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What is the best Wireless router for home use

Discussion in 'Tech Talk - Gadgets, Gizmos and Technology' started by socceteer, Jun 2, 2005.

  1. DonLandis

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    Jason- Thanks for the tip. I will check out that new firmware and see if it fixes the hang up after 11 minutes of sustained uploading. Intermittent packet sends, works fine for weeks on end. But try to upload a 70Mb file and it chokes after 10-12 minutes.

    I just verified the house phone is 2.4Ghz. We hardly ever use it as cellphones with all the free time has replaced our house phone but my wife's laptop in the Kitchen is sitting within 2 ft of the base station for the 2.4Ghz phone. Nobody has complained about losing connection. We are on channel 6 as well. Thanks to this thread, I will recall the solution if it becomes an issue.
     
  2. Bogy

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    Jason, that is good news. I'll have the router on the first floor of the house, and may use an access point as a repeater if needed. I could put that in the master bedroom which is on the second floor. Or even better, we have a walk up attic. That should give me some decent coverage. :) I am looking at picking up a couple of Tivos anyway, and wanted to network them. (Now everybody can tell me what a dumb idea THAT is. :lol: )

    We have the whole house covered with 2.4 GHz phones, a base and I think five or six satellites. I have not noticed a problem so far, although the laptop will once in awhile tell me I am now connected to the network when I thought I already was. But I have never noticed noise or a problem connecting, at least not since I got the WRT54G.
     
  3. JohnGfun

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    Oh...I have the same problem...It drives me nuts! It didn't start until I got My DSL hooked up with the wireless router/modem.
     
  4. BuckeyeChris

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    As has been mentioned previously on this thread, another solution to 2.4 GHz interference on 802.11b and 802.11g APs is to use either a 900 MHz or a 5.8 GHz phone. Or, you could keep the 2.4 GHz cordless phone if you are attached to it and swap out your AP for a 802.11a device that operates on the 5.8 GHz frequency.
     
  5. JohnGfun

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    I know...I actually picked up one yesterday...I was just relating to the situation.
     
  6. socceteer

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    I went out an bought the WRT54GX router, it increased the range and speed, I still do have some dead spots in the house. But it is a very good improvement...Thanks for the help.

    I do have one question....How do you define a router to be a repeater...?
     
  7. BuckeyeChris

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    You're welcome! :)

    Actually, the wireless router isn't the one that's the repeater. It's the wireless access point (AP), such as the Linksys WAP54G, that is repeating the wireless router's signal. That difference is significant, as last I knew it to be true, you could only setup the WAP54G as a repeater with the Linksys WRT54G. I do not know if you can substitute the WRT54GX in this equation for the WRT54G. Also, both the WAP54G and WRT54G must have Linksys firmware version 2.02.2 for repeater capabilities.

    I haven't verified what capabilities the WRT54GX has. Your best bet would be to ask the Linksys experts on the Linksys forum over at DSLReports.com if it can act as a repeater and/or a WDS device. A wireless distribution system (WDS) also extends the range of your wireless AP.

    Hope this answers your question. Should you seriously think about acquiring both a WAP54G and WRT54G for setting up a repeater tandem, please drop me a Private Message on this Web site. I would be more than happy to go in further detail what configuration settings you need.

    One other thing, even in my setup, I still experience some dead spots in my home. In fact, my basement has very poor coverage (my wireless APs are on the first floor where I my PC and laptop are used). Finally, if at all possible, have your wireless AP(s) as high up as possible, off the floor. I've heard some say that hanging the APs from the ceiling (not too attractive if not done tastefully) or placing them in the attic is ideal for maximum coverage.
     
  8. Steve Mehs

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    Yep that's what we do at work. We have a wireless Ad Hoc network for our bar code scanning system. We have three access points in the plant and one on the office, all of then right next to out Nextel repeaters, mounted on the ceiling. A few of the employees on day shift are paranoid that the owner has bugs in the place monitoring our actions, and they think the APs and repeaters are actually a/v transmitting devices :lol:
     
  9. SimpleSimon

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    Only if the antennas are configured for that position.

    A regulat AP with it's "ears up" is best at the same level as the client.

    I just installed a WRT54 on the second floor of a house, and at 50' but down one floor, and through one wall it was flaky getting to a Dell laptop with a built-in 802.11a/b/g. I locked both ends down to 802.11b 11Mbps, and now they run fine.
     
  10. Bogy

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    Chris, thanks for this post. Made a decision for me, possibly. I mentioned earlier that I got a WRT54G. I'm waiting to see what kind of coverage I get in my new house, a great big old place, 2 stories, walk up attic and walk out basement, plus I want to be able to connect with my laptop next door in my church office. I have a WAP11, and with those you have to have 2 WAP11s, one as the AP, and one as the repeater. Glad to hear that with the WRT54G I can use one WAP54G as a reapeater. I was wondering if I should see about picking up another WAP11, but if I just need one 54G I would rather do that and keep the speed up.
     
  11. DonLandis

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    Dec 17, 2003
    Lets see, how to explain this-
    Repeaters don't work like access points or like cellphone towers. What a repeater does is use a sensitive receiver and and transmitter that is like a spring board for a signal that is way beyond reach of the main access point. WRT54G's are not repeaters. Linksys makes a repeater that works in combination with a WRT54G. It is called the WRE54G. When your laptop is beyond range, a repeater in the center between your laptop and the main access point gets the signal and retransmits it wirelessly back to the access point.
    Another way to work is to use two or more access points that are connected by an ethernet cable. You install the second access point in a dead zone of the first AP. With this setup, you can NOT roam between access points as once you are locked to an access point, you will need to reconnect to see the other access point as you roam between them. If your situation is such that your stations are fixed, then a 2 or more access points hard wired to a central router may be better than a repeater.
    In my case I had my worst reception at poolside so I installed a 2nd AP at poolside. Since I booted up at poolside with a fairly fixed position, it wasn't a problem until I bought the PDA last year and now desired to roam. I first tried a repeater box from Linksys. It worked but I still had reliability issues and many dead spots. Next, I tried bigger antennas on the WRT54G. I mounted it high up and positioned the diversity antennas at right angles, and one vertical and one horizontal. Now I can roam all over the house, all over the yard and never lose connection.

    Linksys repeater-
    http://www.computers4sure.com/product.asp?productid=1895879&affid=10000483

    Also see Linksys signal Booster WSB24

    The WAP11 also offers now a quasi repeater mode where you can set up a remote area without cable. I have not tried this but it would be the thing to do if you have a long distance to go.
     
  12. BuckeyeChris

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    Glad to have helped. :)

    You said something interesting about wanting to keep the speed up when you add another repeater to your network. According to some smarter people than me over at DSLReports.com, thoroughput is cut in half in the WRT54G and WAP54G repeater setup, i.e., your theoretical speed of 54Mbps is cut in half to something like 27Mbps. This may also be true in any repeater setup. Perhaps DonLandis could confirm this.

    Now, they say that won't affect your Internet connection since most traditional broadband connections are 500kps to 5Mbps. However, what it will affect are network connections between PCs on the same LAN, e.g., transferring files and sending print jobs. Still, even with reduced thoroughput, 802.11 g users will hardly notice the difference. Overall, I think most WiFi users including myself would sacrifice a little speed for a stable and strong connection.
     
  13. BuckeyeChris

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    Steve,
    It would be just terrible and cruel of you, being that you are more tech savvy than your co-workers, if you were to reinforce their paranoia. Yes, that would be just awful. :D
     
  14. DonLandis

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    "Perhaps DonLandis could confirm this"

    I only had the WRE54G for about a week when I took it back. What I discovered is a huge reduction in speed, tracking sometimes under 2Mbs. But, it could have been RFI from the phone, now that I've read the other thread. What I do know is that the current system I'm using with one AP and larger antennas works much better than the repeater concept. At least in this house it did.
     
  15. Bogy

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    Thanks Chris. As you said, the top speed for 802.11b still is far above what your internet speed is going to be anyway. And the reason I would like to keep the speed as high as possible is for file transfer. I want to be able to access files that are on my desktop at home, and use them at church, without having to fill up the laptop's hd with them. I haven't had a chance to check out the computer in my office yet, except to know that it is fairly new.
     
  16. DonLandis

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    With 1.2 G of uploads to do tonight, I decided to investigate your suggestion.

    "Firmware 4.00.7 released 4/26/2005
    - Adds SecureEasySetup push button support
    - Resolves large file transfer issues
    - Resolves issue with enabling TKIP after enabling WEP
    - Updated QoS features
    - Resolves issues with multiple Access Restrictions policies
    - Resolves issue where multicast breaks when MAC filter status changes
    "


    Notice the second bulleted item! Yes it now works. The flash was easy and the upload task has been working non-stop. Too bad these guys at Linksys never answered my trouble ticket on this, but at least they did fix the problem.
    Thanks much, Jason for your suggestion.
     
  17. SimpleSimon

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    Note to all:

    The "old" Linksys stuff like the USB11, BEFW11S4, etc. Now has HUGE rebates, and it ain't just one to a customer. After rebate, the WAP is $20 and the USB WNIC is $13.

    Check out http://www.newegg.com for details.
     
  18. Cholly

    Cholly Old Guys Rule! DBSTalk Club

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    Indian...
    Re: 2.4 GHz phone interference: I bought and returned 2 USR 802.11G wireless router/cardbus card kits before I discovered a post somewhere about 2.4 GHz phones interfering with wireless routers. Replaced my ATT 2.4 phones that I had bought only a few months prior to the routers with a Uniden 5.8 GHz phone system. No problems now , using a Netgear WGR614 router. Haven't replaced the stock antenna as yet, but may have to do so with forthcoming move. BTW -- check out www.hyperlinktech.com as a source of antennas and cables.
     

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