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Should I get a WiFi extender, repeater, an access point, or a better router? - Page 2

post #11 of 47
Thread Starter 

I already have an old Linksys Wireless B router that I could use as a repeater if I can get DD-WRT on it. My only question is if it's strictly Wireless B, or if that's determined by the firmware.

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post #12 of 47
Thread Starter 

Nevermind. I'm not seeing any information on the internet about using a Wireless B router as a Wireless G one by some firmware tweak or some other simple thing like that. I was hoping to be able to tell them that they don't have to buy anything. lol

 

So maybe they could buy an inexpensive but reliable Wireless G router (since that's what I have now) and use it as a repeater.

 

Edit: I have firmware v4.30.11 on my WRT54GL which supports 4MB firmware upgrades whereas previous versions only allow a 3MB upgrade. This means I should have a very easy time updating to DD-WRT. It might be just as easy as it was to update from the stock firmware to 4.30.11. I'll have to ask. Or maybe I'll try it after I've had some sleep. I've been awake for almost 24 hours now.


Edited by TwoCables - 4/19/13 at 2:56am
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post #13 of 47
Thread Starter 

bump

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rayleyne View Post

I would suggest buying a second cheapo wireless router, Say 59 dollar Tp-link and some Homeplugs, Set one homeplug up where the connection is, And put the other homeplug + cheapo router as close to the low performance area as possible, Even outside, The homeplugs will bridge it and when they want to go outside they can just swap networks.


total cost? maybe 150 bucks tops.

 

If I go this route, then I will need help shopping for homeplugs because I don't know which ones are good or bad.


Edited by TwoCables - 4/20/13 at 7:35am
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post #14 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoCables View Post

So, I live in my parents' basement, and I'm positioned at the very front of the house down here. The router (a Linksys WRT54GL, stock firmware) is down here with me right on my desk along with the cable modem and moving them is not an option. I need the simplest solution possible, perhaps something I can put upstairs on the main floor.

My parents have a gazebo out in the back as shown below and they like to take their laptop out there and even though it functions, they say that the signal is just barely strong enough and so it reduces the performance noticeably as compared to being in the house (roughly where that chimney is, but on the main floor). I can see that because I'm literally at the front of the house in the basement (as close to the front as you can get, right about in the center and I'm facing West and so the router is right up against the wall). So, the router is as far away from the gazebo as is possible, outside of putting it in the front yard or something.

gazebo.png

So as you can see, it's not exactly close! So do they need a WiFi extender, an access point, or should I get a better router? What's the best option without costing too much money?

Additionally, I don't know what's good or bad on the market, and so I need your help with that as well. I'd like to get them the best unit possible whatever that may be (extender, access point, or router) so that it does an excellent job and can keep working for as many years to come as possible. However, my parents said that they don't want it to be too expensive either. I don't know how much is too much for them, but I know that they probably wouldn't want the most expensive unit available either. Of course, that definitely depends on the prices out there too. I mean, to put it in another way: let's say that there's a better router that would solve this problem. That extender or access point can't cost more than that router. So, it has to be at a reasonable price. I'm open to getting a new router if the price is right and if it would solve the problem.

Again, we need something wireless that will go up on the main floor to be in the middle between the gazebo and the router. Either that, or a router that's known to be much more powerful than the WRT54GL

One final requirement: if we get an extender or an access point, then I would like it to have some kind of On/Off switch or button.

I thank you for looking!

Your best best would be to have another access point near the client devices. The access point can connect to the main router via ethernet or wireless signal(bridge/repeater).

Just turning up the transmit power(EIRP) on the main router won't necessarily help. This is due to the client devices only being able to transmit at a certain EIRP, which is substantially less than the router. Most client devices only transmit at around 32mW. The later generations of iPads transmit at less than that. So the client can hear the router well, but the router will have a hard time hearing the client device. They call it "Hidden Node".

I ran into the same issue at my house. I wanted a better signal in my living room for my Smart TV, PS3 and and WiFi enabled audio receiver. I also needed an ethernet hand off for my AT&T Microcell. I always have enterprise equipment laying around due to my profession. So I put an autonomous image on a spare Cisco 1252 access point and turned it into a Non-Root bridge. My Cisco ISR router is the Root Bridge in my office. They are wirelessly connected at 300mbps and provide ethernet hand off to a Trendnet Green switch. My wireless network is repeated over the 2.4GHz network as well.

The exact same scenario my not be achievable for you due to the price, but you can do the same with SOHO routers. You will need a router that will support wireless bridging, and and access point that will support wireless bridging. Both need to be dual band, and preferrably 802.11n capable. You will bridge(Backhaul) the networks over the 5GHz spectrum, and broadcast over the 2.4GHz spectrum. Put the access point nearest the other clients, so near the backwall on your first floor. Make sure the SSID names are the same. The subnet will be the same since the access point has no routing capabilities, it will send all request over the wireless backhaul to the router.

You second option is to run an ethernet line up stairs, or use Powerline ethernet adapters. If you use the adapters, make sure they have AES encryption between them. The data they trasmit can extend outside of your homes wiring infrastructure. With a solid ethernet connection, you can connect the access point to one of the router LAN ports. Set the access point up with the same SSID as the router. As with the wireless bridge scenario, all DHCP will come from the router due to the access point not have routing capabilities.

Either method will extend the ESSID upstairs, and out in your back yard. I wish I could give recommendations on which SOHO router/access point or Powerline adapter to use, but I can't. I mainly only deal with enterprise gear anymore.

Edit: This also helped my extend my wireless network to my garage. That way I can Jam out while working on stuff, and piss off the neighbors. thumb.gif
Edited by Biscuits_N_Gravy - 4/20/13 at 7:59am
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post #15 of 47
Thread Starter 

Woo, my head's spinning. Thank you, though. I trust that I'll begin understanding as I get deeper and deeper into all of this. I hope to be ready for when they begin wanting to take their laptop out there. Although, I still wish it could be easier. For some reason, I have never been able to wrap my head around networking-related things.

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post #16 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoCables View Post

Woo, my head's spinning. Thank you, though. I trust that I'll begin understanding as I get deeper and deeper into all of this. I hope to be ready for when they begin wanting to take their laptop out there. Although, I still wish it could be easier. For some reason, I have never been able to wrap my head around networking-related things.

It's cool, takes time to get used to. My wife is in Veterinarian school right now. The things she tries to explain to me.....my brain goes into overload. wink.gif So I know the feeling.

A coworker of mine decided to run a Cat5e cable to the other part of his house, then plugged in an access point. It connected back to his main router. I think it took him around an hour to run the cable. It can be harder in other houses though, plus you need to actually have a spool of cable, tools and some RJ-45 ends.

Of course the easiest solution would be to use the Powerline adapters. You plug them in, hold down a button, they're connected before you know it. Just connect one to your router, then one to your new access point. Do the quick setup wizard on the new access point and you are done.

The wireless method doesn't take much more effort, but it will require you to enable a couple more things. Mainly, the access point will need to know what wireless network to connect to and it's encryption key. It also may let you specify which frequency to bridge over, which I recommend the 5GHz for the bridge data.
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post #17 of 47
If you want something simple, An Amped Wirless repeater is pretty neat. Easy to setup.
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post #18 of 47
Thread Starter 

Wow. High power amplifiers and antennas? That sounds hazardous to human health.

 

I'm not so sure about this.

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post #19 of 47
http://www.amazon.com/Amped-Wireless-Wireless-N-Repeater-SR150/dp/B004NBN5UY/ref=sr_1_13?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1366510952&sr=1-13&keywords=amped+wireless

That is what I use at home. I use it to extend my next door neighbor's internet to my house with permission of course tongue.gif .
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post #20 of 47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SalisburySteak View Post

http://www.amazon.com/Amped-Wireless-Wireless-N-Repeater-SR150/dp/B004NBN5UY/ref=sr_1_13?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1366510952&sr=1-13&keywords=amped+wireless

That is what I use at home. I use it to extend my next door neighbor's internet to my house with permission of course tongue.gif .

 

It's beginning to look to me like I may be looking for something like this. I mean, if I'm not mistaken, an extender is something that would be sitting on my desk. An access point sounds kind of like something I want, but a repeater sounds like it might be exactly what I was envisioning. It seems to me so far that an extender would just be plugged into my router or something, boosting the signal. I'm looking for something that I can put upstairs that their laptop will connect to and be able to access the router down here through that device.

 

Am I understanding what an extender is correctly?

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It's a computer!
(18 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5-2500K @ 4.5GHz (1.368-1.384V fixed voltage) ASUS P8P67 EVO B3 (UEFI ver. 1850) GTX 780 ASUS DirectCU II (1228 / 6300, 1.180V) G.SKILL Ripjaws X 8GB (2 x 4GB) 1866MHz, CL9 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveOptical Drive
250 GB Samsung 840 EVO (OS) 3 TB Toshiba P300 (storage) Samsung SH-S243N 24x DVD Burner Samsung SH-S203N 20X DVD Burner 
CoolingOSMonitorKeyboard
Thermaltake Frio Win 7 Home Premium x64 SP1 Retail AOC G2460PG (24" 1920 x 1080 144Hz G-SYNC) Filco Majestouch 104-key Cherry MX Blues w/NKRO 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair HX650 (Bronze, ordered on 12-12-2009) CM 690 Intellimouse Optical (1.1A) 1000Hz polling rate Basic, but premium round 
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X-Fi Titanium HD Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 (with 16 AWG Monster Cable... 
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Overclock.net › Forums › Software, Programming and Coding › Networking & Security › Should I get a WiFi extender, repeater, an access point, or a better router?