WRT54GS as relay/range extender and VOIP access point

My neighbor has agreed to share his wireless internet network with me.  I can access his Linksys router from one spot in my house and get a good signal, but I'd like to have more range in my house.  Also, I want to be able to do VIOP phoning using this wireless network.  I just bought a Linksys WRT54GS, hoping that it can both act as a relay/range extender for the internet at my house, and also as an access point for VOIP.

Can anyone tell me the best way to set up the WRT54GS to connect as a relay/range extender?

I figure that's the hard part, and that VOIP will be easier.

Thanks.
mrbeichAsked:
Who is Participating?
 
Peter HartCommented:
The WRT54GS isn't a wireless extender
you need something like:
Belkin F5D7132UK Wireless G Universal Range Extender
see:
http://www.broadbandbuyer.co.uk/Shop/ShopDetail.asp?ProductID=3607

I would be suprised if VOIP will work very well over a repeated WIFI link (lots of lag)
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jekl2000Commented:
One way you could do it is with one of the alternative firmwares such as dd-wrt -
http://www.dd-wrt.com/dd-wrtv2/index.php . It will allow you to use the wrt54gs as a repeater and also gives you the option to increase power. Check out the Wiki link on the url above to learn more.
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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
I've spent a good amount of time at http://www.dd-wrt.com/dd-wrtv2/index.php .  It looks promising.  But I don't know what version to download, or which file within the zip file to install.  This program looks a good bit more technical than I am (though I can figure many things out), so a bit more help would be appreciated.

Thanks, Paul
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jekl2000Commented:
What version is your router.. should be on the label.
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Peter HartCommented:
Beforeyou hgo ahead producnign a wireless repeater from a router  - have you tried VOIP while surfing the 'net ? through a wireless repeater?
I would be suprised if it worked in a manner that was acceptable.
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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
It's a WRT54GS v.7.  

Hey Chiltern, no need to keep chiming in with your "cautionary" (actually, negative) comments.  They're of no help whatsoever, and I'm going to try this regardless of what you say.  It's no great investment and--who knows?--it just might work.
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Peter HartCommented:
you see the comments as negative because they are against what you want the answer to be - they are based on experience and wasted hours - just trying to help prioritse your work - if you try the VIOP in the current configuration and it doesn't work its not going to work in the new configuration.
but hey go ahead wise one
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jekl2000Commented:
Any latency of 20ms or more will affect VOIP, I am not sure how much the repeater adds but there should be plenty of bandwith for VOIP calls as they are only 64k.

Now, if you do want to experiment with your wrt54gsv7 here is the info. Note that as long as you follow instructions you should be ok but caution - you could brick the router. I have personally used the firmware and it is pretty awesome.

Go here: http://www.dd-wrt.com/dd-wrtv2/downloads.php
Select Release Candidates (the v7 is fairly new but reading the forum, it does work well).
Then select DD-WRT v24RC3/Generic Broadcom/Wrt54gv8 Wrt54gsv7. Follow the instructions in flashing.txt.
Also read this forum http://www.dd-wrt.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=20095 there is a set of instructions about half way down for the wrt54gsv7 that is a bit more detailed then the flashing.txt.

After complete, explore you new toy.......

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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
Thanks, jekl, for continuing to send real answers my way.

Is the file your recommending to me the one here?

http://www.dd-wrt.com/dd-wrtv2/downloads/release%20candidates/DD-WRT%20v24%20RC3/GENERIC%20BROADCOM%20(Linksys,%20Asus%20etc.)/WRT54Gv8,%20WRT54GSv7/dd-wrt.v24_micro_wrt54gv8.bin

If so, what do I do with the .bin file?  I don't seem to have a program associated with that file type?  Is there a free program that will handle it?

Thanks.
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Peter HartCommented:
in the linksys menu there is an option to upgrade the software - go into this and it will as kfor the bin file to upload
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jekl2000Commented:
I will double check that file...I thought there was a v7 in there.
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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
I still need an answer as to do with the .bin file.

Thanks.
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Peter HartCommented:
discover what the linksys IP address is  (run cmd then type Ipconfig, the default gateway is the linksys)
then open IE and in the address bar type this address, i.e. hyttp://192.168.0.1.
logon on to the linksys (usually admin,admin for uername and password)
once in the linksys menu there is an option to upgrade the software - go into this and it will as for the bin file to upload that you have downloaded.
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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
I am still trying to make my WRT54GSv7 function as a relay.  I have been using these instructions, which I got from this forum:

1.      Configure your local LAN ethernet address to 192.168.1.100 and connect your local ethernet to your WRT54Gv8/GSv7 on one of the 4 switch ports.

2.      Plugoff the power cord from the WRT54G v8/GSv7.

3.      Push the reset button while replugin the power cord and hold the button for about 20 seconds.

4.      Open your browser and go to http://192.168.1.1 

5.      Use the firmware upgrade dialog to flash vxworkskillerGv8.bin / vxworkskillerGSv7.bin

6.      After the dialog is shown that you need to plugoff the power cord, remove the power cord and replug it in.

7.      Wait about 1 - 2 minutes

8.      Plugoff the power cord again and replug it in.

9.      Enter "tftp -i 192.168.1.1 put dd-wrt.v24_micro_wrt54gv8.bin" on your local windows console and press enter.

10.      The file will now be transfered to your router and be flashed.  After this is done, dd-wrt will automaticly boot and you can reach your router at http://192.168.1.1

I think I followed these instructions through step 8.  I haven't had any success with 9.  I've tried doing the tftp with both the "Run" prompt in Windows and also using the tftp utility found here:  ftp://ftp.linksys.com/pub/network/befsx41_Tftp.exe

Using "Run" seems to get no results.

When I use the tftp utility, I'm not sure what to enter in the "server" and "password" boxes.  I've been trying "root" in server and leaving password blank.  I get "Failed to resolve host address" as an error message.

Any tips?

Also, when I replug my WRT54GS now, all 4 ethernet lights and the internet lights come on and stay on, even though the internet is not connected to it and I only have a cable plugged into port 3.  Does this mean it's bricked?

Thanks to whomever can help.
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Peter HartCommented:
see this forum 0 they are doing the same stuff:
http://www.dd-wrt.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=20095
on it is says leave the password window empty and he also states....
"I dont know if it matters but I had to push the reset button in the back after uploading the new firmware. Also if any n00b like me try this, it is useful to know that the user is root and the password is admin; had to do some digging for that."

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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
I've read very thoroughly at the dd-wrt forum and saw those comments already.  When I use the recommended tftp utility it asks for "server", "password" and "file", not "user".  I'm confused.  I'm not sure if me and the person you quoted are talking about the same utility or not.

Still wondering what it means that those five lights are always on now, even after I've unplugged and pushed the reset button.  And my computer's wireless no longer finds my router.  Seems ominous.
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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
I gave up on trying to get this to work with the WRT54GS.  I bought a Buffalo WHR-G125 and having been trying to flash the appropriate version of dd-wrt into it.

I've gotten further with the flashing process than I did with the WRT54GS, but still haven't successfully replaced the firmware on the Buffalo unit.  I have carefully followed the instructions here:  

http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php?title=Installation#TFTP_Flashing_Buffalo_Routers_under_Windows

But I keep getting the same response:  tftp: can't read from local file 'tftp -i 192.168.11.1 PUT dd-wrt.v24_mini_whr-g125.bin'

I have carefully read for clues as to what I'm doing wrong here

http://dd-wrt.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=118718&sid=99d814004a30d62e5e5c6650de7d34a8

but still haven't gotten it to work.

Hope someone can give me a next clue.

Thanks.
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Peter HartCommented:
back to your original question - you bought a Linksys WRT54GS hopin to use it as an extender - now you have bought a Buffalo WHR-G125 to try and convert to a range extender.the problem being to rid yourself of dead spots.
to solve your problem - Linksys actually sell a range expander called WRE54G-UK which does what you want out of the box.
However, if you want to conntinue to your journey - the dd-wrt.com website has the best advice on how to solve your chosen solution
here http://dd-wrt.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=19799&highlight=buffalo
it suggests the buffalo WZR-G300N is reccomended not the model you have.
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mrbeichAuthor Commented:
I returned the WRT54GS and got my money back.  And now I have successfully flashed dd-wrt into my Buffalo G125.  

I didn't by a stock repeater because I'm not satisfied with the functionality they provide.

My progress may seem painfully slow to you, but I'm satisfied with it.

I've almost got the G125 configured properly to do what I want it to do.

Thanks for your concern.
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Computer101Commented:
Forced accept.

Computer101
EE Admin
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onlyamir007Commented:

hi guys,


 
I really dont wanna hack your thread but I didnt any response so I find experts
 
 
please if u  guys can help me?? how can i route my internet traffic via VPN ???
 
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Hardware/Networking_Hardware/Routers/Q_24220326.html 

 
please answer me .... thankx
 
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onlyamir007Commented:

hi guys,


 
I really dont wanna hack your thread but I didnt any response so I find experts
 
 
please if u  guys can help me?? how can i route my internet traffic via VPN ???
 
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Hardware/Networking_Hardware/Routers/Q_24220326.html 

 
please answer me .... thankx
 
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