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Home Networking question

I have a laptop and desktop both running Windows 7 (Ultimate on the desktop and home premium on the laptop) and a Linksys WRT 160N wireless router. I also have a 4 port hub if needed.

I am picking up a wireless internet signal on the laptop from a neighbor with their permission. What I'm trying to do is provide internet access TO my desktop FROM the laptop. I tried to use a wireless network card for the desktop to try to do this directly, but the signal was too weak. I'd rather not shell out more money for a card with a good enough antenna but just find a way to utilize the internet that the laptop is able to pick up well.

Does anyone have any ideas?

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You're going about this

You're going about this the wrong way. What you want to get is a wireless repeater/relay. Something that will pick up your neighbor's signal, and then amplify it so that other devices can pick it up.

Good news for you, is that you already have all the hardware you should need, but you'll have to flash a custom firmware onto your router known as DD-WRT. It should let you configure the router as a client instead of an access point, so as long as it can pick up the neighbor's signal, it can then act like a shared wireless card to any device connected to it. The one drawback here is that both systems will have to be connected via an ethernet cable. You'll be losing your own wireless ability unless you want to buy another wireless router and connect THAT to the 160N with DD-WRT.

Trying to set up connection sharing like you were talking about would be a nightmare. Many have tried, and given up. The few that succeed are pretty much universally disappointed with the results.

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You need to learn how to read!

I'm not going about this the wrong way. You're failing to understand the question. Please reread my post until you fully comprehend what it is I'm asking.

I stated quite clearly that I did not wish to purchase more equipment. Your suggestion that I buy another wireless router just to use one of them as a client for this purpose is moronic. It would obviously be more sensible just to buy a better wireless network card for the desktop.

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Actually the cost savings handily pay for the extra gear. Seems like a great idea.

Not at all moronic.

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No, idiot, they don't

Obviously buying a wireless network card or making modifications to an existing wireless network card is cheaper than buying another router. At least this is obvious to everyone except you.

Do you even think before you type?

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Sorry but this gets a thread locked. Folks are nice to offer ideas and if you don't like it, avoid such replies.


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Hi-Gain Antennas Are Easy To Make

Depending on the type of wireless card your desktop has, it's easy, and cheap, to make a uni-directional antenna which will increase gain. See the link below for just one such antenna. (I've used this particular WindSurfer antenna a number of times to gather up a weak signal.):

I've also used metal colanders (spaghetti strainers) for connecting USB dongle-styled adapters as well.

One note here: Even though your neighbor has given you permission to use their signal, it's a good guess that your neighbor doesn't have the right to do so in their contract.. Most broadband providers limit the use of wireless to within the household/building only.. A check of the "Terms of Use" for their internet service would certainly enlighten you.. That said, now do what you like..

Hope this helps.


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Thanks for your post and the link, Grif

It was helpful!

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Just one more thing

I appreciate your warning that my neighbor might be violating some bs terms of conditions detail with his isp, but he's a reckless renegade who shamelessly tears off the tags of newly purchased mattresses, and jaywalks with abandon.I heard he once even hooked up a cable tv splitter to provide cable to an additional set, without informing the cable provider. As you can see, he's a wild animal who is out of control! So I doubt he'd be too concerned about this.

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Nope, I Think You Missed The Point.....

Sorry... YOU are the one violating the contract, (and probably the law), because you are the one using the service outside it's intended contract...

Hope this helps.


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