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New router for hard to reach places

Last response: in Wireless Networking
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July 2, 2006 4:37:14 AM

I set up a wireless network for a friend several years ago using Linksys hardware. It worked OK except that the connection was iffy in the back bedrooms where the kids lived.

My friend asked me to take a new look at the problem after I told her of the new techniques to improve the range of the wireless signal.

I chose the D-Link Dl-634M router and for the adapter cards in the laptops, the DWL-G650M. This was the logical choice since they both supported Super G and MIMO.

Setting up the router was no problem other than getting used to how D-Link does things. I turned off the SSID broadcast to get some extra power and a bit of security. The other security features were also left off to begin the testing.

Just for kicks, I checked on the further laptop which still had its Linksys adapter card in it. I was able to connect to the D-Link router although the signal was very weak. When the D-link adapter was installed, it couldn't see the router at all. I turned on Super G mode on the router, but the adapter still couldn't see the router.

I was unimpressed by D-Link's tech support one of whom told me that I had to broadcast the SSID or wireless just wouldn't work.

That's when I turned to you. If you have any suggestions, please let me hear them.

Thanks;

Stan
July 3, 2006 8:24:38 PM

In most all cases wireless routers do not perform as well as there StandAlone AP. The main problem is with the low gain antennas, that come std on wrouters. Most all routers are set at a location that is convient to the ISP service.

I don't know your full layout. If you had added a seperate AP and located to a center location, your coverage would be better. Most standalone AP have High gain antennas, 2 dbi vs 5+ dbi. You can add a extender/repeater, this will help relay the service. Upgrade you antennas, 11b/g yes, MIMI cannot do.

Remember shooting through wall at angles makes the wall thicker and harder to penetrate. Metal objects like ref, furnace, ovens will kill a signal. Mouthing the AP high helps clear these objects. But again, wrouter do not look good with all of the wires hanging from it.
July 4, 2006 6:01:23 PM

It is possible that the new D-link adapter is set up as a different/new network connection. If so then any of the security settings including the SSID will need to be set for that connection. You are using security, right :wink:

It sounds like you are having problems with the new D-Link hardware at all ranges, not just the back bedrooms?
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July 4, 2006 6:53:17 PM

Yes, the new adapter opened a new connection. However, I made certain that the new connection had the proper parameters - SSID and channel. Security has been turned off initially so that the router can have the maximum power to reach this most difficult problem area.

So far, this is the only room I've tried to set up.

Stan
July 4, 2006 7:47:53 PM

Why don't you try the linux Firmware in the Linksys router. That will give you the capability to crank the power up.

Security settings have no effect on the power to the radio. Security just impacts the throughput.
July 4, 2006 9:04:40 PM

The old Linksys router was the BEFW11S4 and I didn't know of any Linux upgrade for this model. A newer router would have more modern features plus the power to drill through walls to get to the far bedroom.

I believe that the D-Link DL-634M has what they need. The problem seems to be in the adapter card - DWL-650M - it doesn't seem to be connecting even with SuperG turned on.

Is it possible that I should use the D-Link configuration utility rather than the windows wireless service? or is there better firmware for the adapter card?

You're right about the security features, Blue68F100 - they eat throughput rather than power.

Stan
July 4, 2006 9:05:56 PM

I sounds like you are doing all the right things. If you plan on using WPA then shutting off SSID is not 'really' necessary. Shutting off the SSID is more of a hold over from days of WEP to make it a little harder to crack. If D-link suggested this give it a try, can always shut it off later.

I assume that the hardware is .11g

A D-Link access point and Card should be able to talk, easily. Give their tech support a ping, they should be willing to help you, as it sounds like you have d-link router and card adapter. If this isn't your speed, update the firmware and drivers.
July 4, 2006 9:09:51 PM

Quote:

So far, this is the only room I've tried to set up.

Stan


Do you mean the room with the worst signal? Try setting up everything with the router and adapter in the same room first, then test range.
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