Wired router to wireless AP problems.

June 6, 2009 at 22:11:21
Specs: Windows XP/2000, Various
At the moment, we have a pretty odd network in order to share one wired internet connection. We needed to share this connection wirelessly to a number of laptops and be able to keep that one wired connection. Here's what we could cobble together:
 Internet connection (10.xx.xx.xx)
 Wired router (
          |-----> Wired connection (192.168.0.xx)
 Wireless Access Point (
       |         |          |
       |         |          |
      \/        \/         \/
 Various laptops (192.168.0.xx)

The reason we have it set up like this is because the wired connection in one room and have access point put elsewhere to give everyone wireless access.

The access point is set up to work on the B/G band and is secured by WPA. The wired router is manually configured with a specific MAC address and a static IP (this is needed to get online) but everything else is pretty much default. The router deals with the DHCP is able to keep track of all the wired and wireless users.

This worked for a while but then odd problems started cropping up when connecting wirelessly. They would have problems staying connected for any period of time (anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour). After being kicked off, they may or may not be able to get back on.

I tested this out today and tried to keep three laptops online. The results were varied. I was able to keep mine online with only one disconnect. One I was able to keep online for an hour at a time before having to completely restart the machine. The third one I couldn't keep online for longer than five minutes.

However, my laptop was running Wireshark to see what was going on. I was using the second one to surf and look up things. The third one I really couldn't get running (it's old and has a lot running in the background).

Also, some of the guys were telling me that they were getting kicked off frequently as well and they are right by the access point. The three I tested were pretty far off but still within range of the access point.

I've been putzing around with this all day but had little success. I ended up having to reset the wired router and I heard that this fixed things for a little bit (for a few hours). But now I'm at my wits end.

Any thoughts? Keep in mind that this is not a home setup so I don't have the equipment in front of me.

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June 7, 2009 at 18:42:27
How many wired ports does the router have? Have you tried the Accesspoint in a different wired port? Does the wired PC show any signs of connectivity problems? When dealing with multiple devices it is sometimes difficult to isolate which one might be causing the problem. Is the accesspoint plugged directly into the router or is there a cable between them? The problem may be in the quality of cable or a flakey connection in the AP or router.

Goin' Fishin' (Some day)

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June 7, 2009 at 19:33:09
The router is a four port. As far as I know, all ports are working (I tested this out to make sure the router was still working properly). There are only three things plugged into the router: the line coming in for the internet, the access point, and an ethernet cable (this usually isn't connected to anything, it's just left for convenience for whoever is there).

But, the cable going from the router to the access point is pretty long. One of the guys suggested that the cable might be pinched and could be causing the problem. Wouldn't that just cut the connection? (Unless the cable may be exposed and there is some interference...)

We don't get any problems when plugging into the router via that open cable (or just plugging into it). However, we aren't testing it for any major length of time (like ten minutes).

I could try to plug the access point into the router with a different cable but that means moving the access point. Stuff like cable management and location is important and a lot of this stuff isn't too mobile. So the router needs to be where it is and the access point needs to be in a specific spot to give everyone access. Thus the long cable for the access point.

If you need to know anything else I'll try to help.

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