AirPort Express not detected by iMac sharing internet via internal AirPort Extreme

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Kid A, Nov 1, 2008.

  1. Kid A macrumors regular

    May 1, 2008
    I've searched and searched and can't seem to find a precise, working explanation for my problem... I'd think my set-up would be common, but apparently not. If this has been discussed before and I missed, feel free to redirect me to the appropriate thread.

    My problem:
    I can't detect my new AirPort Express (N) with my new iMac, unless I plug it into my iMac's ethernet port OR reset it and choose to connect to it's "network". Neither of these options would provide me any value.

    My setup:
    1. Broadband cable modem --> into Ethernet port on my iMac (24" Aluminum C2D 2.8 GHz, April 2008 model)
    2. using iMac's internal AirPort Extreme & internet sharing (upstairs) --> connect wirelessly to old G3 iMac with internal original (i.e. slow) AirPort card installed (downstairs)

    That setup works.

    What I'd like to do:
    Add my new AirPort Express to "the network" to...
    1. AT MINIMUM stream iTunes via AirTunes from my (upstairs, 24" iMac) to my stereo (downstairs).
    2. AT BEST... use the AirPort Express to do the above (share iTunes from 24" iMac w/stereo) AND give my (downstairs) G3 iMac "virtual-N"-speed internet connection, via the AirPort Express's ethernet port. I think this is called an "ethernet bridge", and I've read it is possible but not well-documented, with the AirPort Expresss.
    NOTE: If point 2 is not possible, I want to be able to do point 1 (AirTunes), but still be able to connect my G3 iMac to the internet via its internal original AirPort card. Also, I'd like to keep my 24" iMac directly connected to the internet via ethernet cable for the fastest possible connection.

    [begin rant/]
    I've tried to get this stupid AX setup for hours now, and am starting to regret this purchase! :eek: Maybe I'm just a moron, but I can't seem to accomplish point 2 above, or even point 1. I should at least be able to stream AirTunes, right? Or is my internal AirPort Extreme card on my 24" iMac too inept to do two things at once? Do I really need to buy an AirPort Extreme base station to get everyone talking to each other??? Is that how :apple: gets folks who really shouldn't need one of those to buy one? Maybe I'm jumping the gun here, but I have no problem plugging my ethernet into my iMac directly and sharing the connection via the internal AirPort. Why should I have to buy a dedicated wireless router (i.e. AirPort Extreme base station) just to get an AX working with AirTunes? Ugh. :(

    Also, I'm really getting sick of having to keep rebooting my iMac. When changing my internet sharing preferences (i.e. disabling it so I can try and connect with the AX's "network"), I keep getting my AirPort stuck in "Off" mode, and won't turn back "On" unless I restart. You can click the button to turn on AirPort all day long and nothing happens. :confused:

    I thought AX was supposed to be idiot-proof. It is marketed as such. I realize the ethernet-bridging isn't an advertised feature (so I shouldn't expect much), but at the minimum, getting AirTunes up-and-running should be idiot-proof.
    [/end rant]

    One more thing:
    My 24" iMac is running OS X 10.5.5 and whatever version of AirPort Utility/firmware that was included with the AirPort Express. I used the AX's install disc, and then ran Software Update, and it found no new updates. Also, I'm using iTunes 8, most recent update.
    My iMac G3, for what its worth is running OS X 10.3.9, but that should be superfluous, right? I'm not trying to setup the AX or stream AirTunes from the G3.

    Thanks in advance for any advice!
  2. Kid A thread starter macrumors regular

    May 1, 2008
    I <3 Apple

    Holy #*$@!
    I actually got this to work! I take back all the nasty things I said about you, :apple:. (OK, not really... this was way more difficult to set up than it should've been).

    But still... these little AirPort Express (N)s are marvelous little devices--does things not even advertised to do.

    I have a horrible horrible headache right now (and I'm on a different computer). But if anyone is interested, let me know, and I will try to post the exact settings I chose to get this working.:)
  3. bexbissell macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2008

    Hi Kid A,
    I'm new here but I am trying to get the same configuration going -
    iMac Aluminium with internet sharing to a G3 iMac (no Airport card installed) via Airport Express as an ethernet bridge.

    I'm finding it very hard to work out so if you can offer any advice it would be much appreciated!

  4. etbull macrumors newbie

    Nov 7, 2007
    I am also trying to use the express to stream itunes to my stereo and to provide ethernet connection to my blu-ray player. I have a linksys wireless router connected to my cable router. No luck so far, can you post your setup?
  5. fandsw macrumors regular

    Oct 24, 2007
    Helena, AL
    Ditto, I'm looking for the same answer....any pointers??
  6. mercedog macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2009
    same problem

    i am trying to figure out this same set-up. If you're still around, I would love to get some tips on how to get this done.
  7. ThirteenXIII macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2008
    have you tried to connect to the AirPort Express? while it was plugged into the stereo and non-wifi imac?

    hook those upto it.

    open airport utility, select the AirPort Express, you can restore it default settings then click continue to set it up...

    say you want to add it to the network, then you select from the drop down list your Linksys router or whatever brand wireless router you have.
    enter that information there, continue.

    you want it to JOIN your current wireless connection as that it will address the AirPort Express as an additional wireless device (ie; such as wireless computer; imac, macbook, etc etc) and with the imac connected to it with the ethernet cable, its as if it was an internal wifi card or plugged directly into the router.

    once its all complete you should be able to launch itunes to see in the bottom right corner to see the speakers available; otherwise you might need to go into the iTunes Preferences and underdevices tab, select Look for Speakers on Airtunes, etc etc and you should be good to.

    im not sure if your not selecting the right option on set up, which can be an easy mistake at first glance.

    so basically you want to start form scratch
    1. Set it up for the first time as an additional device
    2. Join an existing wireless network
    3. enter your wifi info and be good to go.
  8. mercedog macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2009
    i have no difficulty finding my airport express if I plug it directly into my modem and search for it on my imac with my airport utility. The problem is that I don't have a wireless router because I use the "share internet" function on my imac to set-up a wireless-esque network in my house. From what I can tell, this isn't a true 802.11 wifi network, so when I plug the airport express into the socket by my stereo on the other side of the room, i am unable to find the airport express in my airport utility. My understanding from what KidA wrote was that he found a way to connect to the airport express using his shared internet network. Ideally, i'd prefer to not have to spend another $180 on a airport extreme base station to establish a wireless network just to connect my computer to my stereo.
  9. mzd macrumors 6502a

    Jul 25, 2005
    i'm not sure how the OP got it to work, but is there a reason you can't plug your modem (cable/dsl) directly into the AE? that is (one) the way it is designed to work. the AE functions as a wireless router and you don't need to use your mac to share internet.

    modem <-> AE
    AE <-> stereo
    AE ))) mac

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