My Home Network

I am an enthusiast and like to play with tech toys whenever possible (usually at night after the kids went to sleep). This time I will write about my home network and how did I set it up.

I will start with my internet gateway, an AT&T U-Verse Router which has 4 network ports and built-in Wi-Fi. Both options are enabled; the latter as a backup in case the main Access Point dies. I connect my Linksys VoIP adapter and the main router, a TRENDnet TEW-632BRP, to it. My main router is assigned a WAN IP as it is located on the DMZ. For some reason the VoIP adapter was not receiving incoming calls while behind the TRENDnet router, so I decided to avoid the hassle of finding out proper firewall rules and just put it behind the U-Verse Gateway under its own subnet instead.

Behind the TRENDnet main router I plug a Brother multifunction laser printer, my main PC and a TRENDnet AP with WDS enabled. I use this last one as a dedicated Wireless-N connection to the other 2 Wireless Bridges I have around the house (more on that later). The multifunction printer has PC-to-Fax capability and I use it to send Faxes-Over-IP. Good thing that JoiPhone provides a reliable service in a pay-per-minute basis.

The Family Room has a Netgear WNR834B setup as wireless repeater-bridge and I connect 3 devices to it: a Sony Blu-Ray Player with BD-Live/Netflix on-demand/other internet service, and Argosy HD 1080p Media Player and a DirecTV HR21 HD DVR for on-demand capabilities. The Argosy media player has a built-in BitTorrent client and it will eventually bring down the wireless connection when there are too many peers connecting to it. Unfortunately it has no configuration to limit the amount of connections, so I decided to turn off the seeding feature.

The master bedroom has an ASUS WL-520gC repeater-bridge and I connect a DirecTV HR24 HD DVR and a Samsung Blu-Ray player w/Netflix Streaming capabilities. This one has a Wireless-G connection and is enough for streaming HD content. It has proven to be reliable enough.

Occasionally my Smartphones won’t connect directly to the main router depending in the area of the house I am, and because of that I setup the repeater feature on my wireless bridges. Now I can be outside the house streaming FriskyRadio via Wi-Fi.

My Kids will use their Netbook to stream directly from the HD DVRs or Netflix on-demand. They do not have TVs in their bedroom and I do not plan to install them yet.

I wish I had the opportunity to rewire the whole house with Cat 5e cable and ensure a bullet-proof networking connectivity, but it seems that the benefits are not going to offset the investment, at least not yet.