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Author Topic: Almond Range Extender Pre-Sale Quesiton  (Read 5176 times)

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Offline Meekro

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Almond Range Extender Pre-Sale Quesiton
« on: October 06, 2013, 01:34:00 pm »
Hi guys,
I have a range extender that I've been thinking about replacing with an Almond. Here's my question..

I want the primary router to be able to jump channels. If I force it to stay on a particular channel, it'll occasionally get really slow, I assume because of noise on that part of the spectrum that it can't avoid by jumping.

Anyway, my current extender forces you to specify a channel -- it won't work when the primary router is set to auto-pick channels. Or rather, it'll lose the connection as soon as the primary router jumps channels.

How does the Almond extender handle this? Can it watch the primary router and jump channels when the primary jumps?

Offline pete

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Re: Almond Range Extender Pre-Sale Quesiton
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2013, 04:54:20 am »
Quote
I want the primary router to be able to jump channels. If I force it to stay on a particular channel, it'll occasionally get really slow, I assume because of noise on that part of the spectrum that it can't avoid by jumping.

I currently have been using a dedicated Ubiquiti Nanostation 2L as my access point for the whole house wireless.  This AP is mounted in the attic of the 2 story home via a combo POE/Network cable.  I never touch the AP.

I have tested the extender features of the Almond.   I have never paid attention to the channel switching on using the Almond as a range extender.

Currently I have left the Almond in "Gateway" mode. 

Its acting as a wireless AP (doing DHCP NAT firewalled to wireless clients on a different subnet).

That said I will give it a try by manually switching my AP utilized channels to see what happens with the Almond in extender mode

The above noted the Ubiquiti Nanostation 2L utilizes a patented feature of channel shifting.

Quote
Channel Shifting: option enables the special channels which have the frequency offset from the standard 802.11b/g and 802.11a channels. This is a proprietary Ubiquiti developed feature. While 802.11 networks have standard channels such as Channel 1 (2412MHz), Channel 2 (2417MHz), etc. Spaced every 5MHz apart, channel shifting will allow operation of new non-802.11 channels offset from the standard channels. All the channels can be shifted by 5 MHz (in 802.11a mode and 3GHz) or 2 MHz (in 802.11b/g/b+g mode) from the default central channel frequency.

The benefits of this are private networking and inherent security. Using channel-shifting, networks can instantly become invisible to the millions of Wi-Fi devices in the world.

Select a Wireless Channel on NanoStation2
Select a Wireless Channel on PowerStation5Channel: select the wireless channel while operating in Access Point mode. Multiple frequency channels are available to avoid interference between nearby access points. The channel list varies depending on the selected country code, IEEE 802.11 mode and Channel Spectrum Width and Channel Shifting option.


Just did a quickie scan of the local access points in the area.  The scan covered channels: 1 32 2 33 3 34 4 35 5 36 6 37 7 38 8 39 9 40 10 41 11 42.  A quickie site survey showed channels 1,6 & 11 are being utilized.  I am using channel 5 and typically do not notice any issues.   



Looking at the Almond; it auto picked channel #5 to use; which also doesn't appear on the list above as being utilized by the neighbors; which is a good thing.

A couple of side notes:
 
1 - Changing the SSID to hidden changed the security to "open". 
2 - Changing the channel mode use to "auto" changed the security to "open". 
3 - Said change above (2) shows channel zero (0) versus the actual channel automatically changed to (channel 5).
4 - Almond auto picked an unused channel when set to auto channel picking.

Don't forget to check and re-enable your wireless security when you do this.





Next changed Almond from AP (Access Point mode) to repeater mode via touchscreen display on Almond.

« Last Edit: October 07, 2013, 05:39:44 am by pete »
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Pete
Lockport, IL  USA

Offline Patrick Wilson

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Re: Almond Range Extender Pre-Sale Quesiton
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2013, 12:30:12 am »
Hi guys,
I have a range extender that I've been thinking about replacing with an Almond. Here's my question..

I want the primary router to be able to jump channels. If I force it to stay on a particular channel, it'll occasionally get really slow, I assume because of noise on that part of the spectrum that it can't avoid by jumping.

Anyway, my current extender forces you to specify a channel -- it won't work when the primary router is set to auto-pick channels. Or rather, it'll lose the connection as soon as the primary router jumps channels.

How does the Almond extender handle this? Can it watch the primary router and jump channels when the primary jumps?

That is not going to work.  Your Ranger extender needs to be on the same channel as the main Router.  (Remember that to work the Ranger Extender acts as a Wi-Fi client of the main Router,  while also acting as a Wi-Fi AP (Access Point) to Wi-Fi clients in it's vicinity. 

Consider this image:


If you put your main Router in "auto" mode,  it becomes a moving target. You need to decide on a channel,  and stick to it.  Put both devices on the same channel.  Due to the 20MHz/40MHz width of channels there are only 3 usable channels anyway.  The only channels any of us should be using are 1, 6 and 11.  (Under Wireless 802.11b there are 11-14 channels depending on juridiction),  but due to wider channels,  there are the only 3 channels that don't overlap in 802.11g/802.11n. 

Consider the following graphic,  (generated by Wi-Fi Analyzer on my Android tablet):


Note how the "N" channels extend across multiple "B" channels.

If you want them on different channels,  then you need to connect your Almond to your main route via cable,  and configure it for "Access Point" mode rather than "Range Extender" mode.   When you operate your Almond as an "Access Point" you actually want both on different channels (even if using the same SSID).  Under Ranger Extender they MUST be on the same channel as the connection between the devices is via radio.

Access Point mode is more flexible,  but requires cabling from the Router to the "Gray" Ethernet port on the Almond.  Range Extender is easier to setup,  as no wiring is needed.  You can plug additional "wired" devices into the two Black Ethernet ports on the Almond in either mode.   For example you could plug a network printer into it,  this would allow a Laptop to connect to the Almond via Wi-Fi,  and print to the printer via TCP/IP,  even though the Laptop is Wi-Fi connected and the Printer is "wire" connected. 

« Last Edit: October 10, 2013, 01:03:21 am by Lars »
Patrick Wilson
Victoria, BC Canada

 

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