Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.




15598 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

# 259842 24-Oct-2019 19:36
Send private message quote this post

My Roku stick works well, but the current wireless access point is a bit of a distance from it and it isn't working great sometimes. Recently someone new moved in next door and used the same WiFi channels and we lost the Roku for a day until I worked out our channels are being drowned out and changed them. Laptops and phones in the same room as the Roku work ok, but the Roku is pretty small and probably has a tiny antenna. Most of our devices use ethernet, and there is ethernet to right beside the Rokua.

 

We sometimes use an unblocker for the Roku - not often, but sometimes. Mostly we watch NZ Netflix. I currently connect it to a router a second subnet, which has different DNS servers. I use an old Linksys 54GL running DD-WRT. We don't really have space to put it behind the TV. My wife uses the unblocker from her laptop quite a bit as well, so a WAP is a better option than changing the Roku.

 

Can anyone recommend a small router, or failing that a small WAP, that might do the job? Maybe even something at looks like a wall wart, with just ethernet going in? I'm thinking more than $30 - $50 cheap ones than the $50 - $150 decent ones, just because it's not worth that much to me to watch TV. I'm fine with ebay / ali express stuff so long as someone has used it and recommends it.


View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
 1 | 2 | 3
22920 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

  # 2343274 24-Oct-2019 20:53
Send private message quote this post

If youre using the wifi on the antique 54GL that will be your problem, 54 meg stuff is just noise to 802.11n or ac gear, it will transmit all over it, and even if it had the channel all to itself its thruput would be so low that no chance of getting enough for even only a full HD stream reliably.

 

I have in the past used a couple of cheap aliexpress openwrt routers so I got a more configurable dhcp and multiple ssid and vlans on them, but now just use the unifi stuff.

 

I havent kept up with what is and isnt supported but there are lots of sellers on aliex that sell ones with openwrt preinstalled on cheap little travel routers for about $25 or so.





Richard rich.ms



15598 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

  # 2343288 24-Oct-2019 21:03
Send private message quote this post

That would explain it. It works much better on the main router, the Fritz 7390, which is the same distance away. Well, the Fritz is better now it's on its own channel, when it's competing for the channel it's not so good.

 

I did wonder I couldn't get more than about 2-3Mbps from the Roku when we have fiber.

 

Looks like this or this should do the job - still interested in a specific recommendation if anyone has one :)


 
 
 
 


115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343349 25-Oct-2019 07:02
Send private message quote this post

timmmay:

still interested in a specific recommendation if anyone has one :)



Netgear sells a couple of 'wall-wart style extenders' that can also run in access point mode - I used an ex7300 for while (makes very decent ap thanks it's qca 4x4 chipset), they've now replaced it with the ex6250 which is only 3x3 but still qca based (and cheaper)

To me it doesn't really sound like there's any issue with just using your current main router except that you've got it's channels locked when it sounds like you should have them on 'auto' so the router can find the least congested channel. Obviously the Roku is currently connecting on the 2.4ghz band - but it's actually capable of using 5ghz as well, so have you tried setting it to talk to your main router on 5ghz instead (which may require you to change your router so it has unique ssid's for each band to get around band steering) - 5ghz attenuates much more rapidly than 2.4ghz so you're generally less likely to hit congestion on the higher band from neighbours.




15598 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

  # 2343350 25-Oct-2019 07:08
Send private message quote this post

bignose:

 

Netgear sells a couple of 'wall-wart style extenders' that can also run in access point mode - I used an ex7300 for while (makes very decent ap thanks it's qca 4x4 chipset), they've now replaced it with the ex6250 which is only 3x3 but still qca based (and cheaper)

To me it doesn't really sound like there's any issue with just using your current main router except that you've got it's channels locked when it sounds like you should have them on 'auto' so the router can find the least congested channel. Obviously the Roku is currently connecting on the 2.4ghz band - but it's actually capable of using 5ghz as well, so have you tried setting it to talk to your main router on 5ghz instead (which may require you to change your router so it has unique ssid's for each band to get around band steering) - 5ghz attenuates much more rapidly than 2.4ghz so you're generally less likely to hit congestion on the higher band from neighbours.

 

I'd prefer a router I can run some version of WRT on, that way I can use the DNS based unblocker.

 

I had the Fritz on "auto channel assignment", but when I looked it had put itself onto the same channel as the very powerful router next door. That's why it's now on manual channel assignment - auto assignment apparently doesn't work well on the 7390, at least in my situation.

 

I do have the Roku on 5GHz right now, and it's working ok. It's just not able to use the DNS based unblocker, as the Roku doesn't let me change DNS settings and I don't want the main network going through the unblocker.


115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343351 25-Oct-2019 07:11
Send private message quote this post

Of course the other option - rather than spend money on a new access point, why not just upgrade from the roku stick to the roku ultra (which has an ethernet port so no issues with wifi)

115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343352 25-Oct-2019 07:15
Send private message quote this post

timmmay:

I do have the Roku on 5GHz right now, and it's working ok. It's just not able to use the DNS based unblocker, as the Roku doesn't let me change DNS settings and I don't want the main network going through the unblocker.



And I presume you don't want the whole house using the unblocker (so can't set it as the primary dns up on the router?)

I'll go pull my netgear out of storage and check if you can actually specify the dns manually on it in AP mode (as opposed to it just passing thru the dns settings given to it via DHCP from the router)



15598 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

  # 2343355 25-Oct-2019 07:22
Send private message quote this post

Thanks for the thought to get the Netgear out of storage @bignose. Let's see if anyone has some other info before you bother to take the time.

 

My wife also uses the unblocker on her laptop sometimes, so the more general solution of a small WAP is better for us than the Roku ultra. Although, my wife usually sits about two rooms / 10m from where the TV would be, so not sure a mini WAP would do that job. I can solve the problem on a laptop fairly easily though.


 
 
 
 


115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343356 25-Oct-2019 07:29
Send private message quote this post

Just fired up the ex7300 - if I change it static IP from dhcp then I can also manually set the primary DNS - but testing a wireless client off it clearly it's only using that internally, the client gets passed thru to the main router DHCP server as you'd exepct and hence gets it's DNS settings from that - so no use to you

What you really want is a main DHCP server that can do per-device settings - which probably means OpenWRT : https://forum.openwrt.org/t/custom-dns-server-for-a-specific-device-ided-by-dhcp-on-openwrt/21333



15598 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

  # 2343357 25-Oct-2019 07:33
Send private message quote this post

I use the Fritzbox as my main router and DHCP server as it's supported, but I have the old router running WRT for this use. I use Pi Hole on an old R.Pi1 as my DNS server, which can also do DHCP, but not sure if it can do per-device settings.

 

Thanks for looking at the ex7300, shame it's not quite right. One of the cheap routers from Aliexpress will probably do the job fine. I'd get a really compact one, plug it in a meter from the Roku and have a lounge hotspot.


115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343359 25-Oct-2019 07:41
Send private message quote this post

timmmay:

Although, my wife usually sits about two rooms / 10m from where the TV would be, so not sure a mini WAP would do that job. I can solve the problem on a laptop fairly easily though.



The ex7300 isn't so 'mini' (it's about 150mm tall) and had no problems covering our whole house (200+m^2)

The ex7300 is supported on openwrt (ath79 target) - but the ex6250 isn't supported yet.

The tp-link re350 and r4e50 are also qca based, supported by openwrt and available readily - and are the same wall-wart form factor

115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343362 25-Oct-2019 07:52
Send private message quote this post

timmmay:

I use Pi Hole on an old R.Pi1 as my DNS server, which can also do DHCP, but not sure if it can do per-device settings.



Just checked and as I expected pihole is also using dnsmasq - so yes you could actually get that to do the per-client DNS settings you need and then run everything off the fritzbox

https://discourse.pi-hole.net/t/things-you-can-do-with-dnsmasq/2595



15598 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

  # 2343369 25-Oct-2019 08:45
Send private message quote this post

Thanks bignose. If it's not too difficult I'll look at that - I'm fairly time poor so putting in a router could be easier than changing the network over to the PiHole for DHCP then messing with configs to assign different DNS servers to some devices. My wife also swaps between WAPs depending on what she's doing - I don't think the unblocked subnet has access to the main subnet.


115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343370 25-Oct-2019 08:49
Send private message quote this post

timmmay:

 

Thanks bignose. If it's not too difficult I'll look at that - I'm fairly time poor so putting in a router could be easier than changing the network over to the PiHole for DHCP then messing with configs to assign different DNS servers to some devices. My wife also swaps between WAPs depending on what she's doing - I don't think the unblocked subnet has access to the main subnet.

 

 

 

 

presuming your wife is on a windows laptop there's decent tools to switch DNS at the client end on demand - means not having to re-associate to a different AP just to use the unblocker.

 

 

 

If you've already got a fairly congested spectrum, having an extraneous AP adding to the mess just to handle clients needing the unblocker is probably the worst possible 'fix' 




15598 posts

Uber Geek

Trusted
Subscriber

  # 2343371 25-Oct-2019 08:53
Send private message quote this post

DNS switch tool could be handy. And yeah I know adding another WAP isn't perfect, but it would replace an existing one and there is enough spectrum. I would run the new WAP very low power.

 

I'll look into how difficult doing DHCP / DNS allocation from Pi Hole is. I have a toddler, I have about four free hours per week that aren't committed for everything I need to do outside work / family stuff, so if it's difficult at all I'll just throw in a WAP.


115 posts

Master Geek


  # 2343374 25-Oct-2019 09:00
Send private message quote this post

timmmay:

 

I'll look into how difficult doing DHCP / DNS allocation from Pi Hole is. I have a toddler, I have about four free hours per week that aren't committed for everything I need to do outside work / family stuff, so if it's difficult at all I'll just throw in a WAP.

 

 

fair enough - I'd go the tp-link re350 in that case - it's the form factor you want, relatively cheap locally (pbtech),  can run openwrt so will do what you want, and avoids the general iffy-ness of network gear out of aliexpress (massively variable quality/reliability)


 1 | 2 | 3
View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic



Twitter and LinkedIn »



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





News »

Vodafone New Zealand starts two year partnership with LetsPlay.Live
Posted 28-Jan-2020 11:24


Ring launches indoor-only security camera
Posted 23-Jan-2020 17:26


New report findings will help schools implement the digital technologies curriculum content
Posted 23-Jan-2020 17:25


N4L to upgrade & support wireless internet inside schools
Posted 23-Jan-2020 17:22


Netflix releases 21 Studio Ghibli works
Posted 22-Jan-2020 11:42


Vodafone integrates eSIM into device and wearable roadmap
Posted 17-Jan-2020 09:45


Do you need this camera app? Group investigates privacy implications
Posted 16-Jan-2020 03:30


JBL launches headphones range designed for gaming
Posted 13-Jan-2020 09:59


Withings introduces ScanWatch wearable combining ECG and sleep apnea detection
Posted 9-Jan-2020 18:34


NZ Police releases public app
Posted 8-Jan-2020 11:43


Suunto 7 combine sports and smart features on new smartwatch generation
Posted 7-Jan-2020 16:06


Intel brings innovation with technology spanning the cloud, network, edge and PC
Posted 7-Jan-2020 15:54


AMD announces high performance desktop and ultrathin laptop processors
Posted 7-Jan-2020 15:42


AMD unveils four new desktop and mobile GPUs including AMD Radeon RX 5600
Posted 7-Jan-2020 15:32


Consolidation in video streaming market with Spark selling Lightbox to Sky
Posted 19-Dec-2019 09:09



Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.


Support Geekzone »

Our community of supporters help make Geekzone possible. Click the button below to join them.

Support Geezone on PressPatron



Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.