mesh networking protocols, such a ZigBee, Z-Wave, and Bluetooth LE.

I’ve been noticing posts that touch on a number of ideas, often in long threads that have wandered beyond the original topic (scope creep). So I figured I’d occasionally dig something out and start a focused discussion to see how useful, and how practical something may be as well as see what kind of general interest t has.

So, OpenThread. Could it be the One Mesh (The one ring to rule them all ref) that could allow some form of interoperability (especially as an option) of different projects?

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One thing that helps is that the rest of meshtastic tries to be pretty agnostic on what the actual transport is at the bottom.

I initially looked at qmesh and reticulum and they both looked really cool but also still pretty ‘alpha’. I also looked a lot at disaster.radio but its implementation was super power inefficient and not really designed with off-the-shelf radios in mind.

So for our current transport: I initially used the mesh router that was part of RadioHead. Then I added flood routing and substantially lowered battery consumption (by letting the main CPU stay in light sleep). Later - for more support for more radios, I changed the phy layer to be based on RadioLib rather than RadioHead.

If someone wants to do the evaluation and effort to port our transport to use qmesh/reticulum or openthread I think that would be great. My personal queue of tasks (nearterm: more devices, multi channel support, mqtt, global messaging gateway and store in forward messaging) are more in areas that are ‘above’ the transport layer.

For the current (and nearterm - next six months?) usecases I suspect the current transport is adequate, but eventually we will want something better.

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