Best option for extending my wifi network? WAP54G or WRE54G?

Discussion in 'Networking Issues' started by ScaryFast, May 19, 2005.

  1. ScaryFast

    ScaryFast Network Guru Member

    My mother owns a campground and I set her up with a WRT54G router last year using normal firmware. I'm not sure about the distance but I know that I can sit and use a laptop out at the Sauna located out back but the signal strength is low. I want to put a device out at the sauna to extend the range to cover the campsites in the surrounding area.

    What's my best option? I'd like to keep my signal strength boosting to a minimum on the WRT(it's a version 1.0 according to the serial number (CDF0) because stability and life of the hardware is important, but if I need to do it to boost the signal between it and whatever I end up putting in the sauna, fine.

    I see the WAP54G has a repeater mode, which seems to be just what the WRE54G does, but which is better? I've read about special firmware for the WAP, but also that the WRE antenna might be better? In any case, the WRE54G is $20 more from an online store and almost $40 locally(canadian funds)

    A second WRT54G seems like a possible option as well(cheapest) according to stuff I've read on this forum, but I have some questions about that too.

    Will WDS cut down on the range? will the lower throughput be something a person would notice when browsing the web? Also, will WDS pass through wired connections? For example, if I had the WRT54G in the sauna and ran a cat5 cable out to a campsite, could I connect a computer to it and have it all work? or is WDS only for wireless to wireless?

    Sorry for the long thread. I'm just trying to decide on the smartest purchase.
  2. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    wds i think will not degrade range but will extende it. but before i awnser your questions about wds i think that you should just get bigger antennas for the wrt and if that does not work then try some 3rd party firmware with the antennas.
    ok back to wds questions it cuts thoughout in half i thnk that wds will work on the ethnet ports on the back of the router. i am pretty sure that is for both wired and wireless
  3. ScaryFast

    ScaryFast Network Guru Member

    Thanks for the reply. If I went with another antenna it wouldn't be enough. the reason the signal only reaches to the sauna is because of all the walls it goes through. I would need a roof mounted antenna and I still don't think it will reach all the sites around the sauna. I should have mentioned that an antenna wasn't what I was looking for.
  4. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    ok....then the only reason why i am not suggesting the range extenders is the fact that they are some times hard to setup i have a dlink range extender and it is really slow and pretty bad. maybe you could consider wds
  5. Couledouce

    Couledouce Network Guru Member

    I had a similar problem, and ended up buying a second WRT54G, and I am very happy.

    I believe the WRE and WAP are fairly close hardware to the WRT anyway, and there are several frimware options available to use WDS. Both your WRE or WAP would use WDS to extend the range anyway...
  6. ScaryFast

    ScaryFast Network Guru Member

    well then, that settles it. I think I'll just pick up a WRT54G. heck, they're cheap enough I could buy 2 for almost the price of 1 WRE54G.

    Then, if I understand things correctly, I should be able to connect 1 new WRT54G to the old one via the WAN port, set it up as a router/dhcp server but with a different subnet to make it behave like a seperate network, correct?

    I'd just like to seperate the business network from the campers network, advanced file sharing be damned.

    Then once that's going I can add on the second new router in WDS mode to expand the campers wifi range.
  7. cr8zy07

    cr8zy07 Network Guru Member

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