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WiFi Hotspot For RV Park

Discussion in 'Networking & Security' started by Michale32086, Feb 11, 2013.

  1. Michale32086

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    I was perusing Google looking for some information on setting up an RV Park Wifi system..

    I came across a TPU thread from 2011 that was helpful but, rather than resurrect an old thread, I thought it best to start a new one..

    So, here I am..

    My situation...

    A year or so ago, I set up a very basic WiFi system for an RV Park

    http://sjfm.us/temp/RVwifi1.jpg

    The small green dot at the lower right is a simple Linksys WRT54G Wireless router (DD-WRT) with an 11dbi antenna attached. It feeds the "pull thru" areas just fine (at the bottom of the pic), but is spotty beyond that... Setting this up was within my level of expertise..

    The Park management wanted to expand the WiFi Access to include long-term residents in the two streets north of the pull thru area...

    http://sjfm.us/temp/RVwifi2a.jpg

    I added 2 more Linksys WRT54G Wireless routers (DD-WRT), hardwired (Cat5E) them directly into the Cable Modem/Router in the RV Park Office that has a 50mbit connection...

    This was (barely) within my level of expertise..

    As of late, the RV Park has been receiving complaints about spotty connections, slow speeds and no connections viewable.

    Personally, I think it's a lot of DSAK and I.D.TEN-T problems as I go out there with my laptop and have no problems with access. But management now wants to sink some $$$ (Probably around 2K) into upgrading the system..

    And here I am now...

    I am a little out of my pay grade, so I was hoping to get some expert/guru advice..

    I read on the afore mentioned thread about this:

    http://www.google.com/products/cata...a=X&ei=i6VvTpW7B7LRiAKI8fTlBg&ved=0CG4Q8wIwAQ

    And was wondering if that might be all I need..

    Any hints, tips, advice, or "yer outta yer mind!!s" would be appreciate... :D

    Michale
     
  2. AthlonX2

    AthlonX2 HyperVtX™

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    I think if you upgraded your existing WRT54G router with 802.11n based products it would solve your issue. Is there any way you could get one setup at the green dot and one more at the far end of the seasonal sites? maybe tuck it in a tree :)
     
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  3. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    Should build a custom router out of a older P4 machine and use access points only. This will help stability issues cause I am willing to be the many residence that connect to this router are using it like its their own world and downloading EVERYTHING.
     
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  4. remixedcat

    remixedcat

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    If you got the budget for it you can get something from extreme networks and have a WLAN controller and access points. but that can run a few thousand...

    Or if you can't afford that then....

    You can deploy a router and then have these wireless access points:
    http://www.ampedwireless.com/products/ap20000g.html

    I did a review located at the following URL:
    http://remixedcat.blogspot.com/2012/11/amped-wireless-ap20000g-full-review.html

    Please read it, as it has a lot of details on those.

    Site Config 1 (1 router//1 access point//1 range extender)
    http://img.techpowerup.org/130211/RVwifi1.png

    Site Config 2: (1 router and 2 range extenders)
    http://img.techpowerup.org/130211/RVwifi2.png
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2013
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  5. Michale32086

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    WOW!

    So many response!!

    Thanx a bunch!!!

    Athlonx2,

    Actually, the Linksys on Pine Dr *IS* in a tree! :D


    brandonwh64,

    No doubt.. One of my biggest problems with this particular setup is that I am not able to monitor the connections as a whole, but rather am limited to simply checking the throughput from the individual Linksys devices..


    remixedcat,

    Thanx for the links. Lemme peruse them and I'll get back...


    Thanx again to all..

    Michale
     
  6. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    Its wise to use only one router on the private LAN and run Wireless access points. This would allow you to monitor the network connections by using the router's web interface.
     
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  7. Michale32086

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    I might be able to bump management up a few K if I can convince them it's worth it..

    Got a link???


    Excellent...

    Couple questions though...

    Outdoor viability is a must.. The current Linksys routers are outdoors (one on a 20 ft pole, one in a tree.... I kid you not! :D) housed in a box:

    http://sjfm.us/temp/rvwifi1.jpg

    There is also SOME foilage around, but most is 8'-10'+ off the ground..

    http://sjfm.us/temp/RVwifi2.jpg

    If geographical is relevant, the RV Park is located in St Augustine, FL (Nation's oldest city!! :D)

    Thanx again for the links.... VERY much appreciated...

    All in all, what I am looking at it is something within my level of expertise, can be set up quickly, monitored extensively and require very little maintenance.

    Providing free beer :toast: would be a bonus :roll:


    Michale
     
  8. Michale32086

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    OK, so rather than adding multiple routers, I should be adding multiple APs...

    Could the multiple routers be the cause of the connection problems that are being reported??


    Michale
     
  9. xvi

    xvi

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    I would make sure you're turning off DHCP on the routers and not using the WAN ports. That basically turns them in to APs with a built-in switch. The "High Gain" antennas change the radiation pattern and can cause dead zones. Make sure you're not using the same channel/frequency for your different APs.

    You might try using sector antennas to blast 2.4 and 5.8 out to wireless clients. If you're trying to blast through trees, you'll want to stick with the 2.4 GHz band since 5.8 GHz does NOT like physical interference, not that 2.4 likes it either. You might be able to put sector antennas up to help focus the signal where you'd like it to go.

    If I'm not mistaken, FCC limits how much power you can pump in to an antenna, but they don't regulate the attenuation (dBi) of the antenna.

    Check for interference. Is anyone else trying to sit on your channel? Do you have multiple APs on the same channel?

    If you need an AP that can be weatherproofed, try some of Ubiquiti's products like their Bullet (single polarity) or Rocket (dual polarity). You'll need a POE injector for those (not waterproof), but you can change a whole heck of a lot of settings on those.

    If you need a quick and dirty solution, and I'm not recommending this, there *are* WiFi range extenders (basically rebroadcast the signal), but we've never had anything good come out of them. Ever.

    Perhaps if you could get a couple sector antennas up around the middle of the park? Four 90 degree sectors to make a full 360?
     
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  10. remixedcat

    remixedcat

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  11. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    Maybe.

    Each router likes to direct traffic and sometime cause conflicts and collisions with data. With one router doing all of the traffic directing and using the access points for their wireless connection to the main router, you should have no issues.
     
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  12. remixedcat

    remixedcat

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    The Amped Wireless units are very powerful. I got a mixed construction house with very tricky walls and a very fat cat that my R20000G has to penetrate thru and I can evne stream videos from 200 some ft away!
     
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  13. Michale32086

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  14. remixedcat

    remixedcat

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    The RE you don't have to run cable to them.... less to mess with, however with RE the B/W may be affected by daisy chaining.... however, when I did that it was still decent enough throughput!!!
     
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  15. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    XVI has a good point too is that you could take the routers you already have and set them as access points if they have that feature. What this does as XVI mentioned is it turns off DHCP and gives the router a IP of say 192.168.1.254
     
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  16. Michale32086

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    That sounds like it might be a good "First Thing To Try" as, if the existing setup is sufficient but just needs adjusted, I might be able to fix things up with what I have...

    On the other hand, the chance to play with some new high end hardware is pretty tempting. :D

    OK, lemme see if I can lay it out..

    I believe the DD-WRT equipped routers can be converted to straight AP mode..

    The current setup is this... There are 3 DD-WRT routers (192.168.1.3, 192.168.1.4 and 192.168.1.5).

    .3 is hardwired to .4 and .4 is hardwired directly into the Cable Modem/Router. They both have stock antennas...

    .5 is also hardwired into the Cable Modem and has an 11dBi antenna and a stock antenna.

    All three point to the 192.168.1.1 (Cable Modem) as the Gateway..

    So, if I understand you correctly, your saying keep the .5 as is and set .3 and .4 as APs pointing to .5

    That sounds right???

    Michale
     
  17. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    Change the router you want to be the main router to 192.168.1.1 then all other routers start at the end of the IP range such as 254, 253, 252 (EX 192.168.1.254). Turn DHCP off on all but 192.168.1.1
     
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  18. Michale32086

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  19. Michale32086

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    Actually, now that I think about it, I think that is how I have it set...

    The Cable Modem is a SMC Business Gateway...

    All the DD-WRT routers have DHCP off and only the Gateway has DHCP on....

    Michale
     
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  20. xvi

    xvi

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    A bit, yes. We often use Ubiquiti radios as they're fairly inexpensive, quite customizable, and can be weatherproofed. You won't typically be able to daisy-chain them though and you'll need to buy your own antenna. Also, they can run DD-WRT. :cool:
     
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  21. Michale32086

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    OK I just checked the routers..

    They are set up to act as APs.....

    So, it seems that THAT is not the problem.. :(


    Michale
     
  22. Michale32086

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    The fact that they can run DD-WRT, something I at least have a passing knowledge in, is a BIG plus...


    Michale
     
  23. remixedcat

    remixedcat

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    The extreme networks wlan controller + 3 APs would be around 12K. but that is top tier stuff for enterprises with thousands of connections.

    The Amped Wireless solution would be 500 at most. but it's very powerful and would do the job.
     
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  24. Michale32086

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    Ouch!

    "Too rich for my blood"
    -Data, STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION, Cause And Effect


    Michale
     
  25. Mindweaver

    Mindweaver Moderato®™ Staff Member

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    You don't need another router. You need a managed switch, and set the switch up with a different set of IP's then the rest of your network. (Example: Main 192.168.1.x Switch 192.168.0.x) this will add another 255 IP's just for wireless then add wireless AP's to your switch. Adding multi routers create multi problems.. Switches are your friend. :toast:
     
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