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Wireless Access Point Distribution

Discussion in 'Networking' started by joybull, Oct 1, 2003.

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  1. joybull

    joybull Thread Starter

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    Sep 18, 2003
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    I am setting up a large apartment (an entire floor) in Manhattan with wireless access. there are a lot of weird architectural obstacles for the wifi signal to get around (lead in walls, steel walls, long hallways, etc.) in the house and i need to get as much coverage as possible. Throughout the house there are ethernet jacks.

    now for the question:
    I need help in figuring out how i should i connect all these access points because i want the apartment owner to be able to hop from access point to access point as they walk around with their laptop (or whatever wifi device) and never not have access. Should I have every access point plugged into an ethernet jack which runs back to the closet and then have them all go to one port on the router\switch (I assume this woulld cause info to be broadcast across all access points at the same time, which would cover the laptop no matter which access point is closest and would also not require a new ip)? Or should I use some sort of mesh wireless access point which would not need to be plugged into an ethernet jack (just power) and would boost the signal or repeat the signal of one access point? If so, what product would work best?

    furthermore, if i use all the same access points on the same channel, i assume they may drown eachother out in some place. how can i deal with that problem on top of all this?

    Thank you all so much.
     
  2. calabash

    calabash

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    Not an expert in wireless, but have a little knowledge. I recommend O'Reilly's book: 802.11 Wireless Networks / the definitive guide.

    You probably have already figured out to stay on one subnet.

    The WAP (wireless access points) are all hooked back up to the wiring closet. You're forming a wireless backbone.

    To my knowledge, the wireless nic will perform the handoff/pickup duties.

    Bridging is only needed when you have more than one sub-net.

    This wasn't much, but maybe it will spark comment.

    Good luck.
     
  3. joybull

    joybull Thread Starter

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    I think I should also simplify my question, I can be a bit verbose.

    The BIG question is, if i have numerous wireless access points in a house and each one is connected toan ethernet jack (that runs to a patch panel in a closet), should i connect all those ethernet runs (that are connected to a wap) to a hub and then connect the hub to one port on the switch\router, or should each ethernet run be connected to it's own port on the switch\router?

    the way i understand it is, if i connect everything to a hub first and then to one port on the switch\router, all internet traffic will be brodcast across all access points at the same time. if i connect each access point to its own port on the switch\router, traffic will get routed directly to an access point, but if the user is moving around the house, the traffic may get routed to the wrong access point and would have to be rerequested.

    which scenario is best?

    Thanks to all.
     
  4. calabash

    calabash

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    Cat 5 cable into the ports on your switch. The router is acting as your DHCP server correct? Your clients will be looking for it, find it and pipe all i-net requests to it.

    I do not believe that roaming is "performed" by the WAP, but the WNIC. The WAP just pipes out the signal.
     
  5. joybull

    joybull Thread Starter

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    I gues I might be making a mountain out of a molehill. What I will do is just connect each access point to its own port on the router\switch. You are right, the pcmci card will handle the handoff from poiunt to point. It would have to be smart enough to handle that. And better yet, i don't have to worry about packets being blasted across all access points (as in the scenario of connecting all the access points to a hub first and them to ONE port on the switch\router).

    But one concern of mine remains to be the fact that i am pretty sure the pcmcia card will not let you switch channels. therefore, all access points will be using the same 802.11b channel and will inevitablt cause dead spots.

    Anyone care to comment on dead spots with multiple access points?
     
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