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Mixed 802.11 b/g and g/n Networks


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Mixed 802.11 b/g and g/n Networks
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digitaldave
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: St Evenage
 
2008-03-20, 13:50

I'm currently running an Airport Express router connected to my cable modem in mixed b/g mode, but if all the devices that would connect to it are 802.11g, would it improve speed a bit to run in g only mode?

Also, I'm thinking about getting either a Time Capsule or Airport Extreme (now that they can do Time Machine), and my MBP is n compatible, so in an ideal world, I would run in n only mode, but this would mean the other devices couldn't connect. So, would running in mixed n/g mode noticeably decrease performance, or would I be better off using my current Airport Express as an extra b/g network for the older devices? And if so, how would I do that, just attach the Express to the Extreme / Time Capsule and set it up with a separate SSID etc.?

Thanks .
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kieran
@kk@pennytucker.social
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2008-03-20, 14:33

I had a lot of problems running my TC in mixed mode. I eventually just gave up and set up two separate networks.

I have TC on a 5ghz 'N" network and the AirPort Express connected via LAN putting out a 2.4ghz "b/g' network.

Performance has been wonderful on both parts. Time Machine with TC in "n" mode is great.

No more Twitter. It's Mastodon now.
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ghoti
owner for sale by house
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Charlotte, NC
 
2008-03-20, 14:43

I don't think it makes a difference if your network is b/g or g when all devices are g, it just opens up the possibility of a b device connecting and dragging the other ones down. Also for n, the problem is that I read somewhere that Apple doesn't do any channel combining on 2.4Ghz, only when run on 5GHz (unless you're somewhere where there are no other WLANs or other traffic (like cordless phones) on that frequency). So the type of setup that kieran describes makes a lot more sense and means that you'll get the maximum throughput from your hardware (because mixing b/g and n means you have to use the 2.4GHz range).
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ghoti
owner for sale by house
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Charlotte, NC
 
2008-03-21, 11:13

You can, but it'll be slow and unstable - though the latter might have been fixed in the meantime (there were some airport updates).
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veryamusing
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
 
2008-03-24, 09:08

My Time Capsule is set up to run a mixed N/b/g network, and it's performing flawlessly. Set up was literally minutes. I kept my Belkin G+ MIMO router connected via LAN from the Time Capsule because I thought I wanted to have the Time Capsule run N only, but now I'm thinking about disconnecting it and selling it.

In short, letting the Time Capsule handle everything isn't at all a bad proposition.
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kieran
@kk@pennytucker.social
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2008-05-21, 20:05

*Bump*

My MBA has been a little slow with internet and backing up to my TC. I have TIme Capsule set up in mixed b/g/n mode.

Should my MBA be connecting at 'n' speeds or should it still be connecting at the 'g' speed?

I might have to go and break out my AirPort Express to use as a second router if it's not going to work out.

No more Twitter. It's Mastodon now.
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PB PM
Sneaky Punk
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
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2008-05-21, 20:11

It would depend on how close you are, and whether there are 'g' devices actively accessing the network. If there are active 'g' devices on the network, it would slow down a bit.
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kieran
@kk@pennytucker.social
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2008-05-21, 20:25

I think I figured out what was slowing everything down.

I was using TC in mixed mode using AirPort Express to extend the network using WDS.

I didn't realize it was such a huge speed hit using WDS. I busted out our old WRT 54G and hooked that up to TC to create a 'g' network and put TC back into a 'n' only network.

It seems to have solved my speed issue.

No more Twitter. It's Mastodon now.
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