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A fully functional PirateBox on a MR3020
PirateBox is a self-contained mobile communication and file sharing device. Simply turn it on to transform any space into a free and open communications and file sharing network.
Share (and chat!) Freely! Inspired by pirate radio and the free culture movements, PirateBox utilizes Free, Libre and Open Source software (FLOSS) to create mobile wireless communications and file sharing networks where users can anonymously chat and share images, video, audio, documents, and other digital content.
Private and Secure! PirateBox is designed to be private and secure. No logins are required and no user data is logged. Users remain completely anonymous - the system is purposely not connected to the Internet in order to subvert tracking and preserve user privacy.
Easy to Use! Using the PirateBox is easy. Simply turn it on and transform any space into a free communication and file sharing network. Users within range of the device can join the PirateBox open wireless network from any wifi-enabled device and begin chatting and sharing files immediately. See the short video demonstration below for more details.

You need

  • TP-Link MR3020 +- 30€
  • USB Stick 64GB (Can be less, but hell, you need some storage!) +- 60€
  • PirateBox sticker +- 5€
  • Everything else is a bonus.

Installation on a MR3020

Download firmware Image.
Download PirateBox
Follow the instructions from PirateBox 1.0 OpenWrt DIY


A good file directory listing script is Datenhangar. That's a Perl cgi script which allows you to even set passwords on directorys. It runs without a problem on a piratebox.

Piratebox has no FTP access by default. To change this, you can install vsftpd. Why vsftpd? Because it's probably the most secure and fastest FTP server for UNIX-like systems.

Here's my config for the PirateBox: <sxh bash;> background=YES listen=YES

anonymous_enable=YES anon_root=/home/ftp/ anon_upload_enable=YES anon_mkdir_write_enable=YES

local_enable=YES write_enable=YES local_umask=022 check_shell=NO chroot_local_user=YES allow_writeable_chroot=YES

dirmessage_enable=YES ftpd_banner=PirateBox - Share Freely

session_support=NO </sxh>

As you see, you need to bind /home/ftp with the path to your mounted USB stick
  • projects/howtos/piratebox.txt
  • Last modified: 2021/10/10 23:05
  • by wc3lmin