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Windows 7: How Do Set A Router and Access Point For Best Performance?

01 Mar 2013   #1
artmanphoto

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 
How Do Set A Router and Access Point For Best Performance?

I am using an AT&T U-Verse Residential Gateway (RG) 2WIRE wireless router as the main router the basement of my house. I have a Dlink DAP-1555 wireless access point on the second floor of my house in the opposite corner of the house relative to the AT&T router in the basement to give me a stronger wireless signal on the second floor of the house.

The AT&T router and the Dlink access point currently have separate different SSID's and use different wireless channels.

I have two iPhone 5's, an iPad and a Macbook Pro in my household all using the wireless signal from the AT&T router and the Dlink wireless access point. When I am on the first floor of the house the iPad and iPhones are set for the AT&T 2WIRE router. When I move to the corner of the house on the second floor where the AT&T 2WIRE router is weak I have to change the wireless connection on the iPad and iPhones to the Dlink wireless access point which is a pain. When I move back to the first floor or the basement I change the connections back to the AT&T 2WIRE router.

Apple support tells me that the Apple devices do not recognize which wireless signal is strongest and automatically switch to the stronger signal. From my observations I think they are correct.

To get "seamless roaming" connectivity as I move my wireless devices around the house so I don't have to change back and forth from the 2WIRE and the Dlink access point, would it work for me to make the SSID's of both the AT&T 2WIRE router and the Dlink access point the same SSID? If yes should I have the wireless channel for the router and access point the same? Currently the router and access point are using "auto" channel selection.

Thanks! Bill


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
02 Mar 2013   #2
chev65

Windows 7 Ult, Windows 8.1 Pro,
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by artmanphoto View Post
I am using an AT&T U-Verse Residential Gateway (RG) 2WIRE wireless router as the main router the basement of my house. I have a Dlink DAP-1555 wireless access point on the second floor of my house in the opposite corner of the house relative to the AT&T router in the basement to give me a stronger wireless signal on the second floor of the house.

The AT&T router and the Dlink access point currently have separate different SSID's and use different wireless channels.

I have two iPhone 5's, an iPad and a Macbook Pro in my household all using the wireless signal from the AT&T router and the Dlink wireless access point. When I am on the first floor of the house the iPad and iPhones are set for the AT&T 2WIRE router. When I move to the corner of the house on the second floor where the AT&T 2WIRE router is weak I have to change the wireless connection on the iPad and iPhones to the Dlink wireless access point which is a pain. When I move back to the first floor or the basement I change the connections back to the AT&T 2WIRE router.

Apple support tells me that the Apple devices do not recognize which wireless signal is strongest and automatically switch to the stronger signal. From my observations I think they are correct.

To get "seamless roaming" connectivity as I move my wireless devices around the house so I don't have to change back and forth from the 2WIRE and the Dlink access point, would it work for me to make the SSID's of both the AT&T 2WIRE router and the Dlink access point the same SSID? If yes should I have the wireless channel for the router and access point the same? Currently the router and access point are using "auto" channel selection.

Thanks! Bill
You should use the same SSID yes, and in most cases if you are roaming with a Windows machine it will automatically pick up the stronger signal and connect to it, this is only possible when using the same SSID on both A/P's.

As for the wireless channel, you should make sure that both A/P's are transmitting on a different channel so as to avoid channel overlap. You can make a more educated channel selection by using a WiFi channel inspector such as Xirrus WiFi channel inspector. Remember that wireless channels overlap by 2 channels in either direction so choose channels that are furthest away from the ones your neighbors are using can help with signal quality.

Wi-Fi Inspector | Xirrus

It sounds like you are using the DAP-1555 in bridge mode although if you could wire it to the router I believe it might work better in A/P mode but running those wires can be problematic for some.

It's important to note that for best wireless performance/speed you should change to the 802.11N Only mode plus use channel bonding mode "20-40Mhz" plus WPA2 with AES encryption.

Using those particular settings is the only way to achieve true wireless N speeds. With those settings and a bit of channel tuning I can achieve 300Mbps with my DAP-1522 but it's in A/P mode.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Mar 2013   #3
artmanphoto

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 

Thanks very much for all of your good information. I am using the DAP 1522 in AP mode hard wired to the AT&T 2WIRE router which is not a N device unfortunately. Since the AT&T router is not a N device should I still set the DAP 1522 AP to 802.11N only mode as you recommended? Thanks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

02 Mar 2013   #4
chev65

Windows 7 Ult, Windows 8.1 Pro,
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by artmanphoto View Post
Thanks very much for all of your good information. I am using the DAP 1522 in AP mode hard wired to the AT&T 2WIRE router which is not a N device unfortunately. Since the AT&T router is not a N device should I still set the DAP 1522 AP to 802.11N only mode as you recommended? Thanks!
Oh so you are using the DAP-1522 in A/P mode, same as me.

If you only need to connect to the 1522 with devices that can work with wireless N then you can use the faster 802.11n Only settings on the 1522, if your signal strength is strong and there are enough unused channels in your area you could also try using the dual channel mode which shows up as 20-40Mhz setting. Those two settings give you the best possible wireless N connection speeds.

You should still be able to connect between the A/P's seamlessly but only with devices that can work with wireless N, your phones and most other stuff will work with the 802.11n standard and the NIC's will use N without adjustments.

The channel selection is also important for best performance, Xirrus is a small program and very simple to use. If you aren't sure about which channels to use you can post the Xirrus screen shot here and I'll have a look at it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Mar 2013   #5
artmanphoto

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 

You mention unused channels in my area. How do I tell which channels are not being used by my neighbors? I now have the SSID, Passphrase, and security set to the same on both the AT&T 2WIRE router and the DAP 1522. I am using channel 1 and 6.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Mar 2013   #6
chev65

Windows 7 Ult, Windows 8.1 Pro,
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by artmanphoto View Post
You mention unused channels in my area. How do I tell which channels are not being used by my neighbors? I now have the SSID, Passphrase, and security set to the same on both the AT&T 2WIRE router and the DAP 1522. I am using channel 1 and 6.
That is what the Xirrus link is for, this will show you all the channels being used in your area.

Wi-Fi Inspector | Xirrus
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Mar 2013   #7
artmanphoto

Windows 7 Professional 64 Bit
 
 

That's cool! I am away from home for several days. I will try the link when I get back home. Thanks again for all of your help. Bill
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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