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PCBUILD  October 2003

PCBUILD October 2003

Subject:

Re: Wireless network access

From:

Fred Nielson <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

PCBUILD - Personal Computer Hardware discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sat, 18 Oct 2003 09:14:32 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (117 lines)

David,

   Actually, I believe the root of the question was "could he use a wireless
router as an access point" (see his last sentence).  My first sentence
answered that question: Probably not.  I believe this addressed his question
quite well.
   Better stated, if all he wants is to add wireless connectivity and keep
everything on the same network, without subnetting, then he is better off
with an access point unless the router is capable of providing non-routed
wire-to-wireless access.
   I then attempted to describe why, without getting too technical, as he
didn't provide much detail regarding his network topology, nor had he
indicated he was interested in a lot of technical spillage.  I also then
indicated he could use the router, but it would require subnetting all PC's
connected to the wireless router, and subnetting could get complicated,
depending on knowledge level.  A point you supported by going into the
technical details of WINS and ARP, and configuring the router to run DHCP or
adding a second DHCP server. I oversimplified it and should have left it out
altogether.

Fred Nielson


-----Original Message-----
From: PCBUILD - Personal Computer Hardware discussion List
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of David Gillett
Sent: Friday, October 17, 2003 11:57 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [PCBUILD] Wireless network access


  I don't think this addresses Tommy's question.  It's pretty clear that the
router adds functions not found in the access point.  It's not clear whether
the access point offers features not in the router.  (Hey, Tommy, could you
give us some model numbers so we know exactly which units you're looking
at?)  And yet the router is less than half the price of the access point, at
the moment.

  [WINS is actually the mechanism for offering NetBIOS name resolution
across multiple subnets.  Many routers provide a way to forward DHCP
requests to a server on another subnet, but it's usually simpler to equip
each subnet with its own DHCP server -- and many routers can do that, too.
  ARP is used to resolve layer 3 addresses to layer 2 addresses.  Since
layer 2 traffic is, by definition, only within the local subnet, there's
never a time when you'd need or want to propagate it to other networks.]

David Gillett


On 17 Oct 2003 at 16:31, Fred Nielson wrote:

> Tommy,
>
> You will need to check the wireless router specifications to see if it
will
> act as an access point only, but I would say probably not.  In general, a
> wireless router will expect to have two separate network subnets or
networks
> connected to it (i.e. two separate IP address ranges and subnet masks),
one
> wired and one wireless, and it will route the traffic between the
networks.
> An access point acts as a hub or basic switch and all connected devices,
> both wired and wireless, are on the same network or subnet.
>
> Depending on your network and what services the computer needs access to,
> you could run it on its own subnet but it can get complicated.  You will
run
> into issues like passing ARP, WINS, DHCP (if needed), etc. or other
> "non-routable" traffic across the router.  Generally you install a router
> internally to subnet and limit broadcast traffic.
>
> Fred Nielson
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: PCBUILD - Personal Computer Hardware discussion List
> [mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Tommy Holmes, Jr.
> Sent: Friday, October 17, 2003 12:35 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: [PCBUILD] Wireless network access
>
>
> We are investigating adding wireless network access.  In the course of
> comparing various products it came to our attention that the U.S. Robotics
> wireless router was available for about $70. after a rebate, but that the
> comparable U.S. Robotics wireless access point costs about $190.  The two
> are very similar in features and in physical design.  In our network
> geography, the router must be installed in a location that doesn't lend
> itself to extended coverage. A much better location is available for an
> access point that would require but a single Ethernet connection.  Is
there
> some reason why one seeking just the wireless network access feature could
> not purchase the less-expensive router, install it in the better location,
> but connect and use it only as an access point?
>
> Tommy Holmes, Jr.
> [log in to unmask]
> 713.621.5666
>
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>
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