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ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI

One visible SSID broadcasted by 2 routers?

I just added 2nd router to my 3 story home. The setup will be:

Modem - 1ft cat5 - Asus RT-N1616 - 30ft cat5 - Linksys WRT54GL

Both routers run newest Tomato Shibby and they are cascaded LAN-LAN (actually LAN-WAN switched to LAN, 2nd router DHCP turned off, gateway and static DNS set to 1st router, DNS turned off, routing mode set as router (vs default gateway). Same SSIDs, both WAP2 personal, same password, same channel.

What I don't like is that I see that same SSID twice on the list of available connections. For some reason they both connect and other router is accessible (192.168.1.1 visible from 192.168.1.2 and vice versa) which is great, but is there a way to have just 1 SSID visible?

Since I don't need N at this time, I tried running both routers as G only, but it made no difference. Tried different channels, same thing - I can still see 2 exactly same SSIDs.

BTW, I am running laptop with Linux (PCLOS) if that makes any difference in network discovery.

jimbopalmer
Tsar of all the Rushers

join:2008-06-02
Greenwood, MS
kudos:3
Yes, use same subnet, same SSID and different channels.

You can choose the stronger signal, because you will see both.
--
I tried to remain child-like, all I achieved was childish.


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI
reply to ba1drick
So 2 exactly same SSIDs will be always visible? That's my problem, not a solution

Same or different channel makes no difference for visibility, at least for me.


clarknova

join:2010-02-23
Grande Prairie, AB
kudos:7
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL
reply to ba1drick
said by ba1drick:

What I don't like is that I see that same SSID twice on the list of available connections.

I believe this is a 'feature' of your client WLAN connection software. For example, the included Windows client will show only one SSID by default if there are multiple APs sharing that SSID, while the wireless client software included with some wifi hardware and drivers will show you each BSSID (individual APs).

I'm not familiar with PCLOS, but you might try looking for a setting in the wireless config to turn that off if you want it off. If no such setting is available, then you may have to try another DE if you're so inclined.
--
db

tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
reply to ba1drick
normally when people do this they want to see 1 AP name and they want the computer to bounce from AP to AP depending on which one has the best connection w/o killing the connection. and typically the hardware they have doesnt allow them to do this (home setup).

with enterprise equipment there is more flexibility. i know you are not looking to go down that path.

i recommend calling them...your_current_ssid1 (192.168.1.1) and your_current_ssid2 (192.168.1.2)

normally users of the wireless network will know which one to connect to based on their location in the home and it was never really an issue once they adjusted to it.


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI
reply to ba1drick
I kinda suspected that it was particular Linux OS causing it but I still have to check it out with Windows.

Both SSIDs have to be the same, because wireless security cameras I am using must have specified SSID they connect to. I still have to figure out how to optimize it, so each camera connects to strongest signal, while being able to fall to another router if one fails for whatever reason.

Right now, if I reboot router they are connected to, they all automatically connect to the 2nd router. But it's all or none situation.

tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
i assume the security cameras and wifi units are mounted and not mobile. why cant they connect to 1 specific AP?


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI
Security cameras are awesome Sharx outdoor units (I have 4 of them). Yes, mounted on the house and garage. 1 router on the 1st floor and 2nd router on the 3rd floor.

I don't want them to be bound to just 1 AP in case that AP fails. I want be able to monitor this location while being away (which is easy using DDNS and either a smartphone or just another PC)

As I mentioned, I would like to be able to set them up so each camera picks the strongest signal first (it looks like each AP hooks strongest on 2 different cameras), but I have no idea how to do it or even if it's doable without 2 separate SSIDs which would beat the fallback advantage.

tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
what if your internet goes down but both APs are online? you have the redundant SSID setup for nothing. what if a breaker trips?

i guess what i am saying is.....i think your APs will be fine while you are gone. if not, try another brand.

i am not trying to get you away from your original plan/question, but sometimes it is good to talk about why you want to do something a certain way.


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI

2 edits
reply to ba1drick
Well, cameras will still record on internal storage even if both APs go down, but obviously I won't be able to remotely see what's going on.

APs are on seperate circuits so I am minimizing potential problems by having 2 of them. And with 3 story home, I really need 2 routers. My old setup had just 1 on the 3rd floor and signal on the 1st floor was crap.

Hiccups happen sometimes even on best hardware/software and these 2 are WRT54GL and RT-N6, both running TomatoUSB by Shibby and I am quite pleased with performance.

I will definitely report back after using Windows for wifi connection and see what it will see.

edit:
I also forgot to mention that half way between 2 routers (on 2nd floor), there is a wireless speaker system and maybe once every 2 weeks or so, something happens that it maybe jumps a channel and completely blocks wifi signal. It haven't happened since I got the 2nd AP, so potentially 2 APs fixed the problem (they run on channel 1 and 11 now, so maybe just one gets blocked, letting the other run correctly and all clients switch seamlessly)


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI
reply to ba1drick
I think I should try to manually power down each camera (while both APs are running) and see if they will connect to the stronger/closer one...

tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
reply to ba1drick
i never said you should keep 1 AP for the entire house, i am just saying, dedicate 1 AP to the cameras vs trying to worry about the hand off if 1 AP were to drop.

IMO, the odds of the AP going down, while you are not home for an extended period of time, are pretty slim.

tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
reply to ba1drick
said by ba1drick:

I think I should try to manually power down each camera (while both APs are running) and see if they will connect to the stronger/closer one...

i would do the opposite. i would unplug 1 AP and see if they auto connect to the other one while monitoring the program to see if there is any down time/flickering while it reconnects to the wifi.


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI
I already did that. If I manually power down or reboot AP#1, all cameras connect to AP#2 and vice versa. Tried both ways. They keep that connection afterward.

Also, on need of 2 APs serving same SSID - I added a note about wireless speaker system to one of my previous posts. What used to happen with 1 AP, it would screw up entire wifi. Not sure what happens, but SSID was just wiped off the list of available networks. Now, with 2 APs, I haven't had that problem for past 2 weeks... I am not saying it fixed it 100%, it it might as well had.

Ie. now, with 2 APs doing same SSID, one set up at channel 1 and other one at channel 11, if that wireless system jumps, I am hoping it just goes up or down (vs completely taking over entire spectrum), so 1 of the APs would still survive.

tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
personally, i think you are creating a bigger issue by trying to have a more redundant setup (w/o the proper hardware).


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI
Not sure why you are implying that my hardware isn't proper for such a simple setup.

I tried scanning the available wifi networks from my smartphone and SSID shows just once. I am guessing it will also be the case with Windows, but I won't know until one of my friends shows up with laptop loaded with Windows, as I haven't used it for close to 8 years now (and I am not missing it

tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
the setup is simple, i agree, but i dont know if what you are trying to do with consumer equipment is a feature of said equipment.


clarknova

join:2010-02-23
Grande Prairie, AB
kudos:7
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL
reply to ba1drick
The wireless client (the cameras in this case) makes its own decisions on how it handles roaming. In some cases, the client will prefer the SSID with the stronger or cleaner signal. In other cases, it may consider other factors, but in most cases it will deprecate the use of an AP whose signal strength and quality is below a certain threshold.

If you want your cameras to prefer a certain AP, but still fail over to the other in case of an outage, you could try reducing the output power on the secondary AP. You may find a point at which the cameras will not prefer it, but are still able to connect to it if the preferred AP goes down.

If you find your speakers are usually causing interference on a specific channel, you may want to put the secondary AP closer to that end of the spectrum and leave the preferred AP at the cleaner end.
--
db


ba1drick

join:2004-07-01
Baraboo, WI
Speakers situation is still a mystery for me. It's a discontinued model with limited literature and no current support. Awesome sound and everything, but pretty impossible to guess what channels it's using. It has selectable 1-2-3-4 channels and they are not visible by any network discovery tool. My guess is 1-2-3-4 has nothing to do with IEEE 802.11.

That's why I thought that 2 APs with distant (1 and 11) channels would possibly cure the problem when wireless speakers go out of control. BTW, using my linux laptop, I can see both SSIDs (same ones) throughout the house and at all camera locations, obviously with various signal strengths.

As far as camera connections, I will try to look for connection pattern.


billaustin
they call me Mr. Bill
Premium,MVM
join:2001-10-13
North Las Vegas, NV
kudos:5
reply to ba1drick
said by ba1drick:

I think I should try to manually power down each camera (while both APs are running) and see if they will connect to the stronger/closer one...

This is what I would suggest. This will give the camera the opportunity to connect to the AP with the strongest signal. Once connected to an AP, it will maintain that connection until something prevents it from doing so. Ideally, the load will be balanced with each AP having half of the wireless devices connected to it. Just remember that you will need to repeat the process whenever an AP is rebooted, or if a camera is forced to another AP due to temporary interference from the wireless speakers.


billaustin
they call me Mr. Bill
Premium,MVM
join:2001-10-13
North Las Vegas, NV
kudos:5
reply to ba1drick
said by ba1drick:

Speakers situation is still a mystery for me. It's a discontinued model with limited literature and no current support. Awesome sound and everything, but pretty impossible to guess what channels it's using. It has selectable 1-2-3-4 channels and they are not visible by any network discovery tool. My guess is 1-2-3-4 has nothing to do with IEEE 802.11.

That's why I thought that 2 APs with distant (1 and 11) channels would possibly cure the problem when wireless speakers go out of control. BTW, using my linux laptop, I can see both SSIDs (same ones) throughout the house and at all camera locations, obviously with various signal strengths.

As far as camera connections, I will try to look for connection pattern.

Borrow a Windows Laptop and load up inSSIDer (or a comparable tool on your Linux Laptop). While watching the signal strength of your AP's, fire up the wireless speakers and cycle through each channel option. With your AP's set at channels 1 and 11, I'm guessing that option 2 or 3 on the speakers will cause the least interference.