What's the Best Way to Set Up Wireless Access Points?

ABigPurpleGoose

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I'm soon moving to a house where a single router/access point will not be enough. The house has multiple Cat6 ports in the walls, luckily. Our connection comes into the house through a BT Openreach port which looks like a compact RJ45, this is an example: https://community.bt.com/t5/image/serverpage/image-id/16858iEE4A9398617E45B8?v=mpbl-1 )
This plugs directly into a BT HomeHub 5 and works as a normal router/wireless access point no problem.

My first question is how could I go about sending the signal along the houses ethernet system and running second and third access points in different rooms?

My second question is would these access points all appear separately when connecting a new device?

My third and final question is would USB network attached storage be accessible through all of the access points, or just the access point that the USB is plugged into?

Thanks
 

kanewolf

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Moderator
Look at the UniFi system from Ubiquiti. Their access points are intended to run as a system. To install them you would put a power over ethernet (POE) switch where the cat6 cables come together. That would feed signal and power to the access points. You then connect that POE switch to your router. You may want to disable any WIFI on the router and let the access points handle all wireless.

With an access point system like the UniFi the access points would all appear as the same SSID. They have features to let devices roam that basic APs don't

USB storage would be visible on a device connected to an access point just like any other device. Access points are transparent from that perspective. USB storage attached to a router is OK for light usage, but streaming high def video will generally not work well. Routers don't have enough CPU power to handle network traffic AND stream video. If you are going to the trouble of installing APs, then also buy a purpose built NAS device for network storage.
 

kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
Look at the UniFi system from Ubiquiti. Their access points are intended to run as a system. To install them you would put a power over ethernet (POE) switch where the cat6 cables come together. That would feed signal and power to the access points. You then connect that POE switch to your router. You may want to disable any WIFI on the router and let the access points handle all wireless.

With an access point system like the UniFi the access points would all appear as the same SSID. They have features to let devices roam that basic APs don't

USB storage would be visible on a device connected to an access point just like any other device. Access points are transparent from that perspective. USB storage attached to a router is OK for light usage, but streaming high def video will generally not work well. Routers don't have enough CPU power to handle network traffic AND stream video. If you are going to the trouble of installing APs, then also buy a purpose built NAS device for network storage.
 

ABigPurpleGoose

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Thanks for the reply. Could I just run an ethernet cable from the back of my BT Hub into the wall ethernet, or do I need a PoE? I was intending to use a spare Belkin router that I have sitting around. It has an "Access Point" setting. I'd just need to configure it without DHCP.
 

g90814

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Yes you can just use your spare router as an AP. I'm not sure if it would use the same SSID as your main router.

PoE is only for devices that require Power over Ethernet. Most consumer devices don't need this.

As far as USB storage, you'd be able to connect to it from anywhere on the network.
 

ABigPurpleGoose

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Okay. Thanks very much.

Would the signal have to originate from a specific "master" RJ45 on the houses' ethernet system, or could I use any of the ports in any room?
 

g90814

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You could use pretty much any port, the only 'master' is the one that connects your main router/modem to the outside world.

If you run out of ethernet ports on the back of the main router, you can buy a gigabit switch fairly cheaply... they usually come with 5 or 8 ports. Or go the distance and buy one with say 16 or 24 ports so all of your wall jacks are 'live'. They cost a bit more.

http://www.newegg.com/global/uk/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=50001233%2040000030%20600015752%2050001015%2050012120&IsNodeId=1&Description=ethernet%20switch&bop=And&SrchInDesc=gigabit&Page=1&PageSize=30
 

ABigPurpleGoose

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Awesome. Thanks a lot.
I'll fiddle around with the hardware I have at the moment and find what's best. My end goal would be to be able to walk around the house without the connection ever dropping off on a device, but that project can wait until I'm settled in :) Thanks again

 

kanewolf

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If your goal is to "roam" then you need better hardware than home grade WIFI. You will have to get something like I listed above. I only mentioned POE because it avoids having to find power for your access points. Using a router as an access point will work, but you will probably be most stable by setting the SSID different than your primary router and manually choosing your access point.
 

ABigPurpleGoose

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I think a switch and proper NAS setup would be as far as I'd go, to be honest. The majority of my heavy internet usage would be at an ethernet PC anyway.
 

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