Airport Extreme - new to me

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by DaveN, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. DaveN macrumors 6502a

    DaveN

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    #1
    So I picked up a 'refurbished' Airport Extreme from Best Buy via mail order. My Netgear wifi router took a dive so I used my older Netgear router until the Airport Extreme arrived. Yes, I know Apple dissolved their router division but I figured it would get my by for a couple of years.

    The good:
    1. The price was reasonable $105
    2. Consumer Reports actually rated the router as one of the better routers for short to medium distances. They report that it slows significantly over long distances and many walls but I live in a medium size house so that isn't an issue for me. In my tests after setup, I was getting nearly my full direct cable connection speed (67 MBPs direct connection to cable and 66 MBPs over wifi at near and most distant spots in my house).

    The not so good:
    1. It only has three ethernet ports. I like to hood up all my nearby equipment via ethernet as that gives you the best performance so I needed to get an 8-port gigabit switch ($24). Now my AppleTV, network drive, stereo, and Phillips Hue are hard wired to the network and I have extra ports available for other equipment. I no longer network the TV as Panasonic hasn't updated their TV OS in years so I don't bother as it is so very slow UI.
    2. Best Buy really didn't 'refurbish' the router. It arrived with the previous owner's network info on it and I had to do a soft reboot to be able to enter my own preferences.
    3. The Apple Airport software on the Mac and iOS is extremely limiting. I can't do much customization such as forcing the guest network on to the 2.4 GHz band. It only does that automatically. I also can't get a decent network map. It just lists the items attached but only on the MacOS version of the Airport control. Also, no control over signal strength. I'd like to be able to turn down the power so I'm only broadcasting to my house and not the whole neighborhood.

    All that said, would I do it again? Maybe. I do have improved wifi speed and once you setup a network, it is pretty much forget it.
     
  2. techwarrior macrumors 65816

    techwarrior

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #2
    Apple philosophy is KISS. They purposely don't pack the AP Utility with the kinds of advanced configuration stuff that other router vendors do. For 99% of consumers, this is actually a good thing as routers can be confusing to many.

    That said, Airport products are generally solid performers.
     
  3. DaveN thread starter macrumors 6502a

    DaveN

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    #3
    I agree about the KISS aspect but sometimes one can go too far. For example, I can get a list of wifi devices but don't see a similar list of wired devices. Well, it works and it was an easy setup so I'm good with that.
     
  4. techwarrior macrumors 65816

    techwarrior

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #4
    Yup. I use WiFi Scanner app on Mac to get a list of all Wired and Wireless devices on my network. Also good tool for looking at all visible WiFi signals to tune my network channels to avoid interference from neighbors.

    A lot can be said about easy setup and it just works. Plenty of other things more worthy of our time in our tech world!
     
  5. Melbourne Park macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    #5
    I have an Extreme but the problem is I want my wife to print with her Windoze 10 notebook, to our HP USB Laserjet. This used to work with airport express devices. But Win 10 doesn't see the Airport Express device. so I thought I'd relocate the Extreme device and connect the Laserjet to that directly. Since my wife's notebook uses the AirPort Extreme's WiFi, I thought the Lasjerjet would be seen. But reading the specs, it seems Apple doesn't support Win 10 PCs. They do see and use the network ... but evidently they won't see a USB based printer one the network or printing direct from the Airport Extreme.

    God knows why Apple will not support Win 10 with printing and WiFi technology.
     
  6. techwarrior macrumors 65816

    techwarrior

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #6
    Have you tried installing the AP Utility on the PC? https://support.apple.com/downloads/airport

    My Wife's PC has this installed and is able to connect to disks and printers connected to my Base Stations.
     
  7. Melbourne Park macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    #7
    No, I did not know that existed.

    Thanks, I will try it!!! I'll let you know. Much appreciated, as there are lots of Apple hardware network devices that have Win10 devices around. The date of that file worries me a bit though, as its 2012, and the Apple devices all say they support XP, Vista and Win8. Hopefully Win10 will operate the Airport file sufficiently well ... I wonder why Apple don't put enough effort in to allow them to add Win10 to their approved list ...
     
  8. techwarrior macrumors 65816

    techwarrior

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #8
    Been using it on Win10 on Wife's PC for a while now, though usually use iOS or Mac versions when i do any work on my Airport network. I think they have not updated it since Win10 came out, thus no note on compatibility.
     
  9. Melbourne Park, Feb 19, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2018

    Melbourne Park macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    #9
    I downloaded and it seemed to install. My wife's computer then found the airport extreme's disk. But its still not finding the HP printer, which is attached via USB to a mac airport device. My wife's computer is connected to the Extreme's network though.

    I might connect the Laserjet directly to the Airport extreme. If that allows her computer to print, then all I have to do is relocate the airport extreme.

    The cable modem connects to the airport extreme with a cat5 ethernet patch cable. But when I have used a patch cable from the modem to go to an ethernet inlet, and using an outlet using a patch cable into the now moved airport extreme, the airport extreme is not getting connected to the cable modem. Which makes me think:
    -1 The ethernet is not connecting properly
    -2 Perhaps patch cables are the wrong cables; maybe their needs to be a crossover cable in that mix of connections.

    Cable modem to airport extreme: ethernet patch cable: Works fine
    Cable modem to ethernet input plug: patch cable -> ethernet outlet plug ->patch cable -> airport extreme: does not work

    Oh well ... darn I am frustrated ...


    Maybe I need to install more modern drivers for that airport device? Its invisible to the Win 10 computer, but works for the Apple computers.

    Another issue maybe my wife's computer. I cannot find the airport driver in Win10. That way I might be able to check its settings. My wife's notebook is an HP Elite 360 13" - its 6 months or so old. It has some extra security features. Maybe those are interfering with the Apple software. In the Windoze I knew, you could find utilities and drivers and check their settings. But I cannot find the airport utility - i have done a Windoze search and nothing turns up.
     
  10. techwarrior macrumors 65816

    techwarrior

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #10
    You should not require a crossover cable. I assume you have Ethernet running through your home, and you are connecting to a jack on either end to the WAN port on the Airport Base Station and to the Modem.

    Are you sure the in house wiring is good? If you connect Wan to the Modem, then LAN to wall jack and a computer on the other end of the wall jack, does it connect?

    Also, try different cables. If one happens to be a crossover, it might be killing your connection.

    Since the printer is USB, maybe just connect it directly to her PC, then share the printer so you can also use it?
     
  11. Melbourne Park macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    #11
    Not sure but it was part of my renovation, which is just finishing (painting the interior just finishing) but the cabling is not numbered. What I tried was putting in an ethernet patch cable from an ethernet outlet port of the cable WiFi router, instead of into the Apple airport device (the white cube with the hard disk in it) but instead, into an ethernet plug next to the cable station, and I think tried several ethernet outlets points in the house, by attaching an ethernet patch cable into each plug, and plugging that cable into the Apple cube airport device. But the light on the Apple device never turned green.

    Hence it appears there could be a problem ... the computer method is not easy because I've not got ethernet on my computers ... although I think my wife's HP notebook might have an ethernet port. I could try that ...


    If she has to connect her notebook to the printer, well then, it will print via the cable! I could put in a twin USB device and just get her to plug in, while the Apple device remained connected for anyone else (me I guess but an IOS device could also print via the WiFi then ...)

    I have a MacPro too (2010 Tower), it might serve to a Win 10 notebook via the network, but I'm not sure. But I normally leave it off unless I need to do something serious.
     
  12. techwarrior macrumors 65816

    techwarrior

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Location:
    Colorado
    #12
    Your description confuses me. But, let me try different angle.

    I assume you have a Cable Modem\WiFi Router unit? And you want to use an Airport base station with USB Printer for a shared network printer (for PC + Mac), and the hard Drive in the Airport for Mac backups and\or file sharing on the network? But, you don't need the Airport for WiFi or routing?

    If this is the case, you can put the Airport anywhere within direct Ethernet to the Router. You want the WAN on AP device to connect to a LAN port on the router. The network Tab Network Mode would be Off (Bridged Mode) and the Wireless Network Mode should be Off so it doesn't conflict with the router WiFi. Then, plug the USB Printer into the Airport device. You may have to reboot the Airport device. Next, connect to the Airport disk on your Mac and\or PC using whatever security you setup when you shared the disk. Finally, add the printer, your Mc and PC should see it on the network by virtue of you being connected to the Airport disk already.
     
  13. Melbourne Park macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2012
    #13
    Phew ... yep, that should work. Lots of ways via ethernet I guess.

    But I installed the Bonjour wizard again, and then again ... then rebooted ... and there was the printer. So now my darling wife can print from anywhere in the house. Great!

    Thanks for your great assistance!
     

Share This Page

12 February 13, 2018