Adventures In Open Source 4G/5G

The winter evenings are dark so as a diversion why not build you own complete end-to-end 4G network. Real phones, custom SIM cards, eNB and a complete core EPC network.

I did this and had some fun. Below is how I did it. Here is my dining room table at home a few weeks ago …


The solution is Eurecom’s Open Air Interface (OAI), and here I’ll provide additional documentation and results.

Getting Started With OAI

OAI has a great Getting Started page.

I have run both a monolithic eNB following the latest tutorial How to connect OAI eNB (USRP B210) with COTS UE and also adding another machine separating the eNB and remote radio following this tutorial: How to use OAI to setup C-RAN -> NGFI RCC/RRU

The solution is good enough to serve HD video and run Speedtest. The solution is cabled, and does not radiate. However I am investigating getting a lab licence.

Some Additional Documentation

Some things are not yet documented on the OAI site so here is some additional documentation:


With 25 resource blocks we are consistently seeing approx. 14Mbit down and 6Mbit up with between 20ms and 30ms latency.

With Thanks

Note this material is published with kind approval of my colleague Chris Murphy of Viavi Solutions Ltd. who funded some of my time working in this, and is published under a Creative Commons Attribution licence.