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TOPIC: Advantages of wireless access points

Advantages of wireless access points 14 years 3 months ago #13784

Hello all,

I'm a new memeber but have been coming to these forums for a long time.

I have a question reguarding the advantages of using a wireless access point over say using a wireless router. I have been researching adding wireless connectivity to an already in place wired network infrastructure. Security is a big priority so if one is more secure than the other let me know. I am stuck on the issue of the advantages of a wireless access point over a wireless router. To my knowledge most wireless routers have the option to run in an "access point" mode which to makes them a more attractive purchase. So if anyone could point me to some articles outlining the advantages or specific scenerios for using access points, or if someone could just give me some examples for using access points over wireless routers it would be a big help to me.

Thanks in advance.

Advantages 14 years 3 months ago #13789

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at first glance there is not advantage of a WAP over a router. here are the reasons why.Consider using a WLAN router for the following reasons:

IP address sharing: WLAN routers offer strong benefits in the home and small office setting. For example, you can subscribe to a cable modem service that provides a single IP address through DHCP to the router, and the router then provides IP addresses via DHCP to clients on your local network. NAT then maps a particular client on the local network to the ISP-assigned IP address whenever that client needs to access the Internet. As a result, you need a router if you plan to have more than one networked devices on a local network sharing a single ISP-assigned address. Instead of having one box for the router and another box for the access point, a WLAN router provides both in the same box.

Connect multiple networks: WLAN routers are also ideal for wireless networks in public areas, especially if there are multiple networks that are accessible. For instance, a University may have a separate network in each of its buildings. Students sitting outside might want to gain access one or more of these networks and also surf the Internet. A WLAN router enables them to access everything through the wireless connection.

Improve network management: WLAN routers in an enterprise environment give network administrators an extra way to monitor and update their networks. In addition to being able to log on either locally or remotely via the wired network, they will be able to log on wirelessly and make any observations or changes.

Improve network performance: Because routers only send packets to specific, directed addresses, they do not forward the often numerous broadcast packets that are sent out by other devices. This results in an increase in throughput because of lower utilization on the network and less work needed by the router. This enables WLANs to operate much more effectively. The router, however, will offer more delay than an access point, but the impacts are generally unnoticeable.

Increase security: A strong advantage of WLAN routers is that they provide an added layer of security, both on the wired side and wireless side. The wired side is usually protected by a firewall and has extensive access control filters. These filters can be set based on MAC (medium access control) address, IP address, URL, domain name, and even a set schedule that allows access only at certain times. If an unauthorized user tries to access the network, an e-mail alert is immediately sent to the network administrator. For supporting sensitive information, many WLAN routers support multiple and concurrent IPSec sessions, so users can more securely access networks through a range of virtual private network (VPN) clients. Most WLAN routers also implement wired equivalent privacy (WEP) encryption
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WAP 14 years 3 months ago #13791

There are also combined solutions that might be of interest if you're thinking of deploying several "access points" in your building. These typically have a central box that provides firewall/router/encryption etc from which you run point-to-point cable out to each of your access points in the ceiling (or wherever). The big advantage here is that all your APs can easily be made to work together to form a single wireless network with wider coverage than from a single AP. Costs more money though

Re: Advantages of wireless access points 14 years 3 months ago #13799

Thanks for the reply's , you've both cleared a few issues up for me. I had originally felt that a wireless router would be best for our situation since the area i need to cover is relatively small, one router should be enough.

Thanks again

effective solution 14 years 3 months ago #13806

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your best solution now is to get a brand new wireless router which gives Super G wireless protocol service (its got 8 times more coverage than 802.11g, and supposed to be 800 times faster!!) this has not been made a standard yet, but Netgear, DLink, Linksys, and TrendMart have already starting production of wireless routers with this new wireless protocol. it is also backward compatible with 802.11b and g. but if you get the legacy wireless receivers from the same manufacturer from which you got the wireless router, you would be able to use the power of Super G.
Picking pebbles on the shore of the networking ocean

Re: Advantages of wireless access points 14 years 3 months ago #13809

Just to make things clear Super G is not a protocol from IEEE but more like an extension of the 802.11g protocol, which promises more than it can give.
The best thing is to buy devices that support the new 802.11n protocol which provides much better coverage using MIMO.
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