WiFi Improvement Suggestions -- Equipment & Topology

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WiFi Improvement Suggestions -- Equipment & Topology

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Diagram of current system topology is shown below.  Primary goal is to expand WiFi coverage to the opposite end of the main building.  Secondary objective is to add WiFi coverage within the 2nd building.

 

Expand WiFi Coverage in Main Building (Primary)

FiOS Quantum gateway (G1100) is only WiFi source currently on premises, located on 1st floor at one end of the house.  Want solid WiFi in bedrooms on 2nd floor at opposite end of the house.  For the most part I have the ability to run new or reconfigure wiring (Ethernet or coax) to any room on the 1st floor.  Any solution requiring wiring other than the existing coax runs to the 2nd floor may not be practical (existing coax runs to the 2nd floor connect to the two 7100-P2 STB's without the "long coax" connection).

  1. Option #1 seems to be purchase a FiOS Network Extender (WCB6200Q) and place it in one of the bedrooms.  Connect it by splitting the existing coax to the 7100-P2 STB (using a 2-way MoCA rated splitter).
  2. Option #2...  Run Ethernet from gateway to 1st floor beneath the bedrooms where dead zones exist.  Connect a 3rd party WiFi AP.  I have a few Linksys Tri-band Velop nodes I believe I could configure to work for this.

Option #1 seems like the most logical choice, but I am curious how other's experiences have been with the WCB6200Q.  Or if anyone here thinks the performance would be better with the WCB6200Q or a 3rd party AP on the floor below the bedrooms but connected by Ethernet back to the Quantum gateway? 

 

There's also a caveat... I'm still working on connecting the coax wall jack in the room I'd ideally want to add the extender to the FiOS network.  If we can't figure out where it terminates we may not have Option #1 available to us.  If this becomes the case, we may be forced into options other than #1.  I'm curious if there are any thoughts on FiOS vs 3rd party equipment...  I've read about issues with 3rd party APs when using FiOS One STBs.  Not the case currently but maybe in the future.  Also curious on preference for Ethernet vs MoCA...  does the FiOS equipment prefer MoCA, or should I still use ethernet if possible to connect the FiOS extender?

 

Main reason for these desired improvements is there is now someone staying in one of the bedrooms.  We want to get them TV and reliable WiFi.  If for some reason we can't get the coax jack within that room live, could we add just a singular FiOS One STB to run off the WiFi we extend to that room?  Worst case I suppose they could get by with an Apple TV or similar, but a FiOS STB would be preferred.

 

 

Adding WiFi Coverage in 2nd Building (Secondary Objective)

The cell coverage throughout the entire property is nearly nonexistent, so we'd also like to add WiFi coverage to a 2nd building on the property.  There's currently a coax run between the buildings, that feeds an STB in the 2nd building.  I'm still working on determining whether this coax run is amplified.  Running an ethernet cable to the 2nd building would be feasible in theory, but definitely a project and direct burial CAT-6 isn't necessarily cheap.  What are my options for bringing WiFi down to my work garage?

 

Network Diagram v2_cropped.png

 

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Re: WiFi Improvement Suggestions -- Equipment & Topology

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Well, let me peruse your text.

 

  • When ethernet and MoCA are simultaneously connected, which physical method of connection does Verizon equipment prefer?

Verizon equipment will be confused. Plugging both the ethernet and coax will create two data links from the upstream device (i.e. G1100), this will cause traffic collision and congestion, slowing your network speed if not rendered the entire system unusable. Have you tried plug two ethernet cables from a switch to another switch? An unmanaged switch has no idea which port to send the packets, unless that layer 2 device supports Link Aggregation, which is not the case for WCB3000N for sure.

 

I just tested plugging a coax cable and an ethernet cable into the WCB3000N simultaneously, see the image.MoCAWCB3000N.PNG

Then, the Cisco unmanaged switch complains a yellow light on the uplink port.Cisco Yellow Light.PNG

So, this cannot be done if you want a stable system. Only coax or ethernet uplink.

 

  • Regarding WCB3000N, WCB6200q

WCB6200q should presumably cover a larger area since it is the second generation of WCB3000N. It is very hard to test wireless signal given all kinds of interference and obstructions are different in each house. 5 GHz is still, by design, vulnerable to obstruction and interference.

  • Regarding STBs

Verizon FiOS STB requires both the Linear TV Signal (same coax port as MoCA) from the ONT and Internet (delivered either by MoCA, ethernet?, or wireless?) from G1100 for the guide data. So to watch TV in the 2nd building, you need a coax cable connected any way for the Linear TV Signal. I am not good at FiOS TVs, so I can be wrong in this paragraph. 

 

  • Does more MoCA devices create more interference?

No. The G1100 MoCA status page shows it can support up to 15 LAN MoCA devices (I only have two, never bought that many for testing purposes). MoCA devices can mix and match their versions. For instance, G1100 can talk to MoCA 1.1 with 175 Mbps. It can concurrently talk to MoCA 2.0 with 500Mbps without issue. Assuming the STB you have is MoCA 1.0, then G1100 will not slow down the entire MoCA network to 100Mbps, but only use this speed with the STB.

 

E3200 theoretically can be used even without any Verizon equipment. It supports MoCA 2.5 at 2.5Gbps (what's the point for gigabit internet?)

 

  • Third party access point

You can try third party router. I cannot give more suggestions here unless I test the equipment myself.

  • The 250ft connection

Well, I can say this is a very uneasy length. If you need a 300+ft connection, I would solidly recommend SFP fiber because of the price and quality, but just 250ft? I am afraid that MoCA and ethernet's signal will be degraded enough trampling the speed. CAT5e and CAT6 all have a 300ft ish distance limit. If you go with the SFP, presumably you don't have a SFP capable switch, so you need to buy SFP to ethernet adapters on both sides. This is very costly, but the fastest of all the solutions.

 

If you have more questions, please ask.

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Silver Contributor II
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Re: WiFi Improvement Suggestions -- Equipment & Topology

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I will answer your questions in no specific order.

 

Does Verizon equipment prefer MoCA or ethernet?

MoCA and ethernet are layer 2 protocols, I don't think the equipment will prefer one over the other. There are considerations over the speed and efficacy. If you wire, let's say WCB6200q, with an ethernet cable, don't you lose a gigabit ethernet port? WCB6200q has bonded MoCA 2.0, support speed up to 1.05Gbps, so speed is virtually the same whether you wire it coax or ethernet. Wait a second, let's back track a second. You have G1100, only supporting MoCA 2.0 (different from bonded MoCA 2.0), can only transmit via coax at a maximum of 500Mbps. So you have to wire it ethernet in order to get 1000Mbps. The updated version of G1100, which is G3100, supports Bonded MoCA 2.0.

 

I am not sure you need 1000Mbps delivered via wireless at the 2nd building. If you think 120Mbps will suffice, then let's try WCB3000N, cost around $30, although it only has 802.11a/b/g/n 2.4GHz or 5.0GHz (a or n only). If you think 500Mbps ethernet will suffice, then let's try ECB5240M (Bonded MoCA 2.0 + 4 ethernet ports, no wireless) or WCB6200q (little expensive). If you really need 1000Mbps, MoCA is not competent unless you upgrade your router to G3100.

 

Should you prefer third party AP over Verizon extenders?

My experience is Verizon's products are better than 3rd party parts given the same price level. I am not sure it is more expensive to a buy WCB6200q and wire it with ethernet (therefore wasting one ethernet port ) than a third party AP.

 

Do you need an amplifier for the 250ft installation of MoCA?

The STB can receive the MoCA signal, but how fast, I do not know. You can look for a Coax amplifier of the frequency at which the MoCA LAN transmits (tricky and expensive maybe?) Or, just pull a fiber with SFP to ethernet adapters. You need to compare the price.

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Re: WiFi Improvement Suggestions -- Equipment & Topology

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Thanks for your thoughts, Cang_Household.  See feedback below...

 


Does Verizon equipment prefer MoCA or ethernet?

MoCA and ethernet are layer 2 protocols, I don't think the equipment will prefer one over the other. There are considerations over the speed and efficacy. If you wire, let's say WCB6200q, with an ethernet cable, don't you lose a gigabit ethernet port? WCB6200q has bonded MoCA 2.0, support speed up to 1.05Gbps, so speed is virtually the same whether you wire it coax or ethernet. Wait a second, let's back track a second. You have G1100, only supporting MoCA 2.0 (different from bonded MoCA 2.0), can only transmit via coax at a maximum of 500Mbps. So you have to wire it ethernet in order to get 1000Mbps. The updated version of G1100, which is G3100, supports Bonded MoCA 2.0.


"Prefer" probably wasn't the best way to phrase this question...  What I meant was, "If both options were available, is there a preference for MoCA vs Ethernet for extender to gateway backhaul?"  This includes considerations like speed and reliability as you mentioned, as well as other pros/cons.  For example, would the extender require a MoCA connection to feed the FiOS One STBs if I were to upgrade in the future?  Would the ethernet option have benefits for the system as a whole (i.e. gateway-to-extender link as ethernet results in fewer signals present on the MoCA network, making it perform better... improved ONT to gateway speed, more reliable signal at STB on end of long coax run, etc.)?

It is interesting that the WCB6200Q extender supports bonded MoCA 2.0 and the G1100 doesn't, as Verion's site implies that the WCB6200Q is intended to be paired with the G1100.  I suppose this is a result of them being made by different companies or the WCB6200Q being released more recently (per the MoCA certification dates).  I'm still working on confirming the speeds under the current service plan, but the ONT outputting in MoCA mode suggests no more than 300/300.  There isn't a need for extreme speeds within the LAN as of now (no NAS, etc.).  There are not any devices to be plugged into the gigbit ethernet ports of the extender at location it would be placed on the 1st floor where I can run ethernet to it, so dedicating one of the two ports to the gateway connection isn't a concern.

Can the newer E3200 be paired with the G1100?  Any issues other than loss of SON features?  It might make sense to spend the extra $80 and get the latest extender version now, and update the gateway to the G3100 at a later date.

 

 


I am not sure you need 1000Mbps delivered via wireless at the 2nd building. If you think 120Mbps will suffice, then let's try WCB3000N, cost around $30, although it only has 802.11a/b/g/n 2.4GHz or 5.0GHz (a or n only). If you think 500Mbps ethernet will suffice, then let's try ECB5240M (Bonded MoCA 2.0 + 4 ethernet ports, no wireless) or WCB6200q (little expensive). If you really need 1000Mbps, MoCA is not competent unless you upgrade your router to G3100.


Would you expect the only difference between the WCB3000N and WCB6200Q to be 802.11n vs 802.11ac (and the speeds each offers)?  In other words, could the newer WCB6200Q potentially do a better job of working off what I expect is a less than perfect signal available at the 2nd building?  Or maybe I'd be better off sticking with the WCB3000N since the upper frequency of it's MoCA 1.1 interface is less than the MoCA 2.0 of the WCB6200 (assume highest frequency portions of the signal will see most attenuation)?

Would one option pair better with the 7100-P2 STB in the 2nd building?  I'm not familiar enough with MoCA to understand whether the data being transferred along the long coax to the WiFi extender will eat into the signal for the STB (or vice-versa).  Maybe WCB3000N wouldn't be as likely to dominate the signal from the STB?  Are the 7100-P2 STB's coax input considered MoCA, and if so do we know what MoCA version they are?  If the STB isn't currently running on MoCA 2.0, I may be forced to use a WCB3000N based on amplifier on the long coax line (whether it's MoCA 2.0 compatible).

Ultimately I'd probably opt for the WCB6200Q, even if the initial backhaul connection solution didn't facilitate 802.11ac speeds.  I have future plans to add a few security cameras around this 2nd building, which I'd like to be able to monitor via the cloud.  So I'm willing to put some work/funds into obtaining the necessary connection speed back to the gateway.

 

 


Should you prefer third party AP over Verizon extenders?

My experience is Verizon's products are better than 3rd party parts given the same price level. I am not sure it is more expensive to a buy WCB6200q and wire it with ethernet (therefore wasting one ethernet port ) than a third party AP.


I have a preference for Verizon-branded equipment.  This system needs to be reliable.  The tenants aren't overly tech-savy don't want to be constantly power-cycling and troubleshooting the system for it to work.  I'd hope that a Veriozon-branded system would be the most stable.  At the very least Verizon techs will work with it.  The only reason I mentioned a 3rd party AP was because I have a few Velop nodes laying around, and I had also seen some complaints with the WCB6200Q's coverage range.

 

 

Do you need an amplifier for the 250ft installation of MoCA?

The STB can receive the MoCA signal, but how fast, I do not know. You can look for a Coax amplifier of the frequency at which the MoCA LAN transmits (tricky and expensive maybe?) Or, just pull a fiber with SFP to ethernet adapters. You need to compare the price.


I'll work on figuring out if/what is currently in place for an amplifier on this line.  Would fiber be that advantageous over a quality CAT 6 ethernet cable?  I don't have any experience with SFP adapters.  Do they 'just work' or could they potentially need to be reset?  See note above regarding my desire for a very reliable and stable system, even if it means less than optimal performance.  Just to be clear, I don't believe the 7100-P2 STB can accept an ethernet input, so the coax would need to remain for STB connection?

 

Thanks again for the help.

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Re: WiFi Improvement Suggestions -- Equipment & Topology

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Well, let me peruse your text.

 

  • When ethernet and MoCA are simultaneously connected, which physical method of connection does Verizon equipment prefer?

Verizon equipment will be confused. Plugging both the ethernet and coax will create two data links from the upstream device (i.e. G1100), this will cause traffic collision and congestion, slowing your network speed if not rendered the entire system unusable. Have you tried plug two ethernet cables from a switch to another switch? An unmanaged switch has no idea which port to send the packets, unless that layer 2 device supports Link Aggregation, which is not the case for WCB3000N for sure.

 

I just tested plugging a coax cable and an ethernet cable into the WCB3000N simultaneously, see the image.MoCAWCB3000N.PNG

Then, the Cisco unmanaged switch complains a yellow light on the uplink port.Cisco Yellow Light.PNG

So, this cannot be done if you want a stable system. Only coax or ethernet uplink.

 

  • Regarding WCB3000N, WCB6200q

WCB6200q should presumably cover a larger area since it is the second generation of WCB3000N. It is very hard to test wireless signal given all kinds of interference and obstructions are different in each house. 5 GHz is still, by design, vulnerable to obstruction and interference.

  • Regarding STBs

Verizon FiOS STB requires both the Linear TV Signal (same coax port as MoCA) from the ONT and Internet (delivered either by MoCA, ethernet?, or wireless?) from G1100 for the guide data. So to watch TV in the 2nd building, you need a coax cable connected any way for the Linear TV Signal. I am not good at FiOS TVs, so I can be wrong in this paragraph. 

 

  • Does more MoCA devices create more interference?

No. The G1100 MoCA status page shows it can support up to 15 LAN MoCA devices (I only have two, never bought that many for testing purposes). MoCA devices can mix and match their versions. For instance, G1100 can talk to MoCA 1.1 with 175 Mbps. It can concurrently talk to MoCA 2.0 with 500Mbps without issue. Assuming the STB you have is MoCA 1.0, then G1100 will not slow down the entire MoCA network to 100Mbps, but only use this speed with the STB.

 

E3200 theoretically can be used even without any Verizon equipment. It supports MoCA 2.5 at 2.5Gbps (what's the point for gigabit internet?)

 

  • Third party access point

You can try third party router. I cannot give more suggestions here unless I test the equipment myself.

  • The 250ft connection

Well, I can say this is a very uneasy length. If you need a 300+ft connection, I would solidly recommend SFP fiber because of the price and quality, but just 250ft? I am afraid that MoCA and ethernet's signal will be degraded enough trampling the speed. CAT5e and CAT6 all have a 300ft ish distance limit. If you go with the SFP, presumably you don't have a SFP capable switch, so you need to buy SFP to ethernet adapters on both sides. This is very costly, but the fastest of all the solutions.

 

If you have more questions, please ask.

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