Verizon sold the territory I live in to Fairpoint. FIOS will never be available where I live (at least not in my life time.)

Comcast has always made be pay for two separate broadband accounts. (2 buildings – pay twice.)

Well. The company she worked for was a Microsoft service provider. When Microsoft suddenly decided not to renew their recurring contract, her employer pretty much closed up shop and she was out of work.

This was a good catalyst to consolidate expenses.

So we’re getting rid of my T-Moblie wireless. My wife’s Verizion wireless, my office Fairpoint land lines, and our home Comcast Phone and internet access.

Step one – 7 Acre Wide Wireless.

I want Hi-Speed wireless access without degradation from the far corner of my office building to across my driveway to the far back corner of the source on both floors.

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My new setup starts with adding a really good base wireless hub.

wnr3700 

I choose the Netgear Rangemax WNDR3700 Dual Band Wireless-N Gigabit Router

[ Get  One HERE ! ]

At over $150 dollars it’s not the cheapest but it’s worth the extra money.

There were about 200 4/5 star reviews on Amazon.com and about 50 1/2 star reviews.

This is a great case of non technical folks (many of whom THINK they are networking experts) being frustrated and blaming the product for their lack of knowledge.

I unplugged all mu networking devices and started from scratch.

I plugged the WNDR3700 into my Comcast Cable modem and then with a physical cable connected the WNDR3700 to a computer.

The first thing I did was update the Firmware to the latest version.

After rebooting the WNDR3700 I set the SSID Names (one for each channel), Password, and DHCP address range as I desired and rebooted the device again.

Pressed the wireless connect – and BANG!

The WORST signal anywhere in the buildings on my property’s 4 bars.

I  connected a  Cisco / Linksys SR2024 24-port 10/100 Switch that I already had to the Netgear router. (Though I plan to upgare to the gigabit version).

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[ Get One Here ! ]

My hard wired connections at peaking at about 30mb down and 3mb up. (Stay tuned – I’m going to improve this soon.)

The WNDR3700 also has a USB NAS feature so I picked up a Seagate Expansion 1.5 TB USB 2.0 Desktop External Hard Drive.

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[ Buy One Here ! ]

I plugged this drive in and went into the device options of the WNDR3700’s admin facility to set the network name of the device.

BANG – 1.7 terabytes of NAS easily accessible from all my machines connected to the WNDR3700.

Setup was EASY and everything worked as I expected.

Now for the HARD part.

The router is in my office but I need SOME hard wired connections in the other building (my house).

This means I needed to bridge the wireless signal from my office into a wired hub in my house.

After a good deal of research I selected a Buffalo Technology AirStation Turbo G High Power Wireless Ethernet Converter

4140Q213J2L__SS500_ 

[ Get One Here ! ]

Setting this guy up was a bit more difficult because, even though this device has 4 wired access ports,  I needed to bridge the signal into my home Ethernet wiring system and I wanted to extend it with a combination hub (Wireless / Wired).

Though not really necessary for wireless access since the WNDR3700’s signal is so strong, I decided to add 2 additional wireless/combination routers to my scheme since I already had a couple of good modem routers. (One in the house proper and one in the basement.)

I have two D-Link routers from previous use.

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A D-Link DIR-655 Extreme N Gigabit Wireless Router.

[ Get One HERE ! ]

And the slightly older D-Link DIR-625 4-Port RangeBooster Wireless-N Router

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The secret to adding these 2 routers trough the is on syncing the configuring settings.

The default device IP address is 1.1.1.1

First I changed the device IP address to something gin the same subnet as my WNDR3700 but OUTSIDE the DHCP address allocation pool.

Next I configured each of the D-Link routers with device IP Address and DHCP address allocation pools all in the same subnet (making sure there could be no conflicts).

After wiring everything up – they didn’t work :)

To solve the last problem I needed to synchronize the wireless channels being used.

On ALL THREE wireless routers I turned OFF automatic channel scanning and set to channel to fix on channel 11 (11 is the default on the Buffalo Air Station) .

In the D-Link routers the admin settings look like this.

Channel - 7-27-2010 10-56-08 AM

After setting these options and rebooting all 3 modems in my network (and updating the router firmware) – everything is working FINE !

Awesome wireless and hard wired connections available everywhere.

TODO:

1.) Upgrade my main office switch to GigaBit.

2.) Upgrade my Cable Model (and Comcast Account) to DOCSIS 3

If selected the Motorola SB6120 SURFboard DOCSIS 3.0 eXtreme Broadband Cable Modem

SBEX-q26-01

[ Get One HERE ! ]

Give it all a try :)

Next I’ll tackle phones :)