Sundown 2013 (the UK’s only Demoscene party) was back again this year in Budleigh Salterton, and once again it was a brilliant event with over 75 attendees from all over the UK and Europe.

We provided help with logistics, Networking, AV and power and anything else infrastructure related! This year we made a few changes to the normal setup …

Our Gear:

Since there is a very slim budget for Sundown, we needed the most cost effective gear we could find (and some of our stock items wherever possible!). We ended up with the following:

  • 2x 24 port Gigabit Network Switches
  • 3x 8 port Gigabit Network Switches
  • 1x Draytek ADSL Router (Routing, QoS, Bandwidth Allocation)
  • 1x Raspberry Pi (DHCP, local DNS + DNS cache)
  • 1x HP Microserver (chat server, IRC server, general-purpose backup box)
  • 3x TP-Link WiFi Access points (* see below)
  • 4x OpenMesh WiFi access points

Our AV gear (big screen, projector, PA and sound equipment) came from Stage Engage.

Very happy with the performance of our wired network this year – it was solid as a rock, with us able to quickly re-distribute what limited ADSL bandwidth we had for video streaming without affecting the rest of the network too much. Also, the Raspibian box easily kept up with demand – next year I think we’ll run IRC from another RasPi, vastly reducing the amount of kit we have to pack in the car!

In Pictures:

IMG_20130909_101857 IMG_20130909_101948 Screenshot_2013-09-09-10-21-05 IMG_20130909_102237 IMG_20130909_102147

More pictures: Steve Netting

Releases: Sundown 2013 on Pouet

Things we learnt:

People are bringing more wireless devices than ever (most attendees had a laptop, phone AND tablet), meaning our regular class C network subnet is nearing capacity – next year we’ll either steal another bit off the netmask or run two class C subnets with routing between them.

TP-Link WiFi access points are hard-limited to 15 client wifi connections! We found out about this at 8pm on friday when people started turning up en-mass and were unable to connect to any access points! We quickly turned to Plan-B (always have a contingency plan!), some un-tested fresh out-of-the-box OpenMesh WiFi gear that we’ll be deploying from the start next time.

Our fairy lights were a bit inadequate this year as lighting for our operations desk – we’ll get some proper lamps next year!

We need a proper Video mixing desk – since we have to support all sorts of inputs (composite, VGA, DVI, HDMI), input switching and fiddling around with plugging cables into the projector in the dark was a bit of a faff.

See you next year!