My Mac Networking Situation - Help!

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by jzj687, May 11, 2009.

  1. jzj687 macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2007

    I need some help with my wireless setup at home.

    Here is my layout:

    I have a three story house.

    On the top floor: iBook (b/g), uMacbook (b/g/n)

    On the middle floor: Powerbook (b/g), uMacbook Pro (b/g/n/), PC (?)

    On the bottom floor: Powerbook (b/g), Mac mini (b/g)

    Here are my needs and reasons I want to change:

    Fastest internet and networking possible, obviously.

    Ability to have media files on an external hard drive and watch them from the computers on the network.

    Ability to backup wirelessly.

    I find my internet to be generally sluggish.

    My b/g network constantly fails and needs to be reset.

    My Time Capsule hard drive and attached hard drive frequently fail to be found (have to restart).

    Bittorrent clients are extremely slow.

    I feel like my wireless settings (dhcp/nat) are not configured well or optimally and want to start from scratch. I've re-done the settings many times. I have factory defaulted even and started again, but I feel like no matter what, there are always problems.

    Here is my present neworking situation:

    I have a cable internet modem (Videotron in Montreal) located on the bottom floor. I have a split ethernet wire connecting the modem to the mac mini and to an Airport Extreme Base Station (n) on the top floor. I have an old Airport Extreme (b/g) connected to it via ethernet cable on the same shelf. I have an ethernet cable running from the Airport Extreme (n) to a Time Capsule (n) on the middle floor.

    The Airport Extreme (n) and Time Capsule (n) are both creating the same wireless (5ghz) network. The Old Airport Extreme is creating a different wireless (b/g) network.

    I have a Lacie 1TB drive attached to the 500GB Time Capsule and a printer attached to the Airport Extreme (n) on the top floor.

    Conclusion - Help!:

    Assuming money is not an issue, what is the best thing for me to do? I was thinking of selling my Airports and Time Capsule and getting the new Time Capsule and Airport Extreme with dual band.

    Is my physical setup optimal?

    Should I move anything around / run new wires anywhere once I have someone coming to the house who can run the wires?

    Is there a certain type of wire thats best?

    Should/can I set up some sort of RAID thing?

    Is there a certain type of network configuration I should set up?

    I just need help please!! If you need any more info, just let me know.

    I really would appreciate any time you guys have,
  2. MTI macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2009
    Scottsdale, AZ
    For speed, security and reliability, it's hard to beat wired connections, and if you have the $ . . . fiber! Wireless is convenient, but there is a bottleneck at the router, particularly if a slower protocol (b or g) is accessing or transmitting big chunks of data through the network.
  3. jzj687 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2007

    But what exactly do you mean by fiber?
  4. Willis macrumors 68020


    Apr 23, 2006
    Beds, UK
    Fibre Optic... it's horribly expensive
  5. MTI macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2009
    Scottsdale, AZ
    While not yet practical for home networks, I do know of several home owners that, as part of their structured wiring, ran fiber optic cable for "future" use, likely for combined data and smart home control.

    As for cost, the cable itself is about the same price as copper (depending on the spot market price for copper, that is) . . . however, the equipment for networking fiber is very pricey indeed, because it's pretty much limited to the industrial/business market.

    The best you can do for household wiring is "gigabit" cabling with Cat6e, which is a bit more expensive, per foot, than Cat5e.

    While Wireless 802.11n might get 100-200 Mbps . . . wired "Gig-E" can transmit within the network at speeds up to 1000 Mbps. Coupled with a fiber optic 'net provider, such as Verizon FIOS . . . it should be fast for the time being.
  6. Willis macrumors 68020


    Apr 23, 2006
    Beds, UK
    After trying to make sense of what you've done, I think I understand. Although this option is nearly the same, just simplified.

    Modem Ethernet to AEBS(n) then your other N station and TC to wirelessly join that network.

    The G stations, hook them up via ethernet to the N remote station and the other to the TC.

    The trick after this is making sure the N talk to the G's properly.

    An easier option is to get the Dual bands. That way, all the stations will be connected to the main station connected to the modem
  7. bohbot16 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 22, 2009
    What do you mean by "split ethernet wire"? You should have the modem connected directly to the AEBS WAN port, then connect the mac mini to a LAN port. This should also be the only router with DHCP and NAT running.

    Be careful with your AEBS(n) and TC that they are set up to properly extend your wireless network and not conflict with one another.
  8. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Nonsense. Neither your computer nor your Internet connection will approach the capacity of your wireless router. Fiber can handle every Internet connection and telephone call in several states. If you attend a university, then your university's fiber backbone handles all of its data and teleconferencing traffic. In fact, one of the problems with fiber is "dark fiber." The capacity of the existing fiber in the ground is so great that it greatly exceeds the available transportable data. For lack a signal to transport, this fiber stays dark.

    This is, of course, a good problem to have. Dark fiber represents an almost free opportunity to do new and innovative things with data/video transport. Officials in my state are developing uses for this available dark fiber. I am certain that other states are doing likewise.

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