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Extending WiFi - Wireless Extender, Repeater, Access Point - Confused..


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#1 nutshellml2

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 12:05 PM

Morning all, I have Verizon Fios with the Verizon modem/router in the basement with all of my A/V/Computer equipment.  I need to extend the range of my wireless signal and little confused as to what I need.  I already have CAT6 cable running throughout the house and homeruned to the basement area.  I think the best way would be to run a CAT cable to an extender vs. using a wireless signal extender, but I'm confused as to what I actually need.  I noticed that many of the wireless/wifi extenders are actually just wireless, and pass through the data therefore slowing it down some degree.  My other concern is I want a seemless wifi signal, vs multiple SSIDs (do I just have to name them the same) So my question:

1) Is there a WiFi extender that is hardwired to the main router/modem?

2) Would I just buy a router and make it into an access point?

3) Would verizon Wifi extender be best bet (that is connected via Coax)?

 

Any guidance or clarification on what is the best route would be appreciated.

 

THANKS!



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#2 Wand3r3r

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 01:14 PM

Seamless would be WDS

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wireless_distribution_system

 

You want a AP at the end of the cable run imo



#3 Trikein

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 02:10 PM

What equipiment do you have now? For instance, do you use ethernet or coaxial from the ONT to the router/gateway? What ties all the ethernet together? If you want seamless roaming, you will need atleast two respectability wireless APs, since no one AP will likly be compatible with the Verizon gateway. 



#4 nutshellml2

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 02:24 PM

What equipiment do you have now? For instance, do you use ethernet or coaxial from the ONT to the router/gateway? What ties all the ethernet together? If you want seamless roaming, you will need atleast two respectability wireless APs, since no one AP will likly be compatible with the Verizon gateway. 

@Trikein Right now i have the Fios Quantum gateway modem/router, I have to double check but I believe I have the coax going to the fios router.  Im using that right now with a 4 port switch to run the network.  I eventually plan to get a bigger switch and patch panel, but that's another story...  

 

So If I were to run a CAT cable from my Fios router to another router in a central part of the home and use it as an AP, you're saying that wouldn't work?  Why specifically?  

 

Thanks!



#5 Trikein

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 02:30 PM

If its coaxial and you have compatible coaxial in the room you need better signal, then I would suggest using one of these. AFAIK that will properly roam the network. Otherwise you would need separate SSIDs. Either you need something compatible with the Quantum gateway or you need to replace the quantum gateway with two models that are compatible together. 



#6 nutshellml2

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 02:40 PM

If its coaxial and you have compatible coaxial in the room you need better signal, then I would suggest using one of these. AFAIK that will properly roam the network. Otherwise you would need separate SSIDs. Either you need something compatible with the Quantum gateway or you need to replace the quantum gateway with two models that are compatible together. 

I could run the coax and use that extender you linked too, the tech recommended that, I don't have coax prerun to where I need it, but I did leave conduit in the walls and have the ability to do it, will just take some more time.  Which is why I was hoping to use the prerun CAT6 cables I did.  

 

So Basically, if I ran a CAT cable from the Quantum router to say a new ACRouter/Access Point upstairs, the wireless signal won't be seemless because of the different brand router/access point wireless signals, it would appear as two different SSIDs?  Do I have that correct?

 

That said, replacing the Fios Quantum I don't think is a possible or bridging it to not use the routing functions so am I correct to say my options are:

1) turn off wifi on the fios quantum use 1 or 2 same brand routers as access points (one downstiars next to fios) other upstairs connected via CAT cable?

2) buy the fios extender and run coax to where i need it.

3) just connect cat cable to an access point BUT i won't have seemless wifi



#7 Wand3r3r

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 05:59 PM

"I already have CAT6 cable running throughout the house and homeruned to the basement area"

 

"If I were to run a CAT cable..."

 

why would you run a cable?  You have a patch panel...



#8 Trikein

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 07:18 PM

Setting up the wireless AP on ethernet isn't the problem. The issue is getting all your wireless devices to roam effectively and transparently between the FIOS router and the new wireless AP. Many of the roaming features built into wireless AP are proprietary and only work with other AP of that same type. That is why I suggested if you want seamless roaming, then to not use the FIOS gateway, but replace it with your own router instead. How this is done depends on what other FIOS services you have and what features you want to maintain. See here for a break down of the different options. With FIOS, you either need to do things all their way, or it gets complex fast. If you can give up the seamless roaming, it gets a lot simpler. 

 

::edit:: I thought about it some more, and one simple solution would be to turn the wireless off on the FIOS gateway and then buy 2 wireless AP and install one next to the FIOS gateway. Then you can set up roaming between the two wireless AP and still keep the FIOS gateway as the network's main router. The downside would be the cost to buy the second AP.


Edited by Trikein, 10 January 2017 - 08:09 PM.


#9 nutshellml

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 08:58 PM

Setting up the wireless AP on ethernet isn't the problem. The issue is getting all your wireless devices to roam effectively and transparently between the FIOS router and the new wireless AP. Many of the roaming features built into wireless AP are proprietary and only work with other AP of that same type. That is why I suggested if you want seamless roaming, then to not use the FIOS gateway, but replace it with your own router instead. How this is done depends on what other FIOS services you have and what features you want to maintain. See here for a break down of the different options. With FIOS, you either need to do things all their way, or it gets complex fast. If you can give up the seamless roaming, it gets a lot simpler. 

 

::edit:: I thought about it some more, and one simple solution would be to turn the wireless off on the FIOS gateway and then buy 2 wireless AP and install one next to the FIOS gateway. Then you can set up roaming between the two wireless AP and still keep the FIOS gateway as the network's main router. The downside would be the cost to buy the second AP.

This makes perfect sense and what I was thinking.  I guess what do I gain by using two wireless AP of my own vs. FIOS is basically not having to run a coax to a new location for the repeater you mentioned and probably being assured that my coverage will be sufficient for the entire house/backyard since I'm not sure how effective the Fios repeater will be and I can get an AC router/AP that has great coverage.  Flip side like you mentioned cost... 

If I did do two AP what brand/type would you recommend?



#10 Trikein

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 09:05 PM

To be clear, you would still need a ethernet between the FIOS gateway and the two AP. If you have a ethernet jack in the room where the FIOS gateway is and where the second AP will be, and the jacks are wired together, you should be all set. 

 

As for which AP, I would need to know more about your environment. How many square feet is your house? How many floors? How many wireless devices? Finally, do you have a price point in mind? Low end would be using two routers as wireless AP. Mid range would be two consumer level wireless AP. High end would be UniFi APs with a matching controller. 


Edited by Trikein, 10 January 2017 - 09:08 PM.


#11 nutshellml

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 09:11 PM

To be clear, you would still need a ethernet between the FIOS gateway and the two AP. If you have a ethernet jack in the room where the FIOS gateway is and where the second AP will be, and the jacks are wired together, you should be all set. 

 

As for which AP, I would need to know more about your environment. How many square feet is your house? How many floors? How many wireless devices? Finally, do you have a price point in mind? Low end would be using two routers as wireless AP. Mid range would be two consumer level wireless AP. High end would be UniFi APs with a matching controller. 

Yes, Understood about ethernet to location of 2nd AP, which I have.

 

For more background 2300sq ft. all wood construction, lot is approx 120x100.  As for wireless devices 3 phones, 1 tablet, maybe one media streaming device, and guests at times, TV and all other A/V equipment and probably media device will be wired.



#12 Trikein

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 09:36 PM

I would suggest two Ubiquiti UAP-AC-LITE APs. Here is a video showing a install but their forums are also a good place for info. Make sure you set DHCP reservations for the APs on the FIOS gateway and disable the wireless on the FIOS gateway completely, including any guest networks. 

 

There are other options if this is not user friendly enough for you. There are a ton of new Mesh network options coming out from Netgear, Asus and Google. A mesh network is easier to setup but you lose some performance.


Edited by Trikein, 10 January 2017 - 09:39 PM.


#13 nutshellml

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 09:44 PM

I would suggest two Ubiquiti UAP-AC-LITE APs. Here is a video showing a install but their forums are also a good place for info. Make sure you set DHCP reservations for the APs on the FIOS gateway and disable the wireless on the FIOS gateway completely, including any guest networks. 

 

There are other options if this is not user friendly enough for you. There are a ton of new Mesh network options coming out from Netgear, Asus and Google. A mesh network is easier to setup but you lose some performance.

I read something a while ago about them, heard good things.  I can figure out the setup, that shouldn't be an issue.  I saw it's POE?  That would be a home run as I have a POE switch powering my IP Cameras and have a few ports open.  And the range will be sufficient just having one on the main floor in the center of the house and would reach out back?  Would one need to be right next to my current fios router in the basement? or I can probably put that anywhere correct?



#14 Trikein

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 10:09 PM

"Would one need to be right next to my current fios router in the basement? or I can probably put that anywhere correct?"

 

Correct. The AP's can go anywhere you have ethernet and electrical or POE. Make sure the POE you use for your camera is compatible with the APs.

 

Also, any thoughts on switching from ONT > Coaxial > FIOS Gateway to ONT > Ethernet > FIOS gateway. Not only would this increase performance possibly, but it would allow you to free up the coaxial to use as a secondary MoCA network. This would only be practical if you do NOT have FIOS video service or need TV caller ID for FIOS phone. Also, the ethernet from ONT to Gateway couldn't be shared by the rest of the wired network. On one hand, it would be a pain to change everything, but on the other hand, it might make sense to move everything over to ethernet if you are data only.



#15 nutshellml

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 10:14 PM

Also, any thoughts on switching from ONT > Coaxial > FIOS Gateway to ONT > Ethernet > FIOS gateway. Not only would this increase performance possibly, but it would allow you to free up the coaxial to use as a secondary MoCA network. This would only be practical if you do NOT have FIOS video service or need TV caller ID for FIOS phone. Also, the ethernet from ONT to Gateway couldn't be shared by the rest of the wired network. On one hand, it would be a pain to change everything, but on the other hand, it might make sense to move everything over to ethernet if you are data only.

I do use Fios Video service and phone.  Don't need the caller id on tv as much as I do need the DVR/STB functions over remote and the app.  That said I have about 8 months left on the contract and may cut the "TV" cord.  At that point, I may go the route you suggested and get rid of the Fios router service.

 

Thanks for the info, I think I will take a serious look at the Ubiquiti APs.  I'll check the compatibility.  

 

One more question that I have seen mixed responses - the range on them - I'm confident they'll work for my entire house as no major obstructions, but will the signal carry to the back yard and property line?  probably about 50' in each direction from the indoor mounted Ubiquiti.






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