Author Topic: Extending your hotspot range  (Read 48311 times)

Offline WorldSpot

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Extending your hotspot range
« on: May 07, 2007, 04:26:37 pm »
Worldspot is compatible with a lot of hardware and software because of its generic compatibility with chillispot.
This is why WorldSpot can manage all hotspot sizes from a single wifi router to a metro scale wifi coverage.
There are lots of techniques that you can combine to extend the range of your hotspot.
For example, one WorldSpot client has setup a metro scale experiment that reached more than 150 simultaneous users.

This sub-forum is a dedicated place to talk about all these techniques. Users are free to propose new howtos. Please try to maintain the first post of each topic updated. Also please don't create new topics to ask for help. Please go in the "Help" forum or reply to existing howtos.

I will first make an introduction about how chillispot works, about ethernet, wifi and IP routing.
Chillispot needs 2 separate interfaces to work: The internet (WAN) side and an ethernet network where it will manage the captive portal.

Ethernet
Ethernet is a local area network protocol which can transport IP packets. This protocol is widely used on many different transport mediums:
- wire: standard ethernet cables and switches. Ethernet plug is RJ45, which you can find on all network devices.
- wireless: WIFI is an ethernet network. A WIFI Access point extends an ethernet network into the air. Wimax also...
- powerline: You can use existing powerline network to transport ethernet frames. A cost effective solution to go through multiple floors of a building.

- Ethernet is fully plug and play.
If you have one ethernet switch on one place, and you want to connect a second switch, simply connect them together (today all switches are automatic).
If you want to extend the range with a powerline device, simply connect your powerline device to your switch, and all your powerline devices will be connected to your local area network.
If you connect a wifi access point to your switch, your wifi clients will be connected to your local area network.

You can combine all these mediums to extend the range of your hotspot. The most common way to extend your wifi range through walls or floors is to combine the powerline and wifi access points. There event exist wifi access points that integrate with a powerline access, so you just have to plug one or more of them at each floor of your building.
All you users can then move between all the access points transparently (this is called roaming)
There are also methods to extend the range of your wifi network without any wires like WDS, which allows you to setup WDS repeaters

You just have to connect your hotspot router to this extended local area network through an ethernet cable. Then configure your hotspot to handle both WIFI and LAN ports.

WAN side, or internet backbone
Chillispot needs to connect to the internet to serve the hotspot users and to connect to WorldSpot web and radius service. Any internet connection should work: DSL, cable, T1, phone modem, satellite, GPRS, WIFI, WIMAX, OLSR mesh network, etc...

Mesh wifi network
Worldspot is compatible with openmesh.com routers. These router have a plug and play firmware that handle a mesh network automatically. You can extend your wifi range easily and cover a large surface. Simply buy routers, create and configure a mesh on the dashboard, plug them, and that's all. Open-mesh setup is in the english documentation.

http://wirds.net has a nice howto about using the OLSR routing protocol with worldspot. OLSR is a little like WDS but is more flexible, and  more scalable. However, it does not work at the ethernet level, but ip level. So I can't be used as a chillispot frontend but is a good solution for a backend. As there are multiple chillispot instances, you will have to login again everytime you move to another node.


To be continued
« Last Edit: April 14, 2010, 11:12:30 am by WorldSpot »

Offline Eiji

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2007, 06:09:32 pm »
Hi,
I have been using worldspot for several months now, i really like it
i have 3 wrt54gl with covaa 6, as access points.
i want to extend my range, my question is..
WDS?
more access points?
can i add more repetears to just one access point?
i want to add 3 repetears
but where is the option in covaa? 
thank you very much

Offline WorldSpot

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2007, 06:53:54 pm »
It is possible to combine all the methods.
Yes you can add WDS repeater on just one of your access point (if it supports WDS).
You might look in Coova website to get some support. I know this is possible as people complained there was a bug in beta.5 which should have been corrected in beta.6

Offline wanalex

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2011, 06:08:15 pm »
HI,

I'm running two networks with 2 wrt54gl and 7 aps and by experience, I really don't recommend wds. I used to link devices by wds, it works, but you lose speed dramatically at the end of the chain if someone nearer the router is downloading...

A lan cable might seem old-fashioned but it really worth it. If your place is equipped with 4 pairs phone line cable, you still have the option to use the existing phone lines to extend your network. I've done it in my apartment block, (100 rooms, and it works!)

Offline taverny

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2011, 06:38:14 pm »
I am trying to extend my wifi range for my hotspot and I am planning to install 2 to 3 Ubiquiti Unifi AP with a network cable to cover my 3 floors . I am not sure how to accomplish that , so far I have a router (Netgear WNDR3700v2) flashed with DD-WRT , I setup Chiilispot and it's working well on my Lan and Wifi. so far my clients will only connect thru wifi but I still setup the LAN as well since my Lan was not getting an IP address from the router anyway.
what I am trying to understand is how will I accomplish that ? if I plug my new APs to the LAN , then what is the next step to tell Chilispot or WorldSpot that this is an AP and not a user?
Thanks in advance.

Offline WorldSpot

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2011, 11:53:52 pm »
A wifi access point should be "transparent" to the network, as would be an ethernet switch.
So there should be nothing to configure, except the SSID.
It should work as is.

Offline plxmas

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2012, 03:43:32 pm »
I have a Linksys wrt-610n.
I use worldspot 2 years.
Now I want to extend wifi area.
May I connect, wired, a linksys wrt-350nv2 in a LAN port to extend mi wifi coverage?

Offline WorldSpot

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2012, 09:33:34 am »
Yes you can if you don't separate wifi from lan in your hotspot, and select the lan bridge in the chillispot interface.
The routers must be connected lan to lan.

Offline plxmas

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2012, 09:50:11 am »
Yes you can if you don't separate wifi from lan in your hotspot, and select the lan bridge in the chillispot interface.


this features is on my wrt-610n dd-wrt?
if I do this, the users have to SSID name to connect? (Hotspot1, Hotspot2?)

Offline WorldSpot

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2012, 11:46:21 am »
I haven't used dd-wrt for a while, but yes it should be in dd-wrt.


You can set the same ssid so users won't have to choose.

Offline hiresicily

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2015, 10:09:47 am »
Hi,

I have my hotspot installed in a Picostation named pico_1. All work fine.

Now I need to extend the range using a backbone  connection feeding internet to a second picostation named Pico_2,  where must set a backbone client. I know the way to do all because I set this kind of configuration for long time in my previous chillifire hotspots.
For to do above configurations must login the routers.
The problem now is how I can login my routers? . Both, when I try to connect the IP address of routers  display the following message

/usr/lib/lua/luci/dispatcher.lua:220: No valid theme found
stack traceback:
   [C]: in function 'assert'
   /usr/lib/lua/luci/dispatcher.lua:220: in function 'dispatch'
   /usr/lib/lua/luci/dispatcher.lua:139: in function </usr/lib/lua/luci/dispatcher.lua:138>

There is a way to login?

Regards

Offline WorldSpot

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2015, 10:16:46 am »
There is no web interface on older firmware.
But there new firmware have it in the full variant.

you may try latest firmware here:
http://worldspot.net/wsbeta/barrier_breaker-r45841-3/

there are 2 variants:
full: include the luci web administration (requires 8mb flash)
mesh: preconfigures a mesh network.

The mesh is a big feature allowing you to add unwired nodes that repeat the signal.
All nodes must be on the same channel.

On repeater nodes, you need to disable chilli using the following commands:
echo DISABLE_CHILLI=yes > /etc/chilli/localConfig
/etc/init.d/chilli restart

Offline hiresicily

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #12 on: August 01, 2015, 10:27:32 am »
Hello,

many thanks for your very prompt reply!

I have 8 MB flash, then you suggest  to install full variant? I suppose I will have more options in full variant?

Regards.
G. trapani

Offline WorldSpot

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #13 on: August 01, 2015, 01:47:11 pm »
You just have access to web interface, and openssl is installed.

Offline WorldSpot

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Re: Extending your hotspot range
« Reply #14 on: August 01, 2015, 01:51:39 pm »
One more tip. If you want to connect another AP to your pico, as you have a single ethernet port, you can bridge br-lan to a vlan like eth0.4 (in worldspot firmware)
Then you can configure the other AP using existing ubiquiti firmware to bridge vlan4 (eth0.4) to the wifi.