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Wireless Crap




This is an expensive lesson to learn so hopefully I help at least one person from making the same mistake I made regarding setting up WiFi in our home.  Now our home is a brick ranch that has plaster walls making it very challenging to provide great coverage from one side of the house to the other.

First I tried ASUS router / wifi combo since it got such huge reviews but it turned off and never came back on.

Installed Apple TimeMachine with all the airport expresses throughout the house and if you are a big Apple person like I am, it worked great until you need to expand or replace a device since they no longer make them so now my Apple network slowly fades to black.

Next biggest thing is the Netgear Nighthawk as my router and wifi solution since it claimed to cover the most distance with the fastest speeds.  It does have decent coverage but it cannot get to the other side of the house so I purchased a NetGear extender.  What a waste of money that was.  I sorta works and the bandwidth is so horrible it made it useless.

Moved on to the NetGear ORBI Pro Mesh Network.  Spent some serious coin these.  Was using one as the router/wifi in the office and then put one in the garage and one in the living room.  They worked pretty good, so I thought.  The app is not so good but it was useable.  Parental controls are weak.  I checked one of the satellites and it showed 0 devices connected, same for the garage, all devices were connecting to the main router in the office.  Suggestion was to reset and reconfigure Orbi's, reset and got the home office router/wifi working, then the garage was working, living room would never pair/sync again with the base, even if I moved the satellite to the same room.  Tried a spare orbi satellite and same results.  What a piece of garbage.  Yea yea, so they claim AC3000 but when I was connected I didn't feel it was as fast as others.  Definitly nothing to write all these reviews I see people writing online.  I believe its a bunch of lies.

Purchased Gryphon (three pack) and replaced the Orbi's.  Setup was pretty easy, I can see devices connecting to each mesh hotspot.  I can roam successfully but again the software is pretty limiting.  Also you must have the app installed on your phone. It does not work any other way.  My family and I started noticing that some of our network devices would just randomly disconnect network and reconnect.  Normally in the middle of a movie or a show.  This has become so annoying that I am scrapping this as well.

Newest purchase is

  • 1 - Ubiquity DreamStation (not the pro version)
  • 2 - NanoHD access points
  • 1 - USW-24-POE Gen2 (basically a 24port switch that has 8 gig non-poe ports and 16 IEEE 802.3at PoE ports which is what I need to power my security cameras and those two NanoHD access points)

I don't have them setup yet but excited to give them a shot since most professional IT people and geeks all around love the ubiquity products.  Stepping up my home network game to the pros.

Here are my steps of attack

  1. Hook up the Dream Machine, turn it on and go through the setup process
  2. Hook up power to the switch, run a cable from switch to dream machine and turn on the switch
  3. Log into UniFi on the dream machine and setup the switch ports to work for my network plans which may include separate VLANs.  Setup ports 21-22 as aggregate ports for QNAP using the LAG protocol.
  4. Run the CAT6 cable from switch through the attic to my desired spots on either end of the house for the two NanoHD access points.  Plug in Access points into switch and setup the access points in the controller on the Dream Machine.
  5. Plug in Printer, Ring and QNAP storage into the non-poe ports.
  6. Plug the 10 PoE Cameras into ports 1-10 which are IEEE 802.3at supported.
  7. Go into QNAP QVR Pro and setup 8 of the 10 cameras with the 8 free included licenses..  if I likey, then I spend the $259 for 4 extra licenses.
  8. Now play with the controller like enable deep packet inspection, turn on IPS and a few other cool tricks like guest network etc.

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So far so good.  VERY VERY happy with the dream machine. The coverage without the two additional access points was very impressive.  Speed is solid. Only thing lacking is parental controls.  Yes you can assign a SSID (wireless radio) the kids attach to and you can schedule when that WiFi is available so I can shut it down in the evening and turn it back on in the morning or even have it shut off besides when they are allowed to use network access for things like school work, online video games.  I also assigned OpenDNS to that WiFi so it blocks some not favorite sites.

I can see all sites that are visited but I can't tell who visited what currently. From my research I need to get something else (possibly the Disney Circle) or install software on the devices which I won't do.

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