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61 posts

Master Geek

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#195188 9-Apr-2016 14:33
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At the risk of offending the previously posted topic police, I've tried searching on the forum, I really have, and I must be missing something because I can never get results simple enough for my head to understand. It's not laziness on my part, I clearly missed the tutorial on how to get the best out of geekzone. Feel free to berate me, but if you wouldn't mind helping me out first it would be appreciated. The requirement is at the very end of the post, I just thought I'd spend a few lines sharing current state with anyone that likes context.

 

So, I'm hopefully shortly(ish) moving to a 200/200 Fibre connection. I've been avoiding replacing my existing router on VDSL for a while and it's just got the point where I'm going to have a tantrum. I have the Spark provided Huawei HG630b. It does a great job wired connectivity; regular speeds of around 48Mbps Downstream / 12Mbps Upstream. I'm fortunate to have ethernet around the house s much of my streaming devices are connected that way. Wireless however... well. No matter how hard I try, I don't get beyond 22Mbps Downstream / 5Mbps Upstream. 

 

I've now tried everything, changed bandwidth, channels etc. Whilst I certainly have a range issue due to the house layout, I've occasionally added access points to address that and speed has certainly improved when connecting to them but then I have the on-going challenges of channel management etc. Irrespective of all of theta, I'm waiting for the fibre to be installed before I invest in a new router or even make anymore changes.

 

At any point I'm happy to add Access Points at other points of the house to extend the Wireless Network. The experience of my house layout is that I need two access points as well as the wireless router in order to provide full coverage and get through the dead spots and all the usual house dramas of nooks and crannies.

 

So, what am I asking... I want someone to give me a simple recommendation. I won't come back and give anyone grief, simply because I am accepting I'm starting from zero knowledge now, which means any advice I receive will place me an infinitely better position.

 

This is what I'm after:

 

1. 200/200 Capable Fibre Router with Gigabit switch and acWifi (Target cost approx: $450-$500) - If it's something that can work on current VDSL connection then I'm happy to buy it now but it isn't a necessity as I've already consigned myself to the pit of wifi despair until fibre lands.

 

2. Additional acWifi access points (I'm happy to repurpose a router if necessary, subject to my capability limitations, but I just find some of them unreliable when I am trying to configure them as a LAN connected access point alone). (Target cost approx: $250-$300 each) This isn't mandatory yet, I'll see how good the range is of the new device first.

 

All help appreciated.

 

 


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  #1529021 9-Apr-2016 15:10
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Others here know more than me, but a start point is the Huawei 659b, AC, GBIT LAN and WAN. May be cheapish/free via Spark if you upgrade, should be free actually. If your happy with the 630b, the 659b is catering for your needs, and its probably best to stick with the Spark router for support. 


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  #1529024 9-Apr-2016 15:14
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What I would do is:

 

Look at a Mikrotik RB3011UiAS-RM (this is a dual core 1.4Ghz) router which runs router OS. A bit of work required to set it up, but you could load it up with a LOT of firewall rules and I don't think it will slow you down. You could got with the RB2011 (personally I think this would be fine), but some guys on here will tell you its only a single core 600Mhz cpu and thats too slow for 200/200 full duplex. Both of these will come in under budget.

 

Another option is a Ubquiti EdgeRouter/EdgeRouter Lite. 

 

Note: the two routers I mentioned here require a bit of networking skill to set up and manage. But you can either follow some guides on here or get someone to set them up for you. There are other routers around which will be easier to set up, but bang for buck the mikrotiks and edgerouter lite are probably priced the best.

 

As for the AP's I would look at getting 2  Xclaim XI-3's. You can look at Unifi AC's but I am gonna probably buy these Xclaim AP's towards the end of the year. They are made by Ruckus so they will have good hardware in them.

 

Dont get all in one units. Most of them just don't work that well.


 
 
 
 




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Master Geek

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  #1529026 9-Apr-2016 15:17
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tdgeek:

 

Others here know more than me, but a start point is the Huawei 659b, AC, GBIT LAN and WAN. May be cheapish/free via Spark if you upgrade, should be free actually. If your happy with the 630b, the 659b is catering for your needs, and its probably best to stick with the Spark router for support. 

 

 

 

 

See, I used too many words an didn't give enough information. Story of my life.

 

 

 

What I was trying to get across is that I'm far from happy with the current router. Things like:

 

Can't select ac only, must have b and g as part of the wireless service.

 

Has a limitation of only 32 wireless devices.

 

Slow Wifi

 

Needs rebooting regularly

 

 

 

It is because of these reasons that I don't have confidence in another router provided by the ISP and was seeking recommendations of other devices and configurations across fixed and wireless.


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  #1529035 9-Apr-2016 15:43
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dmartora:

 

tdgeek:

 

Others here know more than me, but a start point is the Huawei 659b, AC, GBIT LAN and WAN. May be cheapish/free via Spark if you upgrade, should be free actually. If your happy with the 630b, the 659b is catering for your needs, and its probably best to stick with the Spark router for support. 

 

 

 

 

See, I used too many words an didn't give enough information. Story of my life.

 

 

 

What I was trying to get across is that I'm far from happy with the current router. Things like:

 

Can't select ac only, must have b and g as part of the wireless service.

 

Has a limitation of only 32 wireless devices.

 

Slow Wifi

 

Needs rebooting regularly

 

 

 

It is because of these reasons that I don't have confidence in another router provided by the ISP and was seeking recommendations of other devices and configurations across fixed and wireless.

 

 

No worries, I read that you liked it, the issue was wifi. You mean "Can't select N only, must have b and g as part of the wireless service." ?




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  #1529036 9-Apr-2016 15:44
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Yep, that's one of the things I'm not fond of.


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  #1529038 9-Apr-2016 15:56
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darylblake:

 

What I would do is:

 

Look at a Mikrotik RB3011UiAS-RM (this is a dual core 1.4Ghz) router which runs router OS. A bit of work required to set it up, but you could load it up with a LOT of firewall rules and I don't think it will slow you down. You could got with the RB2011 (personally I think this would be fine), but some guys on here will tell you its only a single core 600Mhz cpu and thats too slow for 200/200 full duplex. Both of these will come in under budget.

 

Another option is a Ubquiti EdgeRouter/EdgeRouter Lite. 

 

Note: the two routers I mentioned here require a bit of networking skill to set up and manage. But you can either follow some guides on here or get someone to set them up for you. There are other routers around which will be easier to set up, but bang for buck the mikrotiks and edgerouter lite are probably priced the best.

 

As for the AP's I would look at getting 2  Xclaim XI-3's. You can look at Unifi AC's but I am gonna probably buy these Xclaim AP's towards the end of the year. They are made by Ruckus so they will have good hardware in them.

 

Dont get all in one units. Most of them just don't work that well.

 

 

To go more on this. At the moment I run an Edgerouter Lite which is an incredibly powerful router coupled with a cheap TP-Link websmart Gigabit switch + a Xclaim-XI3 access point. I have had this same setup for almost an entire year which for me - is a record.

 

After dealing with consumer grade routers for quite some time, playing around with Mikrotiks (which don't get me wrong, are great routers) etc I don't think I can improve on much on my home network - so at this point, it appears it is rather futureproofed.

 

It is worth spending money and learning how to drive the products if you're wanting to get the best out of your network. For me, the Edgerouter + Xclaim combo is just awesome and better yet I can add more Xclaim AP's seamlessly if I ever want to. Speeds over WiFi are really good (get around 210Mbit to my aging iMac with its N300 WiFi chipset and 600+Mbit to AC devices actual network speed).

 

The Xclaim AP's are also really powerful - I often get my phone give me "friendzoned WiFi" at the supermarket 1min walk from our house.







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Master Geek

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  #1529041 9-Apr-2016 16:08
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Thanks for this info, I'm really finding it useful.

 

 

 

Whilst I was whining to you all about the existing router, I thought I'd try something. It never actually occurred to me to disable the wireless on the existing router. So I did that and then plugged in a Netgear WAC120 Access point I had lying around. 

 

That's the only thing that has changed in my network config. I'm now consistently getting over 45Mbps downstream across wireless, which is not far from wired speeds.

 

 

Granted I still have some range and dead spot issues, but it confirms to me that the ISP provided router as a single device is not the way to go when I get my fibre connection.

 

Now I need to think about adding some additional APs at the outer reaches of my house, maybe two more, and trying to learn something about bandwidth and overlapping channels. 


 
 
 
 


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  #1529056 9-Apr-2016 16:32
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Netcomm NF8AC. Well below your budget but honestly is a very decent router for ufb and also VDSL.

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  #1529071 9-Apr-2016 16:57
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dmartora:

 

Can't select ac only, must have b and g as part of the wireless service.

 

 

802.11ac only operates in the 5 GHz spectrum and 802.11b/g operates in the 2.4 GHz spectrum. 

 

Within the 2.4 GHz spectrum you cannot have 802.11n only as your wireless network would not be able to decode/process 802.11b/g frames transmitted by neighbouring wireless networks and, hence, could not co-exist with the neighbouring wireless network.  This would breach the 802.11 standard.


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  #1529073 9-Apr-2016 17:00
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  #1529118 9-Apr-2016 18:10
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Crowdie:

 

802.11ac only operates in the 5 GHz spectrum and 802.11b/g operates in the 2.4 GHz spectrum. 

 

Within the 2.4 GHz spectrum you cannot have 802.11n only as your wireless network would not be able to decode/process 802.11b/g frames transmitted by neighbouring wireless networks and, hence, could not co-exist with the neighbouring wireless network.  This would breach the 802.11 standard.

 

 

You can, its called greenfield mode and IME really helps with performance.

 

It's usually locked out on consumer stuff since it will just result in calls when someones dinosaur device cannot connect.





Richard rich.ms

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  #1529128 9-Apr-2016 18:22
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richms:

 

 

 

You can, its called greenfield mode and IME really helps with performance.

 

It's usually locked out on consumer stuff since it will just result in calls when someones dinosaur device cannot connect.

 

 

I am not aware of any major wireless vendor who implemented the 802.11n greenfield protection mode.  Both Aruba and Cisco (the largest largest wireless vendors) stated that the issues with the 802.11n greenfield mode greatly exceeded any advantages.  

 

I remember sitting in a Cisco training session and asking about greenfield and the engineer from the United States advised about how a 802.11n radio would not be able to decode a 802.11b/g frame and read the NAV.  So how would it co-exist with a neighbouring 802.11b/g network?  For this reason with a Cisco WLC you cannot disable all the 802.11b/g data rates.

 

The 802.11ac Survival Guide about sums it up:

 

802.11n offered a "greenfield mode" that saved a few microseconds in the preamble getting a frame onto the radio link. Although it was slightly more efficient, it was not a widely adopted feature and was especially avoided in large-scale networks. The efficiency gains from greenfield mode were often lost because airtime-devouring CTS-to-self messages were required before transmitting in the greenfield mode. As a result, greenfield mode was removed from 802.11ac.

 

 


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  #1529140 9-Apr-2016 18:35
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well enabling it on my cheap-as 2.4ghz 802.11n single chain bridges got thruput up from mid 40's to high 70's constantly.

 

 

 

and you can turn off CTS to self which is one of the first things to do to get decent speeds out of a link.





Richard rich.ms

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  #1529142 9-Apr-2016 18:40
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What happens when your cheap-as router sits next to a heavily utilised 802.11b/g network?  You are now completely dependent on physical carrier sense and have "turned off" virtual carrier sense.


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  #1529145 9-Apr-2016 18:43
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Well if I ever see a G network then I might care, but of the 50+ wifi networks I can see here on 2.4 they are all N so its a bit academic. If it makes the G devices have a bad day then I dont really care to be honest.





Richard rich.ms

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