12MBits/sec will give you about 6Mbits/sec thruput. This is faster than the typical DSL although it may cause problems with a faster cable modem connection. However, I suspect that going through the floor of the house results in an unreliable connection, which is the real problem.
- Run CAT5 upstairs to the computers.
- Run CAT5 upstairs to a 2nd wireless access point.
- Setup a 2nd WRT54G and use WDS to repeat the signal. This might be a problem as you can't seem to go through the floor with a wireless client, there's no reason to suspect that it can be done with a repeater.
- Setup a wireless repeater. Same problem as #3.
- Use the power line to act as a link upstair and setup a repeater. This tends to be limited by the speed of the power line link at about
- Install a directional antenna or reflector on the WRT54G and hope that it penetrates the floor. This is probably the cheapest and easiest solution. A panel, patch, or biquad antenna would probably work. I'm not a big fan of coffee can antennas, but if you can tolerate the aesthetics, that will also suffice. Also: formatting linkMove the WRT54G to somewhere near the middle of the house or at the base of the stairwell. Wireless goes through air much easier than through floors. If your floor is poured concrete, I don't think any form of positioning will help.
Run it to the attic and then to over the bedroom. Install an 2nd access point or wireless router setup as an access point over the bedroom. Ceilings are usually not as heavily built as floors.
Wireless extenders, repeaters, WDS repeaters, and mesh networks all have a small problem. If you need high thruput, they cut your maximum bandwidth in half. That's probably not a problem if you just want to share a DSL or cable modem connection. However, your wireless to wireless thruput will be slow. Methinks you could live with it. Repeaters and extenders are also very specific as to what chipsets and devices they will work with. The newsgroups are full of disappointed users that discover their new wireless repeater doesn't work with their access point or wireless router. WDS is more of the same, but you already have half the puzzle. The WRT54G with Sveasoft Alchemy replacment firmware supports WDS. Buy a 2nd WRT54G to act as a WDS repeater. You can also plug client computahs into the 2nd WRT54G and it will act as a bridge to the first. If you have good connectivity between WRT54G boxes, this is probably the most vesatile and useful arrangment. Unfortunately, it's also the most expensive and complicated to setup.
A WAP (wireless access point) can be wired with CAT5 to the first WRT54G and supply coverage upstairs. You can also use a wireless router as an access point by ignoring the WAN port and router section. You'll find that wireless routers are also cheaper than WAP's. Unlike the extender or repeater, the CAT5 connection is fast, stable, interference free, and always works. A 2nd WRT54G would do the job or just about any wireless device.
Your decision. I would play with location and antennas first. Then decide on the more expensive alternatives if that fails.