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Extending the same wifi network.

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
My wifi router works pretty well, but the signal it supplies is a little marginal at the other side of my house and outside in my yard. I'm getting another wifi router which will be connected to the original router by ethernet cable strung to the other side of the house. My question is: do I have to set up the second router to make it an access point for a new wifi network with a different SSID, or can I re-use the same SSID that the original router uses, so that my existing wifi network will simply have a wider signal area? The new wifi router is a Medialink Wireless N router.

Actually, I already tried this once, with a router from Monoprice, which (if I understood the manual correctly) will let you extend the same network if the second router is connected wirelessly to the original router, but not if the two routers are connected by ethernet cable, as my routers will be. The Monoprice modem did work to add an extension with a different SSID, but that is not as convenient as having a single SSID for the whole network.
post #2 of 12
You can use the same ssid.

Use the same ssid and password as first router.
Turn DHCP server off on second router(AP)
Set one router to channel 1 and the other to channel 11
Main router plugs into a LAN port of the second router(AP) not the WAN port.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Andy. I'll try that.
post #4 of 12
http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Linking_Routers

This is a good overview of all the various options.
post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb View Post

You can use the same ssid.
Use the same ssid and password as first router.
Turn DHCP server off on second router(AP)
Set one router to channel 1 and the other to channel 11
Main router plugs into a LAN port of the second router(AP) not the WAN port.

Also make sure you give the second router a static IP address outside of the main routers dhcp range. You will also have to connect the second router by a LAN port, do not use its WAN port.

David
post #6 of 12
post #7 of 12
What happens when both routers are dual band? The 2.4 channels are 1 and 11, what do you set the 5ghz channels too? 153 and 161?
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Very useful reference in trying to get oriented. This paragraph,
Quote:
But most wireless clients are very "sticky" and tend to stay associated to the first AP they encounter, even when APs with stronger signals are available. So I recommend setting a different SSID for the AP, so that you can manually control connection
seems to imply that if I carry a wifi client from one side of my house to another, where a different access point's signal is stronger, that the device might or might not automatically switch to a different channel/access point. Depending on the device. Right?
post #9 of 12
That's correct, depending on the device.

My android has a hard time giving up the weaker signal for the stronger one. My laptop has a setting for roaming aggressiveness. If all you need is internet access I wouldn't worry about it, If you need high bandwidth you might want to use two different ssids
post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by rsoares28 View Post

What happens when both routers are dual band? The 2.4 channels are 1 and 11, what do you set the 5ghz channels too? 153 and 161?

Any open 5GHz channels separated by 40MHz or more will do. 153 (5765 MHz) & 161 (5805 MHz) are fine.

http://superuser.com/questions/122441/multiple-access-points-for-the-same-ssid
http://superuser.com/questions/367564/multiple-access-point-with-same-ssid-but-all-connections-goes-to-only-one-access
post #11 of 12
Perfect, thanks for the answer
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb View Post

You can use the same ssid.
Use the same ssid and password as first router.
Turn DHCP server off on second router(AP)
Set one router to channel 1 and the other to channel 11
Main router plugs into a LAN port of the second router(AP) not the WAN port.
I've done this now, and it seems to have worked. When I first set the second router up to extend my wifi network, I don't think it was working, but the next day, it seemed to be. Maybe the two routers needed some time to talk things over.

My reason for thinking that the second router does actually work is that I have tried 3 wireless devices from a location in my house distant from my original wireless router where formerly their signals were rather low, but now they're stronger, judging mostly just by the little graphic with radiating semicircles. There's a Kindle Keyboard, an Ipad, and a laptop running Windows. Also, the laptop displays the name of my wireless network with a " 2" after it, which might mean it's using the second available channel (following Andy's instructions, I set the original router to channel 1 and the new extension router to channel 11). None of the three devices showed any improvement in received signal until they were turned off for a while, then turned back on.

For the second router, I used this Mediabridge router, since it was only $50 and got good reviews on Amazon. I used Andy's instructions above as a guide and followed the directions in the user manual for connecting to another router.
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