Paid Access with Prepaid Authentication
How to use prepaid authentication for paid, time-limited and optionally bandwidth-limited Wi-Fi services.
Define your rate plan.
Decide what account time limits, and optionally bandwidth limits, you want to offer (e.g. an hour, a day, a week, etc.), and how much you want to charge. (The above is given for information purposes, and does not constitute a pricing recommendation.)
You can have multiple rate plans that you apply to different network locations, of course. And you can change prices at any time to run specials.
Accounts expire when time or bandwidth limits are reached, whichever comes first. Maximum bandwidth includes upload plus download. One megabyte equals 2^20 or 1,048,576 bytes.
Sputnik does not take a cut of your PayPal or WorldPay revenues.
Log into SputnikNet, then navigate to the prepaid authentication system overview.
Add a new prepaid authentication system or select an existing one.
Generate prepaid cards.
In SputnikNet, prepaid cards are not necessarily physical cards, but user accounts with the following information:
- User ID (the login name)
- Type: either continuous or discontinuous (see below for explanation)
- Minutes: the amount of network access time allowed ("account time limit")
- Bandwidth (optional): amount of upload + download bandwidth allowed in megabytes (2^20 bytes or 1,048,576 bytes)
- "Continuous" starts the clock when the user first logs in; the clock keeps ticking continuously until the account time limit is used up regardless of whether the user is logged in or not
- "Discontinuous" starts the clock when the user first logs in; the clock ticks only when the user is logged in (has an active session); the account is valid until the account time limit is used up
- if you set both time and bandwidth limits, the account will expire when either the time or maximum bandwidth is used up, whichever comes first
- set the bandwidth limit as 0 if you want only time limits to apply
- maximum total bandwidth setting is approximately ten exabytes (ten trillion megabytes)
To create prepaid cards in SputnikNet, click "Edit Settings" from the Prepaid Authentication System menu. Fill out the fields under "Generate Paid Cards" as follows:
- Name for this batch: a unique name for the set of generated prepaid cards that will be displayed in SputnikNet, and can be used for searching, managing, and downloading cards
- Username prefix: text that is appended to the beginning of each user ID code
- Starting suffix number: starting number for this batch of prepaid cards, which will be incremented for each new card
- Number of accounts to create: the number of cards in the new batch
- Number of minutes for each account: the amount of network access time allowed by the prepaid card
- Amount of upload + download bandwidth allowed for each account, in megabytes
- Continuous/discontinuous: see above
Click "Execute" to create your new prepaid card batch.
Apply the prepaid authentication system to captive portal(s) and Sputnik-powered device(s).
Apply the authentication system that includes the prepaid cards to one or more captive portals. Apply the captive portals to one or more Sputnik-powered devices. Here we apply both the prepaid and a PayPal authentication system to the "Special Guest" captive portal, enabling users to pay via prepaid card, credit card, or PayPal account.
Print prepaid cards.
For more information see the online documentation chapter titled "Printing Prepaid Cards".