Does having multiple RJ45 jacks degrade the Internet signal a lot?

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On Mon, 26 Dec 2011 05:19:33 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

The Ubiquiti 15volt POE adapter integral power supply is 0.8 amps.
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On Sun, 25 Dec 2011 08:39:35 +0000 (UTC), Chuck Banshee

All ethernet devices are "active". The last time there was a "passive" hub was with ARCNET. It's just an "ethernet switch".
The added ethernet switch is there simply to allow for more ethernet ports than the 4 provided by your WRT54G router.

This will require a bit of planning. If this was new work, the idea would be to have a jack on every wall. That's often overkill for rooms that are unlikely to need more than one. The balance is to have a jack on each wall that straddles a door. That's because it's rather awkward and messy to run cables across a doorway. Therefore, try to locate your wall jacks so that any cords do not cross walk ways, doors, and traffic lanes.

I suggest you spend the money and use separate cables to each wall jack. Eventually, you're going to install an NAS (network attached storage) server, for storing such things as videos, photos, music, apps, and junk. Gigabit ethernet is the way to get decent speed out of NAS servers. It's also useful if you use a DVR that allows saving shows on a PC. Anyway, gigabit requires all 8 wires.
Unfortunately, you bought your CAT5 at Home Despot and therefore overpaid. Depending on your topology, my guess is about 50ft per cable run. At that rate, your 500ft roll will not be enough cable. If you're short on cash, split the cable between two jacks, but my recommendation is to spend the money on more cable.

Holdit. We may have a problem. It appears that you are using "double NAT", where you have two devices doing NAT (the UBNT M2 and the WRT54G). If you're going to do anything that involves incoming connections (VoIP, remote desktop, games), you'll probably find it easier to have a single easily configurable NAT device. I suggest you turn OFF the DHCP server and NAT in the UBNT M2 radio, and leave the NAT to the WRT54G. This way, the UBNT M2 delivers a single routable IP address from the ISP to the WRT54G which then provides non-routable IP addresses to all the home devices. Note that there's really nothing fatally wrong with double NAT. It's just easier to deal with single NAT.

Maybe. At 10ft, I suggest LMR400 cable and Type N connector. At 2.4GHz, 10ft of LMR400 has a loss of about 0.6dB or about 10%. Good enough. If you go to the next size smaller cable, LMR195, the loss is 1.85dB or about 35% loss. That's still acceptable depending on how strong a signal you're getting from your WISP.
However, the UBNT Bullet M2 radios were not designed to mount or operate in that manner. They were made to screw into the back of the antenna panel. There's also a risk of getting water into the coax cable, which will dramatically increase losses. You'll need to waterproof the RF connectors. I use 1" wide PTFE plumbing tape (1/2" will work and is easier to find) around the connector and partly up the coax cable. Then, wrap the PTFE tape with common electrical tape to keep it in place. Spray with clear Krylon for UV protection.

Careful with the grade of cable. Outdoor can be anything from UV proof CAT5 to gel filled, armored, thick jacket, and shielded cable. A non-penetrating (extra thick) outer jacket is probably all you'll need.

Note that most UBNT PoE is not 802.3af compliant and is therefore non-standard. This is not really a problem, just a warning to be careful what you plug into the device. Ubiquiti claims that they went this route to save costs.

Think about using some kind of tubular feed through. Don't forget the drip loop on the outside. Nail the cable to the wall with something like this: <http://www.cablegiant.com/default.aspx?p_id=4&product_id 90> Black is probably better than white for UV resistance.

You don't need an ethernet switch here unless you want wired internet access in the garage. The easiest way is to just attach an RJ45 plug to the end of some more CAT5. Plug it into the PoE adapter and continue to run the cable into the house.
However, if you want ethernet in the garage, there's an IP layout problem. The cable run between the UBNT M2 and the WRT54G WAN port will have a single IP address from the ISP on it (if you turn off NAT in the UBNT M2). If you install an extra ethernet switch in this line, there's only one IP address for 2 devices to fight over, which won't work. The right way(tm) to run ethernet in the garage is to bring a 2nd cable back from a LAN port on the WRT54G back to the garage for users. I wouldn't bother.
I don't really have any favorite ethernet switches. I like Netgear switches because of the metal case, which is easier to mount and tends to survive better than plastic cases. Netgear also tends to use 12V power supplies, which I find more reliable than 5V power supplies. 12V is also better for battery backup (12v gel cell and charger). However, even the 12V supplies have problems: <http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/pics/repair/slides/Netgear%20DSA-12R-12.html

If you must... I would still suggest running 2 cables.
Incidentally, I've found a LAN cable continuity tester especially useful for catching my wiring errors. <http://www.ebay.com/itm/220895828757

Close. One CAT5 cable from the PoE adapter in the garage to the WAN (internet) port of the WRT54G. The rest of the house wiring originates from the LAN ports on the WRT54G. The 2nd CAT5 cable, going back to the garage, goes to one of the WRT54G LAN ports, and might be used run a 2nd wireless access point.

I'm assuming this ethernet switch is in the same general area as the WRT54G. Essentially, it's a port expander. My guess is about 8 ports minimum. 16 ports doesn't cost that much more.

See my comments on the cable run between the PoE adapter in the garage and the WRT54G WAN (internet) port. It should not have any additional devices connected to this run. ALL (and I do mean ALL) user devices connect either to the 4 LAN ports on the WRT54G, or the ports on the nearby 8/16 port ethernet switch. That puts them all on the same side of the router.

Well, I can make a drawing and post it if necessary, but I think the previous paragraph is clear enough. It would easier if you did the necessary documentation (because I'm lazy).

Mostly yes. However, it's difficult to offer advice when you severely limit your descriptions. I like numbers. Model numbers, distances, sizes, lengths, distances, heights, and all the other stuff it takes to make real calculations. The quality of the answers you receive will largely depend on the quality of the numbers that you supply.
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wrote: (blah-blah=blah...)
I forgot to mumble something about the location of the wireless router. In general, the place where all the wires come together in a star topology is a rats nest of cables. In home installation, the mess is usually hidden behind a desk, behind the TV, in a closet, inside a drawer, or buried in the garage: <http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/pics/drivel/slides/mess01.html The ethernet wires like to live close to the floor. However, wireless likes to live as high as possible in order to avoid obstructions in the house (i.e. furniture). It might be useful to locate the wireless router on a high shelf, while hiding the ethernet switch somewhere near the floor.
Incidentally, the stiff heavy black cables coming out of the back wall are gel filled, shielded, and thick jacketed CAT5 cable. The ends are terminated with special RJ45 plugs designed to accommodate the oversized cable. There was enough spring tension in the cables to unplug themselves.
The cables ran underground near a swimming pool which apparently leaked a bit. That made the wires continuously wet. The jacket and sticky gooey gel prevented moisture incursion into the cable, but did nothing to prevent water from creeping over the outside of the cable, and dripping into the cabinet box. A drip loop at the point of entry would have prevented this, but that was impossible due to the method of installation and the rather stiff cable. I ended up wrapping the cables in a sponge, with vinyl tubing to a collection bucket.
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I've had really bad luck with Netgear, which is why I suggested Dlink. YMMV. Dlink has metal gate versions of their gear.
Regarding double NAT, that is really annoying. Some routers can detect the double NAT (don't ask me how) and warn you.
Most DSL modems are one port routers. This can lead to address conflicts. I really wish the modem manufacturers just expected the customer to use a router. I don't know one person with broadband that doesn't have a router attached. AT$T stared selling DSL modems with routers probably to stop the customer service calls.
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That doesn't make sense. Why would a single port router lead to address conflicts?

If the DSL modem already includes a router, why are people adding a second router? I know there are some edge cases, but I'm wondering about the majority.
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wrote:

Well, this is messy, but I think you might appreciate the details. I'll use the common Speedstream 4200 DSL modem as an example. When installed in the approved AT&T manner, the ethernet port delivers 192.168.1.64 to the external router. The management IP address of the DSL modem is 192.168.1.1.
When connected to a typical Linksys router, the router also wants to use 192.168.1.1 as it's IP address. That's not going to work, and the DSL modem automagically switches to 192.168.0.1 and delivers 192.168.0.64. (This is not 100% reliable, causes some odd problems, and is largely responsible for why Belkin and others are delivering routers using 192.168.2.1).
At first glance, this arrangement looks like double NAT. It is, but with a difference. All IP ports in the DSL modem are forwarded to the ethernet port, so there's no problem with incoming traffic not making it to the router. Were this a "real" double NAT setup, the first router (in the DSL modem) would NOT have any ports forwarded by default.
The catch is that you can only forward ALL the IP ports to one IP address. That means that the DSL modem can only do the NAT thing to one IP address, and therefore to only one device. If that device is a router, there's no problem. If you try to connect an ethernet switch to the DSL modem, and plug in multiple computahs, only one computah will work.
There's one other item that might be of interest. The DSL modem intercepts all traffic on the WAN (DSL) side destined to the management IP address (192.168.1.1). Normally, the external router is configured to send everything to the internet, except the IP's on the LAN side (192.168.1.xxx). If you plug 192.168.1.1 into the web browser, the router will send it to the internet, and the DSL modem will not respond. So, they violate some RFC, and trap this address, sending it to the local LAN side, and then to the management web server inside the modem.
The problem is that the 4200 seems to have a botched implementation of this undocumented feature. The later DSL modems work well, as do most cable modems. Older modems lack this feature and require a static route on the WAN side to get to the DSL modem management web page.
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On 12/25/2011 10:18 PM, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

My head is about to explode like that episode on Star Trek with Harry Mud. Norman coordinate. Or maybe Nomad being confused about Kirk being the creator.
I don't install enough wired system to be good at it. I get it working, lose all knowledge, then relearn everything when someone begs me to hook up a router.
I have the modem address at 192.168.1.254. The router is at 192.168.123.1. Hell if I recall why I had to set them up as totally different networks, other than I had conflict otherwise. The modem is an 2wire used commonly on AT&T bought off of Craigslist. My ISP sold me some POS that would lock up. [Asking for a new modem got me a new POS that was worse than the first, plus a year's lock in.] Say what you want about 2wire gear, it never locks up for me. It also detected the double NAT, bitched at me, turned off it's firewall and DMZed to my router. I was both dissed and pleased at the same time. The thought of having to make it all work again is what I suppose keeps me from replacing the flaky Linksys router.
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A loaf of bread should be eaten one slice at a time. Trying to swallow the whole loaf in one gulp doesn't work.

That's generally a good idea to: 1. Avoid being unable to access the DSL modem diagnostics if the DHCP server in the router assigns the same IP to some computah. 2. Being able to glue two networks together through a VPN. If they were both on the same Class C network (192.168.pick-a-number.xxx), then there's a chance of IP address duplication.

Ummm... 2 wire doesn't make any DSL modems. They make combination DSL modem/routers.
My guess(tm) is that would be a 2701HG-B. There's a fair chance you have one with a marginal power supply. See: <
http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/pics/repair/2Wire-power-supply.jpg
<
http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/pics/repair/2Wire-power-supplies.jpg
It also doesn't have any way to save the setup, not remote admin, and some features disabled by AT&T.

ISP's sell what they can support.

I've seen all kinds of bizarre failures that I originally attributed to the 2wire modem/router. I eventually discovered it was the power supply.

You don't seem to have much luck buying hardware. I can sympathize, but I suspect your search for the ultimate reliable router is an exercise in futility. I haven't seen one yet that I can't kill with various activities. For a while, opening too many streams would kill off those not designed for BitTorrent. Others will blow up with too much outgoing bandwidth for file sharing. Still other would die on wireless as standards evolved and were debugged. All I can suggest is that you keep is simple. Avoid features that you'll never use. Also buy from a vendor that updates the firmware for their products that they no longer sell. That eliminates 2wire, Belkin, and possibly DLink.
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On 12/26/2011 8:30 AM, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

I do have a 2701HG, but not on AT&T. I managed to get it to run on what is now Megapath. They made a modem as well, based on a sample of one I saw at a house in Vegas. You can't buy a 2wire in a store as far as I know. They only sell to ISPs. I've heard about the power supplies being a problem, but thus far, no problem in 3 years, and the unit was used. I grabbed another at the flea market should it croak.
Sell what they support. Well sort of. My isp have been bought once and merged twice. I have a decent collection of crappy DSL modems, only being a Zyxel which is supposed to be good. I have an old modem from Telocity (whatever that Cupertino company was called) that never locked up, but I couldn't figure out how to hook it up to Covad when Telocity went TU.
Note that Linksys will not update my router firmware. There is a GPL issue, which was discussed elsewhere on this newsgroup. Not only will they not update the firmware, they won't even put it on the net for download. I can certify Linksys as a company that won't upgrade at least one model of router, namely my WRT330N. [The New Egg reviews are not very good. I got it when it came out, so there wasn't information out there.]
I guess next time I will spring for a Cisco branded router. I assume they don't leave their small business customers out to sea.
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wrote:

Not applicable/relevant. The problem isn't that the same IP address might be assigned twice. The problem is that there's a router in between these two same-numbered networks. Can't do that. See my more detailed reply to miso.

My understanding is that different subnets are required for a different reason, not to avoid IP address duplication. If both ends of a VPN are using the same subnet, how would the VPN endpoint know that traffic should be passed through the tunnel?
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wrote:

I've been fighting that problem with VPN's since they were invented. What a VPN does is assign a block of IP addresses, that belong to the other end of the VPN tunnel, to the local network. For example: Remote Network = 192.168.222.xxx Local Network = 192.168.111.xxx The remote VPN router is configured to deliver a block of addresses to be used by VPN callers. Let's say that: Remote Network VPN address pool = 192.168.222.50 -> 99 Remote Network DHCP pool = 192.168.222.100 -> .253
When I connect via the VPN tunnel, my computah will have two IP addresses assigned to it. One is something like 192.168.111.xxx, which is used to talk to machines on the local network. The other is an address from the remote VPN address pool, something like 192.168.222.55. This works well and there are no duplicated IP's.
However, let's pretent for a moment that the Class C networks on both ends are the same. Both system use the 192.168.111.xxx address block. The local DHCP server has no knowledge of the remote VPN pool. It assigns addresses based on NOT being able to ping addresses. Since it can't ping anything on the remote end until AFTER the VPN tunnel has been successfully established, there's a very real chance that the local DHCP server will dispense IP addresses that are currently in use at the remote end.
I've seen it happen and it sucks. The worst case is duplication of the router IP address. If both routers have the same IP address, there are several surprises. The most obvious is that the default gateway is now duplicated on two devices. Outgoing packets don't know whether to hit the internet via the the local router or the remote router. It's not unusual to connect to a remote VPN, and then have all that computers internet traffic go out to the internet via the remote router, which is usually quite slow. Another problem is the inability to administer both routers. When I setup a VPN, I have to have access to both routers. If they both have the same IP address on the VPN, that's not going to happen.
For a while, I was administering a remote VPN that was on 192.168.111.xxx, which was the same as my office LAN (because their admin didn't have a clue and just cloned my setup). When I connected, I could not see their NAS box. That's because my office network printer was on the same IP as their NAS box.
Some VPN implimentations take all this into consideration and make an effort to at least prevent gateway IP duplication. In effect, it hides the remote router, making unwanted outgoing traffic impossible, but also blocks remote admin. Sonicwall does this quite well. Linksys and Netgear do not.
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wrote:

I think you're missing what I'm saying. It's trivial to adjust the DHCP scope so that DHCP collisions are completely avoided. Many times, it's also easy to ensure that static assignments, including the gateway, are not duplicated. Given all of that, my point is that I still don't think it will work because the VPN endpoint won't know that it should send traffic through the tunnel if both ends of the tunnel are on the same subnet.
Have you tried that? I don't have the resources at the moment, but I don't think it will work.

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wrote:

Perhaps for small networks it's trivial. This was a series of four medical offices which merged. I was part of the effort to standardize the apps and network. Including remote users and VPN users, there were about 200 machines, which was barely enough to be accommodated by a single Class C IP block. Instead, we renumbered the networks of each remote office to avoid duplication problems. It was not particularly complicated, but it was time consuming and required a rehearsal.
For a typical home user, this problem is not even an issue. The IT department of wherever they're trying to VPN to takes care of the issues. In most cases, they simply force ALL traffic from the connecting client machine to go through the tunnel. The disconnects the user from his own LAN, and forces plenty of wasted traffic going through the VPN, but is the safest and most secure method. One could even have duplicated gateway IP's and it would still work. Too bad local network printers won't print, but there are workarounds (i.e. USB printing).

Sure. Let's try a bit of math. I have about 15 customer sites that run a VPN of some manner. Each site consumes about 10 static IP's, 10 dynamic IP's, and needs a VPN IP pool of perhaps 20 IP's. That's 40 IP's per site. If all these sites subscribed to the consumer brand of VPN router, which defaults to 192.168.1.xxx, I would need 15*40`0 unique IP addresses to avoid duplication. Obviously, this is not going to fit in a single Class C IP block, which allows only 256 addresses. I can widen the netmask to perhaps /22 for 1024 addresses, but many cheap routers don't work well with more that 256 IP's. Obviously, not all 15 customer sites need a tunnel between them, so this estimate is worst case. Still, it does illustrate why I have a simple rule for assigning IP blocks for remote sites with VPN's. I pick a random IP block starting with 192.168.[3-254].xxx. I avoid building networks using 192.168.[0-2].xxx as these are where the typical home routers are located.
Incidentally, since I started doing this perhaps 10 years ago, I haven't had many address conflict problems. I've also fixed a few small networks that were having weird call in problems by renumbering the office LAN so that the home users can use whatever IP block their router manufacturer finds fashionable.

Agreed. I think I stated that when I mentioned the problem of duplicated gateway (default route) IP addresses.

Of course. Many times with many variations on weirdness and failure depending on flavor (PPTP or IPSec), hardware, firmware, client software, and versions. I have the resources, but I'm lazy/busy and don't want to do anything more while waiting the worlds slowest backup to finish (USB 1.1).
This is interesting but I think we're way off the original question and subject, whatever they might be.
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On 12/27/2011 6:21 PM, Jeff Liebermann wrote:

I thought the discussion involved dueling routers. ^_^
TDD
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wrote:

<big snip>

Yay! Progress!

Argh! Nope, not progress. You're still missing my point. Oh well.

You left a lot of things hanging.
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wrote:

Trial by combat was easier.
One last try. This is the article that started the ummm... discussion on the modem/router/bridge/box/whatever functions:
<http://groups.google.com/group/alt.internet.wireless/msg/ec852b46d94fa7c1 Is there anything in this one rant that you find wrong, dubious, debatable, argumentative, fishy, etc? Actually, I just found a small mistake, but I'm not telling.
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wrote:

This was my follow-up to that post.
I think we've addressed everything, some more than once, except your paragraph that begins with "There's one other item that might be of interest." There wasn't anything in that paragraph that made sense, so I assume your small mistake is there. I'm not worried about correcting all mistakes, especially small ones. I just wanted to figure out what you were trying to say. I'm not sure, but I think it might relate to the "redirection" topic that you kept steering back to for some reason. If so, we're done.
On the VPN stuff, I give up. My head hurts and the wall is getting damaged.
Thanks for the discussion. I appreciate it.
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wrote:

It makes sense to me. It was my initial explanation of how the DSL modem was redirecting outgoing traffic to its management port. I don't think I could explain it much better.

Agreed. I'm now behind on my year end bookkeeping and billing. If I go broke, it's your fault. Actually, I was looking for a suitable diversion.

Ok. Bug me if you want to try again. I had to learn most of that the hard way. It wasn't in any of the books on VPN setups.

Y'er welcome.
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wrote:

Oh, ok, it makes sense now, but only after holding the following sentence up to a mirror (since it's completely backwards): "The DSL modem intercepts all traffic on the WAN (DSL) side destined to the management IP address (192.168.1.1)."
Change WAN to LAN and DSL to Ethernet. Little things like that tend to throw me a bit.

I think I asked the same question 3 times and got the same answer 3 times, none of which answered my question, so I'm willing to let it rest. :-)
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