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Thread: WiFi woes

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    Wintermute's Avatar

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    WiFi woes

    I am currently sharing a student house that has rooms over four floors. We got ADSL broadband and a WiFi router to share the connection all over the house since cabling all that seemed too difficult a task. Unfortunately, it turns out that WiFi was designed to be used all on one level with few physical obstacles between the hub and the client (i.e. an office full of cubicles).

    Unfortunately many British houses, including ours, are tall and made of thick redbrick or stone. It turned out that in the rooms underneath the hub it was impossible to establish a stable connection. It would cut in and out from full strength to nothing constantly.

    Similarly, I tacked a USB WiFi point onto a computer in my parents house to connect a laptop to the LAN and it struggles to get a connection through two stone walls from the front room to the back room.

    Has anyone else had any success with WiFi? Was I just having unrealistic expectations?
    Wintermute

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    Apophis's Avatar

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    Re: WiFi woes

    Quote Originally Posted by Wintermute
    I am currently sharing a student house that has rooms over four floors. We got ADSL broadband and a WiFi router to share the connection all over the house since cabling all that seemed too difficult a task. Unfortunately, it turns out that WiFi was designed to be used all on one level with few physical obstacles between the hub and the client (i.e. an office full of cubicles).

    Unfortunately many British houses, including ours, are tall and made of thick redbrick or stone. It turned out that in the rooms underneath the hub it was impossible to establish a stable connection. It would cut in and out from full strength to nothing constantly.

    Similarly, I tacked a USB WiFi point onto a computer in my parents house to connect a laptop to the LAN and it struggles to get a connection through two stone walls from the front room to the back room.

    Has anyone else had any success with WiFi? Was I just having unrealistic expectations?
    If your WiFi router/access point is the variety with two antennas. Try turning ONE of the antennas on it's side rather than pointing upwards. That *MAY* help with getting the signal through the floor.

    You may also want to try relocating the access point / router to a different location in the house, maybe someplace more centralized.

    The other option is to get an additional wireless access point (about $80/us) and run a physical wire from your router to this access point and put it someplace on the other side of your house. I have a Linksys Wireless G access point downstairs in my house, all the way over in one corner, and I can get signal in the opposite corner of the house upstairs. I also don't have a house made out of brick, stone and concrete.

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    Re: WiFi woes

    To further Apo's post: most 360 degree omni-directional antennas have only a 20 degree vertical range from level.

    In English, you have only 20 degrees above and below coverage on your antenna, starting from a 90 degree angle from where it's pointing. Wow, even that wasn't English, but I can't explain it any easier. Suffice to say, that if you held your antenna vertical about 10 feet above or below your PC wireless card (at more than 20 degrees from being level), you won't get much of a signal.

    As was said, try playing with your antennas, or look into buying new ones with greater range and coverage angles.

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    Re: WiFi woes

    Omni-directional is a bit of a misnomer really isn't it? That 20 degree tip is useful though, thanks Fenix. We tried pointing both arials upwards, horizontally and downwards, but with not a bit of difference. In the end I just ran a really long, ugly wire. I guess star-trek like communication between devices is still a way off.
    Wintermute

    Play EVE online. It's like being an accounting addict in space.

    www.MakePovertyHistory.com

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