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Virtual Wi-Fi

Discussion in 'Networking Issues' started by techmanblues, Oct 23, 2005.

  1. techmanblues

    techmanblues Network Guru Member

    http://research.microsoft.com/netres/projects/virtualwifi/

    This looks very interesting. Finally we can assign a single physical wireless adapter multiple configurations so that it can use multiple independent 802.11b/g signals. The ability to do this has been available to the wired NIC for a long time although not many people use it. But with wi-fi, this may change because unlike the wired NIC, wi-fi is cableless which is the reason why this multi-homing feature is not popular with wired NIC. I mean the prospect of running cable from multiple WAN sources to your router is messy. But with wi-fi, there are no cables. This means you can finally have you and your neighbors pool all the different WAN signals and achieve ultrafast Internet speeds.

    Anyone here has the opportunity to try this out? Where I live, there is only one Wi-Fi signal which is mine so I cannot do this. But if you and your neighbors are in good speaking terms, you should give this Virtual Wi-Fi technology a shot. For example, if your neighbor works day and you work night, then you can pool both wireless signals during the day when your neighbor does not use his, and your neighbor can pool the signals at night when you are not home and not using your own Internet connection.

    I did say you and your neighbor should be in good speaking terms. This sharing of the Internet connections can get ugly if the people involved are not friendly and reasonable.
     
  2. crawdaddy

    crawdaddy Network Guru Member

    I don't get it. Or at least your purpose for the virtual wifi. looks like one could conceivably connect to multiple networks enabling more resources to be available simultaneously(ie shares, printers, etc), but I don't see how u can say that you can pool WAN connections.
     
  3. 4Access

    4Access Network Guru Member

    I think the logic goes:

    I've got a 802.11g wireless NIC capable of lets say approx 20Mbps real world throughput. My internet connection is only 5Mbps. Despite the fact that my NIC is capable of 20Mbps I'm never going to get more than 5Mbps when downloading files off the internet.

    Now lets say my neighbor also has a 5Mbps internet connection. If this VirtualWifi feature could allow me to connect to both networks simultaneously then theoretically I could download at up to 10Mbps.

    Unfortunately it won't work that easy. As you can see the "An Example" section on this page the software actually adds additional virtual network adapters that you can configure. While yes, you could use either internet connection, Windows does not support a means of pooling the bandwidth from two network adapters together. (Which is what I think crawdaddy was getting at.)

    It would be similar to having two physical wireless NICs in the computer. One connected to your wireless network and one connected to your neighbors. You could access the internet from either one but Windows doesn't allow you to combine the bandwidth available from both NICs together for downloading. (Although it's possible there's 3rd party software that implements this.)

    Interesting stuff though nonetheless! Thanks for the post! :thumb:
     

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