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Extending WAN from WRT54G between two buildings

Discussion in 'Networking Issues' started by WirelessInn, Oct 10, 2006.

  1. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    Folks,
    I would appreciate possible help with my project as illustrated in the attachment.
    I have 2 commercial blgs and a "home office" bldg (3 bldgs total), as described below:
    1- BLDG A - Home office with internet access (Satellite) and WRT54G wireless router with optional, better antennas. This office has a desktop and a wirelessly connected laptop (in a Windows wireless network labeled "Office1". OS: Windows XP.
    2- BLDG B - "Bed and Breakfast Inn" with current wireless access to the WRT54G router for Guests (service offered to Guests on a convenience/reasonable usage basis)
    3- BLDG C - Retail Store with a Main Office Computer (Windows 2000 Pro) with its own wired LAN connection to several point of sale (POS) computers/workstations.
    All 3 buildings are located in a triangular pattern, about 150 ft from each other - clear line of sight.

    I'd like to:
    - Bridge or otherwise wirelessly link BLDGS A and C to allow the Internet connection in BLDG A to be available to BLDG C (BLDG C also does certain customer services over the internet - it only has a dialup connection for now - No DSL in our town!)
    - Possibly have Main Office Computer in BLDG C able to access Internet via BLDG A, while remaining in its own wired LAN with the POS computers - LAN labeled "Office1"
    - Is this possible? Can indeed Main Office Computer in BLDG C be "on two different networks" (note: the POS computers in a LAN with the Main Office Computer in BLDG C do not have to have access to the Internet. Would Main Office Computer in BLDG C have to have two NICs?
    - Anything else?
    - I so far understand that a pair of WAP54G could be set up as bridges between BLDGs A and C. I am confused about how to make Main Office Computer in BLDG connect to the Internet via Home Office Computer in BLDG A.

    Thanks for ANY, any help!
     
  2. HennieM

    HennieM Network Guru Member

    Not sure if I understand correctly (where's the attachment you mention?), but it's certainly possible to have one computer on 2 or more networks. You need a NIC for every network you want to access. Also, to prevent routing issues and have a "clean" easily debugable setup, better have your 2 networks on different subnets.

    Should a wireless NIC be able to "see" the WRT, you can just add a wireless NIC to your Main Office Computer, and voilla!

    If you want the POS computers to also have access to the internet, specify the Main Office Computer (with the 2 NICs) as the default gateway for the POS network, and set up ip routing/forwarding on the 2 NIC machine - this makes the Main Office Computer act as a computer AND a router.
     
  3. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    Thanks for the very prompt response. Indeed I forgot to attach the graphic. Here it is - I spent too much time trying to describe my project with words!

    I hope this will be clearer. Note: of course, I am NOT worrying about BUILDING B, which is easily reached wirelessly by the WRT54G in BUILDING A.

    My concern is just to have Business Main Office Computer in BUILDING C (and NOT the attached POS via LAN on Workgroup Office1) be able to reach the NET via the installation in BUILDING A. That's why I put "P1" and "P2" on the graphic as the points I need to "bridge".

    Seems that it will also be easier (no line of sight, heavy metal BUILDING C) to make the connection between P2 and the Business Main Office Computer in BUILDING C by CAT cable.

    If you do not mind, please let me know what else I need to do to make this work (unless there is a better solution). I have read a bit about all this, and I am not too bad about graphing it all, but I do have only limited experience in networking. And I am certainly puzzled at having BUILDING C's Main Office Computer act as server for the POS stations in a busy retail environment AND be able to communicate with BUILDING A's internet access equipment!

    As to your recommendation:
    "If you want the POS computers to also have access to the internet, specify the Main Office Computer (with the 2 NICs) as the default gateway for the POS network, and set up ip routing/forwarding on the 2 NIC machine - this makes the Main Office Computer act as a computer AND a router."
    I'll probably have to inquire some more: I could provice you with more precise info about the two networks setups - especfially BLDG C's Main Office Computer and BULDGA's Home Office Desktop!

    Again, Thank you very much for paying attention to all this!

    Roger Thomas
     

    Attached Files:

  4. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    Extending WAN from WRT54G between buildings

    To: HennieM
    Sorry for wasting your time looking at an incorrect graphic (just recently sent you)
    I noticed that there was some misinfo in that graphic, especially folloeing the Asterix at the bottom.
    It is BLDG A and C I am trying to bridge, NOT A and B. Attached is the corrected graphic.
    Thanks for all the help!
    - Roger T
     

    Attached Files:

  5. HennieM

    HennieM Network Guru Member

    No problem WirelessInn, I'm kinda reading impaired, so I got the picture from the picture ;-)

    Here's some ideas of what you COULD do (there are more ways of skinning the, uh signal...). I'm also assuming that you do not have basic knowledge concerning networking, so sorry if I state the obvious.

    1) As for the link from P1 to Main Office Computer (MOC)-

    1.1) Set up a WRT at P2, and run it in bridge mode using 3rd party firmware such as Thibor, dd-wrt, and others, which will allow it to wirelessly connect to P1. (You can also, I think, use a in place of the WRT for this). Add a normal ethernet NIC to MOC, and run CAT5 cabling from P2 to this NIC on MOC. (The other NIC on MOC is still conncted to the POS network).

    OR, if you don't want to run CAT5, and on the condition that P2 can wirelessly see P1 and MOC-

    1.2) Set up a WRT at P2, and run it in WDS mode (3rd party firmware required). This would mean that your WRT at P1 should also be setup for WDS. Now add a wireless NIC to MOC.
    The downside of this setup is that your wireless speed at MOC will be cut in half from what it could be, but for just internet access it should still be fine.

    You'll have to manually configure the P2 WRT's IP address, and probably also disable the DHCP server on this WRT.

    2) Whichever option (or other option) you use, you will now have MOC with 2 NICs in it. At this point you need not worry about which applications you use where, but you need to make sure that the transport or communication paths among devices is sorted - this is the IP network.

    If you run your WRT at P1 with default settings, the P1 wireless IP network would be subnet 192.168.1.0 with netmask 255.255.255.0. You must now check that the existing network between MOC and the POS computers do NOT use the same IP settings; i.e. this wired network must use something like 192.168.2.0 with netmask 255.255.255.0. You'll see this by going to MOC, and in a DOS prompt type "ipconfig -all" (without the quotes), which will show you something like "IP Address a.b.c.#", and "subnet mask 255.e.f.g". Also go to a computer connected to the WRT at P1, and do ipconfig -all. If the a.b.c parts are the same, you must change either one of the networks' ip address range (I'll let you figure that one out by yourself...).

    We'll asume that you have 2 different IP networks.

    3) If the 2 IP networks each have their own DHCP server, you should be able to just install the necessary drivers for the new NIC on MOC, and off you go accessing the internet from it.
    If you don't have DHCP servers, you'll have to manually configure the IP address for the new NIC on MOC. This new NIC should be on the same IP network as the WRT at P1, and should have its default gateway specified as the P1 WRT.

    The setup described above will give MOC access to the internet. If you also want the POS computers, or any other computer connected to MOC at current, access the internet, we'll save that for another chapter.

    Suggested reading: Google for "How IP networks work", or "How routing works". If you familiarize yourself with the basics of networking, you'll figure the setups out much easier.
     
  6. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    Thanks a lot - VERY clear instructions, recommendations! I'll put in additional comments betwen *** brackets

    *** I continue - and will continue - to educate myself!!!
    Thanks! ****
     

    Attached Files:

  7. HennieM

    HennieM Network Guru Member

    Yes, a WAP or something. It was late...

    You actually changed the WRT's IP address to be on the same subnet as your modem's LAN side.

    In your setup, your modem's WAN address is 72.169.82.86 - that's on the internet side. On the LAN side - your P1/WRT/HOC/HOL network is subnet 192.168.0.0 netmask 255.255.255.0. You can therefore have computers with IP addresses of 192.168.0.1, 192.168.0.2, ....., 192.168.0.10, ....., 192.168.0.254, all with netmask 255.255.255.0.

    Your MOC/POS network is subnet 192.168.1.0, with netmask 255.255.255.0. Computers in this network therefore have addresses 192.168.1.1, 192.168.1.2, ....., 192.168.1.254, all with netmask 255.255.255.0.

    These 2 networks are perfect for what you want to do. So

    Set up your new WRT54GL at P2, and load Thibor or other 3rd party firmware. Set it to client bridge mode. Make sure its DHCP server is disabled, and set its IP address to something like 192.168.0.249 (then you know your 2nd WRT is one down from your 1st WRT).

    Now plug in you additional wired/normal NIC on MOC, run the CAT5 to MOC from one of the LAN ports on the 2nd WRT, and things should just work!

    Yes. If not, you can manually configure it to something like 192.168.0.4, subnet mask 255.255.255.0, with gateway 192.168.0.1.
     
  8. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    Extending WAN from WRT54G between buildings

    Friend and expert advisor...
    I am very grateful for your clear instructions.
    It is time for me to interrupt pestering you and get on with it.
    Thjanks again for everything!
    - Roger T
     
  9. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    To HennieM,
    Components have been ordered for the configuration you advised. I have also already run cat cable betwee, P2 and MOC in BLDG C.
    One question: as two NICs are, I would wonder how it is possible to keep relative "independence/invisibility" between the network (192.168.1.xxx) on one NIC linking MOC and the POSale computers (and also hosting our business files/records), the the other network (192.168.0.xxx) providin MOC internet access through BLDG A satellite modem/WRT54 router.
    Would be nice indeed.
    Thanks!
    - RogerT
     
  10. HennieM

    HennieM Network Guru Member

    Your internet connected network (subnet 192.168.0.) would, for all practical purposes, be invisible, or at least inaccessible, from your POS network (192.168.1.), AS LONG AS YOU DON'T ENABLE ROUTING ON MOC.

    If you enable routing on MOC, it would function as a router, linking the 2 subnets, but as long as you don't, the POS computers cannot go through MOC. Do make sure that MOC has security and all that, to prevent any clever cracker getting through to MOC somehow, to fiddle with your POS network.

    Oh, and sorry for the late reply - I missed your last post somehow.
     
  11. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    HennieM - Thanks for the reply. I do see that you also keep pretty busy delivering clear information or recommendations on other forums here!
    I have received and set up my new router as bridge. Wating for the 125ft cat cable and the extra NIC.
    Then I'll test it all.
    Of course, what I am really concerned about is the following:
    - Providing MOC with a faster Internet connection vis NIC#1 >>> bridge >>> Satellite internet provider in other bldg
    - Not worrying about providing any internet connectivity to the POSale Comps connected by LAN to NIC#2 on MOC.
    - Making sure that MOC >>> NIC#1 >>> LAN to POSAles comps stays relatively transparent/i.e. unreachable to the Internet connection coming into MOC via NIC#1. MOC does have all our business functions and records.
    - RT
     
  12. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    Ah, you are right about posting things late:

    "- Making sure that MOC >>> NIC#1 >>> LAN to POSAles comps stays relatively transparent/i.e. unreachable to the Internet connection coming into MOC via NIC#1. MOC does have all our business functions and records."

    I should have qualified "Internet connection coming into MOC via NIC #2" not NIC #1 of course!

    - rt
     
  13. HennieM

    HennieM Network Guru Member

    You lost me RT, or maybe I did not explain properly in my previous post. I'll try again.

    Here /24 means 255.255.255.0 = 3 x 8 ones = 24 ones, and
    /32 means 255.255.255.255 (figure the ones out...)

    You have (or will have)

    POS--192.168.1.0/24--NIC#1--MOC--NIC#2--192.168.0.0/24--WRT_and_others--modem--72.169.82.86/32--i_net

    So, to start from the i_net:
    1) The internet can talk to your modem on subnet 72.169.82.86/32
    2) Your modem can talk to your WRT and other devices (such as MOC) on subnet 192.168.0.0/24

    The above linking between subnet 72.169.82.86/32 and subnet 192.168.0.0/24 works, because your modem ROUTES data packets via itself from one subnet to the other. If the modem did not have routing enabled you would not be able to connect to the internet

    Similarly
    3) MOC can talk to devices (computers) on subnet 192.168.1.0/24 AND devices on subnet 192.168.0.0/24.
    In order for a device on subnet 192.168.0.0/24 (such as the WRT or the modem) to talk to a device on subnet 192.168.1.0/24 (such as a POS terminal), MOC must ROUTE the data packet from the one subnet to the other. If MOC does not have routing enabled, POS terminals cannot connect to the modem, nor can the modem connect to POS terminals.

    Therefore, if MOC's routing is DISabled, data coming from the internet, via the modem, via the WRT, via the bridge, will get to MOC, but cannot get to a POS terminal. Similarly data from a POS terminal can only get to MOC, and no further.

    If however, MOC has routing ENabled, data can get from a POS terminal to the modem, and from the modem to a POS terminal.

    Therefore, DO NOT enable routing on MOC, and POS will be isolated from the internet.
     
  14. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    HennieM,
    All working very well right now, from MOC. Best thing is that I do not seem to be loosing much if any speed on account of the 125ft cat cable from the bridge toi the new NIC on MOC. Other best thing: MOC is indeed, for all practical purpose, invisible to other wireless users. So that its data remains - as it should - private. I use pcAnywhere to access MOC and the rest of the POSales machine network anyway.
    Thanks for everything - I'll keep learning about network things, and I'll continue to pay attention to your posts.
    We got it all done just in time: our bank has been wanting to install a new, fast check processing/scanning/depositing equipment on our commercial premises. Needless to say, it NEEDS com considerably better than the dialup we have had!

    Thanks
     
  15. HennieM

    HennieM Network Guru Member

  16. WirelessInn

    WirelessInn LI Guru Member

    HennieM,
    All working very well right now, from MOC. Best thing is that I do not seem to be loosing much if any speed on account of the 125ft cat cable from the bridge toi the new NIC on MOC. Other best thing: MOC is indeed, for all practical purpose, invisible to other wireless users. So that its data remains - as it should - private. I use pcAnywhere to access MOC and the rest of the POSales machine network anyway.
    Thanks for everything - I'll keep learning about network things, and I'll continue to pay attention to your posts.
    We got it all done just in time: our bank has been wanting to install a new, fast check processing/scanning/depositing equipment on our commercial premises. Needless to say, it NEEDS com considerably better than the dialup we have had!

    Thanks
     

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