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Author Topic: Wireless Network (802.11G) in the shack  (Read 964 times)
KG8JF
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Posts: 298




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« on: April 07, 2004, 08:32:13 PM »

Does anyone have any experience with a wireless computer network in and around the hamshack?  The frequencies used are in the 2.4 gigahertz range.  Intuitively, I can think that there would be one gigantic problem, what with all that rf around.  The signal strength of transmitted network communications is in the 100-200 mw range
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2004, 08:40:30 PM »

I don't have a wireless network in the shack, but do use cordless telephones operating at 2.4 GHz and also a wireless headset operating in the same range, and not only don't they cause or receive any problem to or from the ham gear, they don't even bother each other!

WB2WIK/6
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K8AC
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Posts: 1465




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« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2004, 08:42:12 PM »

I recently experimented with an 802.11b link between PCs here.  After much frustration, I determined that the inability to communicate between the two nodes only 15 feet apart was caused by the 2.4 GHz wireless telephone on my desk.  I thought the spread-spectrum technology would not have that problem, but it did.  If you have other 2.4 GHz devices in your home, you might have problems with or caused by those as well.  
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N0VZ
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« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2004, 08:45:01 PM »

I have a wireless network (802.11b)set up at home including a desktop and laptop I use in the shack.  I have not had any problems in the shack due to the wireless network or with the wireless network itself.
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JDEVARIE
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« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2004, 08:46:05 PM »

I currently have two access points that use the 802.11 protocols, one of them is a G version. I have not had any trouble with it yet. I am only a tech and have been mostly playing on everything at or above 6M. I have listened to the lower bands  and have not noticed a big difference in receive performance between my shack and when I am away with my rig. I have not noticed a performance problem with the wireless network either. I have a Yaesu FT-897D that on 2 meters outputs only 50W which has not affected the network (yet).  I would imagine that higher power may affect the performance of the network. Sometimes I can hear coupling on speakers around the house when I am transmitting.

my $.02
Jim
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OBSERVER11
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Posts: 657




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« Reply #5 on: April 07, 2004, 09:45:45 PM »

I have an 802.11b network that does not work very well in the house. I get too much interferance from the 2.4GHz phones.
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W2AEW
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« Reply #6 on: April 07, 2004, 09:55:43 PM »

I also have a wired/wireless router in the shack next to the cable modem, along with HF and 2m gear.  No problems what-so-ever.  3 computers are wired with cat-5, and 2 others are using 802.11b.  (no, they're not ALL in the shack, HI HI).
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KD5JFT
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« Reply #7 on: April 07, 2004, 11:23:45 PM »

I have a laptop w/WiFi card in the shack.  Also two additional computers (10/100 Base T wired cat 5) in the shack.  Also occasionally (but not often) a 2.4G wireless phone.  A 800 or 900Mhz cell phone also.  No problems.  I intend to have the cable company install a new outlet in the shack so I am planning to move the AP/router into the shack also.  I also intend to install commercial 150Mhz and 460Mhz rigs so I can talk to work (PD) and Sheriff's Office.  I have a Yaesu FT-726R, a FT-847, a FT-90, a VX-5R, and a VX-1R.  No interference between any of the ham equipment or the commercial stuff.

KD5JFT
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KI4BUM
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« Reply #8 on: April 07, 2004, 11:49:01 PM »

Use channel 6 on your wireless access points and your cordless phone problems will go away
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K0RFD
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Posts: 1368




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« Reply #9 on: April 07, 2004, 11:53:15 PM »

I have 802.11B in the shack and a wireless router about 50 feet away in the house.  No HF or VHF interference from the wireless per se, however the computer and monitor generate other birdies of their own.  I detect no change in the noise floor when I use the wireless card's software to turn its transmitter on and off.

As others have mentioned, however, it really does a number on my 2.4 Ghz cordless phones.

This is a little off topic, but if you ARE going to do the wireless thing, make sure you change the default SSID and default administrative Username and Password on your router.  You should probably turn the beacon off too to make yourself harder to find, and move off the default channel (usually 6).  I have a neighbor who has, out of ignorance, left their system set up with all the factory defaults, and if I wasn't such an honest guy, I'd drop my cable Internet provider--no need to pay for my own high speed internet if I can use theirs for free.  Changing the defaults makes this scenario less likely.  If you're super paranoid and don't mind a minor performance hit, you should also enable WEP -- Wireless Encryption Protocol.  
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K9COX
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« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2004, 12:46:12 AM »

I do not have a problem with the wireless network, however the wired network can be heard on 2 meters.
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W3JJH
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« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2004, 11:07:44 AM »

I have no problems using 802.11g in the shack.  My 2.4-GHz phone does not cause any problems either.  The power level of the transmitter in my wireless base station (an Apple Airport Extreme) is only +15 dBm (or about 30 mW).  I operate my home network on channel to be as far removed from the ham band as possible.
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WA3KYY
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Posts: 3




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« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2004, 11:10:44 AM »

I don't have wireless in the shack itself but do have an access point about 25 feet away across the basement.  We use it to bring our broadband connection in the basement to the upper floors of the house. It works fine when I am operating on HF and VHF.  I also have a 2.4 GHz cordless phone with two handsets and have not had any problems with the wireless lan and the phones so far.  I do occasionally cause the DSL modem to reset when I transmit on certain frequencies but I think I can correct that with some ferrite cores on the phone line and power cord to the modem.

73,
Mike
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N6YMA
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« Reply #13 on: April 08, 2004, 04:54:14 PM »

I have 802.11g in the shack and thoughout the house. I'm using a D-Link AirPlus Extreme G router and the matching cards, except for one laptop that uses a Broadcom interface (also 802.11g).

There have been no cases of interference between the radios (VHF/UHF and HF) and the two computers in the shack. The router is also in the shack, along with the cable modem. The laptop is used at various places in the house, and there is another machine nearly 80 feet from the router.

We do have a Panasonic 2.4GHz phone system - haven't noticed any trouble there either. My wife is frequently on the phone at her computer, with no interference.

Please heed the advice to make sure that your network is secure!

73, Bob N6YMA
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K0RFD
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Posts: 1368




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« Reply #14 on: April 08, 2004, 10:50:01 PM »

Didn't want to hijack the thread, but there is one more thing I didn't remember to post until after I posted the "make sure your network is secure" idea.

I believe the single most important thing you can do with wireless is to enable the "MAC Address Filtering" option on your router regardless of whether it takes a few minutes more work for you.

the "MAC Address" is a hardware address that is programmed into each and every piece of network hardware when it is built.  It has pieces and parts; the first few bytes have to do with the manufacturer, and the last few have to do with the specific piece of hardware, much like a serial number.

Enabling the "MAC Address Filter" in your wireless router says, in effect, "Only talk to the actual pieces of hardware I tell you to talk to".

With the filter turned off, the default, any hardware can talk to your network, provided they can find it.

With the filter turned on, YOU get to tell your network which specific network devices are allowed to talk to the network.

A MAC address is a lot harder to spoof than an IP address.  They are not the same.

You will have to spend the time to re-discover the MAC addresses of your hardware ("re-discover" assumes you have thrown away boxes, manuals, labels, anything with the actual hardware MAC address).  But if my neighbor had MAC address filtering turned on, there is no way I could have discovered the presence of the network, the fact that I could have used the default password to access their administrative options, and on and on.

Please secure your wireless network.
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