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Wireless link problems

Nov 04, 20023 mins
Cellular NetworksNetwork SecurityWi-Fi

Ron Nutter helps a reader who’s having trouble with a wireless link.

I have a wireless link between two locations. Location 1 has a D-Link DI-614+ router. Location 2 has a D-Link DWL-900AP+ access point set to wireless client mode. I can ping any computer at Location 2 from Location 1 but cannot ping the opposite way, from Location 2. Why

– Via the Internet

When using a wireless access point as a link to another physical location, you will need to set it up a little differently than if PCs were the only thing that would access them. As a general rule, access points have three modes of operation – access point, point-to-point link and point-to-multipoint link. In access point mode, the units should only respond to wireless cards in clients. In point to point, the wireless units will serve as a bridge or direct link to one other location. In point to multipoint, an access point at Location A can link to two or more access points in different locations.

I have looked at the specs of your two units. When you configure the wireless units for bridge mode, they won’t respond to client requests (from what I have seen in the systems I have worked with). Make sure that both of the units you’re working with have a bridge mode function in the firmware. If you don’t see it on both, make sure you have the units on the latest version of firmware. From what I have seen, I don’t think your two units will do exactly what you’re looking for – hence the problem you’re seeing. One of the units is a router/firewall and the other is just a basic access point. You need two access points (preferably the same manufacturer and model number). The access points, as a general rule, should be just Plain Jane wireless units with no firewall functionality.

If you need to have wireless access at each location in addition to the wireless link you have, you’ll need to put in an additional access point at each location. The difference here is that the additional units will not be set up in bridge mode and should be on a totally different channel than what is used for the bridge link. For example, if you have Channel 6 in use for the bridge link, you would want to use either Channel 1 or 11 for the local connections so you minimize an interference between the local wireless clients and the wireless link.