Airport express as a brige for the network


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
I been having a problem with the Airport express.

I have my airport base station in one room, the nest room beside it is where i like to sit and work. The problem is that while i am in the other room i get about 1 dot of signal which will go away every 1-2 mins and then come back within secs. So between the 2 room i installed the airport express as a brige to boost the signal to allow me to connect without any problems. I followed all the instructions and tryed it many times but i could not get the airport to act as a brige it will only act as a base station without internet connectivity.

I think the problem that it just makes another network and does not carry the signal from the airport basestation. I tryed everything but i am not sure if i am doing something wrong or what, please help.



macrumors 65816
Feb 20, 2002
ok- this is funny.... the base station, is it a new model, a graphite or snow can not do WDS.

Second- if your base station can do WDS, then the supposed easiest way to do this is to use the airport setup assistant, in which there is a tab that says "WDS" and you have to tell the base station to act as a base station for X bridge..., and on the bridge, it needs to be told to act as a bridge for X router.

I have found it easier just to use Airport Admin Utility, open Airport express in that program, and click on the tabs for each feature as I run through this:

"Airport" name both the router (base station) and repeater (Airport express) network EXACTLY the same, also put them on the same channel, this way, on a laptop, you walk from one end to the other of your house, and you never see that you must reselect which network to use. Tell the Airport express to "Create a wireless Network"

"Internet" Connect using WDS, our MAC address of the WDS host will appear below after the final step, make sure the check box is selected for Also Allow wireless Clients... and set to Configure DHCP (it will handle everything itself this way)

"Network" If you are using DHCP.. DO NOT DISTRIBUTE IP addresses, you will be warned of this later....

"Port Mapping" more advanced, leave as is

"Access Control" I never bother with this

"WDS" click the check box- enable this base station remote base station as a WDS, and select which one it is, (sounds like for you its just a remote base station)
Click on "Allow wireless clients on this base station
click on the select button and locate the Main Airport ID (Mac Address I spoke of earlier goes here)
If you have another one connecting off this one, you add it to the bottom box, and change Remote base station to relay....

Let me know if this doesn't do the trick for you


macrumors 68000
Aug 19, 2003
Denver, CO
first thing is first. like big said make sure it is a compatible base station. second and just as important DISABLE ALL SECURITY!!! dont be worried just do it. once disabled set up as big described. then once they are set up and communicating turn the security back on! thats the problem i had setting mine up with a linksys router, im sure it works the same using an apple base station with the express.


macrumors G4
Two other thoughts:

1 - where are the two units positioned? Near lots of other cabling, metal table legs, cordless phones etc? They can all detrimentally affect the signal. And what is the wall made of? If you live in a castle with thick stone walls, it's going to have a harder time going through it than in a house with cavity walls ;)

2 - are you absolutely positive that your airport card is installed properly? If you're getting a good signal when you stand next to the router but not once you start walking away from it, it might be that the antennae cable isn't seated properly in the card.

Good luck


macrumors 65816
Feb 20, 2002
yeah, I had issues with a Linksys router, and the only way to get my airport extreme to work on its network, was to first disable ALL security. Basically I reset all my Apple devices to default, and started from scratch, after I KNEW the Linksys Router was working.

Then, I threw an Airport Extreme Base station (as a Remote Base Station) on the other end of the house for a print server, which is working off my Airport Express, because the Airport Extreme WILL NOT work with a Linksys router, it has to be jiving with Apple hardware, thus the Airport Express Bridge (aka Relay Base station)

Again, for this, the same rules applied, all must be on the same network name, and same channel, did I express that earlier? Both of these are Paramount to get your network to Jive.
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