Wireless repeating/boosting

Discussion in 'Wireless Networking' started by Rob, May 7, 2006.

  1. Rob

    Rob Guest


    I have a setup with 7 PCs on a wireless network - talking to a netgear
    WPN824 (MIMO) acting as an access point only. Each PC has a WPN111
    USB2 wireless adapter - they have no PCI expansion ability.

    A few of the PCs are slow, and one drops off the network all the time.

    After a fruitless few hours spent trying to get another netgear device
    to act as a repeater, only to discover the WPN824 doesn't support WDS,
    I have a couple of options.

    I'm thinking of getting the Hawking HWU8DD for the dropping PC - I
    guess it won't be as quick as the WPN111 but will hopefully get more
    signal so won't drop. My other option is to replace the 824 with
    another access point, and locate a repeater nearer the slower PCs. Of
    course I can change from netgear to something else, but would rather
    not change all the WPN111s. The WPN824 won't take an external aerial.

    Any advice from someone who's been in this situation would be
    gratefully accepted. I'm in the UK so any solution has to be available
    here now (don't think the rangemax next is yet).

    thanks and regards

    Rob, May 7, 2006
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  2. I haven't exactly been in that SAME situation but I have some advice for you
    over the dropping out NIC. I have, on one particular network, 4 x USB wi-fi
    NICS. At first they were all D-link going to a D-Link G604T router. However,
    2 of the NICs were elder D-link DWL-120+ NICs and they only did WEP thus the
    whole network was running as WEP only and naturally that isn't good enough.
    After all, if you can crack a WEP in around 3 minutes as has already been
    demonstrated, all WEP does is keep the honest and not so knowledgeable out.
    So, I got 2 x Gigabyte GN-WB01GS NICs to take the place of the elder D-Link
    so I could do WPA-PSK. I set all this up and got it running as it should but
    I found that though the D-link DWL-G120s worked normally with the network,
    the Gigabytes DID when on WEP as a test but DON'T when using WPA-PSK. They
    do EVENTUALLY get there and work OK but they don't work OK after first
    turning on. What they NEED when turned on is to have the Gigabyte NICs
    pulled out, wait until XP has decided they are gone and taken care of that,
    then put them back in. Sometimes this has to happen more than once, too.
    However, once they finally lock on properly, they stay that way for as long
    as the machines are operational. A reboot sometimes fixes things and
    sometimes causes the problems all over again. Now please take into account
    that this particular network, on every machine, runs BOINC at full capacity
    so it is running the CPU on every machine at 100%. If BOINC is disallowed
    access to start at Windows startup, it seems to go well enough. So, my
    conclusion is that the percentage of CPU used is the reason the Gigabyte
    fails so often BUT points out that the D-link devices seem to be superior
    stuff. Perhaps you have this same problem.

    Now as to what to do with them, get a smart bridge. Divide the networks into
    two parts on 2 different IP address ranges (eg, 192.168.0.x and 10.1.1.x
    maybe) and bridge the two. The bridge will then be able to handle all
    requests to the router and out to Internet.
    Diamontina Cocktail, May 7, 2006
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  3. Hi

    You problem can be summarized in one Word MIMO.

    Unfortunately due to the transit nature of the current MIMO technology (Pre
    802.11n Standard) there is No additional hardware compatible directly with
    MOMO devices MIMO.

    If you want to stay with your current MINO deice your best choice is adding
    a second Wireless source connected with a cable to the MIMO device.

    Wireless, Extending Distance - http://www.ezlan.net/Distance.html

    Wireless Router as an AP - http://www.ezlan.net/router_AP.html

    Jack (MVP-Networking).
    Jack \(MVP-Networking\)., May 8, 2006
  4. Rob

    Rob S Guest

    On Sun, 7 May 2006 22:55:12 -0400, "Jack \(MVP-Networking\)."

    -You problem can be summarized in one Word MIMO.
    -Unfortunately due to the transit nature of the current MIMO technology (Pre
    -802.11n Standard) there is No additional hardware compatible directly with
    -MOMO devices MIMO.
    -If you want to stay with your current MINO deice your best choice is adding
    -a second Wireless source connected with a cable to the MIMO device.
    -Wireless, Extending Distance - http://www.ezlan.net/Distance.html
    -Wireless Router as an AP - http://www.ezlan.net/router_AP.html

    Thanks for those links. I may look into the bridging idea also but wanted to
    keep it simple - I need to remotely access these PCs with pcanywhere and this
    adds a layer of complication.

    Is MIMO really better than the existing standards? I read somewhere that in fact
    802.11b can in fact be faster then 11g - has someone done some real world
    performance testing?

    robatwork at mail dot com
    Rob S, May 9, 2006
  5. Rob

    RalfG Guest

    802.11b connection rate tops out at 11Mbps so it isn't too likely. Not
    impossible though in specific circumstances. If you are using standard
    USB1.1 ports to connect the adapter then an 802.11g adapter data transfer
    rate is limited by the 12Mbps USB1 port bandwidth, but even so 802.11g can
    be slightly faster than .11b.. Low power availability from the USB port and
    adapter-router hardware issues could bring the connection speed down below
    11mbps but those would be hardware specific conditions that wouldn't
    normally apply.

    I've run into the adapter-router hardware issue with both a Linksys 802.11g
    USB adapter (Broadcom chipset?) trying to connect to a D-Link router
    (Atheros) and also with a Dlink adapter with Intersil chipset connecting to
    the same Atheros based router. The Linksys connection speed was very
    unstable, varying continously from 2Mpbs to 54Mbps even when the USB adapter
    was within a few feet of the router. The D-link Intersil based adapter gets
    a much better connection rate but seldom reaches 54Mbps, usually connecting
    in the range of 24 to 48Mbps. In the same physical locations my Atheros
    based D-link USB adapter consistently connects at 54/108Mbps. An 802.11b
    Linksys clone USB adapter that I have also consistently connects at its
    maximum rate (11mbps) when attached to the computers at the same locations.
    I don't know exactly why but the 802.11b adapter also detects several
    external wireless networks while the 802.11g adapters almost never detect
    any but my own.
    RalfG, May 9, 2006
  6. Hi
    And by the way, the concerning parties yet one more time failed two days ago
    to agree on the 802.11n (MIMO) Standard.
    Jack (MVP-Networking).
    Jack \(MVP-Networking\)., May 9, 2006
  7. Rob

    Rob Guest

    Interesting link, that. To follow up on my original problem - the
    Hawking dish-antenna thing that replaced the netgear USB adapter has
    really helped the connection - probably due to its more directional
    ability. Currently being soak tested, but the inital signs are very
    positive. May be able to get away without the booster.....


    Rob, May 9, 2006
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