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Tofucube
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Building a new home network

Thu Apr 27, 2017 9:40 pm

Hi,

My father is currently remodeling his house and he wants to basically create a wired and wireless network in his house. He's really interested in this monster router for his home network.
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product. ... -_-Product
He likes the fact that it has 8 physical ports so he can route a physical wire to every room in the house, and the fact that its suppose to handle wifi connections to many different devices without a slowdown. Its also on sale at Costco for 250, so that is a significant discount over what it usually retails for.

I haven't dabbled in networking stuff for quite awhile, and my googling on the subject doesn't quiet end up answering my questions. My gut is that this is overkill, and that there is a cheaper router solution out there that can be paired with a switch that will handle high speed internet to multiple devices (physical and wifi) just fine.

Some opinions and suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!
 
hkuspc40
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Re: Building a new home network

Thu Apr 27, 2017 9:59 pm

It depends on what you want to do with it... The 8 ports really don't matter as you could go with less ports and use a network switch (more common). The gigabit ethernet is really only necessary if you're using a lot of bandwith on your local network. You're only as fast as whatever your ISP is providing. For 95% of the population this router is beyond overkill but, again, it really depends on what you're doing with it.
 
bfg-9000
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Re: Building a new home network

Thu Apr 27, 2017 10:35 pm

I wonder how that router is wired internally. 8 LAN and 1 WAN when the SoC has an integrated 5-port switch (and RGMII) plus the BCM53125S switch chip is only a 7-port model. A couple years ago the 8 LAN and 1 WAN ASUS RT-AC88U had the same 5-port SoC wired to a 5-port Realtek switch chip over a single gigabit link. So the backplane switch fabric wasn't exactly non-blocking, and in fact no better than a 5-port router and separate switch.
 
Tofucube
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Re: Building a new home network

Thu Apr 27, 2017 11:11 pm

hkuspc40 wrote:
It depends on what you want to do with it... The 8 ports really don't matter as you could go with less ports and use a network switch (more common). The gigabit ethernet is really only necessary if you're using a lot of bandwith on your local network. You're only as fast as whatever your ISP is providing. For 95% of the population this router is beyond overkill but, again, it really depends on what you're doing with it.


I figured that a switch would do the job. There isn't going to be anything crazy done on this home network. i think there is a amount of future proofing my father is trying to do here with just a general expectation of more streaming and more connected devices making their way into the house and he really doesn't want things to slow down as technology moves in. In addition i think he just likes the idea that its all contained in one device rather than dealing with placing multiple devices even if the second device is just a 5 or 8 port switch.
 
NovusBogus
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Re: Building a new home network

Thu Apr 27, 2017 11:36 pm

Definitely use a switch. If you're serious enough to be tearing down walls I suggest using Cat 6A cable; the cost is insignificant given the one-off opportunity to do do that kind of wiring.

Router wise, if it was me I'd skip the consumer stuff and go with a Ubiquiti EdgeRouter Lite and one or more of their wireless APs. That being said, most any $50-100 router is up to the task provided you don't make it do both routing/switching and wifi. Where these all-in-one boxes go wrong is they cram way too much stuff onto one board in a small, poorly cooled enclosure, and bad things happen when too many things are active at the same time. Use a dedicated router and a dedicated wireless AP, either way.
 
notfred
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri Apr 28, 2017 8:15 am

I'm with NovusBogus on this, split the router and WiFi AP parts. You want the router where the connection comes in to the property and that's usually not optimal for wifi. Also agree with the using a simple Gigabit switch.

I run a Ubiquiti Unifi AP-AC-LR mounted to my upstairs ceiling just like a smoke detector. Ethernet cable from that is through the ceiling in to the attic and I have a tube running to the basement wiring closet where the power injector is and everything is plugged in to a simple 8 port Gigabit switch. Netgear, D-Link etc all do very similar 8 port dumb Gigabit switches. I do have a Linux server there that I use as my router, but an EdgeRouter Lite or pfSense or similar would be fine.
 
Omniman
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri Apr 28, 2017 9:22 am

NovusBogus wrote:
Definitely use a switch. If you're serious enough to be tearing down walls I suggest using Cat 6A cable; the cost is insignificant given the one-off opportunity to do do that kind of wiring.

Router wise, if it was me I'd skip the consumer stuff and go with a Ubiquiti EdgeRouter Lite and one or more of their wireless APs. That being said, most any $50-100 router is up to the task provided you don't make it do both routing/switching and wifi. Where these all-in-one boxes go wrong is they cram way too much stuff onto one board in a small, poorly cooled enclosure, and bad things happen when too many things are active at the same time. Use a dedicated router and a dedicated wireless AP, either way.


I second this as Ubiquiti stuff is inexpensive and rock solid. On top of fantastic firmware updates where they don't just give 1 year of updates and discontinue the product.
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Usacomp2k3
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri Apr 28, 2017 9:23 am

notfred wrote:
I'm with NovusBogus on this, split the router and WiFi AP parts. You want the router where the connection comes in to the property and that's usually not optimal for wifi. Also agree with the using a simple Gigabit switch.

I run a Ubiquiti Unifi AP-AC-LR mounted to my upstairs ceiling just like a smoke detector. Ethernet cable from that is through the ceiling in to the attic and I have a tube running to the basement wiring closet where the power injector is and everything is plugged in to a simple 8 port Gigabit switch. Netgear, D-Link etc all do very similar 8 port dumb Gigabit switches. I do have a Linux server there that I use as my router, but an EdgeRouter Lite or pfSense or similar would be fine.

Thirded. Get an Edgerouter Lite, and then the Ubiquiti AP to cover the yard. A cheap name-brand switch can handle all the wired networking you need. In fact, that's exactly how I have my house setup.
 
blahsaysblah
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri Apr 28, 2017 10:46 am

Tofucube wrote:
Hi,

My father is currently remodeling his house and he wants to basically create a wired and wireless network in his house. He's really interested in this monster router for his home network.
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product. ... -_-Product
He likes the fact that it has 8 physical ports so he can route a physical wire to every room in the house, and the fact that its suppose to handle wifi connections to many different devices without a slowdown. Its also on sale at Costco for 250, so that is a significant discount over what it usually retails for.

I haven't dabbled in networking stuff for quite awhile, and my googling on the subject doesn't quiet end up answering my questions. My gut is that this is overkill, and that there is a cheaper router solution out there that can be paired with a switch that will handle high speed internet to multiple devices (physical and wifi) just fine.

Some opinions and suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!

Routers come and go... The house wiring in general cant.

Major cost is the first drop(damn jacks/plate, time to drill holes,...), adding a 2nd/3rd line into same spot is trivial/dirt cheap(just cost of the wire, which is nothing).

Poor assumption that you wont have gigabit internet service some time in future.

It might be good time to also wire up some speaker wires for surround sound. :)

Two or more ports per wall, or if tiny place, three ports per room/key location. Wire itself is cheap/nothing.

Yes alot of those will never be used, but dang they have come in handy once in a while. Have a good location for the patch panel that has some air flow (if at least just a vented hole near ceiling on wall/door) for not only the modem/router, but maybe a network drive and definitely a UPS!!!! dont forget space for a UPS,... Just label everything, remember, not every port has to be wired into switch. Every wall in most every room has ports, but only the active wall/ports are wired in. Has made changing around furniture doable over the years, as both devices and furniture have changed.

low voltage (ethernet, speaker wire,..) crosses high voltage(your actual electricity) in perpendicular fashion. It should never be routed right next to/along it. In general, do not buy any computing (ethernet cable, jacks, outer plates,...) from Home Depot. Way over priced. Search keystone and quickport on amazon for ports/plates.

Dont forget coax, we've moved location of modem/router quite a few times. Sometimes it sits in patch closet, now it sits in central location as it has Wifi router too.

If you want to save some money, have them just drop the lines, crimp the connectors and test the lines yourself. Very easy, as long as you're not type of person to cut corners/be lazy if you make slight mistake.

Remember, you can wire up ethernet's 8 wires with RJ-45(ethernet) head or RJ-11(phone) head, if you need for home security, or peace of mind when power goes out because of special needs... You get into fight with ISP and have to switch to DSL on principal... Anyway, dont use actual RJ-11 wire.

Plenum wiring is for office building that have drop down ceiling where the cavity also moves air, you just pop out a panel to get airflow into room. They are extra rated to not burn so as to not quickly move a fire around. You dont need that, what you do need is to make sure its in-wall rated, CM or CMR, no need for CMP. And and, never, that cheap ****, CCA, copper clad aluminum, solid copper only. Make sure you take a knife and scrape some strands and see if its silver. solid copper is normal, not premium. not getting ripped off.
 
Tofucube
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Re: Building a new home network

Sat Apr 29, 2017 10:39 am

Thanks for the responses everyone. I thought that router situation was overkill.

I've done some minor it work when i was in college so i've wired in a few RJ-45 wall jacks before. We also have a electrician coming to work on the house, so I think we might get them to at least run the wire. Assuming i can convince him to wire the house properly, does anyone know a decent home networking guide to help me with the process? Specifically i could use a refresher on wiring jacks and i know nothing about planning out the location the wall outlets all connect back to, wiring that central point, and testing the connections?

Thanks
 
ludi
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Re: Building a new home network

Sat Apr 29, 2017 1:43 pm

Tofucube wrote:
I've done some minor it work when i was in college so i've wired in a few RJ-45 wall jacks before. We also have a electrician coming to work on the house, so I think we might get them to at least run the wire. Assuming i can convince him to wire the house properly, does anyone know a decent home networking guide to help me with the process? Specifically i could use a refresher on wiring jacks and i know nothing about planning out the location the wall outlets all connect back to, wiring that central point, and testing the connections?

Here's one: DON'T hire an electrician to pull low voltage cable, especially communications, unless they are also experienced in residential communications wiring. Ethernet, coax, and A/V cables need gentler handling during pulls, while avoiding sharp kinks and twists at all costs. Likewise, electric feeders and speaker wires should have at least a few inches of separation from each other as well as from Ethernet and coax (which can be run adjacent).

Otherwise, plan on pulling it yourself before the new drywall goes up, but after the electrician is done pulling any new feeders and installing boxes. If the building permit specifies separate rough and finish inspections, make sure you get the inspections timed so that your own work will also be visible at both stages. Inspectors don't like finding box cutouts in the finish inspection that didn't exist when the rough inspection was performed.
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e1jones
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Re: Building a new home network

Sat Apr 29, 2017 5:21 pm

As has been mentioned previously a regular router and a separate switch is the better way to go. I haven't personally split the router/wifi duties yet, but it might happen at some point.

Since buying my house (2011), I really wanted get my personal desktop off wireless, as well as offer wired access in as many rooms as possible (computers + smart TVs/streaming devices). So the router in in the house near the TV, with the built-in ports serving the smart TV and the switch in the garage. (Strangely enough the ethernet connection for the DTV box is coming back from the switch instead of directly off the router.... never noticed that). On the other end of the feed from the router (in the garage), I have a patch panel directly above the switch, both 24 ports. I only have 12 filled right now, so plenty of extra space if needed.

If you're able to easily pull it yourself, or specify to a 'pro', more is ALWAYS better. I didn't have the luxury of open walls, but there's still 3 in the living room, 1 or 2 in the front bedroom, 4 in the office and a couple in the master BR, plus the 2 monitoring gizmos for the solar arrays in the garage. Garage might not be the best long-term since it gets obscenely hot during the summer... but for now it been ok.

There could be more in the living room, but the modular wall plate also has 2 coax (in addition to the 3 ethernet)... I didn't see the need to squeeze another ethernet in... yet.
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Drachasor
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri May 12, 2017 3:48 am

I also recommend the Ubiquiti EdgeRouter with a separate AP and switch (or switches). There are lots of advantages, such as being able to place the AP exactly where it will maximize coverage. And the EdgeRouter Lite is cheaper and outperforms expensive routers designed for home use.

The Switch doesn't matter much unless you plan on locking down ethernet ports for security purposes.

If you are crimping your own ethernet cables, I recommend the EZ-RJ45 connectors and jackets.
Platinum Tools 100036 EZ-RJ45 Cat6 Strain Relief, (Clear). 50/Bag.(Pack of 50)
Platinum Tools 100010C EZ-RJ45 Cat 6+ Connectors, Clamshell, 50-Pieces

Use it with cat 6a cabling and probably get their crimper too (you can cut them yourself if you want).
These connectors let you put the little wires all the way through, which makes it far, far, far, far easier to do crimping. Might not matter much if you have a ton of experience, but if you are making a dozen ends without a lot of experience then it will save you hours of work (I've tried both).
 
Redocbew
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri May 12, 2017 12:43 pm

Drachasor wrote:
These connectors let you put the little wires all the way through


That's badass. You just made my inner hardware junkie very happy.
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blahsaysblah
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri May 12, 2017 3:12 pm

Tofucube wrote:
Thanks for the responses everyone. I thought that router situation was overkill.

I've done some minor it work when i was in college so i've wired in a few RJ-45 wall jacks before. We also have a electrician coming to work on the house, so I think we might get them to at least run the wire. Assuming i can convince him to wire the house properly, does anyone know a decent home networking guide to help me with the process? Specifically i could use a refresher on wiring jacks and i know nothing about planning out the location the wall outlets all connect back to, wiring that central point, and testing the connections?

Thanks


I have very cheap lan tester(just checks wires are connected) and found a tone generator useful too(not only ethernet, but tracing electrical too). Old tools.
Something along, mine are different:
Tonor TM RJ45 RJ11 RJ12 CAT5 CAT 6 UTP Network Lan Cable Tester Test Tool
Noyafa NF-388-B Multipurpose Network Cable Tester Tracker Tracer Test Ethernet

Have this one:
Fluke Networks 26000900 Pro3000 Tone Generator and Probe Kit

Use this list to research i guess:
Best Sellers in Network & Cable Testers


This is what goes into a wall plate, take a look at picture, it very easy, you just separate wires and push into slots with plastic key they give you.
Cable Matters 50-Pack Cat6 RJ45 Keystone Jack in White and Keystone Punch-Down Stand
 
blahsaysblah
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri May 12, 2017 3:17 pm

RiteAV - Keystone Wall Plate Double Gang 12-Port White (1 Piece Flush)

Has bigger spacing than the leviton plate. I personally used several of those to make patch panel with s2-gang low-voltage box like:

2-GANG OLD-WORK LOW-VOLTAGE BOX/BRACKET
 
Aether
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Re: Building a new home network

Fri May 12, 2017 4:59 pm

Just like some others above, I have also been served well by using a Unifi AP-AC-LR for wireless and an inexpensive 8-port gigabit switch. However, I do not need the configurability of (or want the complexity of) an Edgerouter for routing. I saved a bit of money by instead buying a refurbished Linksys WRT1200AC for $50 on Amazon and turning off the wireless. All I needed to change in the configuration was the login password, and the WRT1200AC has more than adequate throughput for me. (Smallnetbuilder.com reviewed it a couple years ago, and it had throughput of 812 Mbps up and 751 Mbps down.)
 
ludi
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Re: Building a new home network

Sun May 14, 2017 12:43 am

Aether wrote:
Just like some others above, I have also been served well by using a Unifi AP-AC-LR for wireless and an inexpensive 8-port gigabit switch. However, I do not need the configurability of (or want the complexity of) an Edgerouter for routing. I saved a bit of money by instead buying a refurbished Linksys WRT1200AC for $50 on Amazon and turning off the wireless.

The five-port EdgeRouter X costs about the same as what you paid for that Linksys and is reasonably simple to configure, especially if you're already familiar with the Unify AP interface. You don't have to dig into the more complicated stuff unless you want to, but it's available if you ever need it. The X is tiny compared to that Linksys, and you can power both the X and the AP using a single PoE injector and the pass-through port.
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Drachasor
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Re: Building a new home network

Sun May 14, 2017 1:35 am

ludi wrote:
Aether wrote:
Just like some others above, I have also been served well by using a Unifi AP-AC-LR for wireless and an inexpensive 8-port gigabit switch. However, I do not need the configurability of (or want the complexity of) an Edgerouter for routing. I saved a bit of money by instead buying a refurbished Linksys WRT1200AC for $50 on Amazon and turning off the wireless.

The five-port EdgeRouter X costs about the same as what you paid for that Linksys and is reasonably simple to configure, especially if you're already familiar with the Unify AP interface. You don't have to dig into the more complicated stuff unless you want to, but it's available if you ever need it. The X is tiny compared to that Linksys, and you can power both the X and the AP using a single PoE injector and the pass-through port.


I would note that the EdgeRouter X generally performs notably worse than the EdgeRouter Lite (once you toss in firewall rules and the like) -- the X does more things in software and so is slower. However, the X handles switching just as well (but not bi-directional routing). However, the X also does have a significantly more powerful processor (just not as good hard-coded acceleration for routing tasks).

Basically what this means is get the Lite + a Switch if you are going to do any of the following:
1. You are going to have different subnets on your home network and need to max out file transfer speeds between them.
2. Have a gigabit internet connection
3. Are going to be using a lot of firewall rules or other things on the router.

Get an X if you are doing the following:
1. Use OpenVPN on the router itself to let you connect to your home network from the outside (the Lite doesn't provide meaningful acceleration here and can potentially max out the Lite CPU).
2. Are only going to have one home subnet.

The X is also just $50 verse the $100 for the Lite. Personally I got a Lite, though I suppose I could have bought an X in addition for VPN purposes. I have my WiFi on a different subnet than the rest of the home network. It was arguable to go the other way (I do not have gigabit ethernet). When I looked into getting a dedicated router though, it did seem like these were the best options in terms of performance/dollar. The ones from Linksys/Asus/etc are generally just really overpriced for their performance. You can also make your own, but that's much more expensive (Ars Technica has a good article on this).

I'm a network Admin, so I'm used to setting up networks and dealing with them day-to-day. If there's anything I find annoying with buying network equipment for home use though then it is that good managed switches are kind of expensive. I'm not very impressed with GUI-only managed switches. I've bought an HP and Cisco SOHO switch and both cost well over $100 -- I bought two since I also have a lab/server area where I need a lot of extra ports and it is in a different room than the router.
 
Tofucube
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Re: Building a new home network

Sun May 28, 2017 7:42 pm

Hi all,

Thanks for the help on this, we got the house properly wired up but i have a few other questions to help me understand the networking better so i can sell my father on how to best set up this network,

So i know the default set up for a network is Modem > Router > Switch > Devices
Starting there, Does the plugging of the switch into a port on the router create a bottleneck of any sort? I know the router is suppose to route the data in the network by providing IP addresses, does the use of a switch slow any of that down? If so, is it so infinitesimally small it doesn't even matter?

Next, does using a Wifi router as the sole router in the network create any issues, or would a optimal set up have a separate wifi access point somewhere on the network?

Lastly, my father is super sold on this router as previously mentioned. https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product. ... B2753F0088
A big part of the reason is he is under the impression that it has a lot of WiFi channels, and every device wont have the share the same wifi channel and slow each other down. Is that really a thing and would those Edgeware wifi products recommended previously do the job?

Thanks,
 
curtisb
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Re: Building a new home network

Sun May 28, 2017 8:33 pm

No, putting a separate switch going into the router won't create any kind of bottleneck that you'll notice. In a large network you don't want a bunch of gigabit connected devices going through a single gigabit link to get to the rest of the network, but in your case you're sending that traffic towards the router that goes to/from the Internet, and your service is either gigabit or lower.

With regards to the multiple channels, WiFi doesn't work that way. Any wireless AP/router is only going to work on one channel per band at a time (or a few channels bonded). Have a look at this article. It explains a lot about how WiFi works:

https://arstechnica.com/information-tec ... -of-sucks/

As far as that router, you'll spend about the same on a Ubiquiti EdgeRouter Lite and Ubiquiti AP. And you'll be able to replace the AP without changing out the router. The ER Lite is fast enough that it'll last for multiple years where wireless has been changing every few years. And after you read that article you'll see why adding range extenders is a Bad ThingTM. It's better to add another AP on a managed system so they're aware of each other and can avoid using the same channels (or manually setting them on different channels).

I use a utility on my laptop called Acrylic Wi-Fi Home to see wireless AP's broadcasting around my home and either set my AP(s) on channels that don't have anything else on them or that have the last number of AP's broadcasting. The one thing with this is it doesn't guarantee those have the least number of clients, though. Again, that article should make that statement make sense. :)
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Aether
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Re: Building a new home network

Mon May 29, 2017 8:07 am

Ludi and Drachasor, thanks for the feedback on the EdgeRouters. Good to know for potential future use.

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