New AirPort Express as an access point

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by filmguy321, Oct 3, 2012.

  1. filmguy321 macrumors newbie

    Oct 3, 2012
    I am setting up an wireless network in my house. It is a very long house and the entry point for the internet is at one end. I have an AirPort Extreme sending out the internet wirelessly on one side of the house without a problem, and great download speeds. I tried to set up an AirPort Express to cover the other side of the house. And I had it join the network from the Extreme. But the connection is so slow having to go through the Express, and then through the Extreme. So I am assuming if I could "Ethernet it" between the Extreme and Express it would be much faster.

    I tried this already with no luck. The Express continues to pickup the wireless signal from the Extreme.

    My question is: What are the settings to run an Ethernet cable out of the AirPort Extreme to the AirPort Express so I can have the same download speed through out the house.... OR.... will I have to by another Extreme to be able to do these?
  2. bp1000 macrumors 65816

    Jul 7, 2011
    Running an Ethernet cable is messy for me

    Get a 200mbps or higher set of homeplugs to connect the express to the extreme.

    Set the express as an access point with airport utility on your mac

    Same ssid, password as the extreme, it will seamlessly switch over as you walk through the house
  3. wickedpapercut macrumors member


    Jul 17, 2005
    I have an Airport Extreme on one side of the first floor of my house and an Airport Express in the middle of the second floor to extend the network range. The network speed from the second floor is identical to that on the first. So, I have a couple of questions:

    1. where is your Airport Express located? Middle of the house?, opposite side of the house from the Extreme?

    2. how is the connection strength between the Extreme and the Express?

    3. have you tried a power off/on cycle on both devices to ensure that they're connecting cleanly?

    Unless your house is REALLY long (i.e. hundreds of feet long) or with some significant barriers (e.g. interior concrete or brick walls), I don't see any reason why this shouldn't be working for you.
  4. filmguy321 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 3, 2012
    BP1000 - I do not know what homeplugs are? I did have the Express setup as an access point. And it was seamless transition going from one side of the house to the other, but I saw an extreme slow down in speed when I was on the Express side of the house. That is why I was thinking ethernet cable.

    Wickedpapercut - I have the express setup on the other end of the house. I have 2 main areas where I need to get full signal. And of course they are at opposite ends of the house. I tried moving the Express more toward the center of the house (closer to the Extreme), but then the other end of the house gets less signal and slower downloads.

    I was thinking on buying another Express and put one in the middle and one at the other end. But I'm afraid it will still be the same issue. Is it true you get less speed as it goes from one access point to another to finally get to the router and modem??
  5. mic j macrumors 68030

    Mar 15, 2012
    "Homeplugs" are adapters that plug into the electrical outlet of your home and use the wall wiring as a pseudo ethernet system. Their performance depends a lot on the quality of the home wiring. If you try them, make sure you buy the from a place with a good return policy as they may or may not solve your issue.
  6. anush3 macrumors member

    Oct 27, 2010
    here is solution if you want to run ethernet cable. Connect ethernet cable onto gigabit port of extreme (WAN port would already have cable connected to modem) and other side on to ethernet port of Airport express.
    After you do this you need to configure Airport Express to "create a wireless network" instead of "extending a network". Once you configure it this way, it won't pick up signal from Extreme.
    You may want to keep same wifi name.

    Note: You can also try to configure Airport Express in "DHCP mode without NAT" that way it won't act as a bridge. and so will avoid double NAT. Though speed-wise both configurations will be almost as if you are connected to extreme.
  7. BigDukeSix macrumors 6502a


    Sep 22, 2010
    34.6700N 118.1590W
    I will be anxious to hear how you solve this issue. Please come back and let us know.
  8. filmguy321 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 3, 2012
    Unfortunately I haven't yet. Right now I have it setup on 2 different networks. I have the Ethernet cable coming out of the Extreme LAN port and going into the Express WAN port. It works great and the speeds are up to par. But its still 2 different networks, so it was a pain walking through the house.

    The second I try to "Join the Network" on the Express it stops using the Ethernet port for the Internet and goes wireless and wants to connect to the Extreme wirelessly. Which, because of the length of my house and walls the signal is very weak and very, very slow internet speeds.

    The internet section on the Airport Utility software turns gray (meaning you can't use it) to try to gain Internet access through the Ethernet.

    There has to be a way for the Express to gain access to the internet through the Ethernet and still output a wireless signal.

    Any ideas??
  9. alFR macrumors 68020

    Aug 10, 2006

    Have a look at this Apple Airport manual:

    Page 41 onwards ("Connecting additional wireless devices to your Airport network") walks you through setting up the configuration you want (see diagram on page 42 in particular: in your case the Time Capsule in the diagram would be replaced by your Express).
  10. mmomega, Oct 11, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2012

    mmomega macrumors demi-god


    Dec 30, 2009
    DFW, TX
    Have to tried holding the reset button on the Express to reset it back to default settings?
    I always do this when adding a 2nd or 3rd extender to my current network. Just because it will wipe any previous settings out so it will not auto connect to the wifi signal.

    Once you reset the Express you should be able to open Airport Utility on a Mac or iPhone/iPad and it will detect the "new" device and ask how you want to set it up.
    This should give you the ability to pick between a bridged using ethernet or to wirelessly extend the network.

    It should work like a champ after the utility finishes setting it up and restarting the Express.

    I have done with setting up multiple Airport Extremes and Expresses throughout the home.
    I currently have 3 AEBS in different spots with a single ethernet running to each device. This distributes a very strong WiFi signal across my home and I have 1 of the AEBS setup in my living room so I can then connect my AppleTV, XBox360 and DirecTV boxes into the AEBS with ethernet which gives a much quicker connection than over WiFi.
  11. iPhonePunker macrumors newbie

    Nov 22, 2012
    hi my problem is something similar i have a eircom Netgear WIFI router (Irish network) down stairs but my room is at the other side of the house and I'm on my last nerve with lagging while I'm gaming. so im considering getting a airport extreme base station and using it as a wireless access point but i want to make sure that it can be used as totally wireless access point and i don't have to connect a LAN or Ethernet cable cause there is a fair distance between my room and the router. any info would be handy and im considering ether the small airport extreme that looks like a white apple TV or large Airport extreme with more ports which would be faster thanks:D:apple::apple:

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