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Wireless bridging

N/A

Wireless bridging

OK, I have cunning plan to upgrade/extend parts of our network in the office, however, I am totaly stumped with anything wireless.

We have 3 laptops, 1 test console (a PC doing nething but network monitoring and corss-browser website testing) and a network printer that are to go on the wireless portion of the network.

I am hoping to go with Buffalo equipment, due to major recomendations, however, some of the aspects are little out of my reach.

Purchasing of the CardBus and PCI network cards are not an issue and pretty straight forward. However, working with the network printer and access point is not too good.

We currently use a SAR-715PV as our broadband router and modem. This provides DHCP where needed on the network, though some devices have static IPs. We also have plenty of space on our 3Com switch for hardwired devices, and future expantion.

What I need to know more on, is how the access point works?

Which of the two devices will provide the IP to any connecting clients? The AP or the router?

If it is the router, then it is pretty much plug and off we go.

As for the printer, I will need to use a bridging adapter, to link the ethernet interface of the printer, wirelessly into our new AP (same as the xbox wireless links)

Does anybody know if Buffalo provide this sort of device?
22 REPLIES
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Wireless bridging

Buffallo make pretty much the same type of gear as Netgear, D-link etc.
The router is still the link, to this you will need to add the 'Buffalo'
WLA-G54 wireless bridge type access point.
They also make a wireless print server LPVW11G or LpV2 WS11GC(compact)
Plus the PC/PMC1A cards you mentioned and your ready to go.
http://www.buffalo-technology.com/products/wireless/lpv-wl11g.htm
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Wireless bridging

HMM, not sure if that is what I wanted.

I know roughly what I need, but need some advice on the actual specifics.

For our systems, it will be 3 bog standard Wireless CardBus card and a PCI card. There is no issue there, as such.

I need advice on the Access point/Concentrator and a ethernet bridge.

OuView full list in phpBBThe printer that will be made wireless is a large Epson 7000. We allready have a 10/100 ethernet printer server built in, so we simply need a bridge, like that used to make Xbox wireless.

In adition, the AP/concentrator will be kept along side our existing comms equipment.

Having looked, would the following be true. We need a:

Quote

Buffalo WLI-T1-S-11G Wireless Media Converter
WLI-T1-S-11G

Used to turn the printer wireless

And a:
Quote

Linksys WAP11 Instant Wireless Network Access Point - Version 2.2

To act as the access point for all the PCI, CardBus and medias converters.

Assuming the above is true, how would the wireless desivices obtain there IP address? From an existing DHCP server, or in the access point?

If the above isn't true, then can you make a sugestion, or point me to somewhere where I can get to grips on the different ideas between wireless.
Community Veteran
Posts: 3,789
Registered: 08-06-2007

Wireless bridging

Either the WAP will assign IP addresses, or you can probably configure it as a DHCP relay to relay from the router to the client machines.

I set up a wireless router recently that provided a DHCP server, but not a relay so I ended up splitting the network into two subnets (the WAP is the gateway for the wireless portion, which in turn has the router as its gateway)

I'm not familiar with the Buffalo kit, but either way should work fine.

B.
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Wireless bridging

Not entirely sure what you are trying to do. Why do you want the printer to be wireless? Is it because there is no cable in the area? Generally speraking, the WAP simply acts as a switch/hub, so there is no need for a bridge unless you specifically want to set up a different subnet. Similarly, if you don't enable the DHCP server on the WAP, it will pass through by default. One of the truly amazing things about wireless is that if what you want to do is straightforward, it tends to work out of the box - years of experience have taught us that this is not the way computers work, so we spend a lot of time looking for solutions to non-existant problems Smiley
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Wireless bridging

It's not so much needing a solution for a problem, it is making sure there isn't a problem.

Maybe it isn't a bridge that I need for our printer, however, the problem there reamins the same.

The printer is on wheels. Though it may not be so heavy as some standard desk laser printers from HP, the is very wide (It prints borderless A1) and certainly isn't a one man job.

The office was setup 5 years ago, assuming that only 4 full-time and a part-time member of staff would be using the office. The office was wired such that each work-station (4) had two network links (only 1 of each pair was terminated fully at the concentration point).

Since that time, I have started there. The network has changed, for the better.

It now features 7 systems, 3 laptops and 2 network printers. As you can see, 7 + 3 + 2 does not equal the 8 cables installed.

It will simply cost too much, for the little work we need doing (placing between 2 and 7 cables into the office. Any more, and it would look like a BT exchange for the size of our office).

At this time, the larger network printer, is sharing a network socket with the laptops and the cable runs right the way around the room. The the easies thing to keep swapping.

The idea is to make the printer mobile. Such that you plug in wherever in the office, and it will now work.

I now understand the bridge concept links to seperate subnets together, so I am guessing it is a media converter we need. IE, two seperate networks, linked wirelessly but remaining on the same subnet.

This is the same as used with the xbox. The ethernet cable from the xbox runs to the coverter. All LAN transmitions are transported to a WAP, and hey presto, wireless access on a xbox.

The principle is the same here, however, what hardware I need is unknown. Thats just the bit I aint getting.

I usualy learn by buying (be it right or wrong).
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Wireless bridging

I'm not convinced this is what you are looking for, but I remember reading a John Honneyball article in which he mentioned buying a couple of wired to wireless lan bridges.

Basically it sounded like a small box that you plugged one lan cable into and it turned it into a wireless link. Which i would guess you could hook as required to your existing cabling with out worrying about subnets and the like...
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Wireless bridging

That is exactly what I am after.

While the LAN in question would only be the single printer, it would wirelessly link into the WAP.

I guess I realy need to find some good articles on it. Mag hunting here I go.
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Wireless bridging

Try back copies of PC PRO for the John Honneyball stuff, arround march to July i think it was. But i've given up subscribing to it anyway as theonly bit worth reading was real world computing.
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Wireless bridging

Ok I understand now. One thing you will need to check is what configurations your WAP kit supports. Generally they can act as an access point OR as a bridge. Some offer the capability to do both at once, but in my experience this is hard to get working properly. The solution in this case might be to use a pair as a wireless bridge for the printer, and another one as an access point for the workstations. Things to watch are that you set non-overlapping channels for the bridge and the WAP (if in doubt, spread them out!), and make sure you use the right (wireless) MAC addresses for the bridge. Should be pretty straightforward like that..
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Wireless bridging

I am in the thinking of looking out for some of the XBOX wireless kits rather than Buffalo now.

XBOX has it's ethernet out port, just as my printer does. The wireless kit wirelessly links it to the network.

Many people here than use there wireless network further, and at the same time as the XBOX.

This in essance is the same as I want.

One thing I need to get straight is, when using WIFI, is each wireless link a single IP feed, or, can it carry moe than one IP feed.

Obviously bridge mode can, however, I am on about a single Client to WAP link.
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Wireless bridging

OK, take a gander at THIS product.

This is what I am after, however, from a more reliable maker.

Allowing any ethernet device to attach itself to a wireless network, wihtout having to be wireless enabled.
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Wireless bridging

Consider also Linksys WET 11 ethernet bridge for your printer as there are some advantages in keeping to units of the same manufacturer at least for
all the wireless bits.
http://www.linksys.com/products/product.asp?prid=432&grid=
The Linksys WAP unit you have chosen appears correct .It has a multimode
AP functions but in bridge mode its used for linking 2 or more wired
networks together so the default WAP mode is the correct setting.
As I understand it you already have a network and all you're doing is getting
rid of the wires,so the equipment you are using should have the same
funtion(as close as possible) to the wires.
The router/modem will still keep the same function eg. to collect and provide
IP, a link to WAN and as existing, a DHCP server.
The function of the WAP will be 'invisible', the computers wont see it,
it will enable the wireless computers to communicate with each other
and as a link to the LAN. In reallity it will also function as a
'bandwidth manager'.
You would simply connect your WAP unit to the network and if enabled it
would obtain its IP address from the DHCP server (the router).The subnet
mask will be the same as the existing network and default gateway is
set automatically If DHCP is enabled.
The wireless components have MAC addresses also they will need to be
set the same SSID and set to work on the same channel.
Also there are WEP encryption features to negotiate but these can be bypassed initially if required to get the setup working, but Linksys usually
have very clear set up wizards.
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Wireless bridging

The purpose isn't to replace or extend our network, but free a few resources and add roaming abilities to the printer.

It just seems so hard to explain it, then interpret results from it all. I am now at a stage where I am inclined to just get the wires installed.

I understand that devices are not seen as being wireless on the network, and they will simply look like another node.

What we must have:

The ability for our laptops to link up, just like any wired node on the network.

Our printer is currently wired to the network, however, it needs to be turned wireless, just again, like the laptops above.

Problems:

The printer does not have any addons that will make it wireless, only a network port.

Solution:

Having looked at the Linksys device you provided a link to, this is again ideal. However, that begining question still remains.

Looking at that page, it provides PS2 and Xbox solutions links. If you imagine that picture with the consoles replaced with a printer, that is our setup.

Looking at it, we can use the printer at the same time as the laptops with that. Is that correct?

If so, then I at last have my solution.
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Wireless bridging

The unit connects any ethernet enabled device ( such as your printer )
to the WLAN, so yes you will be able to use your printer with any of
your computers in the network. As you pointed out earlier you already
have a built in print server otherwise you would use the device I mentioned
earlier which is a combined bridge/print server so yes the Linksys
WAP unit and WET 11 ( for the printer ) plus the PC cards and cardbuses
for the laptops ( preferably all from Linksys) will fit your requirements.