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1.2 GPS Settings


Altering/disabling the GPS functionality does not mean that you will be unable to be found. Via triangulation of your radio, location may be given up to someone if they are determined enough.


GPS is provided by either the device or your paired phone. More than likely, you will want to keep GPS functionality operational. It is not required, but does assist in some of the time calculations at a bare minimum.


SettingAcceptable ValuesDefault
fixed_positiontrue, falsefalse
gps_accept_2dtrue, falsefalse
gps_attempt_timeinteger (seconds)0 (see note)
gps_formatGpsFormatDec, GpsFormatDMS, GpsFormatUTM, GpsFormatMGRS, GpsFormatOLC, GpsFormatOSGRGpsFormatDec
gps_operationGpsOpUnset, GpsOpStationary, GpsOpMobile, GpsOpTimeOnly, GpsOpDisabledGpsOpUnset
gps_update_intervalinteger (seconds)0 (see note)
location_shareLocUnset, LocEnabled, LocDisabledLocUnset
position_broadcast_secsinteger (seconds)0 (see note)
position_broadcast_smarttrue, falsefalse

On gps_attempt_time, gps_update_interval, & position_broadcast_secs when you set these to 0 you are not disabling these features.

On gps_attempt_time and gps_update_interval, the value 0 will be interpreted by the device as the default of 30 seconds. On position_broadcast_secs the value 0 will be interpreted as the default of 15 minutes.

If you wish to disable any GPS features, see below for more information.


If set, this node is at a fixed position. The device will generate GPS updates at the regular gps_update_interval, but use whatever the last lat/lon/alt it saved for the node. The lat/lon/alt can be set by an internal GPS or with the help of the mobile device's GPS.

Set/Unset Fixed Position

Set Fixed Position - Current Location
meshtastic --set fixed_position true

The device will continue to acquire GPS coordinates according to the gps_update_interval, but will use the last saved coordinates as its fixed point.

Set Fixed Position - User Defined
meshtastic --setlat 37.8651 --setlon -119.5383
Unset Fixed Position
meshtastic --set fixed_position false

It may take some time to see that the change has taken effect. The GPS location is updated according to the value specified on gps_update_interval and the mesh will be notified of the new position in relation to the position_broadcast_secs value.


Determines the amount of time that a GPS fix should be allowed to take. The default is every 30 seconds. If you increase this value, it will allow the device that amount of time in seconds to acquire coordinates. If the device is unable to get a fix, it will turn off until the next interval. GPS coordinates are updated every gps_update_interval seconds.

Change GPS attempt time frequency

Set GPS attempt time to default (30 seconds)
meshtastic --set gps_attempt_time 0
Set GPS attempt time to 45 seconds
meshtastic --set gps_attempt_time 45


Determines how the GPS coordinates are displayed on the OLED screen.

GpsFormatDecGPS coordinates are displayed in the normal decimal degrees format: DD.DDDDDD DDD.DDDDDD
GpsFormatDMSGPS coordinates are displayed in the degrees minutes seconds format: DD°MM'SS"C DDD°MM'SS"C, where C is the compass point representing the locations quadrant
GpsFormatUTMGPS coordinates are displayed in Universal Transverse Mercator format: ZZB EEEEEE NNNNNNN, where Z is zone, B is band, E is easting, N is northing
GpsFormatMGRSGPS coordinates are displayed in Military Grid Reference System format: ZZB CD EEEEE NNNNN, where Z is zone, B is band, C is the east 100k square, D is the north 100k square, E is easting, N is northing
GpsFormatOLCGPS coordinates are displayed in Open Location Code (aka Plus Codes)
GpsFormatOSGRGPS coordinates are displayed in Ordnance Survey Grid Reference (the National Grid System of the UK). Format: AB EEEEE NNNNN, where A is the east 100k square, B is the north 100k square, E is the easting, N is the northing

Specify GPS Screen Display

Specify GPS format on device screen
meshtastic --set gps_format GpsFormatUTM


How the GPS hardware in the device is operated.


This is independent of how our location is shared with other devices. For that see location_share.

GpsOpUnsetDefault: operates the same as GpsOpMobile.
GpsOpStationaryNote: This mode was removed, because it is identical go GpsOpMobile with a gps_update_interval of once per day This node is mostly stationary, we should try to get location only once per day, Once we have that position we should turn the GPS to sleep mode This is the recommended configuration for stationary 'router' nodes
GpsOpMobileThis node is mobile and we should get GPS position at a rate governed by gps_update_interval
GpsOpTimeOnlyWe should only use the GPS to get time (no location data should be acquired/stored) Once we have the time we treat gps_update_interval as MAXINT (i.e. sleep forever)
GpsOpDisabledGPS is always turned off - this mode is not recommended - use GpsOpTimeOnly instead.

Enable/Disable GPS

Set GPS to default settings
meshtastic --set gps_operation GpsOpUnset
Set GPS to only be used for time
meshtastic --set gps_operation GpsOpTimeOnly
Disable GPS Completely
meshtastic --set gps_operation GpsOpDisabled

gps_operation GpsOpTimeOnly is preferred to gps_operation GpsOPDisabled because it allows the device to get a hi-res time.


Determines how often should the device should attempt to acquire a GPS position (in seconds). The length of time the device is allowed to attempt to acquire GPS coordinates each interval is set using gps_attempt_time. The default is every 30 seconds.

Specify GPS update interval

Set GPS update interval to default settings (every 30 seconds)
meshtastic --set gps_update_interval 0
Set GPS update interval to every 45 seconds
meshtastic --set gps_update_interval 45


Determines whether location is shared with other nodes. See more details.

LocUnsetDefault: operates the same as LocEnabled
LocEnabledThe device is sharing its location (or the paired phone's location)
LocDisabledThe device is not sharing its location (if the unit has a GPS it will default to only get time - i.e. GpsOpTimeOnly)

Disable Location Sharing

Disable Location Sharing
meshtastic --set location_share LocDisabled

Disabling location sharing does not disable the GPS functionality, only the location sharing via the mesh.


How often our position is sent to the mesh (but only if it has changed significantly).

The GPS updates will be sent out every position_broadcast_secs, with either the actual GPS location, or an empty location if no GPS fix was achieved. This defaults to broadcast every 15 minutes.

Specify GPS position broadcast frequency

Set GPS update interval to default settings (every 15 minutes)
meshtastic --set position_broadcast_secs 0
Set GPS update interval to every 60 seconds
meshtastic --set position_broadcast_secs 60


position_broadcast_smart will send out your position at an increased frequency only if your location has changed enough for a position update to be useful.

Complements position_broadcast_secs (doesn't override that setting) but will apply an algorithm to more frequently update your mesh network if you are in motion and then throttle it down when you are standing still. If you use this feature, it's best to leave position_broadcast_secs at the default.

position_broadcast_smart will calculate an ideal position update interval based on the data rate of your selected channel configuration.

As an example, if you configure your radio to use Long Range / Fast, if you have traveled at least 144 meters and it's been at least 61 seconds since the last position update, a new position broadcast will be sent out. If you've moved less than 144 meters, we will broadcast the position based on the value of position_broadcast_secs.

The table below is a summary computed values from the algorithm.

Long NameUpdate every x-secondsUpdate distance traveled (meters)
Long Range / Slow88150
Long Range / Fast61144
Medium Range / Slow3041
Medium Range / Fast3030
Short Range / Slow3030
Short Range / Fast3030

A person walking in a straight line will take about 90 seconds to travel 150 meters. That walking speed estimate was used as the baseline for the formula used.

Enable/Disable Smart Position Broadcast

Enable smart position broadcast
meshtastic --set position_broadcast_smart true
Disable smart position broadcast
meshtastic --set position_broadcast_smart false


Bit field of boolean configuration options for POSITION messages (bitwise OR of PositionFlags)

POS_UNDEFINEDRequired for compilation
POS_ALTITUDEInclude an altitude value (if available)
POS_ALT_MSLAltitude value is MSL
POS_GEO_SEPInclude geoidal separation
POS_DOPInclude the DOP value ; PDOP used by default, see below
POS_HVDOPIf POS_DOP set, send separate HDOP / VDOP values instead ofPDOP
POS_BATTERYInclude battery level
POS_SATINVIEWInclude number of "satellites in view"
POS_SEQ_NOSInclude a sequence number incremented per packet
POS_TIMESTAMPInclude positional timestamp (from GPS solution)

Set/Unset Position Flags


Include each flag desired from the table above separated by a single space.

Set Position Flags
meshtastic --pos-fields POS_ALTITUDE POS_ALT_MSL
Unset Position Flags
meshtastic --pos-fields POS_UNDEFINED