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Extending network coverage across block of flats

Posted on 2008-10-04
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Hi All

There are two blocks of flats that are situated next to each other.

I would like to use their internet (ISP is Be There) of a friend who lives in the other block of flats. I'd say there is around 70 metres distance and around 7 brick walls between. I cannot pick up any signal at the moment.

Is there any product I could buy that would extend and allow this? Just to let you know, there is a window and door opening at the back of both mine and my friends networks flat. Possibly an idea of having an aerial coming out of both our windows to extend the signal?

My budget is around £35-40.

Cheers
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Question by:garreH
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by:devangshroff
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buu as acess point link linksys WAP 45G
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by:devangshroff
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sorry it linksys WAP54G
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pmwrightjr earned 129 total points
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I'm not qualified to comment on specific wireless equipment you could use since I'm in the US and laws vary from country to country as to permitted frequency of operation, output power and the like.  (For that matter, what you want to do may or may not be legal but I can't comment on that either).  
But if I were doing that here and it sounds like you have direct line-of-sight, I would get a pair of wireless access points that are capable of operating in point-to-point bridge mode and a pair of high-gain directional antennas.
The requirements for the access points is that they must be capable of accepting an external antenna and they must be capable of operating in point-to-point bridge mode.  As mentioned above, the Linksys WAP54G is one possibility that meets both requirements but there are many others (e.g. Belkin F5D7230-4, Netgear WG602).
The requirements for the antennas are that they be directional, preferably with a fairly narrow beam angle and that they won't be too conspicuous, distracting or constitute a hazard.  There are directions out on the 'Net for making 2.4 GHz antennas from Pringles potato chip cans so for the real budget solution, you might look some of them up.
I'm not sure who you have across the pond as far as vendors for antennas and pigtails, but my favorite here is HyperLink Technologies where you can find the antennas and the vendor-specific pigtails to connect them.  If I were going to use their products, I would choose a 2.4 GHz Yagi array that would give you 12 dbi of gain (versus the 2 dbi antenna that comes with the access point).  That might break the budget but look how much you'll be saving!

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by:dkarpekin
dkarpekin earned 129 total points
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Any "home" wireless will do, you only need to bring antennas out of the wall, with no bstraction beetwen two antenna will give pretty strong signal- theefore max. bandwith.
Or maybe just run CAT5, and connect to $20 4port switch, will do the trick?
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by:gbglass
gbglass earned 129 total points
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Using an indoor directed antenna should fix this. 6db gain should be enough for 70 meters provided there are no obstacles between the antennas. I'm assuming you already have wireless devices that you can attach external antennas to.

Cheap antennas such as D-Link ANT24-0600 (£20) should do the job remember to check for correct antenna connections.

Also keep in mind long cables to the antenna decrease performance, some wireless devices have low output power. Output power should be about 15dbm for this setup to work. So if you need very long cables or have low output power you might have to consider using stronger antennas.
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