Jump to content

Home wireless access points - advice pleese


Recommended Posts

Hi y'all tech types

 

I'm thinking/needing to upgrade the wired and wireless aspects off my abode.  Could peeps with hands on experience in this area have captain at my sketch below and let me know if i'm on the right track?  or have i made some schoolboy errors?  I've illustrated specific components to make my thinking really visible but if any of these look like poor choice let me know why.   

 

Btw I'm not super tecchie...they don't call me 2 bricks for nuthin...it's taken me quite a while to research this far...and unsure if the config/setup on multiple WAPs is tricky for a non-IT person?  I want to be able to set a few time/usage based rules for the WAP broadcasting but unsure if that will work with a switch between the router and the WAP units?

 

The house is single storey, and single brick for the interior walls.  NBN is FTTP and 100/40.  As i'm planning to hard wire one of the heavier users (streaming tv) and have no WiFi 6 devices for the foreseeable i'm thinking just to go with Wifi 5 for reasonable economy.  But open to pre-investing in Wifi 6 components if there are really distinct advantages...reliability? ...enhanced multi-tasking even with Wifi 5 devices? ...better wall penetration?

 

Ethernet cabling Cat 5e should do the job but probably better to use Cat 6 i guess.

 

Last thing...i won't be able to frequently check for replies to this thread (if i indeed get any) but i will truly appreciate those who take the time to make simple constructive input.

 

image.thumb.png.6b6c6c19a3d473e127af37cbb09d7461.png

Cheers

2B

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a bit short on hands on experience yet because I'm at a similar stage to you,  ie., planning.       Here more out of interest than offering any advice sorry, but nevertheless have some comments/questions.   .  

 

Is any of the hardware you've listed existing.?   

 

The TP Link AC1750 you mention are  wifi range extenders.   I'm pretty sure that's not what you want.  .    https://www.tp-link.com/au/home-networking/range-extender/re450/

 

probably one of these?   

https://www.tp-link.com/au/home-networking/access-point/

 

I've been leaning toward the Ubiquit gear.      Apparently great perfromance from their WAPs and good user interface.       I got the impression they're very capable and configurable,  but also OK reasonably easy for non-IT people.     I'll be changing from Apple Airport Extremes, which are dead simple,  so I need something good for dummies.     

 

My current plan is the start with a Dream Machine  (router + WAP) in central location and see if the better wifi signal from this one unit is good enough, then add more WAPs only if necessary.        Or,  the Dream machine Pro out of sight and a separate WAP (for higher WAF).   

 

With  the right bits  I think you could do away with the switch.       Some ubiquiti WAPs have a secondary ethernet port which you might be able to connect one of your wired devices (TV,PC) ,   or to another WAP.   Passthough of POE may be an issue so best not take my word for it.   . 

 

 

17 hours ago, 2Brix said:

Ethernet cabling Cat 5e should do the job but probably better to use Cat 6 i guess

 

I think you're right on both points.    Best to future proof.      make sure it's solid copper too

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

hi @manchu

 

None of the hardware i listed/sketched has been purchased as yet. Presently i have only the generic "free included" wireless router than came when i connected to NBN two years ago.

 

Regarding the WAP's I should have labelled them as TP-Link EAP245 which are a ceiling mount clamshell type as sketched.  But i am also considering the Ubiquiti ones. 

 

I could do away with a switch if i go to a router with 8 LAN ports.  But i would still need PoE injectors or a local power point (with wall wart) for each WAP i believe.

 

And I want individual control of each WAP so i'm thinking to not have any connected in series (pass through) unless i can still manage/place usage rules on individual WAPs e.g. the ones broadcasting signals to XBox and the like.  

 

The more i research the more Qs arise 😵

 

Cheers

2B

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know about the techy stuff, but I do know that wireless sucks. When we bought this house I ran at least 1 Cat 5 to every room in the house. I have a 24 port switch in my "server" room mostly full, and 6 WAPs around the house. And I often have to change WAP to get a decent connection.

 

Running the Cat 5 through brick walls might be interesting! But I guess you have a plan.

 

I don't about PoE but will follow this thread, hopefully I will learn something. :)

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

hey @Jake

 

My house is single storey and the perimeter walls are double brick with cavity, so easy enough for a sparkie to run cables to most locations.  I need to learn some more about managed vs unmanaged switches and perhaps run more cables to more wall points.  

 

Cheers

2B

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 20/05/2021 at 8:26 PM, 2Brix said:

I need to learn some more about managed vs unmanaged switches..

1. You don't need a managed switch.

2. You don't need the AC1750's.

3. Disable the wifi in your router.

4. Buy a used Pakedge W6 access point (maybe $20 on eBay), put it in the middle of the house, run a Cat5e to the router, configure it and you're done. Unless you live in a sprawling mansion this single AP will cover the whole house.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

You can forget wired, I did, and never looked back.  Used a wifi mesh system,  and I get at nbn FTTC 100/40 everywhere in the house.  Best thing I ever did, even though I have run 300mtrs of cat 5 in the house to every room that we roughed in during the build but never used.  And yes we run wifi to the smart TV with Netflix 1080

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Many thanks for the replies @brodricj and @Addicted to music

 

Actually yesterday while out at the shops i just grabbed a new AC modem (ASUS RT-AC68U) and hooked it up this morning.  Setting it to broadcast Wifi at 2.4GHz only seems to be providing enough range and bandwidth.  I realised i had previously some users at the far end of the house connected on 5 GHz and that had been p*** poor.  But connecting those same users on 2.4 GHz it's pretty good.

 

I'll live with this for a few weeks and then probably get an unmanaged switch to give me extra LAN ports and run cabling to the heavier users (XBox and streaming TV) and also to the far end of the house for connecting a 'hard wired' mesh node.  

 

Cheers

2B

Link to post
Share on other sites

Mini update, some before and after wifi speed tests . 

 

Test done using Ookla speedtest app on my old (6s) phone connected to the 2.4GHz band.  Incomer is FTTP and nominal 100/40 subscription

OR = original router --> NR = new router

Numbers are ping (ms) - download (Mbps) - upload (Mbps)

And i've indicated the approx path length and obstacles

 

1) Study where router is...OR 3-34-46 --> NR 2-74-39

2) Kitchen Bench (5m, 1 brick wall +fridge) OR 3-28-38 --> NR 2-86-45

3) Rumpus room (10m, 2 brick walls) OR 3-30-23 --> NR 2-77-45

4) Nook at far end of house (20m, 3 brick walls) OR 3-13-20 --> NR 2-55-40

 

Ok so not a complete heat map with multiple repeats etc but enough to show a distinct improvement just by changing out the wireless router.

 

However there is a particular deadspot at a far corner of the house which i'm likely to address by running a cable to that location and setting up a second router as a mesh node.

 

But so far pretty happy with the KISS result.  And now i can get back to more important stuff like sipping a bevvie and spinning tunes 😎

 

Cheers

2B

Link to post
Share on other sites

You don't need a 2nd router. You should only have one router on the network. If you have a dead spot, crank up the output power of your AP, or change its physical position. If that doesn't cover the whole house, get a better access point. Or buy a meshed WiFi infrastructure, but that will be the more expensive option. You don't want to have multiple access points each with different SSID because you won't have the convenience of seamless roaming.

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you want a mesh solution with decent radio management and inbuilt security to control your kids access, this is well worth a look: https://www.plume.com/homepass

 

I would still wire each one to the wall from a central switch but the ease of deployment and radio smarts in these is fantastic.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

thanks @BugPowderDust There's so many options.  For now i'm taking the following path

 

1) Upgraded the main router yesterday

2) Buying another this week/weekend to set up as a mesh node (wireless at first, then wired)

3) Thinking about running cables to 2 or 3 other locations within the house, but maybe not for a few months

 

Cheers

2B

Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, to wrap this up unless I'm missing something. When you say you're buying another router I take it you mean you're buying another access point, and your new router has a WiFi management agent function whereby you can mesh a number of access points connected to it.

 

However if you really mean you are buying another router, I'm not sure how you'd go about meshing access points connected to different routers. There really is no purpose in doing it that way, if it can be done.

Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, brodricj said:

OK, to wrap this up unless I'm missing something. When you say you're buying another router I take it you mean you're buying another access point, and your new router has a WiFi management agent function whereby you can mesh a number of access points connected to it.

 

However if you really mean you are buying another router, I'm not sure how you'd go about meshing access points connected to different routers. There really is no purpose in doing it that way, if it can be done.

I use a 'retired' modem router in my shed, as a WAP. It is wired from the main router in the house, to one of the router ports, and set up as a wireless access point. It isn't what you would call a 'mesh" though.

Similar to this:

https://www.cnet.com/home/internet/how-to-turn-an-old-wi-fi-router-into-an-access-point/

 

The beauty of it is, I have a fixed and a DHCP pool in the shed, for different devices, and they are all on the same subnet as the main router in the house. So it works seamlessly between the house and the shed.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The DHCP pool in the shed is actually reserved in the DHCP server of the house router. As you've pointed out, both the router function and modem function of the box in the shed is disabled, leaving its access point function as a LAN client of the house router. Effectively, what you have is a dumb access point in the shed hardwired to the house router. Which is all well and good enough, resurrecting some purpose for a box that would otherwise be living in a shoe box, or the recycle bin. If you are seamlessly roaming WiFi clients between the shed and the house the house router must also be performing a management agent function. Fancy one box technology that. In my house I need five different boxes to do the same thing.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, brodricj said:

OK, to wrap this up unless I'm missing something. When you say you're buying another router I take it you mean you're buying another access point, and your new router has a WiFi management agent function whereby you can mesh a number of access points connected to it.

 

However if you really mean you are buying another router, I'm not sure how you'd go about meshing access points connected to different routers. There really is no purpose in doing it that way, if it can be done.

 

I will be buying a second same-brand router with a common software interface that allows it to be designated as a mesh node and form a single SSID with the primary router to provide seamless roaming.   I'll report back after i give it a crack over the coming weekend.  Cheers, 2B

Link to post
Share on other sites

19 hours ago, brodricj said:

The DHCP pool in the shed is actually reserved in the DHCP server of the house router. As you've pointed out, both the router function and modem function of the box in the shed is disabled, leaving its access point function as a LAN client of the house router. Effectively, what you have is a dumb access point in the shed hardwired to the house router. Which is all well and good enough, resurrecting some purpose for a box that would otherwise be living in a shoe box, or the recycle bin. If you are seamlessly roaming WiFi clients between the shed and the house the house router must also be performing a management agent function. Fancy one box technology that. In my house I need five different boxes to do the same thing.

Yes, the house router handles IP addressing both fixed (all non mobile devices) and DHCP (all mobile devices). The shed router is on a fixed IP on the house router. The old modem in the shed is merely a Wireless Access Point to the network in the house. What I meant being seamless, is that whether I'm in the shed, or in the house, I'm still on the same subnet as all boxes connected to the network, both in the house and in the shed. Geez I hope that makes sense LOL The wireless radios in each router are set on different channels, but my mobile devices will just switch to whichever signal it receives best.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

You know you don't have to use a TP-Link Router. You could use a home security device such as a Firewalla Gold and pair use TP-Link's Wi-Fi 6 (802.11AX) ceiling mount devices (made for enterprise use). There's downloadable management software can be used to configure and manage them centrally. Otherwise I think you're basically on the right track.

 

One thing I really like with the Firewalla Gold is the ease of use in setting up a WireGuard VPN server so I can access my network remotely.  It's easy to configure and understand despite advanced security features. I particularly like the Geo blocking features as it really is incredible how many hacking attempts there are from China and Russia with a smattering from ex Soviet countries, Sri Lanka etc. It has content filtering too though I prefer to use OpenDNS for that and just use the built in content filtering for certain things on certain groups of devices across the network. The DNS caching speeds browsing up somewhat too. Fantastic product.

Edited by MattyW
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
On 23/05/2021 at 11:51 AM, Addicted to music said:

You can forget wired, I did, and never looked back.  Used a wifi mesh system,  and I get at nbn FTTC 100/40 everywhere in the house.  Best thing I ever did, even though I have run 300mtrs of cat 5 in the house to every room that we roughed in during the build but never used.  And yes we run wifi to the smart TV with Netflix 1080

 


I was running a single Billion 7800 down stairs,  the house is dual level.  When we went nbn 100/40 I realised with the speed test that the bedrooms upstairs wasn’t getting anywhere near this,  up stairs opposite diagonally  we were dropping out and was getting up to 10mb/s.   I thought I needed to run the ethernet I had roughed in,  until   I started to look at mesh systems.  The Orbi was the best thing I ever did and never looked back,  the satellite unit is in the main bedroom up stairs thats 15m diagonal from the main unit and there are no dead spots anywhere in the house,  in fact the other day I walked down to the end of the street which is over 120m and I was streaming live on iPhone,  I realised I was out of range when the reception went dead and I had the phone SIM card 4G data turned off!   Blew me away on the range of this thing.   

 

Edited by Addicted to music
  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 23/05/2021 at 4:31 PM, 2Brix said:

Mini update, some before and after wifi speed tests . 

 

Test done using Ookla speedtest app on my old (6s) phone connected to the 2.4GHz band.  Incomer is FTTP and nominal 100/40 subscription

OR = original router --> NR = new router

Numbers are ping (ms) - download (Mbps) - upload (Mbps)

And i've indicated the approx path length and obstacles

 

1) Study where router is...OR 3-34-46 --> NR 2-74-39  --> NR 3-72-45

2) Kitchen Bench (5m, 1 brick wall +fridge) OR 3-28-38 --> NR 2-86-45 --> NR 2-93-43

3) Rumpus room (10m, 2 brick walls) OR 3-30-23 --> NR 2-77-45 --> NR 3-73-46

4) Nook at far end of house (20m, 3 brick walls) OR 3-13-20 --> NR 2-55-40 --> WLMN 3-87-39

5) Bedroom 4 (25m. 3+ brick walls) OR 3-18-14 --> NR 2-81-43 --> WLMN 3-103-45

6) Bedroom 3 (25m, 5 brick walls) OR 4-2-1 --> NR E-E-E --> WLMN 3-92-42

 

Ok so not a complete heat map with multiple repeats etc but enough to show a distinct improvement just by changing out the wireless router.

 

However there is a particular deadspot at a far corner of the house which i'm likely to address by running a cable to that location and setting up a second router as a mesh node.

 

But so far pretty happy with the KISS result.  And now i can get back to more important stuff like sipping a bevvie and spinning tunes 😎

 

Cheers

2B

 

Right-tee-o then.  Second router purchased yesterday and set up this morning.  Using the routers' software interface, one set as the primary and one reset as a mesh node.  And this morning's 2.4 Ghz Wifi testing results noted above...and indicated whether my phone had auto-connected itself to the PR (Primary Router) or WLM (wireless meshnode).  Excuse my casual terminology. maybe not pedantically correct, but should be unambiguous.

 

Summary

a) It did take a couple of goes to "find" and synch the wireless mesh node but it seems perfectly stable thereafter

b) With the wireless mesh node placed in the Nook the adjacent weak/deadspots have been resolved

c) Roaming is seamless (and can view the handoff as devices move from one end of house to t'other)

 

No doubt similar or better results can be had by other means but this has worked well for me.  And potentially i won't bother running an ethernet cable over to the mesh node, as so far it seems to be performing fine via wireless.

 

Cheers

Ticc

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I would love a mesh system, but they seem very expensive just to avoid having to change WAPs.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...