I'm trying to configure multiple WAPs connected to an existing LAN. I want to have all wireless clients get their IP config from the LAN's Windows 2000 Server (which provides DHCP and DNS server services). What is the best way to configure the WAPs?
Thanks - indeed I don't want to use the WAP/routers' DHCP services at all. From your other post, looks like I need to use same channel on all 3 to have seamless roaming, right? The WEP keys already match (don't think the devices support WPA - I'm not in front of them to check).
No. They can and should be on different non-overlapping channels (1,
6, and 11) but all the same SSID. If they were on the same channel, and they had overlapping coverage, then they will interfere with each other. The way it works is that a client radio holds onto a give access point and channel until it loses signal. It then scans all the channels (1->11) looking for the same SSID. Some clients are smart enough to take the strongest (or lowest S/N ratio) channel. Others are stupid and just take the first channel they blunder across. If you have overlapping coverage areas, you can see where there might be a problem.
Otherwise, wait for the IEEE to release 802.11r (fast roaming) which should work much better.
Thanks! I found the WAP can be either configured strictly as an access point, or as a router. Either way, when I configure it w/ an IP address in the same subnet as the LAN wired computers, including the Win2K server, I can connect to the WAP from a wireless client, but the client doesn't get it's IP from the Win2K DHCP server. Instead, it gets an autoconfig-type address.
The WAP, when just an access point, only allows me to specify the IP and subnet mask. When router functions are enabled, I can set WAN IP settings, including IP addr, subnet mask, DNS server addr.
The Win2K server is 192.168.0.3. The default gateway is 192.168.0.1. The WAP is 192.168.0.5, and it's DHCP server capability is disabled. The WAP's DNS is set to 192.168.0.3.
Any ideas why the client isn't getting through to the Win2K DHCP server?
Would you care to enlighten us as to precisely which brand and model you're dealing with here?! :) Because if you can configure your access point as a router then it's not an access point but a wireless router and the config is different.
Right, lets start again.
Configure them/it as an access point and do nothing else. If it's really working as an access point and isn't a router and there's nothing else you haven't disclosed then it will be doing layer 2 bridging and therefore will be bridging packets quite happily between both the wired and wireless segments.
Clients will then get their addresses from the Windows 2000 server.
I'm not sure about that model, but when I tried their "bridge" mode selection, all control over the wireless settings were lost because the internal web server was disabled in their bridge mode. It's much easier to simply:
Assign a proper IP address (more on this later)
Ignore the WAN port connection.
Connect to the wired LAN using a LAN port, not the WAN port. That effectively turns your wireless router into an access point without losing the web server config.
Ok. That means the clients are not connecting to the DHCP server. One obscure possibility is that I've seen some access points block broadcasts. This requires buggy firmware to accomplish and I suspect is NOT the problem here.
Is there some kind of security system running on the W2K server that would prevent it from recognizing a new computer on the LAN?
Try downloading and using a free DHCP tester:
does NOT require an IP address to be assigned in order to find a DHCP server and will function with 169.254.xxx.xxx or whatever.
Incidentally, I'm not thrilled with Belkin products in general and suggest you try an alternative. Almost any wireless router setup as an access point will work for what you're doing.
It should. Something is wrong, but I can't tell without sniffing the traffic to see what's happening. If you feel ambitious, setup Ethereal for sniffing. Connect a hub (not a switch) between the access point and the DHCP/DNS server. Filter for DHCP and ARP packets. If you've never done this before, this is not a trivial exercise and can best be solved by substitution.
Exactly. However, you have no reason to do this, so I would not.
In the bridge (access point) mode, the only thing that IP address does is give you access to the device configuration. It can be any IP address you find useful and has no effect on bridging.
I do this on systems that are short of /24 IP addresses or where I don't want clients playing with the wireless devices. For example, I have the DHCP server deliver IP's to the clients using 192.168.1.xxx, while all the access points and devices are on 192.168.111.xxx. Since bridging doesn't know anything about IP addresses, as long as my management computer can be configured to 192.168.111.xxx, I can talk to the wireless devices. XP and W2K allow multiple aliased IP's on a single interface so this is really easy. However, in your case, I don't see any benefit so setting the device and client IP's in the same /24 network is probably the desired configuration.
Incidentally, if you juggle IP's quite a bit on a laptop management device, I suggest using:
make it easy. I have something like 30 configurations, one per customer network, on mine. Yeah, this is a plug.
 Whenever I mention running out of /24 IP addresses (253), someone always remarks that such a large system should be broken up with VLAN's or subnets to control traffic. That's true. However, connecting 2 or more remote offices with a VPN will instantly consume a substantial number of IP's. Each client computah now will have two IP's. One for the local LAN on one subnet, and one for the VPN on the remote /24 network. Traffic is controlled by the routers, but the IP consumption is still substantial.
Ah, so they are wireless routers, but you are planning on only using the AP function of them? [As Jeff would say at this point, is there a particular reason why you are keeping the manufacturer, model number, hardware rev, and firmware revision a secret?] If you can turn off the router functionality this should work just the same as an AP, though you may have to connect to the LAN port instead of the WAN port and perform some unknown configuration steps.
Well, I've only tried them on the same channel and they seemed to work fine, but others in this newsgroup have said that you'll want to use non-overlapping channels, so I can't say for sure. I could try it easily enough, but not today...