Questions regarding using a WRT54G and WAP45G to link two wired networks

Posted on 2007-08-07
Last Modified: 2013-11-12
I have a wireless network presently installed in my home, and I'm looking to change the configuration.  At present, I have my broadband connection coming into a Linksys WRT54G, logging onto the broadband provider through PPPOE, and three computers (two laptops, one desktop) that connect through wireless NICs.  

(I have the recommended wireless security options enabled - no SSID broadcast, changed admin password, non-standard IP range, WPA w/16+ character PSK, and a limited number of IP addresses offered via DHCP.)

What I'd like to do is change the way the desktop connects to the WLAN.  Right now it has an internal PCI card installed, but I'd like to change that and install a small 5 or 8 port ethernet switch with some sort of a wireless connection attached so that the desktop and possibly one or more devices can share one wireless connection rather than have to purchase wireless cards for each device.  I don't want the wireless configuration limited to WAP to WRT - I still want to have other wireless equipment (such as the laptops) able to connect to the wireless network.

I thought I could accomplish this by purchasing a WAP54G and setting it in repeater mode while being hardwired to the 5-port switch, but that doesn't appear to be working.  I configured the WAP54G in repeater mode and supplied the MAC address of the WRT54G, but it doesn't seem to be working.  I've set the WAP to have all the same wireless configurations as the WRT and have given it a static IP address in the same subnet (i.e. for the WRT, for the WAP).  I can ping the WAP when it's hardwired to the WRT, but not when it's disconnected.

I've read a lot here on EE regarding using WAP54Gs as repeaters, and it doesn't necessarily seem to be the most reliable configuration.  I've considered setting up two WAP54Gs in bridge mode but I'm trying to do this with the minimum amount of hardware and configuration needed.

Any suggestions?
Here's a simplistic diagram of how I have it configured at this point:

Broadband----------WRT45G                       WAP54G-----------Linksys 5-port workgroup switch
                                 |    |                                                                                   |
                                 |  Desktop                                                                         |
                                 |                                                                                    Desktop
Question by:cferino
    LVL 1

    Expert Comment

    Here is a link from the linksys forum on your issue...

    BUT...It sounds to me though for what I understand that you are trying to accomplish, that it would be easier to just put a wireless card in your desktop.
    LVL 11

    Accepted Solution

    If you want the destop connected to the switch to communicate with the wrt54g, you can run it in AP client mode, although in AP client mode, it acts as a single wireless adapter so I dont thing multiple devices can communicate through it using a switch, it may be possible using a hub, but I have not tried it. It will not work in repeater mode connected to a switch.

    The best bet would be to get another WAP54g and bridge the two together.

    Author Comment

    Thanks for the suggestions - as to the wireless card in the desktop, I had that configuration previously.  That's what I'm trying to move away from so I don't have to purchase wireless adapters for another printer and any other devices in that desktop's area.

    As to the bridge suggestion, I'm not opposed to doing that - I just wanted to be sure what the best configuration would be.

    Do I have to/should I configure the two WAP54G units with a completely different SSID and WPA PSK than the main WRT54G so the bridged units don't interfere with the main wireless network in the house?

    Author Comment

    I set up an additional WAP54G with both units set for wireless bridge mode, and everything is working as desired.  One followup question - the configuration looks as though I can set additional bridge configurations (there are spots for four different MAC addresses in the wireless bridge setup).  Is this possible?  Can I set up one unit with a maximum of four different bridge configurations (MAC addresses)?
    LVL 11

    Expert Comment

    I don't think the wap54g supports point to multi-point bridging. If it does, it will have that option, but if I recall, it does not. The other 3 Mac inputs may have been there just in case they did wanted to support it later.

    Author Comment

    Thanks.  I may give it a try in the future.

    Appreciate the assist!

    Write Comment

    Please enter a first name

    Please enter a last name

    We will never share this with anyone.

    Featured Post

    IT, Stop Being Called Into Every Meeting

    Highfive is so simple that setting up every meeting room takes just minutes and every employee will be able to start or join a call from any room with ease. Never be called into a meeting just to get it started again. This is how video conferencing should work!

    Last Mile Wireless The term last mile wireless is a bit deceptive as it can be much more than a mile. It is also called WiMax and 802.16. It generally refers to relatively short distance point-to-point / point-to-multipoint secure wireless connecti…
    I recently purchased a Bluetooth headset called the Music Jogger (model BSH10). The control buttons on it look like this: One of my goals is to use it as the microphone and speakers for Skype calls. In that respect, it works well. However, I …
    This Micro Tutorial will show you how to maximize your wireless card to its maximum capability. This will be demonstrated using Intel(R) Centrino(R) Wireless-N 2230 wireless card on Windows 8 operating system.
    Viewers will learn how to connect to a wireless network using the network security key. They will also learn how to access the IP address and DNS server for connections that must be done manually. After setting up a router, find the network security…

    794 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

    Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

    Join & Ask a Question

    Need Help in Real-Time?

    Connect with top rated Experts

    18 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now