WiFi range extender requires wifi...



  • Got a good donated computer from a local college (older Core2Quad with 16GB of memory). Threw Linux Mint on it. Pulled a monitor, keyboard, and mouse from my spares and I was good to go. I then purchased a Netgear WiFi Range Extender from Amazon for ~$45 at the time.

    My goal was not to install a home run as our walls are not cable friendly, but at the same time not using a Powerline adapter. I put it in extended mode so that my desktop can use the available network port and provide extended wireless upstairs as well.

    I hadn't used this model before and found something really weird and interesting... You get through most of the setup and apply your changes, the thing reboots and is completely inaccessible. I thought I made a mistake so I factory reset it (twice) and did this a few more times. I finally looked up a YouTube setup and the person explicitly said "you will HAVE to set this up with a wireless device, as a desktop without wireless will not be able to complete the setup".

    So I grabbed my girlfriend's Chromebook and completed the setup without any issues. I thought that was weird that it is explicitly required to have a wireless device, to setup a wireless networking device.

    The only reason I can come up with about this being required (haven't found rock solid evidence in documentation), is that when the extender reboots, it kills the session with the desktop, and the desktop cannot re-establish the session because it requires Internet connectivity to verify the setup is complete, prior to accessing the device for final setup confirmation. Whereas the wireless device (in this case, a Chromebook) is constantly connected to the the network and does not have to reestablish any session with the network, but rather just the networking device when it becomes available. But even then, when the networking device boots back up, the setup should be able to complete with a wired desktop doing the setup, at least I would think.

    Thoughts?



  • I have Netgear WiFi extender (the 5 port switch one) and it is the exact opposite. I have to set it up via Wired network.

    That's just funny. I wonder why the difference.



  • Cheap devices programmed by the cheapest possible programmers that get them to barely working status would be my guess.



  • I never had any luck with WiFi extender. Run the cable would be my first choice.



  • @travisdh1 said in WiFi range extender requires wifi...:

    Cheap devices programmed by the cheapest possible programmers that get them to barely working status would be my guess.

    Similar experience with an D6220.
    Cheapest of the nastiest.
    Antennas are not removable, the ENTIRE router must reboot when most settings are changed and it feels dirt cheap (buttons on the front feel fragile and the plastic case is more suited to a noname junk brand). If you pay more than $60 for it, you are being ripped off on an epic scale.


  • Service Provider

    @Harry-Lui said in WiFi range extender requires wifi...:

    I never had any luck with WiFi extender. Run the cable would be my first choice.

    Same here, they always cause problems.



  • The only luck I've had is with a Linksys router wrt-54g v2 and dd-wrt in client bridge mode. Have to set it up wired. Once setup, lock it down and forget about it. It's rock solid.



  • If you can skip the extender and go wired, always nice.



  • Only time I ever had wifi range extenders work nicely was with DDWRT

    Hardwire it - no regrets


  • Service Provider

    I always hardwire if the option presents itself.



  • Cabling: One aspect of home networking that is far too often overlooking is implementing a quality cabling plant inside the home. This requires far more effort than other home networking projects and falls more into the electrician space rather than the IT professional space but is also one of the most important pieces from the home owner perspective and end user perspective rather than the IT pro perspective. A good, well installed cabling plant will make a home more attractive to buyers and make the value a powerful home network even better.

    http://www.smbitjournal.com/2014/05/doing-it-at-home-enterprise-networking/


  • Service Provider

    @NerdyDad said in WiFi range extender requires wifi...:

    Cabling: One aspect of home networking that is far too often overlooking is implementing a quality cabling plant inside the home. This requires far more effort than other home networking projects and falls more into the electrician space rather than the IT professional space but is also one of the most important pieces from the home owner perspective and end user perspective rather than the IT pro perspective. A good, well installed cabling plant will make a home more attractive to buyers and make the value a powerful home network even better.

    http://www.smbitjournal.com/2014/05/doing-it-at-home-enterprise-networking/

    What an excellent reference :)



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