Two airports: Does it matter if I use "extend network" or not?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by mortenjensen, Nov 18, 2013.

  1. mortenjensen macrumors regular

    Mar 19, 2012
    Hi all,
    I have the following setup at home:
    - Airport extreme 5. gen. as base.
    - Time capsule 4. gen. hidden away in the other part of the house wired to the extreme.

    Now: Is there actually any difference between:
    - setting up the Time Capsule as "extend network".
    - or setting it up as "Create own wireless" with the SAME ssid, security, code etc.?

    I originally did the first, but for some reason, I lost the connection to the Time Capsule and had to reset it. I have now done the last without any error.

    Am I missing out on something, or does the "extend network" setting simply do what I have done manually by using same ssid and so on?


    By the way: I also changed from "auto" channels to fix channels (like 1 and 11) - maybe that what was made i crash in the first place, some clash in channels??
  2. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

    Aug 24, 2013
    Far from here
    "extend network" has to be used only if you can't hard wire the TC to the Extreme.

    Since you have the TC wired to the Extrem (which is the best setup you can do), the TC must "create a network", with :

    - same SSID
    - same password
    - same security (WPA2)
    - different channel
    (will be achieved by choosing "automatic" on both devices, or better by choosing 2 different channels manually).

    This is a "roaming" network : any client device sees a sole wireless network, and will connect to the access point (Extreme or TC) it gets the best signal from.
  3. mortenjensen thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 19, 2012

    This explains, why I had a breakdown!

    I was not aware that "extend" is solely for the un-wired solution!

    By the way, what are two good manual 5ghz channels like 1 and 11 is a good pair on the 2.4 ghz-band?

    This explains!

    Yes, I want a seemless solution throughout the house.

  4. drsox macrumors 65816


    Apr 29, 2011
    Put the 5Ghz on Auto and the AE will chose. No need to be selective with channels as on the 2.4Ghz band.
    If there's only a limited number of users, then using the same channel for both also works fine (that's what I have on all my 4 AEs)
  5. RMo macrumors 65816


    Aug 7, 2007
    Iowa, USA
    For a primary source on this matter, see Apple's "Wi-Fi base stations: Setting up and configuring a roaming network (802.11 a/b/g/n)" article at The advice for a roaming network, which it seems like you want, is precisely what other people have told you (other than that Apple doesn't mention anything about channels, presumably assuming they are all on automatic, which is probably what I would do unless I had a good reason not to).

    If you can't do a roaming setup (which requires wired connections between the base stations), see for other options (well, really only one unless you're using older versions).
  6. priitv8 macrumors 68040

    Jan 13, 2011
    Use OS X's built-in wifi diagnostic utility. It will survey your ether and suggest you the best channels at your location, for both bands.

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