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I am using 3com equipment and all of it is on the same channel. I've looked at the trouble shooting and everything should be working, but it is not. As soon as I unplug the access point, then I get the weak connectivity back to the internet. Do I have a bad access point, or is the problem something else?
Is this access point also completely wireless?
Regardless of the state of the laptop, can you "log in" to the access point's configuration "Web page" from another machine on the same router?
I'm just throwing questions out because a lot of things have to be right for this to work; You can have channel collisions, IP address collisions (if the router and access point both have configuration "Web pages", then they must be at different IP addresses), and after that, there's the security encryption, MAC address filters -- all that.
1 turn of dhcp on the acess points just let the router do that.
Now next question how are you connecting the acess points to the router?
1 Wired ie you have a cable running from each ap to the router? (this is the standard way )
#2 is tricky as you are trying to set up a WDS wirless distribution system or bridge separate wiredlans to the router - thisisn't in the standard you can do it but normaly all the ap and the routers need to be from the same manafacturer.
you can use range extenders to expand your coverage but each hop cuts the bandwidth in half.