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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For about a year we've had two RTV 4xxx's which both have a Linksys WET54G. One of the units was somewhat reliable with it's network connection, I could receive shows from others and it would update very regularly, but at times it was not contacting the Replay service. The other unit was very irregular, I frequently had problems with it connecting and did not even try receiving/sending shows. I did notice that the "G" light on either bridge was not on consistently, especially on the latter one. Also, streaming between the units has never worked. At times I could acknowledge the other unit, but never see the Replay Guide.


After speaking with Linksys support, they recommended a Range Expander. So I got one, and now I am having problems getting either unit on the network. One thing I did differently, which I didn't think would be a big deal, was that I enabled WEP encryption. But right now I am having problems pinging either unit or the bridges, it is very unreliable. the lights are on, even the "G" light, more consistently than ever. All Firmware is up to date, on the WAP54G, Range Expander, and Bridges.


Does anyone have a clue as to what might be the issue here?


Thanks!


-Larry
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by lcpittman
For about a year we've had two RTV 4xxx's which both have Linksys WRT54G. One of the units was somewhat reliable with it's network connection, I could receive shows from others and it would update very regularly, but at times it was not contacting the Replay service. The other unit was very irregular, I frequently had problems with it connecting and did not even try receiving/sending shows. I did notice that the "G" light on either bridge was not on consistently, especially on the latter one. Also, streaming between the units has never worked. At times I could acknowledge the other unit, but never see the Replay Guide.
Snce the stock firmware deoesn't support WDS bridiging, I assume you are running the Sveasoft firmware on the WRT54G units? If so, what version? Streaming doesn't work very well except in the later Alchemy versions (is unusable in Satori). Also, you must disable loopback in the firmware. I'm not sure is Satori allows this, but Alchemy does. Sveasoft's implementation of loopback is very, very flawed.


Wait, where do the WAP54G and bridges you later mentioned come into this? Your network description is not very clear at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
You'll have to excuse my ignorance, I'm not sure what WDS bridging is and why I'd need it. I was always under the impression since I did my initial research over a year ago, that by simply hooking up an ethernet bridge would suffice. If that is not the case, then please educate me. Your stuff about Alchemy and Sveasoft is confusing me.


My network includes an 8 port (wired) router, WAP54G, WRE54G (expander), 2 WET54G bridges (All linksys)


Sorry, no WRT54G's, messed up the model numbers, I'll edit the original post.


I did look at Sveasoft's site, but one concern I have is that for the Expander to work I need to have at least the 2.08 version of firmware on the WAP, and I did not see that version on the site.
 

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Originally posted by lcpittman


Sorry, no WRT54G's, messed up the model numbers, I'll edit the original post.
Okay, this clears things up. Ignore the stuff about Sveasoft, Alchemy, etc., as it is no longer applicable to your situation in light of this corrected info.


I'm afraid the answer to your problems is likely one that you won't like. In general, the Linksys WET54G is a POS. It has serious problems and (when it even works) often performs worse than its 802.11b cousin, the WET11. If you want a reliable and proven wireless solution, look to the products that support WDS bridging such as the Buffalo WBR-G54/WBR2-G54 or the Belkin F5D7230-4. Both products are extensively discussed in these forums. (At the risk of confusing you again, I should note that the Linksys WRT54G/GS supports WDS bridging also, but only with the third-party Sveasoft firmware).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
So then does that mean the WEP encryption is a non factor?


Also between the Buffalo WBR-G54/WBR2-G54 or the Belkin F5D7230-4, which one in particular would you recommend?


Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by j.m.
the Linksys WET54G is a POS. ... If you want a reliable and proven wireless solution, look to the products that support WDS bridging such as the Buffalo WBR-G54/WBR2-G54 or the Belkin F5D7230-4.
But this is not making sense. You are telling me that my Bridges are "crap", and then telling me to buy wireless routers. I was thinking the model numbers you gave me were for bridges, but they are routers.


So what parts of the network should I be replacing, the WAP or the bridges, or both?
 

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Originally posted by lcpittman
So then does that mean the WEP encryption is a non factor?
It could be a factor in your current complete lack of connectivity. Try disabling WEP on your wireless devices and see if that helps. Even if it works, I doubt performance will be adequate to reliably stream at anything higher than standard/low quality.

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Also between the Buffalo WBR-G54/WBR2-G54 or the Belkin F5D7230-4, which one in particular would you recommend?
The Buffalo units (WBR2-G54 is the successor to the WBR-G54 and is mostly the same) are the better all-around choice. However, the Belkins are usually a bit cheaper and work very well too *if* you can find a pre-14xx hardware revision. The later revisions have performance issues and should be avoided.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by lcpittman
But this is not making sense. You are telling me that my Bridges are "crap", and then telling me to buy wireless routers. I was thinking the model numbers you gave me were for bridges, but they are routers.
I know this is confusing; however, the devices I mentioned can serve as a router/bridge/AP or any combination of the above. If you were to buy the Buffalo or Belkin units, you would need at least 2 of them and perhaps 3--one to replace the WAP54G and one for each ReplayTV (unless they are close enough to be wired into the same bridge). You *might* even be able to use the WAP54G (reducing the number you would have to buy) because it supports WDS bridging IIRC.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
OK, so you're saying that these routers can be configured to work as a bridge?


If that's the case then I will exhaust the WEP issue, just to see what kind of a difference that will make. If that isn't working, then I will try to implement one new device at a time, this is really getting old, and more expensive.


On the issue of security though, do you recommend WEP anyway? and if I do only MAC filtering, is that usually "good enough?


I really appreciate your help, thanks.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by lcpittman
OK, so you're saying that these routers can be configured to work as a bridge?
Yep, they are very versatile, especially for the money. They are frequently available for ~$20 or less after rebate.

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On the issue of security though, do you recommend WEP anyway? and if I do only MAC filtering, is that usually "good enough?
Yes. MAC filtering is trivial to get around, as is SSID cloaking. Encryption is a must if you want any real security.
 

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WEP is also not very secure, someone can break you keys using a brute force approach in a few hours, or a few days at the most. The people who are really concerned with security use hard to guess keys, and change them on a schedule. WEP will keep out the 99.9% who don't try very hard.
 

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Originally posted by FarmBubba
WEP is also not very secure, someone can break you keys using a brute force approach in a few hours, or a few days at the most. The people who are really concerned with security use hard to guess keys, and change them on a schedule. WEP will keep out the 99.9% who don't try very hard.
The weakness of WEP is exaggerated, especially for the average home user's WLAN. Yes, it can be broken fairly easily. However, doing so requires capturing and analyzing a substantial amount of wireless traffic on your WLAN. On the average user's fairly low traffic WLAN, it would take several days or even weeks to accumulate enough data to crack the key. If you change the key once every couple of weeks, this task becomes even more difficult. See http://www.samspublishing.com/articl...le.asp?p=27666 for more information about the(overly) bad rap WEP gets. Yes, it has its problems, but it is still quite effective with proper precautions as long as your network isn't a used to transfer national secrets (or other data that would make it an attractive target).
 
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