Help with Airport Express Network Plan

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Maxicek, Nov 18, 2004.

  1. Maxicek macrumors regular

    Apr 23, 2004
    I currently have the following kit:
    Powerbook (specs in sig.)
    Win XP 802.11g laptop
    Netgear DG824M Wireless 802.11b wireless router/firewall/ADSL modem
    Epson Stylus Photo R300 Inkjet Printer. (USB 2.0)

    I want to set-up the printer to be able to access it over the network, so I thinking of buying an Airport Express, giving me the added bonus of being able to play my music over the hi-fi speakers.

    From what I have read, I have two network options:

    1: Disable the wireless 802.11b on my router and link the Airport Express to it by an Ethernet cable. This will give me wireless access for both laptops at 802.11g speeds and therefore quicker printing. The downside is that I have to route the cable somehow. If I want to extend the network in the future, I can add further Airport Express(es?), as I can’t extend the range of a non-Airport wireless network.

    2: Just use the Airport express to link the printer and hi-fi to my existing 802.11b. Slower printing, but I don’t have to route any cables.

    Is my thinking correct?
    Any comments / help much appreciated.
  2. wPod macrumors 68000


    Aug 19, 2003
    Denver, CO
    1. this is an apple endorsed myth that you cant use the express with any other basestation for range extending. on the main pages of apple they state you can only extend the range with multiple express stations or with an extreme base station. but if you dig deep (ill let you do the searching) you will find you can actually extend the range as long as your base station supports WDS. my express is currently extending the range of my Linksys WRT54G and it works great. i would reccomend upgrading your base station to a 11g network. you can pick up the linksys for around $60.(and other brands about the same) if you are partial to netgear search around on google for compatible netgear basestations. will be slowed down if you try to stream over an 11b basestation.

    but for the cheapest, hooking the express to your current basestation through ethernet will allow 11g wireless to the laptops. the only problem will be placement of the express. but, if you have the money for a new basestation, or can wait a while to save the $60 or so, you would probably be better off with an 11g basestation.
  3. Enigma macrumors member

    May 20, 2004
    Amazingly I have almost exactly the same hardware you do. What I did was rerouted my phoneline so that the ADSL router was where I wanted the Airport Express to be, then disabled the wireless on the router and plugged it into the Airport Express to provide the wireless. I wanted the 802.11g mainly because I have a Linux box that's basically my file server that's hidden from view but connected to the DG824M via a patch cable (and then on to the AE), and file access over 802.11b is a bit slow.

    One thing you may want to do is disable the AE's onboard DHCP, since I found that the default was for it to assign IPs to wireless devices then route the traffic. I preferred just letting the DG824M doing this so that all my computers have IPs from the same block (192.168.0.x).

    Great setup though, and saved me buying a new ADSL router with 802.11g as I was planning. Far cheaper to spend £10 on a phone extension and spend an hour or so fighting to get it all under the skirting so it's out of sight.

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