Technical Discussion
  >> Home Networking, Internet Connection Sharing, etc.


Register (or login) on our website and you will not see this ad.


  Print Thread
Standard User mattih52002
(newbie) Fri 03-Feb-17 11:18:55
Print Post

Home networking nightmare I'm having


[link to this post]
 
Hi,

I'm out of ideas and feel a forum post might yield some good suggestions.

Bear with me, there's a bit of background to this post.

I live in a three story house with the ground-floor being sub-level meaning all walls are solid. The previous owners had the BT master socket placed in the attic bedroom. When we moved into the house we immediately realised that Wifi signals weren't reaching the living room or for that matter any point past the stairs leading from the middle floor to the ground floor. Wifi reception on the top two floors is great.

At this point the only thing I could think of was to purchase some power-line adapters so I bought 4 TP Link adapters. I placed one in my kitchen and one in my living room giving me wired and wireless access in those rooms....great! The master power-line adapter is plugged into the router in the loft.

I have two other power-line adapters at specific points in the house. One in the attic room as I have a Netgear Arlo hub that has to be placed in the loft void to ensure wireless reception to the 5 outdoor cameras. I have a second wired power-line adapter on the middle floor as this serves a Samsung SmartThings hub that again has to be placed where it is as the z-wave/zigbee reception isn't great elsewhere (I have smart devices all over the house).

I've had at least 6 months of dropped connections perhaps even more from the power-line adapters for unknown reasons and am at the point of ditching them.

I've thought of moving the master socket to the middle floor but I'm not entirely sure that will give me coverage to the ground floor. There must be some metal construction in my ground floor as any wifi signal struggles hence the reason I have two on the ground floor, one in the kitchen and one in the living. If for example I removed the kitchen one, the living room signal would not penetrate to the kitchen.

I've contemplated getting wifi range extenders but I'd need a few and don't have the plug socket capacity to feed around the ground floor.

Has anyone else faced a problem like this?

If I have the master socket moved to the ground floor I could continue to use the power-line adapters to feed signals and Ethernet points upstairs but I doubt this will resolve the random drop-outs I'm experiencing in the adapters.

I recently purchased the Netgear R7000 Knighthawk router in an attempt to strengthen the signal. Prior to that I had a bog standard Sky Fibre router. The signal from this is great throughout the top two floors but nothing to downstairs.

Any ideas will be kindly received as the drop-outs are causing headaches and I'm not able to see an immediate solution by not using powerline.
Administrator MrSaffron
(staff) Fri 03-Feb-17 13:42:01
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: mattih52002] [link to this post]
 
Get Ethernet cabling sorted out between all the floors - its some hassle but once done gives you lots of options. If you do the Ethernet cabling yourself its not that expensive just fiddly and a little confusing but sockets and small patch panels are much easier to source and deal with these days.

If then wanting to do things you right wireless after than consider kit like Ubiquiti access points not cheap but things like being able to power using PoE means just one cable when installing and thus easier to locate in optimum location

The pro version gives more management options, but people seem just as happy with the cheaper AC Lite version.

The author of the above post is a thinkbroadband staff member. It may not constitute an official statement on behalf of thinkbroadband.
Standard User WWWombat
(knowledge is power) Thu 09-Feb-17 22:58:27
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: mattih52002] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by mattih52002:
Has anyone else faced a problem like this?


Oh yes.

If powerline adapters work, they are great. If not, they're a royal pain to get working, and deserve throwing out.

My first point would be like Andrew: use a cabled ethernet backbone down the house, with small switches on each level, and a WiFi access point on that level, for that level.

If fixing wiring in place is going to be hard, consider workarounds. At the moment, I have one leg of our backbone using a flattened patch cable, that routes carefully through the seals in the windows, up the house behind a drainpipe, and back inside through another window.UV will kill it off sooner or later, but it was a quick fix.

Second would be to give up on using the WiFi built-in to the router. Any router. You want to give up on consumer-level WiFi, and step on to the entry-level enterprise-grade stuff.
https://arstechnica.co.uk/gadgets/2016/05/ubiquiti-u...

Andrew pointed at links to Ubiquiti Unifi access points, which are a good entry point for this.

An alternative to a (wired-backbone + WiFi) plan would be one of the newly-released mesh WiFi setups. There, you buy a pack of 3 WiFi APs, which create their own wireless backbone using, if I figured it correctly, separate radio channels for the backbone and for the end-users.

This wireless backbone would probably depend on you getting good connectivity from one floor to the next on 5GHz, so might not be really suitable.


Register (or login) on our website and you will not see this ad.

Standard User ukhardy07
(knowledge is power) Thu 09-Feb-17 23:43:45
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: mattih52002] [link to this post]
 
Powerline are terrible for dropping out, especially the TP Link ones.

Some homes do not work well with them and in these homes I would ditch them all together.

Best option, run ethernet, find a way to do it - lift the carpets get the wires under the floorboards. This is by far the very best solution.

Wireless extenders = slower speeds unless you spend £100s.
If you insist on having wireless extenders get something good such as this:
https://www.shop.bt.com/products/bt-whole-home-wi-fi...

Even this might not cover the whole area though... I would personally get ethernet to a few rooms and have dedicated APs in these rooms.

Have one unified SSID and your devices will roam between each. You could have 5 APs throughout your home, and your devices would only see one network name, so you wont need to connect to different networks in different areas of the home.

These are pretty good also, not sure if they work wirelessly between one another though.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ubiquiti-Networks-UAP-AC-LI...

Edited by ukhardy07 (Thu 09-Feb-17 23:50:06)

Standard User craski
(member) Fri 10-Feb-17 09:53:40
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: mattih52002] [link to this post]
 
Have you considered running the ethernet cables externally to each floor if getting cable routes internally isnt an option?

Zen Unlimited Fibre Office BQM
Standard User eckiedoo
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 10-Feb-17 10:25:03
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: ukhardy07] [link to this post]
 
I have three WiFi citcuits, with slightly different names.

By setting on each WiFi PC to connect "Automatically" to effectively the strongest in any room, I get smooth transitions, whilst having the advantage of slightly different names if any of them fail.
Standard User WWWombat
(knowledge is power) Fri 10-Feb-17 14:10:36
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: ukhardy07] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by ukhardy07:
Have one unified SSID and your devices will roam between each. You could have 5 APs throughout your home, and your devices would only see one network name, so you wont need to connect to different networks in different areas of the home.


My experience on consumer equipment is otherwise. Without any help on the network side, I find devices stay sticky to the weaker APs, and there is nothing you can do to make them swap, apart from turning devices off and on again.

I found it much easier to have different SSID names, and to manually choose a better network when I move around the house.

However, enterprise-grade equipment should be better able to cope with roaming, though it sometimes also needs a controller to help. That's the kind of thing mentioned by Sarah in this thread.

The kind of APs you mention are good for that kind of use:
In reply to a post by ukhardy07:
These are pretty good also, not sure if they work wirelessly between one another though.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ubiquiti-Networks-UAP-AC-LI...


Those need a wired backhaul that provides PoE (Sarah's post has details).

Ubiquiti have their "Amplifi" products that work via a wireless mesh instead, rather like BT's "Whole House WiFi" and others. There are lots mentioned on this thread
Standard User ukhardy07
(knowledge is power) Fri 10-Feb-17 14:39:33
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: WWWombat] [link to this post]
 
Yep both of my links are for APs which have a dedicated controller smile

I personally have no issues with devices roaming between APs, but I place my APs in "no signal" spots, so devices have no choice but to switch over.

In between areas are likely covered ok by both APs.

Anyway, just moved flats and the new place is covered by one HomeHub so I can't really do any testing.

Edited by ukhardy07 (Fri 10-Feb-17 14:41:13)

Standard User ukhardy07
(knowledge is power) Fri 10-Feb-17 14:40:37
Print Post

Re: Home networking nightmare I'm having


[re: eckiedoo] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by eckiedoo:
I have three WiFi citcuits, with slightly different names.

By setting on each WiFi PC to connect "Automatically" to effectively the strongest in any room, I get smooth transitions, whilst having the advantage of slightly different names if any of them fail.
Hmm I don't like that, I would much prefer getting a wireless controller and professional setup. More expensive but I do not want the faffing around.
  Print Thread

Jump to