No Cables? No Way!

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by eljanitor, Sep 3, 2012.

  1. eljanitor macrumors 6502


    Feb 10, 2011
    I have been tasked with finding a solution to extending a wireless network without cat 5e cables. So my first solution was lets buy a bunch of air port express's and make them repeaters across the distance we need.

    My answer was:"They are too expensive, what else can we use?"

    So I did some research and found a great D-Link product the DIR-505. No matter what mode I put these things on they run for awhile and then they drop the signal ( every time ). I've tried putting them closer together, and further apart. Nothing prevents this issue.

    They do not stay connected to the wireless router continuously, they do not do what is needed. So back they go. Although I was told they can extend a wireless network reliably, news is they don't. As a basic repeater, or hot spot they work great.

    I want to run drops off a router, and switch to the areas needed and and install real range extenders off the drops. If I can't do this does anybody have any suggestions to go wireless? I need proven results.
  2. Comeagain? macrumors 68020


    Feb 17, 2011
    Spokane, WA
    What distance do you need to cover, and what's te budget like?
  3. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    when you start trying to daisy change a wireless network threw multiple repeaters like that you are just asking for problems.
  4. AngryGerbil macrumors 6502a


    Aug 26, 2012
    I don't know what distance you're trying to cover but as someone said, daisy-chaining access points probably isn't the best way to go about it. You might want to see if there's a version of dd-wrt for the DIR-505 and then adjust the transmission wattage from there. For a really long distance you might not have a choice other than an industrial strength wireless repeater. That's big $$$ though.
  5. Orange Furball macrumors 65816

    Orange Furball

    May 18, 2012
    Scranton, PA, USA
    Why not use Cat5 cables? While adding extenders may seem ok, they don't work too well after 2-3. They are really slow once you get a certain distance away.
  6. belvdr macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2005
    No longer logging into MR
    Agreed. Every time you add a wireless repeater to the mix, bandwidth is effectively halved.
  7. eljanitor thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 10, 2011
    Its a large house made of all kinds of crazy stone, concrete, wood, steel, plaster drywall etc... It's several thousand square feet, with a few levels. I know running Cat5e or Cat6 cables from the router to all the areas needed will work. Then all that has to be done is put a wireless range extender in the desired rooms like a D-link DAP-1360. would solve this.

    I don't know if I'd use that exact range extender because it's only 10/100 Mb/s. I was hoping to have a 10/100/1000 internal network since cables and drops need to be run anyways.

    I'm open for suggestions. Thanks for all the advice all of you have given so far too.
  8. jaysen macrumors 6502

    Sep 16, 2009
    At very minimum I would try to drop at least 1 cable to each floor. Use repeaters/AP from there for every floor. This doesn't solve your no cat cable requirements however it gives you reliable wireless for those floors assuming you don't have concrete/metal walls inside the home.

    If this is a professional job then I would explain to the customer the importance of signal degradation and connection reliability.

    If this is for a friend/family member then I would call them idiots and tell them not to compalin once everything is said and done about their ****** signal or slow internet

    This is not completely unattainable however like others have stated they do sell commercial grade equipment however cost will greatly increase.
  9. Random Chaos, Sep 7, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2012

    Random Chaos macrumors member

    Jan 16, 2008
    Simple: Get a good quality amplified directional (or omni) antenna attached to a router that you can change the antenna on (most you can't). If you pump enough power out, you can get a single AP running your entire house, though the FCC might not like you too well! Also, take a look at these products: - some of them work at distances of up to one mile. If you get it to the room(s) you want without repeaters, you can always bridge it to a 2nd router in that room, either wireless or wired.
  10. brentmore macrumors 6502


    Jul 19, 2002
    I second the suggestion to run a cable to each floor at a minimum. Since drops are going to be run, it shouldn't add too much labor into the mix. Though there are lots of options to broadcast your signal over a wide area, I tend to remain conservative when it comes to wireless. From a security point of view, the 'quieter' you are the better.
  11. eljanitor thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 10, 2011
    Thank you for all the input I've received so far. Let's see what they ask me about this soon.
  12. roadbloc macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    Agreed. I have no choice but to use several Airports to extend the network from next door to my house and I can tell you now that it is far from ideal. It becomes a nightmare to maintain as it drops connection at least once a day and the Internet itself is very very slow.

    Where possible, do not expand wireless networks with repeaters. I unfortunately do not have a choice.
  13. throAU macrumors 603


    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    What is the budget? If they say "nothing" or some other ridiculously small amount they aren't interested in a working solution.

    Is it a home network or a business network (yeah, its a house, but do they need it to be reliable business grade)?

    How many users?

    All of these factors will come into play.

    Higher end wifi APs (like the latest Cisco gear) have awesome features like automatic power management to stop APs clashing with each other, auto channel hopping, etc. But they cost money.

    Using cables to multiple APs will always be a better solution if you can justify it due to the bandwidth issues already mentioned.

    You may be able to use ethernet over power adapters to make use of the building's electrical connection for extending the network, rather than wifi between APs.
  14. notjustjay macrumors 603


    Sep 19, 2003
    Canada, eh?
    This summer I set up a system of Engenius access points and client bridges for a campground. We've distributed the network across four buildings each a few hundred feet apart with trees in between. I used one Engenius 2611P in access point mode mounted to a pole attached to the roof of the building where the DSL modem lives. Every other building has another 2611P in client bridge mode associated with that first AP, feeding a local wireless router to provide wifi service to clients in that building. Each router is set up with the same ssid/password so that clients can (somewhat) seamelessly connect to the same network no matter which building you're actually in.

    There are still some kinks to work out but it works fairly well and I'm extremely impressed by the distances we're able to cover!

    Not totally relevant to your situation but maybe it gives you some ideas.
  15. eljanitor thread starter macrumors 6502


    Feb 10, 2011
    Thanks for all the advice. I have abandoned the project, and will let my bosses figure out what to do on their own. If they wont listen to me then they can pay another company to tell them the same things.

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