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placing a second router

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July 23, 2008 5:21:38 PM


I have a cable modem on second floor in the front of house and a Linksys WRT54GL router with Tomato firmware and 9 dbi antennas. My laptop in my basement picks wireless signal but my basement is in the back of my house.
Could I buy another router place it on the second floor in the back of my house by the window and could get a better signal in my basement ? If I could how would I set it up ?

abrand888

More about : placing router

July 24, 2008 2:03:03 AM

I looked at the link. I understand it but I cannot use cablling. I need to do it wirelessly if at all possible.

Have you any other ideas ?

thanks
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Anonymous
July 24, 2008 6:54:39 AM

For wireless link between routers to work you need model(s) which support WDS. If not look at purpose-built range extender/repeater.
Anonymous
July 24, 2008 7:02:05 AM

You might also look at high-gain antenna or abandon wireless and use mains-plug network adapters.
July 24, 2008 12:25:23 PM

filhart,

The router I am using is WRT54GL. Since I am using Tomato 1.19, I see that at present I am set up for access point. In looking inside Tomato, there is two options. One is access point plus WDS and the other is WDS only. I can buy another Linksys WRT54GL router and how can I set up both routers ?

My present router is using two 9 dbi antennas. I have a extra pair of 6.5 dbi antennas that I could put on second router and place it by my window in the back of the second floor. Will this be sufficent so I will see a stronger signal in the basement ?

What exactly do you mean purpose-built range extender/repeater.

I saw a Belkin urepeater on NEWEGG and am waiting for info on that unit.

Thanks
Anonymous
July 24, 2008 9:37:02 PM

"What exactly do you mean purpose-built range extender/repeater."

Check out Netgear/Linksys websites or online retailers -- basically they are units which can connect by wire (or wireless, I believe) which will help extend wireless coverage.

Frankly, homeplug (mains borne networking) is simple and much more reliable/secure than messing about with multiple wireless units.
July 25, 2008 1:17:57 AM

Hi,

I tried two different sets of Netgear wireless home plugs and the first set failed and the second set also failed. It is hard to pin down the support guy and even if I tell him a good time to get me, he doesn't always call that day so a lot of time is wasted.

I am open to another brand to test and will appreciate a reccomendation.

Thanks for your rep-lies.
Anonymous
July 25, 2008 6:09:48 AM

Netgear had a recall on their mains plug adapters.


The brand that seems most recommended in the UK is Solwise (though I suspect that's merely the name of the importer). Might be worth a look at their site and try source a similar looking product from a supplier local to you.
July 31, 2008 2:02:02 AM

fihart,

I just tried second set of Netgear wireless range powerline and it is a failure. The recertified units had their serial numbers blacked out so the Netgear support would not even help me without a serial number. I returned two sets to eCOST and hopefully I will get a credit.

So I am waiting for Solwise to tell me who is selling in the states but I am open to using either a range expander or another router . Is there any setups for a range expander ? If I got another Linksys and loaded it with Tomato firmware, how could I set up both routers properly ?

Thanks for your time.
Anonymous
July 31, 2008 9:24:16 AM

You should get a refund on the Netgear units -- particularly if the retailer hadn't pointed out that they were reconditioned.

Don't know about Tomato. You should just be able to connect one mains plug device by ethernet to the router bringing in internet and at the other end connect the mains plug device by ethernet to your computer.

Or connect it by ethernet to a simple switch or router if you need more than one computer connected at that end.
July 31, 2008 8:42:25 PM

I'm no expert on wireless networks, but why can't you just use a repeater?
August 1, 2008 12:05:54 PM

jeb1517,

where would you place a repeater ? My setup is in the front of my house on the second floor. I have cable modem going to a Linksys WRT54GL router. I replaced the 2 dbi antennas with 9 dbi ( I presume it is that) and my setup in my basement is in the back of the house. My signal in the basement although the numbers look good on antenna strength is poor in surfing. It takes time. I am spoiled because upstairs in the front of my house I get fantastic speeds downloading or surfing, downstairs is pathetic.

Would buying a repeater -which brand would you suggest- and placing it in my bedroom on the second floor help getting the signal downstairs to my basement or placing it on the main floor and seeing how strong a signal I get by trial and error in my basement.

Is a repeater similar to a router ? Could a router be set up as a repeater ?

Since I am a newbie in this stuff and inquisitive I am happy to do experiments. My thinking could be wrong but if a router could be set up as a repeater and it has antennas connected to it, it would pick up the signal from my first router and like filhart states placing it by the window would give me a stronger signal hopefully downstairs.

Thanks
August 4, 2008 1:46:25 PM

So your house has a 2nd floor, a 1st floor, and then the basement? And your router is currently in the front of the 2nd floor and you would like good signal in the back of the basement? First of all, I don't see how placing any device by a window would help. You have a couple of options that I can see. Since the distance you are trying to cover seems to be fairly large, you could try buying an N class router (you currently have a G, not even super G, just the regular 54g). The new N class routers have much better range. 2nd option is getting a repeater. I would place the repeater on the first floor, somewhere in the middle preferably. If not, then towards the back. Routers can be used as repeaters but it depends on the firmware but you said it seems like tomato can do that.

EDIT: Check out this website
http://lifehacker.com/software/router/hack-attack-turn-...
it shows how to use your router more effectively. I'm not sure if that's what you meant with the tomato thing. Also...the 2nd floor is a curious place for your modem and router. Most people have it on the first floor where the cable comes in. Placing your modem and router on the first floor would help alot too.
August 5, 2008 2:21:09 AM

jeb1517,

My setup is on the second floor because it is a dedicated computer room but doesn't have AC. My basement also has a computer set up but has AC. I am not a fan of cable just high speed wireless. I do have a super G USB lan driver and when I use a 12 dbi antenna going to my PC, the speed is poor and doesn't hold steady. To me it is ironic that my lapop when down in my basement picks up a stronger signal than my regular pc with the usb lan driver but I would like the signal stronger so it locks on solidly.

I looked at the link about dd-wrt and will print it out and see if it will do better than the third party firmware Tomato. I will need to really read everything before I think about redoing my firmware.

The tomato firmware will allow me to set up WDS on a WRT54GL router. I selected the WRT54GL router because I also go on line using Ubuntu for surfing upstairs because I have two computer systems upstairs. There is no guarantee that if I bought a wireless N router it will pick up a stronger signal in my basement. I will check with Microcenter on their return policy if I bought a wireless N router they will accept it back. I don't mind trying it.

Which wireless N router would you suggest ?

Getting back to setting up a second router as a expander, how does one set up the second router ? Do I leave the first router as a AP ? I would prefer using the same model router set up as a expander because the firmware is geared for the Linksys routers.

I did ask Belkin about their expander about 10 days ago but never got a answer. They said it will be answered in the order it is received and I guess I am number 1000.

As far as placing the router to a window I believe it was mntioned either here or in a answer to someone else. Would placing the router as high as possible help the wireless signal ?

Thanks
August 5, 2008 1:42:09 PM

ABRAND888 said:
I do have a super G USB lan driver and when I use a 12 dbi antenna going to my PC, the speed is poor and doesn't hold steady.


Well that's not surprising. It wouldn't matter if you had the best and most expensive USB adapter in your computer. It can only receive what the router sends it and right now your router isn't doing a good job. From what I've read (never actually bought antennas myself) antennas don't make that big of a difference. Laptops for some reason always get better reception in my experience. Microcenter should take it back no problem. My work has a 30 day return policy on routers open or closed. I would just leave the router where it is. There was also a tutorial in that webpage I linked that showed how to increase the strength of your wireless signal. If you decide to switch firmware, maybe you could try that also. N routers can get pretty expensive but look for one on sale at microcenter. We had a D-Link N on sale for 39.99. The Linksys ones usually run around $100 when on sale. There are also Linksys models for about $250.
August 5, 2008 5:50:13 PM

JEB1517,

I ran two weeks ago a lot of tests on my pc in my basement with different antennas connected to the Engeniustech USB lan driver and the results were very poor. Sometimes the speed picked up a little but to try and download newsgroups discussions or freeware were not great. In order for me to test download speeds, I would go to pctools.com and download their free anti virus program or avg free anti virus to get a idea of speed. Download speed using cantenna and even a 16dbi yagi antenna was 120 kb/sec to 190 kb/sec.

I also have a WiFire USB antenna and on a pc was 160 kb/sec-186 kb/sec but was more steady than the other antennas connected to usb lan driver to pc. The laptop by itself was 210-285 kb/sec. With the WiFire connected to laptop and internal wireless turned off was also 227-275 kb/sec almost the same results. I use the WiFire antenna when I am on the road. It helps sometimes.

So what I need to do is increase the transmit power from 70 to 100, maybe or go incremently. I don't know if I am right in doing so but I can try it for a while and see if the download speed picks up. Will a N router help I don't know. I will also check on how hot the Linksys gets by increasing the transmit power. I assume that if I could buy a N router like the D-Link when on sale will it improve the signal downstairs I really don't know.

Will changing third party firmware from Tomato to DD-Wrt help I also don't know but according to the link you gave me might be worth a shot first. On my Linksys I have two 9 dbi antennas which I replaced. A good test might be to put first on the original antennas and see what signal strength I get in the basement with the 70 mw setting I already have. I also have 6.5 dbi antennas as well as the 9 dbi antennas and run different tests and write the outcomes. Might be interesting not only to me but others.

I didn't buy any routers yet, either Linksys or D-link. The only router I have is the Linksys with the Tomato firmware upstairs connected to my cable modem.

Somehow I need to help the internal wireless antenna of the laptop to get a stronger signal and forget trying the pc to be like the capability of the lapto to receive a wireless signal.


Thanks
August 5, 2008 5:58:13 PM

Yes, that's exactly what I would do. Test out that firmware and see if it helps any before buying another router. Also, I'm very confident an N router would help out especially if you buy a nice one such as a Linksys 300N. Even the 150s should be much better than 54g. Post back your results and good luck.
August 5, 2008 9:35:41 PM

jeb1517,

I will start first putting back the original antennas, leave the Linksys where it is and write down the speeds with the 70mw setting on my laptop in the basement. I will then exchange the original antennas and put the 6.5 dbi antennas and monitor the speeds downloading in the basement. After that I will put the 9 dbi antennas, note the speeds and see if there are any differences. I must tell you that sometimes I get better speeds and it peters out. Should be interesting.

I will change the transmiting power to 80 and see what I get, first with original antennas, 6.5 and 9 dbi antennas, then 85mw and again do the test all over again and see how hot the Linksys. This will take some time but it should be interested. I will use the firmware I loaded into the Linksys, Tomato.

I stopped off at Microcenter this afternoon and they have a D-Link DIR-615 for 40.00 after rebate and a DIR-628 for 80.00 after rebate. Also have a DIR-625 Rangebooster N wireless router for 70.00. Their policy is quite liberal. I have 30 days to bring it back for a full credit so I really can test each or one of them to ascertain which would be best znd know they can be returned. Interesting !

Which model would you suggest ? Where would I place the N Router ? Upstairs and the Linksys downstairs or vice versa ? Should I leave the transmitting power at 70 or higher ?

Since I am using one of the routers downstairs, how do I set up the router to receive the signal ? If it receives the signal, then the output of the router will go to laptop or could it also go to my pc too ?

Thanks

I am hopeful that after all these tests I will not only be successful but also help others.
August 5, 2008 9:46:23 PM

Jeb1517,

I just went to the DD-WRT page and saw that the D-link 625 and 628 both support b/g/n routers. It also supports the Linksys WRT54GL router. I find this interesting. Thes unit are on sale at Microcenter but the DIR-625 is called Rangebooster.

Look forward to your reply.
August 7, 2008 6:45:33 PM

What happened with your tests? I would see if boosting the transmit power helps your reception in the basement before buying the 2nd router. If it doesn't help, then get one of those N routers. I don't think it should matter too much which one you get. Depends how much money you are willing to spend. Whichever one you choose, you should be able to tell fairly quickly if you are getting better reception or not in the basement. All these methods I'm referring to only incorporate ONE router (placed in the same spot you currently have your router, front of the house on the 2nd floor). If even the N router can't give you a satisfactory signal in the basement, then try the setup with two routers. I would leave the N upstairs and place the Linksys on the first floor, either in the middle or towards the back (transmit power set to default). The link below has the process of how to set up the Linksys as a repeater. I didn't read the whole thing but it seems like the right thing.

http://www.wi-fiplanet.com/tutorials/article.php/10724_...
August 7, 2008 6:55:29 PM

I just would like to add...usually switching firmware on a product seems risky and people tend to not do it (including myself). However, I read about the history of this firmware and I found it pretty interesting. It seems that Linksys used Linux to develop the firmware. Since Linux is open source, Linksys was forced to give up the code to their firmware. This allowed developers, like the one who made the DD-WRT firmware (named BrainSlayer), to find out exactly how the WRT54G router worked. As a result, developers were able to create their own firmware, using Linux, that could unlock the true potential of the router. Since then, Linksys has stopped using open source programming for their firmware...obviously.... My point is that although flashing firmware might be risky in other situations, it seems like the appropriate thing to do with this router. Another popular firmware for this router is called Alchemy and Talisman, released by a company called Sveasoft.
August 8, 2008 6:27:09 PM

jeb1517,

Here are all the results of all my tests which took a lot of hours.

August 5, 2008

I am using Tomato 1.19 Third party firmware and transmitting power is 70mw on Linksys WRT54GL

router with 2 dbi original antennas that came with Linksys. The tests are in my basement which is in the back of my house using my Laptop.

Status 3 bars
AVG FREE started at 165kb/sec - 185 kb/sec
AVG Free second time started at 165kb/sec - 185 kb/sec
PCTools.com Anti-Virus 700kb/sec - 800kb/sec- this website is always very fast.
PCTools.com AV second time 700kb/sec - 800kb/sec -same as upstairs on second floor
Symantec Norton Anti-Virus 620kb/sec - 900kb/sec

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
70mw power output
one 2 dbi antenna and one 6.5 dbi antenna- couldn't find second 6.5 dbi antenna

Symantec AVirus ` 4039kb/sec - 4086kb/sec -don't understand why it is so fast
System Works 361kb/sec - 512kb/sec -evidently Symantec has fast downlod
AVG Free 156kb/sec - 280kb/sec
AVG FREE AGAIN 220kb/sec - 280kb/sec
PCTools Registry program 290kb/sec - 356kb/sec

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

August 6, 2008
70mw connected two 9 dbi rubber ducky antennas Had to reconfigure windows connections.

AVG FREE 120kb/sec - 218kb/sec
AVG FREE second time 240kb/sec - 290kb/sec
AVG FREE third time 120kb/sec - 224kb/sec
AVG FREE fourth time 258kb/sec - 289kb/sec

FREEWAREFILES.COM web site

Zone Alarm Free 1100 kb/sec average download speed
Mario Forever (20 MB) 270 - 323 kb/sec
Little Fighter 2 300kb/sec - 340kb/sec

===============================================================================================

Changed transmitting power to 84mw and reconfigured Windows to find wireless connection.
9 dbi antenna connected to Linksys Router

Little Fiughter 2 120kb/sec - 250kb/sec
Little Fighter second time 170kb/sec - 290kb/sec
Mario Forever 190kb/sec - 317kb/sec
Mario Forever second time 139kb/sec - 320kb/sec
AVG FREE 170KB/sec - 340kb/sec
PCTOOLS.COM 3000kb/sec too fast in downloading speed to really see speed.

==============================================================================================

Put back 2 dbi original antennas on the Linksys transmitting power 84mw

WENT TO AVG FREE 170kb/sec - 187kb/sec
AVG FREE-2nd time 185kb/sec - 187kb/sec
pctools.com Spyware Doctors 420kb/sec - 484kb/sec
pctools anti-virus instantaneously-can't figure out download speed
Mario Forever 78kb/sec - 235kb/sec
Zone Alarm Free 3600kb/sec
Little Fighter 2 60kb/sec - 172kb/sec
Little Fighter 2-2nd time 200kb/sec - 250kb/sec

went to another site- seemed to take forever to get to the site-hangs up
downloaded a few programs 50kb/sec - 86kb/sec

=============================================================================================

Same day August 7, 2008 at 11)00 pm 84 KW TRANSMITTING POWER

avg free.com 176KB/SEC - 284KB/SEC
SECOND TIME avg free 160KB/SEC - 305KB/SEC
pctools.com aNTI vIRUS 330KB/ -370KB/SEC

WENT TO A SITE THAT i WENT TO USING 2 DBI ANTENNAS AND I got there faster.

went to Freewarefiles.com Si

Little Fighter 2 66kb/sec - 281kb/sec
Zone Alarm Free 400kb/sec -466kb/sec
AVG FREE -same website 240kb/ - 306kb/sec
Mario Forever 180kb - 345kb/sec










August 11, 2008 2:24:23 PM

Seems like you're getting some pretty descent speeds. Is your router getting really hot using the 84kw setting? Also, did you try using your desktop? Your desktop was the one that you were having slow connection problems with right?
August 11, 2008 4:15:25 PM

jeb1517,

My router is getting hot but not very hot because I haven't been on line for more than a hour. Should I keep it on for 8 hrs and really see how hot it gets ?
I didn't try my desktop because the only way I can try it is with the USB lan driver and antenna and the speeds really seems to be half of what my laptop gets. I am getting different speed results by going to different web sites and when I download documents like the one you recommended DD-WRT, the download speed is 60 - 90 kb/sec and when I downloaded the same documents upstairs it was 3x faster than the basement speed.

I can live using my laptop in the basement because you said that laptops get better results than desktops. I would be interested in experimenting with another router to get at least 50% higher download speeds.

Micro Center is a fair place to do business with. I can buy a DIR-625 or DIR-528 D-Link router to experiment with. Both routers are supported by DD-WRT firmware. Which model would you suggest trying ? Should I place the N draft router right next to my cable modem upstairs, install the DD-WRT firmware on the D-Link and alo install the DD-WRT firmware on the Linksys or leave the Tomato firmware on the Linksys ?

Should I remove the 9 dbi antennas off the Linksys, put back the original antenas and put the 9 dbi antenas on the D-link ? I find all this stuff quite interesting. I could put the Linksys in my dining room which is right over my basement in the back of the house and maybe I will get a stronger signal.

I look forward to your reply.

August 12, 2008 3:14:29 PM

Place the DIR-625 next to your modem using default firmware. At first, use all factory antennas to see what kind of speeds you can get in the basement. See if your desktop can get a good signal from the DIR-625. After that, try putting the Linksys in your dining room with DD-WRT firmware. Using that firmware, set the Linksys up as a repeater using the link I posted a few replies up. With the Linksys acting as a repeater between the basement and the 2nd floor, I think you should see much better wireless quality on your laptop and your desktop.
August 12, 2008 6:41:15 PM

jeb1517,

Microcenter also has the DIR-628 dual band n router with a $20.00 rebate and is just $10.00 more than the DIR-625 router. Would it pay to buy this model since it is on sale ? Both model are compatable with DD-WRT firmware.

Thanks
August 12, 2008 8:00:10 PM

jeb1517,

I was looking at the specs of Tomato and saw that setting up the router for ap and wds becomes a repeater. If I were to use the Linksys with this setup, can I get the same results as having the DD-WRT firmware or do you feel DD-WRT is a more robust firmware and I should install it. I also read that if one is changing firmwares, it might be safer to reinstall the original Linklsys firmware first and then install the DD-WRT firmware.

Your opinion please on the steps I should do.

Wireless modes: access point (AP), wireless client station (STA), wireless ethernet (WET) bridge, wireless distribution system (WDS aka wireless bridging), simultaneous AP and WDS (aka wireless repeating)

Thanks.
August 13, 2008 4:32:00 PM

I've read that WDS isn't as good as just setting it up as a repeater. This is just what I've read and have no personal experience though. You can try the WDS route but I think it might be a little more complicated than just making it a repeater. I think the DIR 625 is good enough. But again, use the DIR 625 by itself first and see if you can get better connection in the basement. After that, then put the Linksys on the 2nd floor. Actually I think you should try using the AP and WDS (to make it a repeater) first. This way, you won't have to flash the firmware to get DD-WRT. I'm curious though to see if the DIR625 on its own gives you better signal.
August 13, 2008 7:31:18 PM

jeb1517,

Just picked up the DIR-625 at Microcenter, the last unit in stock. I see that its specs are 4x range and there is another model with 6x range. I think this test should be interesting. I will test the DIR-625 as is with its own antennas first. Will check wireless signal strength, then if not strong enough, will change the antennas to the supposedly 9 dbi antennas and then put regular antennas back on the Linksys and change the Linksys to AP + WD place it on the second floor and compare signal strengths in the basement and seer where I am.

All interesting stuff. Ran it 84mw it doesn't seem to get too hot. Had it on for 2 hrs.Will run it tonight all night and see what happens.



August 13, 2008 7:41:00 PM

When you set up the Linksys as AP + WDS, place it on the first floor in your dining room, (which I think you said is above your basement?) instead of the second floor
August 13, 2008 8:08:18 PM

will do. I figured you meant the first floor.
August 14, 2008 3:36:19 PM

jeb1517,

Last night was a disaster. I configured the D-Link router, it seemed to work almost as fast as the Linksys upstairs near my computer but in the basement it failed. The signal downstairs was less than 50% of the signal I normally get using the Linksys and doing surfing it creeped trying to load a page and when I went to download avg, the highest speed was 10.5kb/sec and avg will take 1 hour to download. This is modem speed.

I went back upstairs, turned off the computer, reinstalled the Linksys went back downstairs turned on the laptop and the web pages loaded pretty fast and the download speed was between 195 - 290 kb/sec. A fair speed.

I went back upstairs and looked at the 2 dbi antennas on the D-Link and the length of the antennas was 1/2 the size of the antennas on the Linksys. So I thought of using the Linkys antennas but it has the small small sma plug and I need adapters to convert them to the size of the plugs on the Linksys. Well I don't have them and wonder if MicroCenter sell these adapters.

Could the D-Link router be partially defective ? I don't know but I don't know how to test the router yet.

So that is the story so far. I will be back next Tuesday to do more testing and look forward to your thoughts.
August 14, 2008 4:27:25 PM

Wow that's very poor performance from the D-Link router. I don't know if its defective or not, maybe D-Link just makes crappy routers. Did you try using the Linksys as an AP+ WDS? I would return the D-link and just get another Linksys WRT54G so you can use one as a router and another as a repeater. You can leave the one you have right now with the tomato firmware and flash the new one to DD-WRT so you can use it as a repeater. In the meantime just leave yours operating as a router with 85kw transmit power. that seems to do an OK job in your basement. I guess I'll never recommend d-link routers again...
August 14, 2008 4:50:14 PM

jeb1517,

I didn't go further setting up ther Linksys as a AP+WDS because the signal was crappy and why go further ? Even if I were to set it up as AP + WDS on my first floor, the only way I could find out if it is picking up a signal is to plug my laptop into the Linksys on the first floor and see what is happening. If it really worth it ?

Perhaps I should contact D-Link and ask them if the DIR-625 is capable of sending a strong signal to the basement ?

I don't know if Microcenter is selling a WRT54G router or not. I did see some units but without antennas. They seem to be built in the unit.

Do they work the same ?
August 14, 2008 6:29:55 PM

You could try calling D-Link but I'd be surprised if they were of any help. The ones that look just like the WRT54G but without the antennas are the wired routers (no wireless feature so no need for antennas). Some of the new wireless routers have internal antennas but they look different from the WRT54G and I don't know if they have open source firmware or not, I doubt it. Places like Best Buy or Circuit City might have a WRT54G in stock. Maybe even Radio Shack. It's a very common router.
August 14, 2008 8:22:11 PM

Jeb1517,

I did call D-Link and they wanted to help me but the router is in my house. I will be back Monday evening or Tuesday and will try and access the router by ip address lkike I do with Tomato. Hopefully I will get in and see if I can raise transmission power and if I can will try it again. The earliest I can call D-link is Tuesday evening when I am at home and see if there might be any differences by changing any settigs. If unsuccessful I will return unit to Microcenter.

Will keep you posted.

Thanks again.
August 15, 2008 12:45:39 PM

Ok good luck let me know what happens.
August 19, 2008 5:44:08 PM

jeb1517,

I saw the same model DIR-625 at Bestbuy for $40.00 and same 30 days return privilege so I bought a new unit and return the other unit that they charge me $80.00 for credit which they did. I figured my tests should be on a new unit not a unit returned to Microcenter with the cable missing as well as the manual.

Will repoort back soon.
August 19, 2008 5:44:41 PM

sorry DIR-615 model not DIR-625
August 19, 2008 6:02:58 PM

Cool.
August 20, 2008 3:08:09 PM

jeb1517,

Last night didn't turn out the way I hoped. I installed the new DIR-615 router and near my cable modem it worked as fast as my Linksys. Before I installed the D-Link, I changed the Linksys to be AP + WDS. I then checked the download speed and the very same file FREE AVG seemed to download a bit faster than regular AP but that might be a diffeent server.

With the D-Link installed with D-Link software, I raised up the router, made certain the antennas weere stretched horizontally and went down to my basement. Afer configuring the laptop to use Windows to set my wireless settings, I dowloaded again avg free and the download speed was 190 -
290 kb/sec. I then tried to repeat the same test 5X and the download speed was modem speeds. I then went to PTOOLS and REEWAREFILES.com to try and download their different programs and they too were modem speed. I don't believe that the N+ of the D-Link has the power to send a strong signal anywhere in my house but that may change, maybe.

I then brought down my Linksys, placed it in my dining room right over the basement, went down to the basement and try to connect to it. I am using a utility from Engeniustech that I used their USB Lan driver and the signal strength of the D-Link in my basement varied from 14 to 20 db which is low and the Linksys varied from 45 to 49 db in signal strength and was five bars vs. 2 bard with the D-Link. I was able to conect to the Linksys signal on my laptop but I hit a stone wall.

I could not go out to the internet at all or retrieve even my mail. It kept going back to D-Link and it was downloading at V.92 modem speed.
I then went into the firmware to see the transmission power and it was set to high. There was a medium and a low setting. It seemed to be channel 1 just like my Linksys is set to channel 1 but even thought Windows stated I was connected, I was stopped. If I could get into Linksys connection and surf the Internet, I would be set.

I might try a 9 dbi antenna on the D-Link tonight but I can't find my other adapter to convert the small sma to a larger size for 2- 9 dbi antennas so one will be a 9 dbi and one a 2 dbi antenna. That will be one test. A friend of mine at work will lend me a 7 dbi D-Link antenna so I think my test should just be one 9 dbi antenna and one 7 dbi antenna and this will really tell me something new hopefully. I will try it first alone and maybe with the Linksys in my dining room but if I can't lock onto the Linksys secondary signal what good is the testing og the Linksys in my dining room.

I look forward to your suggestions.I think that even though I failed so far it is quite interesting.

Thanks
August 21, 2008 3:27:39 PM

Well it seems like the 2 routers together are giving you a good signal where you need it, but it's useless since you can't actually get on the internet. I'm not sure what the issue is there. The D-Link seems to be transmitting a signal, since you said you get online by directly connecting to the D-Link, but the Linksys isn't. Maybe you should try messing around with the settings in the Linksys router. You can connect to it but it isn't transmitting anything. Seems to me like the Linksys isn't even receiving a signal from the D-Link. Maybe it's because of the AP + WDS method?

The D-Link is just a bad product I guess. It's giving you worse signal in the basement than your Linksys did and the Linksys has older technology. If I were you, I would return the D-Link and pick up another WRT54G. I know they have different versions of the WRT54G now. Like WRT54GL or something. I don't know if that one also comes with open source firmware but try to find a plain WRT54G if you can. or maybe the L version will work too.

Anyway, if you don't want to return the D-Link again, then try messing around with the Linksys to make sure that it's actually intercepting a signal from the D-Link. It doesn't seem to be transmitting anything right now. If you do use two Linksys routers, than leave your current one with Tomato and put DD-WRT on the new one and try it that way. Or you could just keep the D-Link and put DD-WRT on your current one but I know you said that would probably require two firmware flashes (one to go back to original and one to get to DD-WRT) and I'm not sure if you want to take that risk. Progress is slow but at least it's progress, right? Let me know what you decide to do with the D-Link, I say return it.
August 21, 2008 5:52:41 PM

jeb1517,

Last night everything that showed the D-link router being a candidate to be returned was overturned. I replaced the original antennas that came with the d-link with a 9 dbi antenna to one port because I have a adapter that converts the small sma to the 9 dbi antenna which I believe is reverse TNT connector and I had a D-link 7 dbi antenna to the small sma connector which has a long cable, so I stretched it further.

All I can say at this time is that downloading AVG Free 4X the average speed was from 220 - 300 kb/sec. Pctools programs went up in the stratosphere around 700 -800 kb/sec few different programs were from 188 - 276 kb/sec and a few others from 240 - 300 kb/sec. I will rerun these test with the 15 programs exactly the same tonight and will report back whatever the results may be, hopefully the same.

So the numbers seem to be the same as my Linksys or slightly better. I imagine a much stronger antenna might do better but the original 2 dbi antennas of the D-link look like midget's in comparison to the Linksys antennas. I have two more weekend vacations coming up so more tests will be done next week.

I have a lot of theories but will keep mum until I do further testing. I heard that 2.4 GHZ telephones might impede the signal strength. I have a 2.4 in my basement and on the first floor in my kitchen. My brother-in-law just sent me a 900 MHZ 2-line phone and I wonder where the best place is ?
Have you any thoughts ? Might this 2.4 GHZ telephone be causing signal strengths ?

I will keep you informed. I can monitor my emails answer but not do any testing till next week. This is a interesting journey to get a great signal in my basement.

Thanks.
August 27, 2008 7:16:49 PM

jeb1517,

I am still testing the dlink and the Linksys and do not have conclusive results. I did learn something interesting. There are times when I use windows to access the dlink and get a poor connection. If I turn off and then on the cable modem and the dlink router, I seem to get a better signal in the basement. Since I have the Engeniustech utility, I can see immediately the signal strength. If it is low, I go uptairs and turn off/on cable modem and router, I get a stronger signal.

I am playing around with a 9 dbi antenna going to one sma port and the other is a 16 db yagi antenna. I am moving it around. I believe that getting a good signal consistently might be doable but I have to get the same results two or three days in a row.

Will get back to you probably after Labor Day when I will be home.

I wonder if there is a device that I can connect to my cable modem & router and send upstairs a signal to turn it off and then on from my basement.

Thanks
August 28, 2008 4:15:08 PM

jeb1517,

I am going to change my 2.4GHZ telephone in my basement over the weekend to a 900 MHZ and see if this helps me get a better signal. One thing I know for sure is that the 2 dbi antennas do very little unless it is next to the computer. I am going to run the Linksys router upstairs tonight and see if the signal I get in my basement is any better than the DLink router puts out. A yagi 16 dbi antenna and the 9 dbi rubber pucky antenna doesn't seem to put out any stronger signal than my previous setup of a 9 dbi antenna and a 7 dbi antenna that I get in my basement using my laptop. I agin tried the dlink upstairs and the Linksys router right near my laptop and I got nowhere. I get such a strong signal but I can't connect. I ran iconfig and it sees the ethernet connection but I can't make any connection to the router other than my connection to the output of the router right into my laptop and I see flickering on the wan light and a little on the # 1 output of the router but I can't connect at all.

My utility shows me the Dlink and Linksys it seems to be connected to Linksys but is going nowhere. Could it be that since I am using two different named routers, I can't connect ?

So this is where I am up to. I was wondering if I were to buy a Linksys WRT54G router, install the DD-WRT firmware as a repeater will the signal not only be stronger but making a connection might be doable since both routers have the same name ?

Thanks
August 28, 2008 4:25:24 PM

jeb1517,

I just thought of siomething. Since I can see with the utility program the channel the dink is using I should change the channel I have on my Linksys from 1 to either channel 6 or 11 and then maybe I can connect ?
September 1, 2008 11:50:08 AM

The phone frequency might play a part in signal strength. I think the DLink N router runs at 2.4GHz also?? Maybe since the phone and router are on the same frequency it's causing interference, I'm not sure.

Are the two routers on the same channel? Try putting them both on channel 6 then try putting them on different channels, one on 6 and one on 11. Name brand of the routers shouldn't make a difference when trying to use one as a repeater.

When you have the DLink upstairs and the Linksys acting as a repeater on the first floor, you said you could connect to the Linksys but couldn't get online, right? Try connecting to the Linksys using an ethernet cable just as a quick test to see if you can get online that way. Maybe it is receiving the signal but just isn't repeating it.
September 2, 2008 3:32:04 PM

jeb1517,

I read somewhere that if one was to disable DHCP on a second router (my Linksys WRT54GL) and the output of the router went to the laptop, it was possible to get a better signal to the laptop. So I went into Tomato, entered my password and disabled DHCP and connected a cable to my laptop. I didn't see ay improvements at all. Maybe I did something wrong but I am not sure. So I decided to look at the configuration in Tomato and it didn't accept my password no matter what I tried. I was afraid that I screwed something up and wanted to get back to square one. So I went up to the second floor, took the D-link 615 out of my setup and connected the Linksys into my system. I was on line but I still couldn't get into Tomato. I tried reinstalling Linksys software and got same message, cannot access the router. So I tried a hardware reset on the Linksys and it too didn't work no matter how hard I held the reset button. Finally by some quirk, I came across a password that allowed me to get into the Tomato firmware. I did see that DHCP was enabled, it was set to AP, and my transmission was 84mw. Everything upstairs worked flawlessly. I tested three times this password and each time it was successful. So now my Linksys is the only router being used upstairs.

So at this time I have two 9 dbi antennas connected to the Linksys. I didn't install the 900 mhz telephone yet but I have interesting results. My laptop shows 2 bars signal strength and 14-21 dbi antenna strength. My download speeds are similar to the D-Link router with the dlink a little stronger by about 20-30 kb/sec. I decided to test my laptop in my dining room to see if I will get a stronger signal. I got 4 bars and antenna signal stremgth ranged from 23-29 dbi. I expected terrific downloads but all the sites I always go to, the download speeds were slower by 75-100 kb/sec. I immediately went down to the basement, downloaded from the same sites and the speed increased by 75-100 kb/sec.

So would a repeater in my dining room really give me better signal strengths and download speeds in my basement ?

If I tried a yagi antenna on one end of the Linksys instead of a 9 dbi antenna give improved signal strength for downloading or not. I can try it tonight.

I can install the 900 MHZ telephone system and just leaving the setting the way they are and see if there might be any improvements if any.

I can increase transmission speed to 100mw and see if it improves download speeds and monitor my Linksys that it doesn't really get to hot.

Would the D-Link 615 placed in my basement near my laptop and connected to my laptop do anything to improve download speeds ?

Might the new Linksys USB-N adapter WUSB600N with cradle which Maximumpc wrote up this month be helpful in picking up a better signal that the internal wireless adapter g ?

I look forward to your thoughts.



jeb1517,

I read somewhere that if one was to disable DHCP on a second router (my Linksys WRT54GL) and the output of the router went to the laptop, it was possible to get a better signal to the laptop. So I went into Tomato, entered my password and disabled DHCP and connected a cable to my laptop. I didn't see ay improvements at all. Maybe I did something wrong but I am not sure. So I decided to look at the configuration in Tomato and it didn't accept my password no matter what I tried. I was afraid that I screwed something up and wanted to get back to square one. So I went up to the second floor, took the D-link 615 out of my setup and connected the Linksys into my system. I was on line but I still couldn't get into Tomato. I tried reinstalling Linksys software and got same message, cannot access the router. So I tried a hardware reset on the Linksys and it too didn't work no matter how hard I held the reset button. Finally by some quirk, I came across a password that allowed me to get into the Tomato firmware. I did see that DHCP was enabled, it was set to AP, and my transmission was 84mw. Everything upstairs worked flawlessly. I tested three times this password and each time it was successful. So now my Linksys is the only router being used upstairs.

So at this time I have two 9 dbi antennas connected to the Linksys. I didn't install the 900 mhz telephone yet but I have interesting results. My laptop shows 2 bars signal strength and 14-21 dbi antenna strength. My download speeds are similar to the D-Link router with the dlink a little stronger by about 20-30 kb/sec. I decided to test my laptop in my dining room to see if I will get a stronger signal. I got 4 bars and antenna signal stremgth ranged from 23-29 dbi. I expected terrific downloads but all the sites I always go to, the download speeds were slower by 75-100 kb/sec. I immediately went down to the basement, downloaded from the same sites and the speed increased by 75-100 kb/sec.

So would a repeater in my dining room really give me better signal strengths and download speeds in my basement ?

If I tried a yagi antenna on one end of the Linksys instead of a 9 dbi antenna give improved signal strength for downloading or not. I can try it tonight.

I can install the 900 MHZ telephone system and just leaving the setting the way they are and see if there might be any improvements if any.

I can increase transmission speed to 100mw and see if it improves download speeds and monitor my Linksys that it doesn't really get to hot.

Would the D-Link 615 placed in my basement near my laptop and connected to my laptop do anything to improve download speeds ?

Might the new Linksys USB-N adapter WUSB600N with cradle which Maximumpc wrote up this month be helpful in picking up a better signal that the internal wireless adapter g ?

I look forward to your thoughts.



July 8, 2009 1:13:27 PM

abrand888,

I know this thread is old....wondering if you have found a solution for boost your wifi range.
!