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My house is long and has a maze of rooms. The front part is on a higher level of 4 feet. The study at the back part has a PC and a ADSL modem/router plugged into a phone extension. Wifi signals are good at the back part only.

The front section has another PC with a good POE (power over Ethernet) connection because wifi could not reach the front section (an extender was tried but worked only intermittently).

I need two pieces of advice please.

  1. What is the best way to extend wifi to the front section? I have tried nearly everything within the physical confines of the study. I was thinking of a POE connected with a spare router to make a bridge / 2nd wifi access point at the front. Is this possible and how do I do it?

  2. I have just bought a gaming PC which will be placed next to the front section PC. Both may need access to the internet. Obviously wifi for the gaming PC is out unless Quest 1 is solved. Is there a POE splitter or do I need a second pair of POE.

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I assume you mean Ethernet-over-Power Lines, not "Power over Ethernet", which is a method of providing DC power over pairs 3 and 4 of a 4 twist pair cable.

It doesn't sound as though you've exhausted all of your possible WiFi solutions just yet. There are a wide variety of antenna configurations that may be able to solve all of your problems. If I understand the layout of your home correctly, a so-called "corner antenna" may be the best solution. A corner antenna has very high gain in a 90 degree pattern. To use this in your home, place the antenna as close as possible to the rear of your home, then point the antenna towards the front. That should cover your entire house better than the standard omnidirectional antennas most WiFi access points ship with.

If that doesn't work, you may have to switch to Ethernet-over-Power line. In the situation you describe above, there are two possible choices. The first is to use a wired connection from both devices at the front of the home to a switch. The second would be your previous suggestion -- setting up a wireless access point at the front of the home.

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Also, you can add new powerline ethernet adapters to your existing network simply by plugging new ones in and sync'ing their password/encryption key. However, if the computers at the front part of your home is physically close, you might as well get a wired ethernet switch which is much cheaper. The switch can connect both your old PC in the front part and your new gaming PC to the powerline adapter. If you must have wireless, you can get an pure WiFi Access Point which might be cheaper than a router. An access point works like a switch (i.e. no routing function). – Sep 23 '12 at 12:31
Yes sorry I mean Ethernet over power lines. I will try the corner antenna then ethernet over power if it does not work. – Teik Sep 24 '12 at 2:58
I will also try the pure wifi access point as I need wifi, currently users of ipad and iphones have to go to the back part. – Teik Sep 24 '12 at 3:01
Thanks guys. I appreciate your help very much. I would imagine many people would be in the same predicament and would use a ethernet over power plus wifi access point – Teik Sep 24 '12 at 3:04
You can wind up with problems having too many PLC ("Power Line Carrier") devices on a single power line. Before getting into problems with that, go with a Wireless-N setup and directional antennas. – Julie in Austin Sep 24 '12 at 23:35

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