Mesh Wi-Fi, is it what it's chalked up to be?

Yes! Exactly!

I went with Eero also. Four-device Eero pro system (all the big device, no “beacons”). I needed strong signal at the edges of the house to keep Nest cams from dropping out. Most of the exterior is stucco so there’s a metal mesh layer in it. Not quite a faraday cage but it does seem to affect the cameras.

Of my four eeros, I’ve only got one in a spot with wired backhaul. Fixing that is on my to-do list. :grinning:

3 Likes

Like you said, if you can have a wired backhaul, this is the number one thing you can do to improve your wireless network that uses multiple APs (I guess they are calling that “mesh” now days, though it really isn’t in the same way as Z-Wave / Zigbee, I digress). Even if you need a MoCA or Powerline backhaul, this is better than even the best wireless mesh backhaul.

Roaming between access points is tricky, and depends both on features and behaviors of the client and the network (the access points).

802.11r Fast Transition - eero, Ubiquity, enterprise gear, and most mobile devices support this. This lets the client pre authenticate to the next AP before the handoff, limiting the time of the roam.

80211k Neighbor Lists - pretty much an enterprise gear and iOS feature, this let’s the AP tell the clients about neighbors to roam to.

80211v Transition Management - take the above a bit further and let’s the AP tell the client more about the network and even instruct it to roam to another AP.

By and large though, as you have discovered with the wife’s laptop, the majority depends on how sticky the client was programmed to be.

… I use Cisco enterprise gear at home, but I usually tell people to get eeros or Ubiquity. I think eero was one of the first consumer devices that implemented 80211r, which always impressed me.

eero is short on details but the wireless backhaul isn’t like the “old” multi-AP setup. It uses channels or frequencies that don’t cut your bandwidth in half.

Also, eero sets all devices to use the same channel and same SSID. Not sure, this may be necessary for the 802.11r protocol

I would not turn on 802.11R as it has a vulnerability related to the KRACK issue and it requires a rewrite of the RFC to fix it. If you are not running voice over wireless it, disabling it will not cause you any noticeable issue. I have been told those running VoIP over WiFi might detect a blip as a user moves between cells.

I have been looking for a mesh setup that does broadcast both SSIDs as some of my Lo T devices need the 2.4 only. Also, I have a Xfinity Gigabit setup which need their modem router to not be in bridge mode. I am using an Apple Airport extreme plugged into the Xfinity router and it works but Wi-Fi is not good. The Asus in the first post looked good, but does that still stand?

Hey guys, I have been asleep at the HA wheel these past few months but catching up on some old logs now. I wanted to update this thread that I have sense updated my home to the Linksys Velop setup and wow has it made a difference. I use the tri-band as my primary and two dual bands. The tri-band is located upstairs where my cable comes in and where the model is located. I then have a switch wired on the slave side of the tri-band. My dual bands are located downstairs in the living area and bedroom area, hard wired it. Setup was not as easy as advertised and the Linksys support was useless. Once it was setup and running, the system has been solid for several months. I have now doubled my wireless speeds in my home without upgrading my cable service.

All of my IOT devices hardwired in where possible and the system is very reliable…well except for all of the known ST bugs we all love.

To eliminate redundant wires, I am using my old PoE switch and using Texas PoE splitters at the access points. so far so good!

1 Like

© 2019 SmartThings, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy

SmartThings; SmartApps®; Physical Graph; Hello, Home; and Hello, Smart Home are all trademarks of the SmartThings, Inc.