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Author Topic: Looking for Advice on Network setup  (Read 2392 times)

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Offline tvpccr

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Looking for Advice on Network setup
« on: November 18, 2016, 07:06:19 pm »
Hello Guys,

Since I am new to Almond, I am a little unsure about the best possible setup and I am hoping either a technician or a current user may be able to guide me so that I do not need to trial and error thing (or at least less permutations).

I live in a 3800 square foot home spread out over 2 floors, however the entire house is made out of concrete block with rebar inside it. This house is Wi-Fi's enemy. I have gone through another mesh product with limited success and decided to just make the change.  With all the rave reviews of the previous Almonds I decided to take a chance (not to mention that I have Philips hue, so some extra zigbee repeaters seemed like a great bonus).

I purchased 4 Almond 3s and I have a bunch of different ideas as to what might work, I would love to hear some feedback of how others have used previous Almonds, and perhaps how some engineers think I could use these.

1) I have the ability to provide Ethernet to each A3,  using the same SSID on all of them
Good: Fast internet Bad:My understanding is that they can not mesh in this set up and I would have to set up my home automation on each A#

2) Use 1 A3 as the main router, then mesh the 2nd a room away up stairs,, next mesh the 3rd directly below te 1st and the 4th between 3 and 4 on the first floor.
Good: Full mesh functionality and hopefully they are all working together sharing home automation features Bad: I am rolling the dice with connectivity and if #4 is 2 hops from the main one, I am looking at some poor speed.

3) Use Airport Extreme as the main router and use the A# in AP mode placing each of them a single hop from the Airport Extreme.
I have no idea is this is a good idea or not, but that Airport Extreme as been one of the better routers in this house, so using it as a main router sticks in my head.

Does anyone have any thoughts or ideas as to a better way to start?

Thanks in advance!


Offline Ohiomedic

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Re: Looking for Advice on Network setup
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2016, 10:29:30 pm »
Hello Guys,

Since I am new to Almond, I am a little unsure about the best possible setup and I am hoping either a technician or a current user may be able to guide me so that I do not need to trial and error thing (or at least less permutations).

I live in a 3800 square foot home spread out over 2 floors, however the entire house is made out of concrete block with rebar inside it. This house is Wi-Fi's enemy. I have gone through another mesh product with limited success and decided to just make the change.  With all the rave reviews of the previous Almonds I decided to take a chance (not to mention that I have Philips hue, so some extra zigbee repeaters seemed like a great bonus).

I purchased 4 Almond 3s and I have a bunch of different ideas as to what might work, I would love to hear some feedback of how others have used previous Almonds, and perhaps how some engineers think I could use these.

1) I have the ability to provide Ethernet to each A3,  using the same SSID on all of them
Good: Fast internet Bad:My understanding is that they can not mesh in this set up and I would have to set up my home automation on each A#

2) Use 1 A3 as the main router, then mesh the 2nd a room away up stairs,, next mesh the 3rd directly below te 1st and the 4th between 3 and 4 on the first floor.
Good: Full mesh functionality and hopefully they are all working together sharing home automation features Bad: I am rolling the dice with connectivity and if #4 is 2 hops from the main one, I am looking at some poor speed.

3) Use Airport Extreme as the main router and use the A# in AP mode placing each of them a single hop from the Airport Extreme.
I have no idea is this is a good idea or not, but that Airport Extreme as been one of the better routers in this house, so using it as a main router sticks in my head.

Does anyone have any thoughts or ideas as to a better way to start?

Thanks in advance!
You can do either wired or wireless mesh. Both are setup using the wizard when first setting them up, or using the add almond on the touch screen.

Offline Lims

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Re: Looking for Advice on Network setup
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2016, 10:41:57 pm »
How is 'wired' mesh configured? Can I hook three A3's up to hard wired backhaul links, have them serve the same SSID and then have my device seamlessly travel between all three when walking around the house?

Also from what I understand mesh will only work if you 'add' A3's to the primary router, is this true or is there a way to set them up individually and then create a mesh?

Thanks....

Offline Shazster

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Re: Looking for Advice on Network setup
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2016, 11:00:43 pm »
I have an Almond+ as main router, and an Almond 2015 as a secondary used in two configs:
A+ main router & AP, main floor. A2015 as wireless repeater/bridge in basement.
A+ main router & AP, A2015 as wired AP. (Recent change - ran the cable last weekend. So far so good, some improvement over my previous repeater setup).

If you have the ability to run cable in that sort of concrete & rebar environment, you might as well do so. Save yourself the headache right off the bat. If you have an Airport Extreme and 4 A3s, you have 5 APs (not sure you need that many, but having and not needing is better than needing and not having) to work with. Option 1 is probably your best starting point, with cloned SSIDs as you planned (That is how mine are set up). Do not get too hung up on the semantics of "mesh or not mesh", you either get good signal or you don't - how it happens will be pretty transparent to you. I don't have A3s, so I'm not sure what mesh improves in your life.

As for working your Airport into the mix as your main router, while using your A3s as wired APs...I'm not overly impressed by the basic router functions I have with my own As (I hope the A3s have some improvements). I have been toying with the idea of migrating to a similar setup, with a wired gigabit router providing overall router duty and both my A+ and A2015 serving out wireless as APs and handling the home automation duties.

Try it. If you already have the cabling set, why not?

                      WAN
                          I
  A3(AP)-----AptExp-----A3(AP)
                          I
                        A3(AP)

Plug your Hue Hub into the most centrally located of any of these points in your house. And you'll have an extra A3 to play with to cover any blind spots via ethernet or wireless bridge if needed for more property coverage (garage, workshop, shed etc..).   

« Last Edit: November 18, 2016, 11:03:26 pm by Shazster »

Offline tvpccr

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Re: Looking for Advice on Network setup
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2016, 10:24:16 am »
Awesome. Thank you all; Shazster especially for the detailed layout.

I am sure this will not be my last post.

 

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