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Please help.. Went THIBOR to TOMATO and brutal wireless signal now..

Discussion in 'Tomato Firmware' started by duckdown, Feb 7, 2007.

  1. duckdown

    duckdown Network Guru Member

    Hi folks

    I switched from quite an old version of Thibor (v11) to Tomato just the other day, but I'm having an annoying problem now..

    The wireless signal output is absolutely BRUTAL. I have 2 wireless connections in this house, and neither is going above 17 quality. Most of the time, when I'm on my laptop in the basement, I have _3_ quality, and constant disconnections from the AP and wpa_supplicant needs to re-authenticate etc.

    It's become VERY bothersome and I can't imagine how a newer, more updated firmware can diminish my wireless signal so much?

    I am using a GS model v3 router.. I've tried channels 1, 6, and 11, none of them improve the situation at all. I have tried upping the mW output to things as outrageous as 200 from the default 48 and it makes _0_ difference. When I stand RIGHT beside my router with the laptop, it never goes higher than about 30-32 quality, with the RSSI for both wireless clients averaging around -70 dBm all the way to -90 dBm

    The "noise floor" was calculated a few times and seems to be around -80 dBm to -85 dBm.

    This router is on top of a desk with no obstructions or metal objects or people around it, and both antennas are positioned vertically straight into the air.

    Can ANYONE please help me? This is absolute insanity and I have no idea why the signal is so low.. Any help would be greatly appreciated ASAP because this is pretty worrysome

    Cheers
     
  2. Reiper

    Reiper LI Guru Member

    Ok, I'll ask... Did you clear the NVRAM before and after you switched to Tomato?
     
  3. larsrya8

    larsrya8 LI Guru Member

    Which signal are you having trouble with: the one received by the router from the clients or the one received by the clients from the router? I have a Sony VAIO sitting literally behind me, and the router in front of me, and the router says the quality is 20 (noise floor at -93dBm). However, the laptop says it is receiving an excellent connection from the router (output on router is 21 mW). I haven't had any disconnection problems though... but why is the received signal so weak? Or is the problem that the laptop is too close?

    And yes, I cleared the NVRAM. Wireless didn't even work until I cleared it.
     
  4. duckdown

    duckdown Network Guru Member

    I certainly cleared NVRAM both before and immediately after; I followed the flashing instructions to a tee..

    The extremely low quality I'm talking about is when it shows the wireless devices in the DEVICE LIST, it has a small animated graph that refreshes every 3 seconds. My quality is at a constant _3_. literally :(
     
  5. der_Kief

    der_Kief Super Moderator Staff Member Member

    Hi,

    did you try the different security modes (WEP,WPA, none) ? Also you should try the different B/G modes ! Test step by step so maybe you can isolate (leave the advanced options at default) this problem.

    der_Kief
     
  6. GeeTek

    GeeTek Guest

    Sounds like a sick radio. My Tomato wattage changes fine, and 84Mw is very strong. Might consider a new radio.

    Edit - Did you switch firmware back to see if it fixes it ? That sounds like a bad problem.
     
  7. larsrya8

    larsrya8 LI Guru Member

    Would upping the transmit power on the router improve the router's signal reception or the laptop's signal reception? I'm assuming the signal disconnect is probably caused the router losing the signal from the wireless client.

    duckdown: what is the laptop saying about the wireless connection?
     
  8. digitalgeek

    digitalgeek Network Guru Member

    upping the transmit power will not necessarily increace reception. the best way to "improve" reception is add the 7dbi antennas, and maybe depending how close you are to the router, you wds (although the cost of a second router is hard to justify)
     
  9. larsrya8

    larsrya8 LI Guru Member

    I tried all three B/G modes, between no encryption and WPA AES, and a few channels throughout the spectrum. No improvement. Wasn't that surprised, since I couldn't see how any of the settings (besides wireless channel) would affect the signal reception/noise at such a close range. Using B-only might help at a distance, but when the signal won't go above 30 even when right next to the router...

    An interesting comparison would be a Linksys Wireless-G USB adapter I had on a computer downstairs (at least 25 feet or so through a wall and floor/ceiling) had a signal between 60 and 70. Makes me think that this has more to do with the transmit power of the client than the router. A laptop's built-in card is probably pretty weak.

    edit: duckdown, did you try putting the antennas out to the sides? Might help reception of signals emitting from the basement.
     
  10. azeari

    azeari LI Guru Member

    well the animated graph that refreshes every few secs represents what the router sees. In this case, tomato might simply be using a different scale from thibor.

    Also, boosting the transmit power of the router will increase the signal str the clients see and will probably have NO impact on what the router sees, as ur experimentation has already shown.

    If you're trying to improve the signal quality on that page, its more reasonable to increase the transmit power of the clients(i.e. laptop, desktop). I believe you can modify it in the windows device manager, and removing power savings from the wireless drivers.

    A more reasonable question is, are you experiencing signal drops? or very low bandwidth? If you're not, everything's probably working in good shape.

    PS: increasing the transmit power beyond 84mW or 100mW has been proven to be rather ineffective due to the subsequent increase in signal noise levels. 84mW or below should be fine for most cases
     

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