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How do I use an access point as a repeater?

Discussion in 'Networking & Security' started by hat, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. hat

    hat Maximum Overclocker

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    I got a friend who has a wireless network and he has a gaming machine on that network... he's far enough away from the router for it to drop his connection and lag out on him, so I told him to get an access point and use it as a repeater, putting it somewhere between the router and him to increase his signal strength. Problem is, I have no idea how to actually do it. The setup should go like this:

    router--> <--wireless to access point--> <--access point--> <--wireless to his pc
     
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  2. Kreij

    Kreij Senior Monkey Moderator Staff Member

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    What you describe is not an ideal solution. Can you give us some more information on your friends situation?
    How far is he from the wireless router?
    What is the environment that he has to deal with (cement walls, etc.)
    Can the AP be wired to the router?

    I run a wired AP that easily handles signals from 100' away through cement firewalls, and that is with just a simple linksys AP.
     
  3. hat

    hat Maximum Overclocker

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    It can't be wired, or else I would have told him to set it up as such.

    I don't know exactly how far away, but he's on a different floor. I don't know what type of material the signal is going through though. All I know is that it would be a good idea to add a repeater to boost the signal.
     
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  4. Kreij

    Kreij Senior Monkey Moderator Staff Member

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    Well the question becomes, if his Wireless transceiver cannot reliably get a signal at his location (on another floor), will an AP be able to do that?

    It seems that the signal is being degraded (or attenuated) by something in the environment. An AP might have the same problem if what is isolating the signal is severe enough to prevent communications with wireless devices.
     
  5. hat

    hat Maximum Overclocker

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    I'm thinking it would be better ifhe had an access point acting as a repeater if he can place it in a good spot between him and the router so there's 2 shorter, stronger signals rather than one long, weak signal...
     
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  6. Kreij

    Kreij Senior Monkey Moderator Staff Member

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    You are right, hat, but without knowing the topology of the building or where the placement of the AP would be it is really hard to give an honest answer as to whether the AP would help.

    That being said, you can set up the AP with a unique IP Address on the network, and set the AP's default gateway to be where it should be. Then set the workstation's (laptop, whatever) default gateway to be the access point.

    If this is on a domain, you want to make sure that the DNS routers are set correctly too.
     
  7. hat

    hat Maximum Overclocker

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    I tried doing it myself and I couldn't get it to work. I may give it another shot sometime. I pretty much did all of what you said though.
     
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  8. Batou1986

    Batou1986

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    What your trying to do by making 2 shorter stronger signals is the right way to go about it unless you want to run a wire.

    My router has something called WDS, Wireless Distribution System here's the blurb from help

    WDS Enable

    When WDS is enabled, this access point functions as a wireless repeater and is able to wirelessly communicate with other APs via WDS links. Note that WDS is incompatible with WPA -- both features cannot be used at the same time. A WDS link is bidirectional; so this AP must know the MAC Address (creates the WDS link) of the other AP, and the other AP must have a WDS link back to this AP. Make sure the APs are configured with same channel number.
     
  9. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    repeaters only work with WEP encryption, and they're a bitch to setup if the two access points are different brands, in my experience
     

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