Forum Thread

need access point for work

br1ckhouse 337 50 December 27, 2015 at 07:02 AM
I need two access points to get a wireless connection set up for our internal network and for guest access. What's the difference between a AP and a wireless router? That being said, any recommendations for something that gets the job done at a basic level and is reliable enough that I don't need to worry about it for a while?

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#2
I know a few people who swear by Ubiquiti for business / multi-ap deployments, but I haven't used them myself.

The difference between and AP and a router is that an AP provides wifi access to an existing network, while a router also handles routing between networks. You typically want only one router on your network, but you can always setup extra routers as APs.
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Last edited by quotidian December 27, 2015 at 07:31 AM
#3
Quote from quotidian View Post :
I know a few people who swear by Ubiquiti for business / multi-ap deployments, but I haven't used them myself.
You can't go wrong with Ubiquiti. However, set up might be a bit daunting for a novice, though they have an active support forum [ubnt.com].

If you just buy an AP, you will also need a router. Ubiquiti makes these as well and people can't seem to recommend them enough. This [arstechnica.com] is a good read on Ubiquiti gear.

How many people do you need to serve? How big an area do you need to cover? It may be that a very good consumer wireless router will do the job for you.
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Last edited by hbarnwheeler December 27, 2015 at 08:37 AM
#4
Quote from br1ckhouse View Post :
I need two access points to get a wireless connection set up for our internal network and for guest access. What's the difference between a AP and a wireless router? That being said, any recommendations for something that gets the job done at a basic level and is reliable enough that I don't need to worry about it for a while?
I doubt that you would want to allow guests to access your main network be it at home or at the office. You don't need anything to allow guests to access your existing network and because you have these questions I believe that you suspect you need security and that means you need a router to isolate your main network from the guests. Many newer routers have a guest network built in and IMHO this is probably the easiest solution for you. Don't use an AP if security is an issue.
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#5
Quote from dale_101798 View Post :
I believe that you suspect you need security and that means you need a router to isolate your main network from the guests. Many newer routers have a guest network built in and IMHO this is probably the easiest solution for you. Don't use an AP if security is an issue.
OP needs a router either way. Ditto for the AP if WI-Fi is necessary.
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#6
Quote from dale_101798 View Post :
I doubt that you would want to allow guests to access your main network be it at home or at the office. You don't need anything to allow guests to access your existing network and because you have these questions I believe that you suspect you need security and that means you need a router to isolate your main network from the guests. Many newer routers have a guest network built in and IMHO this is probably the easiest solution for you. Don't use an AP if security is an issue.
That's a good point. If all the OP wants is two distinct wifi networks, getting a single router that supports a guest network will be a much simpler setup. The only reason to get multiple access points would be to cover large or segmented spaces.
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#7
I use one Ubiquiti AP for this at work. I run the controller in a linux VM.
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#8
thanks all. I have about 3000-4000 sq feet to cover so I'll need two. We currently have some D-Link DAP-2360 in another office, which are selling for under $100 at amazon. Any recommendations on if we should just get those again or if there's better models at a lower cost?
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Last edited by br1ckhouse December 28, 2015 at 06:46 AM

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#9
Quote from br1ckhouse View Post :
thanks all. I have about 3000-4000 sq feet to cover so I'll need two. We currently have some D-Link DAP-2360 in another office, which are selling for under $100 at amazon. Any recommendations on if we should just get those again or if there's better models at a lower cost?
We've recommended Ubiquiti APs. If for some reason you are more comfortable administering the D-Links and are happy with their performance, then that's a reason to buy more of those.

Is your 4000 sq feet all on one floor? Many walls?
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Last edited by hbarnwheeler December 28, 2015 at 07:42 AM
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#10
Quote from hbarnwheeler View Post :
We've recommended Ubiquiti APs. If for some reason you are more comfortable administering the D-Links and are happy with their performance, then that's a reason to buy more of those.

Is your 4000 sq feet all on one floor? Many walls?
it's a pretty open layout but I might just leave it hidden on top of the ceiling panel as I'm too lazy to mount it. I'm assuming that they are able to handle multiple VLANs but correct me if I'm wrong.

Amazon has a decent price: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HXT8R2O and http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005H4CDF4..

however, I read that they can't get power from a PoE switch as they are 12v, not a 48v. I would prefer to have them off tables and in the ceiling but not if I need to hire an electricians. At this price point of under $90, there probably isn't any better option, is there?
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#11
no offense, but not sure if you're the right person to be setting up your network if you don't know the difference between an AP and a router. do you have a system/network admin or engineer? also, you would want to set something up to not have to worry about it ever, not just for a while. When you do have issues, it's going to be a pain for everyone including yourself when people complain.

whatever you decide to do, test and test a lot with lots of devices with multiple users. test the strength and signal as well as speeds. have AP's overlap so there's always an AP to connect to. How many users/devices are you supporting (phones, tablets, PC's, etc)?
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Last edited by aznboicn December 29, 2015 at 03:44 AM
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#12
Quote from br1ckhouse View Post :
it's a pretty open layout but I might just leave it hidden on top of the ceiling panel as I'm too lazy to mount it. I'm assuming that they are able to handle multiple VLANs but correct me if I'm wrong.

Amazon has a decent price: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HXT8R2O and http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005H4CDF4..

however, I read that they can't get power from a PoE switch as they are 12v, not a 48v. I would prefer to have them off tables and in the ceiling but not if I need to hire an electricians. At this price point of under $90, there probably isn't any better option, is there?
You can buy a PoE injector or you can also get a Ubiquiti Router such as the ER-X-SFP which has built in PoE capability compatible with their APs.
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#13
Quote from br1ckhouse View Post :
thanks all. I have about 3000-4000 sq feet to cover so I'll need two. We currently have some D-Link DAP-2360 in another office, which are selling for under $100 at amazon. Any recommendations on if we should just get those again or if there's better models at a lower cost?
Maybe you should think about DD-WRT [dd-wrt.com] Firmware, DD_WRT has become quite elegant and it offers more options than stock firmwarelook around. With DD-WRT you can crank up the transmission power and using alternate higher gain antennas would allow users consistent connections from farther away. Cool

I didn't check to see if your hardware supports alternative or external antennas.
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#14
Quote from br1ckhouse View Post :
however, I read that they can't get power from a PoE switch as they are 12v, not a 48v. I would prefer to have them off tables and in the ceiling but not if I need to hire an electricians. At this price point of under $90, there probably isn't any better option, is there?
They come with a POE power adapter. But, like others have said, if you are very inexperienced, you may want to go with a simpler solution, such as a high-end consumer router. Those at the top end should be able to cover 4000 sq ft of open space.
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#15
Quote from aznboicn View Post :
no offense, but not sure if you're the right person to be setting up your network if you don't know the difference between an AP and a router. do you have a system/network admin or engineer? also, you would want to set something up to not have to worry about it ever, not just for a while. When you do have issues, it's going to be a pain for everyone including yourself when people complain....
and cost the business $$$$ during downtime. There are zero consumer grade AP's that should be used in mission critical businesses.
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