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Multiple Access Points leading to unstable desktop


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#1 aninkling

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Posted 06 March 2010 - 10:30 AM

Network: 2 APs, 3 computers, all wireless
Computers: 1 Vista desktop, 1 XP laptop, 1 Apple laptop
AP settings: obviously, same SSID, channel 6 and channel 11.

Problem. The Vista desktop is located where the AP signals are approximately equal in strength. In fact, they trade being the strongest at the desktop location several times a minute. It appears that the desktop tries to keep up with the strongest. Complication: somehow Vista sees one of the channels as a HOME/PRIVATE channel and the other as a PUBLIC channel.

The combination of rapid switching and the PRIVATE/PUBLIC attribution plays havoc with the home NETWORK. You need PRIVATE to share files and you need a solid connection to maintain mapping. With the flip-flopping between channels and PUBLIC/PRIVATE, the NETWORK is unstable.

I assume the solution is to get the desktop to pay attention to only one channel? Right? Or is there another option? How do I do this? Thanks

Edited by aninkling, 06 March 2010 - 10:32 AM.


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#2 CaveDweller2

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Posted 07 March 2010 - 01:08 PM

Some software that come with wireless cards have that capability. I do not have acess to a Vista machine with wireless, but you might look in device manager at the properties, might be in there.

Can't you tell it to connect only to X network and it stay on that one?

Hope this helps thumbup.gif

Associate in Applied Science - Network Systems Management - Trident Technical College


#3 Orecomm

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Posted 08 March 2010 - 09:42 PM

There are a couple of significant ways to get a system to "prefer" one AP over another, depending on the level of control provided by your drivers. If you can get into the driver details easiest if you use the manufacturer's drivers rather than the rather plain-vanilla Microsoft ones, particularly if they are the Intel PROSet drivers. Look for the ability to prefer an AP by it's MAC address, or a channel scan list, or controls for roaming sensitivity . With many drivers you can do settings on a per-SSID basis, which is handy if your machine will be moving around.

With PROSet you can find the roaming sensitivity (probably the least intrusive parameter) under the Network Connection Properties -> Advanced -> Roaming Aggressiveness. The choices are Default and Lowest - choose Lowest. Your client won't roam unless the current signal becomes unusable.

If you use Microsoft Windows to manage the connection you may find selection capability (although a bit backwards) under Profiles->Manage Exclusions. You will want to add the MAC address of the access point you DO NOT want to attach to. Ever. Unless you delete it from the list.

Back to PROSet, you can also set a parameter in Profiles->Advanced Settings->Mandatory Access Point that is the MAC (aka BSSID) of the Preferred AP.

The channel scan list isn't settable with PROSet but is with some other managers.

Unfortunately, there is no real consistency among chipsets or managers, but there is usually something that will get you there. You may have to dig pretty deep, and it is probably under an advanced menu.

#4 aninkling

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Posted 07 April 2010 - 09:06 PM

OK, this is closed. Did it through MAC addresses.




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