SatComms, Windows 10 and RedBox


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Malcolm.Blackwell
Malcolm.Blackwell
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We are changing our FB150 for a Fleet 100 and updating the laptop we use on board from windows 7 to 10. We use this system mainly for emails (through mailasail using Thunderbird) and weather info whilst on passage. Before we turned off the auto update feature in windows 7 whilst on passage and it worked well. I am being advised I now need to put some form of firewall in between the Fleet 100 and the laptop to stop excess data usage and updates etc.  The Redbox is being recommended although I do not need its 3G /4G and wifi capabilities so seems an expensive 'box' for the task.
Anyone have any experience of using the Redbox or any suggestions on other solutions I should look at? 
Dick
Dick
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Malcolm.Blackwell - 30 Mar 2021
We are changing our FB150 for a Fleet 100 and updating the laptop we use on board from windows 7 to 10. We use this system mainly for emails (through mailasail using Thunderbird) and weather info whilst on passage. Before we turned off the auto update feature in windows 7 whilst on passage and it worked well. I am being advised I now need to put some form of firewall in between the Fleet 100 and the laptop to stop excess data usage and updates etc.  The Redbox is being recommended although I do not need its 3G /4G and wifi capabilities so seems an expensive 'box' for the task.
Anyone have any experience of using the Redbox or any suggestions on other solutions I should look at? 
Hi Malcolm,
For all things sat-comm related (and SSB interface/modem related), I would turn to Jeremy (or John) at UUPlus (http://www.uuplus.com/). They have always given excellent advice from a very practical point of view and have been willing to talk even if there is no immediate likelihood of sales.
I remember discussing Redbox back in the day, chose to go in another direction, but forget all the details as to my reasoning.
My best, Dick Stevenson, s/v Alchemy



Chris.Pink
Chris.Pink
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Hi Malcolm,
Although unsure of how much help it will be to your required system and usage, I'm content to report that we have a Redbox which we are very happy with. It is primarily installed to allow easy use (for us) of an Iridium satellite base station for at-sea weather and general comms. The satellite phone/ base station is simply plugged into the Redbox which in turn is connected via wifi to our laptop, which operates as the data terminal. The Redbox performs all the data compression and firewall policies to ensure our connection is optimised and efficient without the need for us to fiddle with laptop settings.
The other feature of our Redbox installation is that it operates as a router for all and any laptop, tablet and smartphone devices we wish to have on board (this feature is selectable). For those days when we are hunkered down in inclement weather near a reasonable wifi connection, our Redbox also becomes the router for that as well. We have had great advice and support over the years from Ed and his team at Mailasail.
With regards
Chris Pink
Malcolm.Blackwell
Malcolm.Blackwell
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Chris.Pink - 7 Apr 2021
Hi Malcolm,
Although unsure of how much help it will be to your required system and usage, I'm content to report that we have a Redbox which we are very happy with. It is primarily installed to allow easy use (for us) of an Iridium satellite base station for at-sea weather and general comms. The satellite phone/ base station is simply plugged into the Redbox which in turn is connected via wifi to our laptop, which operates as the data terminal. The Redbox performs all the data compression and firewall policies to ensure our connection is optimised and efficient without the need for us to fiddle with laptop settings.
The other feature of our Redbox installation is that it operates as a router for all and any laptop, tablet and smartphone devices we wish to have on board (this feature is selectable). For those days when we are hunkered down in inclement weather near a reasonable wifi connection, our Redbox also becomes the router for that as well. We have had great advice and support over the years from Ed and his team at Mailasail.
With regards
Chris Pink

Hi Chris
Thanks. When I transferred from Windows 7 to 10 I could not get the mailasail email system to work and I must admit Ed was very helpful in sorting this out. Had to change from Live Mail to Thunderbird and this fixed the problem.  Looks like your system and usage is very similar to ours so good to hear you are happy with it. We will not need the wifi part of Redbox as we have a separate system (Yachtspot) for getting 'external' wifi and the yacht has its own 'internal' wifi. 
Regards
Malcolm

Chris.Pink
Chris.Pink
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Malcolm.Blackwell - 8 Apr 2021
Chris.Pink - 7 Apr 2021
Hi Malcolm,
Although unsure of how much help it will be to your required system and usage, I'm content to report that we have a Redbox which we are very happy with. It is primarily installed to allow easy use (for us) of an Iridium satellite base station for at-sea weather and general comms. The satellite phone/ base station is simply plugged into the Redbox which in turn is connected via wifi to our laptop, which operates as the data terminal. The Redbox performs all the data compression and firewall policies to ensure our connection is optimised and efficient without the need for us to fiddle with laptop settings.
The other feature of our Redbox installation is that it operates as a router for all and any laptop, tablet and smartphone devices we wish to have on board (this feature is selectable). For those days when we are hunkered down in inclement weather near a reasonable wifi connection, our Redbox also becomes the router for that as well. We have had great advice and support over the years from Ed and his team at Mailasail.
With regards
Chris Pink

Hi Chris
Thanks. When I transferred from Windows 7 to 10 I could not get the mailasail email system to work and I must admit Ed was very helpful in sorting this out. Had to change from Live Mail to Thunderbird and this fixed the problem.  Looks like your system and usage is very similar to ours so good to hear you are happy with it. We will not need the wifi part of Redbox as we have a separate system (Yachtspot) for getting 'external' wifi and the yacht has its own 'internal' wifi. 
Regards
Malcolm

Hi Malcolm,
Thanks. Your point about moving from Live Mail to Thunderbird is interesting. We operate a Windows 10 (all latest updates included) and as of last year, when I last checked, Windows Live Mail worked fine through the Redbox and Iridium connection. I will look out for that and run a test when we re-join our boat when restrictions lift.
Regards
Chris
Malcolm.Blackwell
Malcolm.Blackwell
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Chris.Pink - 8 Apr 2021
Malcolm.Blackwell - 8 Apr 2021
Chris.Pink - 7 Apr 2021
Hi Malcolm,
Although unsure of how much help it will be to your required system and usage, I'm content to report that we have a Redbox which we are very happy with. It is primarily installed to allow easy use (for us) of an Iridium satellite base station for at-sea weather and general comms. The satellite phone/ base station is simply plugged into the Redbox which in turn is connected via wifi to our laptop, which operates as the data terminal. The Redbox performs all the data compression and firewall policies to ensure our connection is optimised and efficient without the need for us to fiddle with laptop settings.
The other feature of our Redbox installation is that it operates as a router for all and any laptop, tablet and smartphone devices we wish to have on board (this feature is selectable). For those days when we are hunkered down in inclement weather near a reasonable wifi connection, our Redbox also becomes the router for that as well. We have had great advice and support over the years from Ed and his team at Mailasail.
With regards
Chris Pink

Hi Chris
Thanks. When I transferred from Windows 7 to 10 I could not get the mailasail email system to work and I must admit Ed was very helpful in sorting this out. Had to change from Live Mail to Thunderbird and this fixed the problem.  Looks like your system and usage is very similar to ours so good to hear you are happy with it. We will not need the wifi part of Redbox as we have a separate system (Yachtspot) for getting 'external' wifi and the yacht has its own 'internal' wifi. 
Regards
Malcolm

Hi Malcolm,
Thanks. Your point about moving from Live Mail to Thunderbird is interesting. We operate a Windows 10 (all latest updates included) and as of last year, when I last checked, Windows Live Mail worked fine through the Redbox and Iridium connection. I will look out for that and run a test when we re-join our boat when restrictions lift.
Regards
Chris

Hi Chris
I will be interested to see how you get on. I took the laptop off the yacht and updated it from 7 to 10. After it updated itself it would not allow me to load the version of Live Mail that MailaSail have on their site and say one needs to make their system work. Therefore Ed suggested changing to Thunderbird and this loaded and worked first time.  I must admit I am a Mechanical Engineer so IT etc is not my strong suit!!
Regards
Malcolm

John Tait
John Tait
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Chris.Pink - 8 Apr 2021
Malcolm.Blackwell - 8 Apr 2021
Chris.Pink - 7 Apr 2021
Hi Malcolm,
Although unsure of how much help it will be to your required system and usage, I'm content to report that we have a Redbox which we are very happy with. It is primarily installed to allow easy use (for us) of an Iridium satellite base station for at-sea weather and general comms. The satellite phone/ base station is simply plugged into the Redbox which in turn is connected via wifi to our laptop, which operates as the data terminal. The Redbox performs all the data compression and firewall policies to ensure our connection is optimised and efficient without the need for us to fiddle with laptop settings.
The other feature of our Redbox installation is that it operates as a router for all and any laptop, tablet and smartphone devices we wish to have on board (this feature is selectable). For those days when we are hunkered down in inclement weather near a reasonable wifi connection, our Redbox also becomes the router for that as well. We have had great advice and support over the years from Ed and his team at Mailasail.
With regards
Chris Pink

Hi Chris
Thanks. When I transferred from Windows 7 to 10 I could not get the mailasail email system to work and I must admit Ed was very helpful in sorting this out. Had to change from Live Mail to Thunderbird and this fixed the problem.  Looks like your system and usage is very similar to ours so good to hear you are happy with it. We will not need the wifi part of Redbox as we have a separate system (Yachtspot) for getting 'external' wifi and the yacht has its own 'internal' wifi. 
Regards
Malcolm

Hi Malcolm,
Thanks. Your point about moving from Live Mail to Thunderbird is interesting. We operate a Windows 10 (all latest updates included) and as of last year, when I last checked, Windows Live Mail worked fine through the Redbox and Iridium connection. I will look out for that and run a test when we re-join our boat when restrictions lift.
Regards
Chris

I'll be interested in your experience Chris. I was looking at a Redbox to use to get weather for a Turkey/Madeira delivery I've been recruited for, although I can't see that happening before Spring 2022 as things stand.
Chris.Pink
Chris.Pink
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Hi John,
If you have any specific questions you would like answering concerning the installation or use of Mailasail's Redbox please let me know.
For us the Redbox performed as advertised, operating as a smart, compact wireless router which integrates our satellite communications and Wi-Fi connectivity (we will be adding mobile data cellular connectivity as well). The Redbox knows what you have connected and contains all the necessary driver, connection set-up and firewall firmware inside. Incidentally, as the outside world changes, Ed Wildgoose and his team at Mailasail provide any necessary firmware upgrades which are easy to install. We don't need to worry about configuring our connections or messing with our laptop firewalls, which I value enormously because there are plenty of other things to bother us when we are preparing the boat or going sailing.
If you have a more generic requirement for obtaining weather at sea, you might find a call to Mailasail worthwhile to see what system-solutions they might recommend.
Regards
Chris
John Tait
John Tait
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Chris.Pink - 15 Apr 2021
Hi John,
If you have any specific questions you would like answering concerning the installation or use of Mailasail's Redbox please let me know.
For us the Redbox performed as advertised, operating as a smart, compact wireless router which integrates our satellite communications and Wi-Fi connectivity (we will be adding mobile data cellular connectivity as well). The Redbox knows what you have connected and contains all the necessary driver, connection set-up and firewall firmware inside. Incidentally, as the outside world changes, Ed Wildgoose and his team at Mailasail provide any necessary firmware upgrades which are easy to install. We don't need to worry about configuring our connections or messing with our laptop firewalls, which I value enormously because there are plenty of other things to bother us when we are preparing the boat or going sailing.
If you have a more generic requirement for obtaining weather at sea, you might find a call to Mailasail worthwhile to see what system-solutions they might recommend.
Regards
Chris

Thanks Chris: yes I've been dealing with them for years, so I know how good they are.
GO

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