Tip: using GPS with your Pepwave MAX

Most Pepwave MAX routers feature a GPS receiver along with the embedded 4G LTE/3G modems.

Once a GPS antenna is connected, the Pepwave MAX router will start to receive, output and record the GPS location data. Internet connection or a SIM card is not required for the GPS receiver.

GPS signals do not penetrate concrete well, so for best GPS reception, it is recommended to use either an external GPS antenna or place the GPS antenna close to a window.

There are 3 ways to access the GPS location data.

1. Use a network client to connect to your Pepwave MAX router.

Once the Pepwave MAX router is receiving a GPS signal, it will output location data in NMEA sentences on TCP port 60660.

You can use telnet or any IP networking tools to connect to the Pepwave MAX router on TCP 60660 and view the NMEA sentences.

telnet 192.168.50.1 60660

view real-time gps received by pepwave max using telnet or netcat

This is the quickest and easiest way to view the GPS location data. It can be used to test and verify the GPS reception.

There are plenty of software that can connect to a GPS receiver by TCP/IP to display, manipulate and record location data.

NMEA Sleuth is one that is particularly useful for maritime. On top of displaying your location on Google Maps and the latitude and longitude, it will display your heading and speed in nautical mile.

view and record real-time gps received by pepwave max using nmea sleuth

Be sure to look around for a software that best suits your needs.

2. Forward the real-time GPS location data to your server.

The Pepwave MAX router can also forward the GPS location data to an IP address, whether on its LAN or through a PepVPN or SpeedFusion VPN.

To setup GPS forwarding, go to the Pepwave MAX router web admin interface, under Advanced > GPS Forwarding.

configuring gps forward on pepwave max web admin page

You can specify an IP address and the protocol and port to forward the GPS location data to. You can also select the NMEA sentence type to forward.

Once the setting is saved and applied, GPS location data in NMEA sentences will be forwarded to the specified host on the specified port.

You can use netcat, PHP or any IP networking tools, on the receiving host, to listen for, record and manipulate the NMEA sentences

netcat -l 8080

view real-time gps received by pepwave max using telnet or netcat

With the NMEA sentences forwarded to a host, you can record these location data and manipulate them to your needs.

2. Download the historic GPS location data in a GPS eXchange (GPX) file.

Selected Pepwave MAX routers can store up to 7 days of GPS location data in GPX file.

To download the location data in GPX file, on the web admin page, go to Status > Device, select a date, and click to download the file.

downloading gps location data in gpx file on pepwave max web admin page

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you turn on or off the GPS receiver?

There is no on/off switch. Once the Pepwave MAX is powered and a GPS antenna is connected, it will start receiving GPS signal.

How do you troubleshoot the GPS receiver?

  1. Make sure the Pepwave MAX is powered, and a GPS antenna is properly connected and placed in an open area with good GPS signal. Use your smartphone to test if GPS signal can be received at the location.
  2. Use telnet to connect to the Pepwave MAX on TCP 60660.
    1. If connection is refused then make sure the Status LED on the Pepwave MAX router is green and wait to try again. If still unsuccessful after multiple tries then it is a sign of a hardware defect.
    2. If connection is accepted but telnet receives no print or print has no location coordinates. Make sure the GPS antenna is properly connected and is in an open area with good GPS reception before trying a second GPS antenna. If still unsuccessful after trying multiple GPS antenna then it is a sign of a hardware defect.

Is a SIM card with data needed for GPS?

SIM card is not needed for GPS.

Can you forward the GPS location data to a host in a remote network connected by IPsec, PepVPN or SpeedFusion VPN?

Yes. GPS location data can be forwarded to a remote host connected by VPN.