Can you ping from the nodes running batman-adv to other nodes running batman- adv ? In other words: Is your mesh working ?
Yes, I can use the standard ping command to ping any batman node on the mesh from any other batman node. It is the non-batman clients that are not communicating with anything. They can only ping the node they are directly connected to.
Can you provide specifics about what you saw when running tcpdump ? What does 'never getting anything back' mean ? The ping goes one way without any pong showing up ? Have you checked on the ping destination (via tcpdump) that the ping ever made it there ?
I had two non-batman clients on the mesh, connected to two different nodes separated by a third node (i.e. for the client on node 1 to communicate to the client on node 3, the data has to go through node 2). Each client can ping the node they are connected to (the br0 interface, which has the IP address), but when they try and ping another node or the other client I see the ping requests go out in tcpdump, but nothing received at the other end (again in tcpdump). I do see a lot of ARP requests without replies on the originator if that helps.