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  #1  
Old 06-20-2010, 07:00 PM
Andy Dixon
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Default Improve Your Wireless By Reusing An Old Router

<div class='os_post_top_link'><a href='http://lifehacker.com/5563196/turn-your-old-router-into-a-range+boosting-wi+fi-repeater' target='_blank'>http://lifehacker.com/5563196/turn-...-wi+fi-repeater</a><br /><br /></div><p><em>"If you're upgrading to a faster, stronger wireless router, don't chuck your older Wi-Fi box. With the magic of DD-WRT, you can turn your older wireless router into a range-expanding Wi-Fi repeater to cover everywhere you need a connection. The advent of wireless home networks grew slowly in the past decade, but reached the point at which nearly every home with a high-speed connection had a wireless router that shared Wi-Fi connections throughout the home. Now Wireless N has become the standard at electronics retailers, promising faster connectivity with your wireless devices, faster transfer and streaming speeds between devices, and better connectivity. So what's to be done with your home's first wireless router?"</em></p><p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com/resizer/thumbs/size/600/wpt/auto/1277050085.usr11334.jpg" style="border: #d2d2bb 1px solid;" /></p><p>Lifehacker has published an article on how to use your old wireless router to increase the range of your wireless signal about the house.&nbsp; This is something I have done in order to get a decent signal in to the back garden so I can sit in the sun with that glass of wine, my laptop for some light browsing and some music playing.&nbsp; This article does require that you have a compatible router with the required DD-WRT firmware to make it work, but if you have it, then this is a great way to expand your wireless network to those area's where it's weak.</p>
 
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  #2  
Old 06-20-2010, 10:58 PM
freitasm
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Hmmm. Not so fast. DD-WRT doesn't run in any old router. It needs specific chipsets, a certain amount of minimum memory and so on. For example trying to flash DD-WRT to an old Belkin router might brick it, because of low memory on those routers.

It does run on Linksys WRT54GL routers, which are not old by any means - just get one from retail, really cheap these days, install DD-WRT and off you go.
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  #3  
Old 06-21-2010, 06:07 PM
ptyork
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freitasm View Post
Hmmm. Not so fast. DD-WRT doesn't run in any old router. It needs specific chipsets, a certain amount of minimum memory and so on. For example trying to flash DD-WRT to an old Belkin router might brick it, because of low memory on those routers.
It actually runs on a bunch of routers. Not all, but a large percentage. Check out the router compatibility database before taking the plunge.

http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Supported_Devices

Despite the obvious name derivation, it's not just WRT54G's anymore, though I've still got two of those old boogers. Sadly, they're now relegated to a closet as spares.

The article does mention it, but I'll repeat it. Using the router in the wireless repeater mode cuts the speed in half when connecting to the remote modem. Not a huge deal for surfing, but don't expect anything other than standard def YouTube to stream well in the real world.

Note that you can use two routers in a wireless BRIDGE mode (no repeater functionality) if you want to hook up your XBox or PS3 or whatever that has an ethernet connection. In this setup you do NOT pay the half-speed penalty. Still, for "true" HD streaming you'll want something better (probably ethernet, though Powerline and MOCA work well in most homes--I'm a MOCA fan), but this isn't a bad solution for almost any highly compressed content.
 
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Old 06-21-2010, 09:50 PM
freitasm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptyork View Post
It actually runs on a bunch of routers. Not all, but a large percentage. Check out the router compatibility database before taking the plunge.

http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Supported_Devices

Despite the obvious name derivation, it's not just WRT54G's anymore, though I've still got two of those old boogers. Sadly, they're now relegated to a closet as spares.

The article does mention it, but I'll repeat it. Using the router in the wireless repeater mode cuts the speed in half when connecting to the remote modem. Not a huge deal for surfing, but don't expect anything other than standard def YouTube to stream well in the real world.
I didn't say it run on the Linksys WRT54G only. I said it doesn't run in all routers. That's all. I suggested the Linksys WRT54G simply because if you don't have a router and are looking for one then it's a model that will sure work. I have a TopGlobal MB6800 3G/WiFi router and it runs on it - but the router costs about five times the Linksys in some places.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ptyork View Post
Still, for "true" HD streaming you'll want something better (probably ethernet, though Powerline and MOCA work well in most homes--I'm a MOCA fan), but this isn't a bad solution for almost any highly compressed content.
Correct. If you have 720p/1080i/1080p content coming from a media server you don't want to use WiFi. A good gigabit switch will do a much better job - shame about the cables, but that's how it is. If you have a new house/renovating then it pays to plan for structured cabling arond - even more if you want to use VoIP for example and get rid of ATA devices.
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  #5  
Old 09-12-2011, 09:12 PM
prozema
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Default DD-WRT on TopGlobal MB6800

Quote:
Originally Posted by freitasm View Post
I didn't say it run on the Linksys WRT54G only. I said it doesn't run in all routers. That's all. I suggested the Linksys WRT54G simply because if you don't have a router and are looking for one then it's a model that will sure work. I have a TopGlobal MB6800 3G/WiFi router and it runs on it - but the router costs about five times the Linksys in some places.



Correct. If you have 720p/1080i/1080p content coming from a media server you don't want to use WiFi. A good gigabit switch will do a much better job - shame about the cables, but that's how it is. If you have a new house/renovating then it pays to plan for structured cabling arond - even more if you want to use VoIP for example and get rid of ATA devices.
Are you able to point me in the right direction for getting DD-WRT installed on a TopGlobal MB6800? I'd like to do this and have been searching trying to find a way. Your post is the the only i've found from anyone saying they've done it. Any help would be greatly appreciated!
 
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Old 09-13-2011, 09:32 PM
freitasm
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It runs but I found out an update bricked the TopGlobal, so had to revert to the official firmware after a while.

You can try using the minimum DD-WRT install, it seems the TopGlobal doesn't have much free memory. You just have to download it and use the update option in the web admin.

Mind you, like all "mods" this one is done at the owner's risk. You have to be aware that if the device is bricked you will need a TFTP server to restore the original ROM, and a special sequence for boot the device and automatically connect to a specific IP address.

In other words, if you are not comfortable changing your PC's IP address, installing a third party software in case the update goes wrong, then don't do it.

I can not supply support in this case either, the instructions on how to restore are in the TopGlobal web site. Make sure you have those before you need them, just in case it's not in the site anymore.

DO IT AT YOUR OWN RISK.
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