Home Networking Advice

31
Found 18th Mar
We’re having some work done around the house and thinking of using the opportunity to improve our WiFi and networking.

Im looking for a mesh type WiFi system as we’ve got a few floors to cover, also at the same time getting some hardwired access put in. The BT Home WiFi seems to cover what I need at a reasonable cost but with them only having a single Ethernet port I’m not sure how to get around the wired devices.
I don’t have much knowledge on using switches but would the below work and allow all the devices to connect and work together as seamlessly as possible?

Hopefully it’s self explanatory but the Superhub would be in modem only mode, the switches would be something like (amazon.co.uk/NET…PKO) and all wired with cat6 or similar.

2911224.jpg
Thanks in advance!
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31 Comments
What you have put would work but you are in essence creating 2 tiers - second switch would make it more equal if also connected to superhub
Original Poster
Bertz994 m ago

What you have put would work but you are in essence creating 2 tiers - …What you have put would work but you are in essence creating 2 tiers - second switch would make it more equal if also connected to superhub


Thanks, the superhub can only output to one socket when in modem mode which is the issue.

Another otpion is to run 4 cables from the first switch and have something like amazon.co.uk/Qua…PTI to feed those 4 devices.

what would be the benefits of this over 2 tiers? Also with this setup what device would control all the connections? I.e I assume if I looked on the home WiFi settings I wouldn’t be able to see any of the wired devices connected
A2DY_6 m ago

Thanks, the superhub can only output to one socket when in modem mode …Thanks, the superhub can only output to one socket when in modem mode which is the issue. Another otpion is to run 4 cables from the first switch and have something like https://www.amazon.co.uk/Quad-CAT5e-Data-Outlet-Plate/dp/B00BMPPPTI to feed those 4 devices. what would be the benefits of this over 2 tiers? Also with this setup what device would control all the connections? I.e I assume if I looked on the home WiFi settings I wouldn’t be able to see any of the wired devices connected


Missed modem only - in which case it will not work as as in modem mode you need a router inbetween.

Having tiers in switches is known as cascading them.
Edited by: "Bertz99" 18th Mar
Original Poster
Bertz999 m ago

Missed modem only - in which case it will not work as as in modem mode you …Missed modem only - in which case it will not work as as in modem mode you need a router inbetween.Having tiers in switches is known as cascading them.


That was my worry. Seems impossible then using BT Home WiFi as they only have a single port and that would be used taking from the Superhub. Surely that’s a bit of a design floor!?

Any ideas how to get around this
A2DY_28 m ago

That was my worry. Seems impossible then using BT Home WiFi as they only …That was my worry. Seems impossible then using BT Home WiFi as they only have a single port and that would be used taking from the Superhub. Surely that’s a bit of a design floor!?Any ideas how to get around this


I have a Superhub3 in modem mode connected to a Netgear Nighthawk R7800 router - get excellent signal strength everywhere but just a two storey house to cover.

Not used a Mesh system so not familiar with exactly how it works but I assume you would just need to put a router in between your SH3 and the first network switch in the diagram above for work.

Alternatively why not run a cable from your Superhub 3 to a standard router located somewhere on the middle floor in the house? This would have 4 ports itself and hence you could save the cost of a switch.
Original Poster
Van19737 m ago

I have a Superhub3 in modem mode connected to a Netgear Nighthawk R7800 …I have a Superhub3 in modem mode connected to a Netgear Nighthawk R7800 router - get excellent signal strength everywhere but just a two storey house to cover.Not used a Mesh system so not familiar with exactly how it works but I assume you would just need to put a router in between your SH3 and the first network switch in the diagram above for work.Alternatively why not run a cable from your Superhub 3 to a standard router located somewhere on the middle floor in the house? This would have 4 ports itself and hence you could save the cost of a switch.


Thanks.
I am trying to have the vast majority of the kit hidden away. So for example the switches would be under the stairs/in store rooms and then have the Ethernet sockets in the wall to plug in either the WiFi hubs or devices.

I was hoping for a simple answer but seems much more complex. A decent router in the middle might work but again would prefer to avoid too much wiring in the hallway and a router with big aerials sticking out isn’t ideal. Nothing is ever easy!
A2DY_22 m ago

Thanks. I am trying to have the vast majority of the kit hidden away. So …Thanks. I am trying to have the vast majority of the kit hidden away. So for example the switches would be under the stairs/in store rooms and then have the Ethernet sockets in the wall to plug in either the WiFi hubs or devices. I was hoping for a simple answer but seems much more complex. A decent router in the middle might work but again would prefer to avoid too much wiring in the hallway and a router with big aerials sticking out isn’t ideal. Nothing is ever easy!


Super hub is a router though, that is until you put it into modem mode - not sure why you are doing that rather than disabling its own wifi which is how I read your first diagram and would allow you to run two cables to both switches and remove the cascade.
Original Poster
Bertz992 m ago

Super hub is a router though, that is until you put it into modem mode - …Super hub is a router though, that is until you put it into modem mode - not sure why you are doing that rather than disabling its own wifi which is how I read your first diagram and would allow you to run two cables to both switches and remove the cascade.


There doesn’t seem to be anyway to disable the wireless unless it’s in modem mode.

I guess most sensible thing to do is leave the Superhub as is and have this connected to a single switch with all 9 devices connected to that.

Should that all work? Need to check the Superhubs ports are gigabit otherwise it won’t work.
A2DY_18th Mar

There doesn’t seem to be anyway to disable the wireless unless it’s in mod …There doesn’t seem to be anyway to disable the wireless unless it’s in modem mode. I guess most sensible thing to do is leave the Superhub as is and have this connected to a single switch with all 9 devices connected to that. Should that all work? Need to check the Superhubs ports are gigabit otherwise it won’t work.



help.virginmedia.com/sys…Hub
Original Poster
Bertz9927 m ago

https://help.virginmedia.com/system/templates/selfservice/vm/help/customer/locale/en-GB/portal/200300000001000/article/HELP-2413/Turn-off-the-wireless-connection-on-your-Virgin-Media-Hub


Thanks, that page wouldn’t load when I was looking on settings but that makes sense now as I’m on WiFi.
That seems the the logical way to go so would be something like below (assuming I can find a decent 10+ port gigabit switch for a decent price)

Does this seem a reasonable setup?33465106-D7mHu.jpg
A2DY_21 m ago

Thanks, that page wouldn’t load when I was looking on settings but that m …Thanks, that page wouldn’t load when I was looking on settings but that makes sense now as I’m on WiFi. That seems the the logical way to go so would be something like below (assuming I can find a decent 10+ port gigabit switch for a decent price)Does this seem a reasonable setup?[Image]


Yep seems reasonable- 2 switches also would work - just I would avoid cascading by running two cables from your router to them. In this manner your router is the backbone of your network.
Original Poster
Bertz9918 m ago

Yep seems reasonable- 2 switches also would work - just I would avoid …Yep seems reasonable- 2 switches also would work - just I would avoid cascading by running two cables from your router to them. In this manner your router is the backbone of your network.


Perfect thanks.
Using the Superhub as the backbone of the network is worrying considering how awful it is but dont have much choice and as long as this setup means if/when it gets replace or we swap suppliers is a straight swap then that’s perfect.
A2DY_22 m ago

Perfect thanks. Using the Superhub as the backbone of the network is …Perfect thanks. Using the Superhub as the backbone of the network is worrying considering how awful it is but dont have much choice and as long as this setup means if/when it gets replace or we swap suppliers is a straight swap then that’s perfect.


Yw

There is the choice as van1973 suggested he has the Super hub purely as a modem and a router inbetween this external point and his private network. His router is expensive for the wireless facilities it offers which wouldn't be of interest in your use case.

You can not get away without a router as this is what enables you to communicate from your network externally.

You are correct though if you stick with the superhub as the backbone it simplifies future upgrades/changes.
Why not run cat6e to each floor then use a router on each floor in ap mode. Will be easy to do and you should get really good coverage.

I did mine. Cat6e throughout the house and used an old router in ap mode and I've got really good network and WiFi coverage
Original Poster
Cunny18 m ago

Why not run cat6e to each floor then use a router on each floor in ap …Why not run cat6e to each floor then use a router on each floor in ap mode. Will be easy to do and you should get really good coverage.I did mine. Cat6e throughout the house and used an old router in ap mode and I've got really good network and WiFi coverage


That’s similar to what I’m aiming to do using the BT home WiFi hubs on each floor. Then alsousing the opportunity to put extra sockets in for devices which can be wired rather than rely solely on WiFi. On my last count we’ve got 32 devices on WiFi in the house at the moment, any of these I can get onto wired I will try to.
If you need any help or advice pm me.

I'd have 1 control point tho saves a lot of messing. Don't forget to let main router do the dchp requests
Original Poster
Cunny5 m ago

If you need any help or advice pm me.I'd have 1 control point tho saves a …If you need any help or advice pm me.I'd have 1 control point tho saves a lot of messing. Don't forget to let main router do the dchp requests


Thanks, appreciate that.

When you say one control point what does this mean?

if there is a better way of running it let me know, general setup is as above,
Just let your main router do all the work.
Setup each router going up on ip address.
So main router would be 192.168.0.1
First ap 192.168.0.2
Second ap 192.168.0.3 and so on.
Let your main router handle all dchp to avoid any conflicts.

What I also did was also run a coax feed to each room a cat6e socket was going, be it sky dish or vm feeds
You could also think about the wiring of the ap's.
Basically do you want them all coming to a main point or are you going to 'piggy back' off each ap
Cunny12 m ago

If you need any help or advice pm me.I'd have 1 control point tho saves a …If you need any help or advice pm me.I'd have 1 control point tho saves a lot of messing. Don't forget to let main router do the dchp requests


Sorry but I have to question your setup to begin with.

A router is a layer 3 device - i.e. ip address and you use for networking and subnetting

Switches and access points are layer 2 devices - i.e data link layer only working on the mac address (reason switching the OP super hub to solely a modem takes out a for example the dhcp services)

Buying routers to disable the routing functionality and not subnet seems a special way to go when access points themselves are cheaper.
Original Poster
Cunny4 m ago

Just let your main router do all the work. Setup each router going up on …Just let your main router do all the work. Setup each router going up on ip address. So main router would be 192.168.0.1 First ap 192.168.0.2 Second ap 192.168.0.3 and so on.Let your main router handle all dchp to avoid any conflicts.What I also did was also run a coax feed to each room a cat6e socket was going, be it sky dish or vm feeds


Great thanks. I’ll need to work out how to assign the IPs! Assuming that’s something I’d do the Superhub settings and then make sure the Mesh system isn’t doing anything with dchp.
Bertz9910 m ago

Sorry but I have to question your setup to begin with.A router is a layer …Sorry but I have to question your setup to begin with.A router is a layer 3 device - i.e. ip address and you use for networking and subnettingSwitches and access points are layer 2 devices - i.e data link layer only working on the mac address (reason switching the OP super hub to solely a modem takes out a for example the dhcp services) Buying routers to disable the routing functionality and not subnet seems a special way to go when access points themselves are cheaper.


A router will be a far better option solely for coverage.
Extenders are rubbish and give out slow speeds.
Another option would be homeplugs however in my experience my setup has worked far better.

I could not get any good coverage in my conservatory so I ran a cat6e feed over the house and directly in. Found an old cable router and used it in ap mode. I get speeds of upto 80mbps from a 100mbps service and all devices are fully wired into a switch or the router.

I tried using an extender, even with the cat6e connection was lucky to get over 3mbps.

If you allow each router to handle dchp on their own you will end up with conflicts. You need to let 1 device on your network manage the dchp requests when requested by a mac address
Cunny32 m ago

A router will be a far better option solely for coverage. Extenders are …A router will be a far better option solely for coverage. Extenders are rubbish and give out slow speeds. Another option would be homeplugs however in my experience my setup has worked far better.I could not get any good coverage in my conservatory so I ran a cat6e feed over the house and directly in. Found an old cable router and used it in ap mode. I get speeds of upto 80mbps from a 100mbps service and all devices are fully wired into a switch or the router.I tried using an extender, even with the cat6e connection was lucky to get over 3mbps.If you allow each router to handle dchp on their own you will end up with conflicts. You need to let 1 device on your network manage the dchp requests when requested by a mac address


Sorry Cunny but wireless tech stands on its own - you can buy it coupled in a router but a router primary role is for subnetting - hence it is in the OSI model layer 3. Same manufacturers sell same series with same wireless tech in routers and in their same series access points.

Hence why I question the setup you have gone for. Only time that would make sense to me is if you were leveraging routers you already had to save cost and as you have found out it adds to the complexity required to the setup. There are times you may want multiple routers to split up and subnet one network - although tbh not many home users I would expect to require this.

Further you are missing the op's setup which is using the mesh access point approach.

Yes if you have multiple dhcp servers on the same subnet without having them co ordinate with each other you are going to have conflict. DHCP leases IP addresses - IP is layer 3 - something the OP will not have multiple on to contend with your odd approach.
Edited by: "Bertz99" 18th Mar
Original Poster
Thanks Bertz99 and Cunny. Appreciate your input here and seems the mesh aspect could be confusing matters.

For me so long as the hardware setup of the approach is fit for purpose the settings involved can be worked through, I just want to make sure when I’m chasing dozens of meters of cabling through the walls and floors that it’ll actually work!

thanmks.
@bertz I'm unsure exactly what is 'odd' about my setup. And like I said I did have an old cable router in the garage that's now got a new lease of life

However I'm not going into it here with you.

Best of luck to op and his task/project
Edited by: "Cunny" 18th Mar
Original Poster
One more quick question for anyone in the know. Is cat6 the best to use?

ive seen 6e but nothing is clear on the differences. I’m going to need around 150m so want to make sure it’s futrueproof.
@Cunny - I would always find it odd as a router is used to subnet but I seen people on here advise buying 3 routers and using just one as a router.

e.g. R7000 nighthawk router is £140 - matching access point, the EX7000, is £80 - both use the BCM4360 for wireless comms and the EX7000 should be hardwired to your R7000 in this example.

3x r7000 = £420 and extra configuration to ensure 2 R7000 act like EX7000 access points and do not route.

1xR7000 + 2xEX7000 = £300 and less configuration.

I am not having a go - these forums are for sharing info, whilst I understand how you have got yours working, and am pleased you are clearly happy with your solution, I am not sure it is one I would 100% advocate it as the ideal with the exception of provisioning kit already owned to save money.

@A2DY also good luck - just make sure when you are doing those cable runs you leave some spares in situ
Edited by: "Bertz99" 19th Mar
A2DY_45 m ago

One more quick question for anyone in the know. Is cat6 the best to …One more quick question for anyone in the know. Is cat6 the best to use?ive seen 6e but nothing is clear on the differences. I’m going to need around 150m so want to make sure it’s futrueproof.


Cat 6 is fine just make sure it’s shielded.
A2DY_50 m ago

One more quick question for anyone in the know. Is cat6 the best to …One more quick question for anyone in the know. Is cat6 the best to use?ive seen 6e but nothing is clear on the differences. I’m going to need around 150m so want to make sure it’s futrueproof.


There isn't a formal standard on Cat 6e but rather an manufacturer "variable" enhancement.

howtogeek.com/704…se/

100% as Airbus says
Edited by: "Bertz99" 18th Mar
The "one big switch" diagram does mean wiring n times to each location.
The alternative is to use the hub (or hub as modem with separate router) to drive a trunk line to a switch on each floor - or to an AP on each floor and not bother with the mesh system

Hunting for cheap DD-WRT capable routers - the Linksys EA6350 at £54.99 on amazon is on the list, so with DD-WRT and some setting adjustment, each one would provide 4 wired ports from one trunk line, and the Wifi (set all Wifi to same SSID and key to allow roaming). maybe some more investigation required, but this is the first at a reasonable price that can be converted to DD-WRT (There are some cheaper Archer C2, but they could only do the "poor mans AP" by disabling router functions and connecting via a LAN port, so you only get 3 outputs instead of 4)
Edited by: "matth9999" 19th Mar
Have to be careful when buying Ethernet cable as the standards aren't regulated well. Cat 6e is a rogue spec, cat 6a or cat 6ea might hold better to the standards but there's no guarantee. Never go for CCA cable.

I like mesh due to the fact the ap do the signal strength switching and not the client device. Had to set mac filters on a speaker dock to prevent it from ping ponging between two different access points. Portable devices tend to do this as well but I would say it's more seamless now with newer tech and bigger buffers.
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