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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Aug 21, 2008
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    Extending wireless network with Airport Extreme
    I recently bought an Extreme,

    I'm with Virgin Media and the router I had (belkin wireless G) seemed to not agree with my iMac (older style) - it had crappy signal.

    I'm quite far away from the router anyway, but my macbook (almost brand new) gets a signal fine. Which is probably because my macbook is on 2.4GHz and my iMac is on 5GHz... am I right? probably not.

    So i got the Extreme, thinking that it would just join my network, extend the signal and bobs your uncle... but no. I tried setting it up to 'Extend a network', but it came up with 'The network you selected cannot be extended'.

    Anyway, so I contacted virgin media and they sent me a new router... which was nice of them, i guess. But i'm still unable to extend the network, even with this new router... which i don't even think is better than the Belkin i had =S

    help me please?

  2. #2

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iCaptain View Post
    I recently bought an Extreme,

    I'm with Virgin Media and the router I had (belkin wireless G) seemed to not agree with my iMac (older style) - it had crappy signal.

    I'm quite far away from the router anyway, but my macbook (almost brand new) gets a signal fine. Which is probably because my macbook is on 2.4GHz and my iMac is on 5GHz... am I right? probably not.
    It's dual-band, so you can either be on 2.4 or 5. Just keep in mind that the higher up in the spectrum you go, the shorter the range.

    So i got the Extreme, thinking that it would just join my network, extend the signal and bobs your uncle... but no. I tried setting it up to 'Extend a network', but it came up with 'The network you selected cannot be extended'.

    Anyway, so I contacted virgin media and they sent me a new router... which was nice of them, i guess. But i'm still unable to extend the network, even with this new router... which i don't even think is better than the Belkin i had =S

    help me please?
    The biggest thing with wireless routers, and the most oft-overlooked is how the router is placed. Most routers will be fine in homes up to 2500 sq. ft. If you have a home much bigger than that, that's when you'll need to consider extenders or additional routers.

    As far as placement goes, your router should be as high up as possible within your home. It should also be central. It should be away from other wireless devices like baby monitors and cordless phone bases. Additionally, microwave ovens destroy WiFi signal, so it should be far away from one if possible.

    Additionally, if you live within close proximity of others, you'll want to make sure you've surveyed the area with a tool like AirRadar. Check the channels the others are operating on and make sure yours is using a different one.

    And finally, Macs tend to work better using WPA encryption rather than the ancient WEP, which is dead.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  3. #3


    Member Since
    Aug 21, 2008
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    Thanks for the quick reply!

    I kinda knew all that stuff, though lol

    What I want to know was why it won't let me extend my wireless network? does my router have some kind of setting that i need to change? or is the wrong type of router or.... I can't think of any more possible reasons.

    other than: am I just an idiot?

  4. #4

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Not sure that you can do this unless your second router is also an Apple product. But here's the skinny right from Apple:

    Using the AirPort Admin Utility to create a WDS network with multiple base stations
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  5. #5

    RavingMac's Avatar
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    You can extend a WDS with a Linksys router and Airport Extreme, but I've seen some posts stating Belkin router doesn't support WDS. If so, you could try Ethernet bridge and use the Extreme as your wireless hub.

    If you google Linksys airport extreme and WDS you should be able to pull up an article that has step by step instructions. Or, if you want to look back through my posts, I have the link in a posting some months back.

    Hope this helps.

  6. #6


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    I have a Netgear router, does that change anything? lol

  7. #7

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iCaptain View Post
    I have a Netgear router, does that change anything? lol
    Check the Netgear's documentation and see if it supports WDS.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  8. #8


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    In the netgear wireless setup i found a section called Wireless Repeating Function. I tried to enable it, but it said that security had to be disabled and that the channel had to be taken off 'auto' and i had to assign a certain channel.

    How do i do i found out what channel to set it to?
    it goes from 1 - 13

    thanks

  9. #9

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iCaptain View Post
    In the netgear wireless setup i found a section called Wireless Repeating Function. I tried to enable it, but it said that security had to be disabled and that the channel had to be taken off 'auto' and i had to assign a certain channel.

    How do i do i found out what channel to set it to?
    it goes from 1 - 13

    thanks
    Well, you'll want to survey your area with the AirRadar tool I mentioned previously and find the most commonly used channels, then pick one that isn't being used.

    But quite honestly, if you can't use security, then it's not worth it. The last thing you want to do is have an open wifi hotspot.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

  10. #10

    RavingMac's Avatar
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    Is your router separate from your DSL modem or built-in? If separate, you might try using the Extreme as your WDS base and the Netgear as the remote (don't know if the Netgear unit will support joining a WPA WDS as a remote, but worth trying).
    As CWA107 has said, the process is in the Apple link he posted. All you need is the MAC addresses for both routers (usually on the bottom of the device).

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