Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Creating a Universal Wireless Repeater

Everyone once in a while I need to extend an wireless network.  I may be traveling and need to amplify an open wi-fi network.  I may need some additional range at home in some dark corner of my garage or workshop.

Creating a "Universal Wireless Repeater (UWR) is simple.  You only need two things:

  1. an off the shelf wireless router/access-point you may already own
  2. a copy of DD-WRT software (specifically v24 beta). I first mentioned dd-wrt here last fall where I took a $50 Linksys router and made it oh so much better.

A couple of weeks ago I followed the same process to create a UWR using the new v24 beta version of the same DD-WRT firmware.  The UWR is "a device that you can place anywhere and it will wirelessly repeat the strongest signal, onto another wireless network (with or without security)."  Great!! Who doesn't need to do that occasionally?

This time I used a Buffalo wireless router that I bought for $25!  (Incidentally, this same router is available again for $25 here.)  Once you've upload the firmware (being careful not to brick your new router, the whole process takes about 10 minutes.

If you have an old wi-fi router laying around, give it a try!  The instructions are here.


Leo & Carolyn said...

Meraki ( sounds like a really good option for you...check it out.

Jeff said...

Hey, thanks for the link! That looks like some pretty interesting products!

paxitus said...

We just installed a Meraki network across a campus of buildings and I'm very impressed with the range we're getting for such a low cost.

Jeff said...

paxitus, thanks for the note. Meraki sounds like it works well.