Questions about how things work


#1

Sorry for lack of knowledge just had a few questions about how things work.

First I’ll explain how I think this works and please inform me what I have wrong.

The argon is a microcontroller/processor that is like a router that sends out wifi to create a network.

The xenon is a WiFi repeater that extends the network allowing any device connected to the wifi to talk to all other devices.

If this is correct I have some questions if these ideas will work on this environment.

If I connect a laptop / raspberry pi to this network can I control each other devices connected Photon, argon, xenon, to say blink a led that’s connected to the gpio pins? Like if raspberry pi has a led, argon has one and xenon having one.

If I connect a xenon to a router through Ethernet could I have the same environment skipping the argon?

Could I run this all as a private network that has no connection to the internet only a at home/portable in range setup?

If I connect the argon or xenon/router to the internet could I ssh and control all the devices from another location?

Or does the mesh network not allow other devices to connect to it only mesh particle products?

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I am very new to microcontrollers iot programming and networking in general.


#2

That’s a lot of questions, but I’ll try to answer some of them.

Let’s start with Mesh VS WiFi. Though they both use the same 2.4GHz, they’re different technologies, and aren’t compatible. That means that all your mesh devices create a Mesh network, to which other compatible Mesh devices can connect. This is specifically using OpenThread, not wifi or Bluetooth as is often assumed. For the time being, it’s Particle devices only, but in the future compatibility with other OpenThread products might become available too.

What does the above mean? If you hook up a mesh device with a connection to the internet (cellular, wifi or ethernet) then that device can act as a gateway for other devices, allowing them to connect to the internet via the Mesh network even though the might not have an internet connection themselves. As said before, this will only work with Mesh devices, so you won’t be able to connect your laptop or RPI to the Mesh because they have neither the hardware nor the software for it.

Devices connected in the Mesh can be controlled from both inside as well as outside (providing there’s a connected gateway). You can program the devices to talk to each other internally (not internet needed) or over the web using the cloud. Additionally there’s a REST API available that’ll allow you to talk to the devices using the cloud.

Hope that helps. Let us know if you have other questions. Additionally, there’s always the docs.particle.io where you can have a deeper look at how things ought to work.


#3

Thank you very much this actually explained a lot and helped! Unfortunately seems like the mesh system is not going to suit my needs for my project ideas.