WDS - configuration for more than two routers

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awrobinson
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Location: Durham, NC, USA

PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 17:11    Post subject: WDS - configuration for more than two routers Reply with quote
I have built a WDS mesh for my home, and it works quite well. Now I want to add a third router to the mesh. The docs explain what to do for two routers, which is to put each other's MAC addresses in the WDS configuration. The docs do not explain what to do for more then two routers. Do I put all three MAC addresses in the WDS configuration for each router? If my mesh is a linear chain, do I just need to exchange MAC's with the closest router? Should I exchange MAC's with the "master" router, the one with the internet connection? What is the proper WDS configuration for more than two routers?

Thanks!

Andrew Robinson
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switch
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Joined: 30 Apr 2008
Posts: 967
Location: Romania

PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 17:24    Post subject: Reply with quote
Ideally, you'd want to keep the number of wireless 'hops' to a minimum, since wireless throughput decreases two-fold for each AP that must relay the signal through the WDS.

Example:

Client [WiFi] AP3 [WDS] AP2 [WDS] AP1/WiFi Router

In this case, the traffic is relayed across 2 WDS APs, which results in a 0.5^2 = 0.25 or 25% maximum throughput compared to the ideal scenario where the client connects directly to the endpoint.

Example 2:

Client [wifi] AP5 [WDS] AP4 [WDS] AP3 [WDS] AP2 [WDS] AP1/WiFi Router

In this example, the maximum throughput from the client to the router is 0.5 ^ 4 = 0.0625 or 6,25%. Assuming ideal 54mbps connections, the client-router maximum possible bandwidth will be equal to about 3mbps.



In your case, you'll want to link both APs(routers) to the main Router using WDS. If you need FAST client-client interaction between users connected to each of the secondary APs, you could try linking them all in a mesh, tho I wouldn't advise it - it could be bad for traffic directed at the Internet.
awrobinson
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Joined: 17 Jul 2006
Posts: 16
Location: Durham, NC, USA

PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 18:44    Post subject: Reply with quote
When you say "you could try linking them all in a mesh", do you mean putting every router's MAC in every other router's WDS configuration? In other words, if I had five routers, each router's WDS configuration would contain the MAC addresses of the other four routers?

Also, from your description of hops and throughput, for best throughput to the internet, I take it I would want to link a given router to the router closest to the gateway that it could communicate with. Am I understanding this correctly?

Thanks for the tutorial!
switch
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Joined: 30 Apr 2008
Posts: 967
Location: Romania

PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 19:50    Post subject: Reply with quote
awrobinson wrote:
When you say "you could try linking them all in a mesh", do you mean putting every router's MAC in every other router's WDS configuration? In other words, if I had five routers, each router's WDS configuration would contain the MAC addresses of the other four routers?

Exactly. That way if client A on AP4 tries to connect to client B on AP2, he can do so with maximum throughput. It's not always optimal, as having two distant APs in WDS might turn out to be worse than having a third AP in the middle to improve the connection.

Be careful though: I for one don't have first hand experience on how WDS plays with full meshes. You can't really break anything by trying, but do test it before concluding that it works fine :)

awrobinson wrote:
Also, from your description of hops and throughput, for best throughput to the internet, I take it I would want to link a given router to the router closest to the gateway that it could communicate with. Am I understanding this correctly?

Yes. Like above, mind the connection speed between the APs. Sometimes a better connection is desirable, even if it introduces another hop over the WDS.
awrobinson
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Joined: 17 Jul 2006
Posts: 16
Location: Durham, NC, USA

PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2008 15:42    Post subject: Reply with quote
A couple of other questions occurred to me.

1. The gateway router should have the MAC of every other AP trying to communicate directly with it in its WDS configuration, yes?

2. Corollary question. If I have decided that a new AP is too far away to communicate directly with the gateway, the intermediate AP needs to know the MAC's of both the new AP and the gateway AP, but the gateway AP does not need to know the MAC of the new AP?

I'll experiment, but confirmation helps give me confidence in my understanding. Thanks!
switch
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Joined: 30 Apr 2008
Posts: 967
Location: Romania

PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2008 18:19    Post subject: Reply with quote
In WDS, you type in the MACs of the APs/Routers you want the current one to bridge with. This is to be done for every AP/Router.

AP3 <-> AP1(main) <-> AP2 <-> AP4

In the above example, AP1 is the main internet router and AP4 is too far away to connect directly to AP1.

AP1 WDS will contain the MACs for AP3 and AP2
AP2 WDS will contain the MACs for AP1 and AP4
AP3 WDS will contain the MAC for AP1
AP4 WDS will contain the MAC for AP2


...but to answer your questions:
1. Yes.
2. Yes. As far as I know that WDS page is for configuring WDS links between APs. No need to put in MACs for APs you don't connect to.
awrobinson
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Location: Durham, NC, USA

PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2008 20:19    Post subject: Reply with quote
Thanks switch!
eccecc
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Joined: 28 Mar 2008
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PostPosted: Fri May 16, 2008 11:13    Post subject: WDS wired and wireless Reply with quote
I have 3 buildings ( only one with internet) and have multiple WRT56G & GS routers all running various versions of V24. All with unique mac addresses

Wireing within the buildings is easy. I have 1 DCHP router/ gateway and 2 wired aps in one building. I have connteded to one othher buildings to the gateway router first with bridge mode (but that did not work when I started adding ap IP problems) and now in WDS.

Can I make a WDS by connecting to the gateway router and another wired router? The two wired routers are on different channels becuase the signals over lap. Or do I set up a second WDS to the non gateway router?

I do not want to use up all of the band width with the WDS hops
Interloper
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Joined: 09 Jul 2008
Posts: 28

PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2009 0:45    Post subject: Static Routing in this Mesh Reply with quote
What are the rules for static routing in this case? And a simple question: How can the wired and the wireless clients all be transparent? I've tried turning on the firewall to a virtual SSID and doesn't seem to block traffic. Any ideas? I can provide lots more info Razz but starting off simplistic
GeeTek
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:19    Post subject: Reply with quote
switch wrote:
...that WDS page is for configuring WDS links between APs. No need to put in MACs for APs you don't connect to.

Even though you are guessing, that iz exactly correct. Only program the WDS links that you anticipate to be valid. If a possible loop in radio connectivity exists then enable STP (spanning tree protocol) on all radios envolved.

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mrupload
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Joined: 13 Apr 2009
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 8:59    Post subject: WDS is the only solution? Reply with quote
Hi All!

I have a short question. There is two router (mine and my neighbor’s router). One is a Linksys WRT 54 GS another one is a Linksys WRT 54GL originally.


On both router running a DD-WRT firmware.

My neighbor has an internet connection and I don’t have it. I would like to use my neighbor’s internet (ha is agree to share with me).


I read something regarding WDS solution and configuration between the two routers.

http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php?title=WDS_Linked_router_network#Working_Products



My question is that: It is possible to use my neighbor’s internet without WDS configuration???

I’ve seen something on the DD-WRT menu like ‘wireless site survey’ and there is an option (JOIN) after that I got the results about available wireless networks.

I am just wondering that maybe with that ‘join’ function I could use my neighbor’s wireless network?! Am I right?

Anyway I’ve tried with that ‘join’ but I don’t know what kind of other configuration needed in the ‘wireless menu’???

Thank you for your help!

BR,
Mihaly
olmari
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Joined: 24 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:35    Post subject: Reply with quote
it is possible to connect to an accesspoint other ways than WDS, but there is no one correct way to do these...

if you do want to be on "one big LAN" then WDS is your best option, and if it is used only between 2 accesspoints then there is no speed loss.

Then you can use "client" mode on your router so that your router uses WLAN-connection to neighbours router as WAN and NATs the connection normally...

Main point is that what do you want to achieve? separate yourself from your neighbours LAN or be part of it or something more specific?

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mrupload
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 13 Apr 2009
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 10:22    Post subject: Reply with quote
olmari wrote:
it is possible to connect to an accesspoint other ways than WDS, but there is no one correct way to do these...

if you do want to be on "one big LAN" then WDS is your best option, and if it is used only between 2 accesspoints then there is no speed loss.

Then you can use "client" mode on your router so that your router uses WLAN-connection to neighbours router as WAN and NATs the connection normally...

Main point is that what do you want to achieve? separate yourself from your neighbours LAN or be part of it or something more specific?


Hi Olmari,

Thank you for your answer.

Yes, it seem to me also that the best solution is to configure and use WDS configuration on both routers.

Just one more question: Is it ok to use a Linksys WRT 54GS (v6.0) and Linksys WRT 54GL together? Or those routers should be the same type of hardware?
As far as I know Linksys WRT 54GS and Linksys WRT 54GL has a same hardware (Broadcom BCM5352) just the software is the difference.

Thank you for your help!
BR,
Mihaly
soulstace
DD-WRT Guru


Joined: 04 Aug 2007
Posts: 6427

PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 18:45    Post subject: Reply with quote
it's fine to use different routers together for WDS, but it's best if each router runs the same version (the svn build number) however even that is not absolutely necessary.

micro/mini/std/etc does not matter either
ImLearnin
DD-WRT Novice


Joined: 18 Apr 2009
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sat Apr 18, 2009 2:07    Post subject: Re: WDS is the only solution? Reply with quote
mrupload wrote:
Hi All!

I have a short question. There is two router (mine and my neighbor’s router). One is a Linksys WRT 54 GS another one is a Linksys WRT 54GL originally.


On both router running a DD-WRT firmware.

My neighbor has an internet connection and I don’t have it. I would like to use my neighbor’s internet (ha is agree to share with me).


I read something regarding WDS solution and configuration between the two routers.

http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php?title=WDS_Linked_router_network#Working_Products



My question is that: It is possible to use my neighbor’s internet without WDS configuration???



The answer is yes. Assuming all your boxes are running at least v24 you can use the repeater mode or bridge mode along with a virtual interface to connect your box to his network. In basic terms, the difference between the two is repeater mode isolates the two networks by using a different subnet for each and bridge mode uses all the same subnet and usually the dhcp server in his router provides addresses. Normally bridge and repeater modes only provide services to the hardwired ports on the router. This is where the virtual interface comes in as it attaches your wireless modem to the network. Google is your friend.
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