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Home networking help reagrding wireless access points :D

by roguesk / July 27, 2011 9:33 PM PDT

Hello guys, in advance thanks for your help and patience. I
have taken the time to draw a diagram to help you understand my situations

Note: The length of the ground floor is probably 60-100
feet. With minimal walls/doors on the ground floor

As it stands I only have the second floor router but due to
bad coverage on the ground floor I am planning to place an access point (where

I have purchased a powerline adapter to minimise cabling for
a physical connection to the WAP. This is where I have a few questions that I
would appreciate if you could answer.

1. Will the powerline adapter work in this way
providing a physical connection to the WAP?
Im a believer in wiring and
dont like repeating due to complexity and signal deterioration.

In relation to the WAP:

Devices that use wireless are: 3 iphones (wireless n at
2.4ghz) and 2 laptops (wireless g). (future proofing maybe considered)

I am not that fussed with internal network transfer speeds.
I am more concerned with range of wireless as internet access everywhere in the
house is the priority.

2.Will a wireless N WAP benefit me in this
situation or should I stick to the cheaper wireless G WAP's?
proofing? mainly concerning range?)

3.I require a wired connection from the WAP so that
my xbox can be wired to the home network. Is there a WAP that has network
switch capabilities or will I need to purchase a seperate network switch to
place before the WAP (from powerline adapter)?

4. I would prefer a single SSID where I can switch or
the device switches from the upstairs router and WAP when signal is better at a
particular point. Is this something that is possible or will I be better off
with two seperate SSID's for WAP and wireless router and manually swicth
between them?

5. Which WAP do you think would best serve my

was looking at: netgear wn604?

I apologise if these questions seem obvious, im quite a
networking novice so any help would be appreciated. We all started
somewhere Grin Thank you very much

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All Answers

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by bill012 / July 28, 2011 12:33 AM PDT

You can use most any router as a WAP by just using the LAN ports and ignoring the WAN port. Mostly because of supply and demand you can get a router cheaper.

You have to look very hard for a non N router lately so I suspect you will not save any money by buying a G only device. Even the dual band ones are getting much less expensive.

Signal strength is the same for both N and G, they use the same radios. The quality of the signal will be better for N since it tolerates interference better. This in effect means you get a usable signal at a greater distance but not because the radio signal itself goes farther. When you run a mix of G and N devices your router will try to force your N devices to run in G mode unless it sees only N devices so you really don't get the benefits of N unless you have only N devices. From cost standpoint though you might as well get N and turn it off if you don't need it.

The powerline adapters work just as you describe. This is one of the main uses they sell these for. Based on other forum posts they do have a issue if you were to take a laptop and move between the wireless routers on either end of the link. Sometimes it takes a bit for them to switch over. Still I would set a single SSID and just be aware of the limitation and how often you will be walking around and using your wireless devices.

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by roguesk / July 28, 2011 12:59 AM PDT
In reply to: Router/WAP

Hi, thank you for your reply.

I have tried the setting the same SSID's in the past and it hasnt turned out well. Am i missing a trick? How does it actually work? Unless im mistaken i figured a wireless device only communicates with one AP until it is told to connect to another AP :-s so how does it work when you have 2 APs with the same SSID.

I guess I wanted to avoid the router. but basic setup would be:
Turn off dhcp on wap
enable wap mode
ignore wan port and plug ethernet into LAN ports
set static ip for wap and remove from dhcp pool of router

anything else? and also i once tried this with an old netgear dg834gt and the wired connections from it were restricted. like ps3 and xbox nat type was always strict.

Thank you in advance for your patience.

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router as AP
by bill012 / July 28, 2011 2:43 AM PDT
In reply to: hmm

It varies a little between routers but the key thing is to turn off the DHCP but some routers are smart enough to not give out DHCP if the WAN port is not plugged in. Yes a WAP is a little simpler to setup... you would think it would be cheaper since it has less features.

If we look at wireless without any security the PC will hop back and forth to whichever device has the strongest signal with the correct SSID. From a network standpoint it is the same as move a cable from one switch port to another. Your IP and MAC do not change just the port. It will switch almost instantly.

Things get much more complex when you have encrypted data. For simple home users where you use pre shared keys it just has to renegotiate the keys. You may get a couple of seconds of outage. Commercial implementations you have to do special stuff to avoid this delay and because they use radius servers rather than pre shared keys. Still our system in my building has more that 100ap using the same SSID on multiple channels and you can walk down the hall streaming video with no loss.... assuming it is actually possible to watch video and not fall down the stairs.

Some pc drivers allow you configure the signal level to switch between access points, this tends to be a art to get right. You set it to low and it switch back and forth all the time but if you set it too high you tend to use a access point with poor performance for longer.

If you search these forums you will see a discussion about powerline extenders and WAP and delays. There appears to be some "bug/feature" in how the MAC are updated in the powerline.

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thank you for your help!
by roguesk / July 28, 2011 3:02 AM PDT
In reply to: router as AP

So what I should be doing is disabling dhcp on the second access point so only one of them is handing IPs and along with the other little tweaks it'll allow me to connect to whichever signal is better whilst roaming? Providing of course brand is the same and i dont hit major problems?

Also if my primary router is say
I always have problems designating the second
Once the ip has changed i can never get back onto the router settings. If i could i wud set dhcp pool from .3 to .2--
Do you have any idea why this is? (sorry off on a tangent but you seem to know what your stuff so why not)

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