2017-10-30 Finally reliable home WiFi

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After years of hungering after WiFi that just works with all the weird kit I have floating around the house, it may be I've finally got something that indeed, just works.

My WiFi story:

  • Atheros based D-Link DWL-G520 AR5212 PCI card, supporting 802.11b/g. Plugged into a NetBSD box running hostap. Ok, it worked, ignoring the occasional crashes and instability.
  • Dlink DAP-1522 WiFi bridge, supporting 802.11a/b/g/n. Pretty reliable, needed the occasional reboot. Ended up committing suicide, failing to stay powered up for more than a second or so, although that may have been due to the occasional electrical incident (UPS brownouts, and 11kV transmission lines dropping on the 415V domestic lines outside our building, that managed to blow the fuze box off the neighbouring building, and also hurt my Yamaha amp).
  • NETGEAR DGN2200 (I think?), supposedly capable of 802.11n. I was using it as a ADSL Wifi router - I found it unstable, dropped ADSL links frequently, crashed occasionally, and required regular reboots. I didn't keep it for long.
  • Billion BiPAC 7700N R2, also 802.11n capable. Used for quite a while, until I found the 16 wifi station limit too limiting. Still using it as an ADSL PPPoE bridge while I'm waiting for my NBN FTTP to be lit. I have a bit of a soft-spot for Billion after their above & beyond tech support.
  • ASUS RT-N56U. My first dual-band router. Used just as a WiFi bridge, initially running stock firmware, and later OpenWRT, then briefly LEDE, until in later versions they stopped enabling all the interfaces on initial installation, which makes things a little tricky.
  • TP-Link AC1750 Archer C7 v2. Also dual-band. Not bad, good range. Briefly ran the stock firmware, which was a little unreliable, before switching to OpenWRT, and then LEDE. Followed a bunch of bugs, upgraded to head/tip regularly, and even as of 2017-10-01, still had issues requiring a reboot to address. Seemed to be most unreliable with iPhones & iPads, android devices and laptops were mostly ok.
  • Ubiquiti UniFi AC Pro AP. Dual band. On the advice of a colleague, took the plunge, set up the unifi management software on my NetBSD router, bought the AP, and off we go. Stable. No crashes, no issues requiring reboots (with 16 days uptime). Plenty of features. I can see how this could work in an enterprise. Every bizarre WiFi dongle seems happy, from Apple stuff to el-cheapo mk808b android TV dongle.

Misinformation found herein copyright Paul Ripke (aka “stix”) stixpjr@gmail.com.