October 11, 2001: Ok, I'm in a better mood now.
Ok, we all know that WAP11's are my favorite item - I bought 2, I played with 2, and I got-them-the-hell-outta-here 2. They're actually really good basic base stations - they don't DO DHCP, but they do PASS DHCP requests (they're not bridges, per se, as they can't do NAT on their own).
BUT! Why the heck am I posting this drivel?
Well, the WAP11's came down in price from $200-ish to $149-ish. They've also got a new Firmware rev that gives them 4 modes: 1) Access Point - hook into your network, and works great 2) Access Point Client - YEAH! It's an Ethernet client! Get those gears moving! 3) Point to Point link - connect 2 directly together in a "wireless wire" fashion 4) Point to Multipoint link - connect "n" together in a "wireless wire" fashion
Now, 1 + 2 > 3 & 4. How? Turn one into an access point, and one into a client. The AP acts as an AP for all real clients in the area. The APC acts as (essentially) one of those Lucent, Linksys, etc.. USB dongles. The benefit here is that it's Ethernet - you don't need USB drivers for it! It'll work on a Mac, work on a PC, work under Linux, etc.. just attach a hub or a Crossover cable, or a NAT box, and it works great! (with some caveats).
Caveat 1: use the SMC firmware (2655W - 1.4g7 firmware). SMC makes the same box, with different packaging. SMC has newer firmware, but their software doesn't do the Client mode stuff, so you still need to use Linksys' software to configure it, and you still need a windows box to configure it. Not a huge biggie.
Caveat 2: The damn thing wouldn't work with my Mac attached (Same as last time, and neither OS 9 or OS X 10.1 worked) with a crossover cable. Hook up my Stylistic 1200 w/ crossover cable - boom! Works like a charm. 400 KBps file transfers over the LAN. Nice. Hook up a 4 poot NAT box, BOOM! Works on both the Mac and the PC. Plug, unplug, plug, unpower, repower, and..... BOOM! Works on the Mac now! Dunno how or why.. maybe just needed to get broken in.
So, for all those folks who wanted Point-to-Multipoint connectivity, cheap, but didn't want to get 2 boxes (AP + WAP11 for P-to-MP link), it's HERE!
Also, Dell's got a 20% off deal, where after free shipping they're $124 each! (http://www.techbargains.com & http://www.dell.com/us/en/bsd/sna/sna_topic_bsd_save20_snp.htm?customer_id=04) Yowza!
Check out this search for all WAPs (http://www.dealsites.net/modules.php?op=modload&name=livedeals&file=index&mode=search&query=wap*)
-DanRichardson "I love these things, I hate these things, I love them again!"
Linksys WAP11 - http://www.linksys.com/products/product.asp?prid=157&grid=19
Also known as the Crap11 right now, since I'm in a generally foul mood and want to take it out on a electronic gizmo released 1/2 baked.
Has anyone thought about hacking the firmware of the wap11's? I'm thinking it would be neat to have an open source firmware to implement routing protocols, etc. You could make them as modules to a node composed of an ethernet hub and multiple wap11's handling the air interface and routing between other collocated wap11's across the hub... no need for a pc running linux to do all the routing... makes APs and network infrastructure nodes real cheap... just a pile of wap11's! -orbboy