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Thread: Do I *NEED* a WAP to use NetRemote?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Do I *NEED* a WAP to use NetRemote?

    Kinda embarrassing asking such a noob question after wanting/preparing for/buying equipment for/waiting for/even evangelizing NetRemote for almost a year now, but...

    If I had a wireless PCI NIC in my HTPC, and a wireless CF card in my PPC, is that "good enough"? Even if (potentially) neither of them can "see" my WAP?

    My problem is that my wireless router is upstairs and toward the back of the house. (It resides there because our "office" is combined w/the upstairs guest bedroom, so that's where the printer lives, and since the wireless router has a built-in print server, it serves the main PC (via CAT5) and the notebook (via wifi.)

    The best solution would be a second WAP in the front part of the house so that the whole house is covered...
    (but at the moment, I'm not allowed to spend any more money on HT equipment. ops: )

    So, for now, I'm thinking that if I could beg/borrow/steal (not literally - but maybe pick one up so cheaply as to keep myself out of trouble :wink: ) an 802.11 PCI NIC, then, even if the HTPC and/or PPC can't see the wireless router upstairs, at least they can see each other.

    Would this work? Is it really that easy? It would be nice to finally start working w/NetRemote.

    Keep up the great work, Ben!
    Thankya... thankyaveramuch.

  2. #2
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    Default

    Do you need an AP? No.

    You can run the cards in ad-hoc mode which is peer to peer. I do this now with my Buffalo cards. Ad-Hoc mode is not such a standard as AP mode, and there are supposed to be combinations of cards that wont work - but I have not had any problems.

    Cheers,

    Gavim

  3. #3
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    Default

    As Brockgr mentioned, you can use ad hoc mode to directly connect one computer to another. However, in addition to potential vendor incompatibilities, expect the range and battery life to be greatly reduced. Also, the 'time to connect' is usually much longer than with a WAP.

    Considering that you can pick up a WAP for only slightly more than a PCI WiFi NIC, I think the WAP is the better investment.

    -Dave

  4. #4
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    Yep I agree with Dave - it really depends on the cost of AP's in your area and if you already have the cards. If you already have the cards, run in Ad-Hoc until you can sneak the AP into the house .

  5. #5
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    :?

    That doesn't make sense... Two PCs - neither connected to a LAN - both in the same workgroup, both with static IPs... how could this be anything but really fast? No other traffic "on the wire" - no packet collisions - no addressing/DNS issues to contend with...?????

    As far as range goes, that's easy - they'll never be more than 20 feet apart (although the HTPC *IS* in a closet...)
    Thankya... thankyaveramuch.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElvisIncognito
    :?

    That doesn't make sense... Two PCs - neither connected to a LAN - both in the same workgroup, both with static IPs... how could this be anything but really fast? No other traffic "on the wire" - no packet collisions - no addressing/DNS issues to contend with...?????

    As far as range goes, that's easy - they'll never be more than 20 feet apart (although the HTPC *IS* in a closet...)
    It makes a bit of sense that ad hoc would be a tough slog for a wifi adapter. In infrastructure mode, each device only has to communicate with the base station, allowing it to optimize it's transmission and power configuration to suit that single connection; the base station does the heavy lifting of repeating the packets back out to all the other other wifi devices in its larger transmission radius with its fixed, more powerful antenna.

    In ad hoc mode, every deveice must be constantly broadcasting and recieving, on the look out for other devices. It doesn't get the benefit of the WAp doing a lot of the broadcast work, plus the WAP is theoretically in the centre of the wifi hotspot, allowing devices to use less power to reach devices on the 'other side' of the WLAN.

    -Dave

  7. #7
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    I don't mean to be difficult, but what's the difference between only having to maintain a single connection (with the WAP) and only having to maintain a single connection (with the only other node on the wireless LAN (which is <= 20' away)?)
    Thankya... thankyaveramuch.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElvisIncognito
    I don't mean to be difficult, but what's the difference between only having to maintain a single connection (with the WAP) and only having to maintain a single connection (with the only other node on the wireless LAN (which is <= 20' away)?)
    This is just a hypothesis. I'm not a radio engineer, by my logical brain tells me that in infrastructure mode, the wifi device only needs to concern itself with one connection to it's associated base station - it can throttle back the transmission power. In ad hoc mode, even if only one conenction is active, the NIC must be prepared for the possibility of accepting *many* connections - the wifi device is actively searching for other connections via a broadcast beacon, and hence is running continually. Just a theory, but it is proven by the fact that you will see reduced battery life and crappier reception (not that reception will be much of an issue with the distance required in your case).

    -Dave

  9. #9
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    Elvis, I tried the ad-hoc mode. Simply put it worked, but far from reliably and far from satisfying. I bought an AP pretty soon. Anyway, you migh sell your PC NIC and buy a bridge, so you'll connect the PC to it via regular LAN and just use the wireless part for wireless devices, like I do with my laptop and my PPC. 8)
    Tor - managing director of the Cinema Inferno home theater and multi-zone sound system with Girder running the show in the back, NetRemote as the GUI and Media Center 17, PowerDVD and ZoomPlayer as playback software
    Hobsyssel mastiffs: http://www.hobsyssel.no

  10. #10
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    Just saw this simple comparison, on THG, of Ad-Hoc and Acess-Point modes.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/game/200303221/wifi-02.html

    Gavin

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