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I’m confused about ubiquiti


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6 minutes ago, Nickfromwales said:

Probably just a few posts on here tbh. How handy are you? Do you need to make any RJ45 plugs off etc? 

The cabling is in place, but it is just Cat6 cable, with no RJ45 plugs at the moment. My electrician offered to do the setup for me for £300 but that seemed a bit much to me. But I don't really know how much work is involved as a lot of people here have given me the impression it is really technical to get a ubiquity system up and running. (I'm in London, so London prices.)

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1 minute ago, Adsibob said:

The cabling is in place, but it is just Cat6 cable, with no RJ45 plugs at the moment. My electrician offered to do the setup for me for £300 but that seemed a bit much to me. But I don't really know how much work is involved as a lot of people here have given me the impression it is really technical to get a ubiquity system up and running. (I'm in London, so London prices.)

I pay my IT guy £360 for a day including fuel / expenses etc. He makes off all RJ45’s / labels everything up, mounts and sets up the AP’s and runs through all the testing point to point. I see value in that at that price and nowhere near London ;)  

I’d say your electrician is probably giving you a reasonable price….not cheap / not expensive IMO. 

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On 13/02/2022 at 21:21, Nickfromwales said:

We’re with them because, when it doesn’t need to be reset and we’re not sitting around for 15 mins waiting for it to put its dummy back in, the internet speeds are too damn good to go elsewhere.

 

Same here re speed - although 'apparently' we're too far away in the new build for them to be 'arsed' to run a cable through the duct we've installed ?

 

But on the reset time - if you've switched off wifi as @PeterW said, we find it reboots in no time.  So it seems the wifi functionality is what takes the time to reboot.  In the current house we run 3 Google mesh routers which happily hops through two 9 inch brick walls into the extension.

 

Simon

 

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  • 3 months later...

So this thread has definitely helped me get less confused about ubiquiti, but I’m still confused. To get the switch, within the flex series there appear to be three options:

See final section on right hand side of this table: 

 

https://www.broadbandbuyer.com/advice/4384-ubiquiti-standard-and-lite-switch-series-comparison-chart/

 

I don’t care about outdoor use, so then the only difference between a USW Flex and a USW Flex Mini is that the mini does not support 802.3af PoE. But is that Worth spending an extra £60 on, because that appears to be the price difference!

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And one more source of confusion. With a good mesh network, my understanding is that each node expands the network so that as you move through the house you are cleverly connected to the nearest node, but you don't notice any drop in signal as your connection changes from one node to another. Is that also the case with wireless access points? Or if i have a WAP on each floor of the house and i move from one floor to the other my connection speed might drop (or get severed altogether) momentarily as the device reconnects to a nearer WAP?

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51 minutes ago, Adsibob said:

And one more source of confusion. With a good mesh network, my understanding is that each node expands the network so that as you move through the house you are cleverly connected to the nearest node, but you don't notice any drop in signal as your connection changes from one node to another.

 

Sort of. It's actually up to the client device's wifi stack to notice there's a stronger AP available and make the change over to it. So it depends what devices you use as to how well it works.

Unlikely GSM there's no formal handover protocol (although some versions of ubiquiti tried to fake it by hiding the weaker API from a moving client to force it to reconnect to the stronger one, in practice I think that caused more issues than is solved, especially with the well-known Cupertino fruit products.

 

I find my Android phones and Mac laptops move around the house fine.

 

One tip: make a separate dedicated SSID for "legacy" devices, inc all 2.4GHz only devices, and turn on all the "legacy backward support" performance degrades on that. Those devices tend to be super cheap stuff that never get FW updates, but also rarely move around (e.g. light bulbs, bathroom scales, etc). Then have your main SSID track the very latest stanards and the high data consumers (phones, laptops, chrome cast) can generally keep up to date enough to stay compatible with that

 

 

 

58 minutes ago, Adsibob said:

Is that also the case with wireless access points? Or if i have a WAP on each floor of the house and i move from one floor to the other my connection speed might drop (or get severed altogether) momentarily as the device reconnects to a nearer WAP?

 

what exactly do you mean by WAP? A non-ubiquiti / non-mesh product, or a standard ubiquiti AP but using wireless rather than wired backahual?
If the former, depends entirely what product you mean.

If the latter, yes it still behaves like a mesh, but not as good. I'd try as hard as you can to get all APs wired. Two less-ideal placed wired APs are probably better than one perfectly placed wireless one.

 

 

13 hours ago, Adsibob said:

I don’t care about outdoor use, so then the only difference between a USW Flex and a USW Flex Mini is that the mini does not support 802.3af PoE. But is that Worth spending an extra £60 on, because that appears to be the price difference!

 

What do you intend plugging into the switch? Do those things need 802.3af PoE? If not I wouldn't bother.

A five-port switch is pretty tiny, you really don't have more wired ethernet devices than that? but if it's just for the APs get one that supports the APs now and be prepared to swap out (or add additional to it) in future.

 

FWIW: I find the ubiquiti stuff is good, but bit of a power hog.  I'd hoped getting one big switch (I have the 48 port PoE) would give some efficiency in scale vs lots of little, but I'm not convinced. I have about a dozen PoE devices on it (cloud key, APs, CCTV cameras, a couple  olimex esp32-poe, and a PoE-USB dongle for my toothbrush)

 

 

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39 minutes ago, joth said:

Sort of. It's actually up to the client device's wifi stack to notice there's a stronger AP available and make the change over to it. So it depends what devices you use as to how well it works.

Yup. A common misconception amongst clients so I explain this before installing. You can walk from one AP and get to the next and the device is clinging onto the weak original signal. Then it wakes up and says “oh, there’s a strong signal, let’s consider using that”. Then takes it’s sweet time to migrate. 

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3 hours ago, Nickfromwales said:

Yup. A common misconception amongst clients so I explain this before installing. You can walk from one AP and get to the next and the device is clinging onto the weak original signal. Then it wakes up and says “oh, there’s a strong signal, let’s consider using that”. Then takes it’s sweet time to migrate. 

And that is the case regardless of whether I have a couple of wired ubiquiti AP, like the ones you recommended earlier, or a regular mesh system like the Deco?

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4 hours ago, joth said:

 

what exactly do you mean by WAP? A non-ubiquiti / non-mesh product, or a standard ubiquiti AP but using wireless rather than wired backahual?
If the former, depends entirely what product you mean.

If the latter, yes it still behaves like a mesh, but not as good. I'd try as hard as you can to get all APs wired. Two less-ideal placed wired APs are probably better than one perfectly placed wireless one.

 

i meant a PoE access point that plugs into Ethernet and beams out beautifully fast wifi.

4 hours ago, joth said:

 

 

What do you intend plugging into the switch?

 

 

The access points! That’s the point of them I thought! Now I’m sure you will tell me there are plenty of other clever devices that can be PoE, but I don’t own or need any of those, other than some access points.

 

4 hours ago, joth said:

 

Do those things need 802.3af PoE?
 

that’s really my question. if I’m only using them to power, and send internet to, the  the access points, so I need them or not?

4 hours ago, joth said:

 

If not I wouldn't bother.

A five-port switch is pretty tiny, you really don't have more wired ethernet devices than that?

 

Is not so much about lack of devices, it’s lack of cable imbedded in the wall. Basically, I didn’t know about all this technology when I designed my wiring. So I just put in a CAT6 cable for each of the two computer stations, a network printer,  and each of two TVs. Luckily, my electrician used some initiative and buried an additional cable going to the landing of each of the two upper floors in the house and then when I later mentioned to him that I was looking into buying a mesh system, he said: why not install some access points instead.

4 hours ago, joth said:

 

but if it's just for the APs get one that supports the APs now and be prepared to swap out (or add additional to it) in future.

 

FWIW: I find the ubiquiti stuff is good, but bit of a power hog.  I'd hoped getting one big switch (I have the 48 port PoE) would give some efficiency in scale vs lots of little, but I'm not convinced. I have about a dozen PoE devices on it (cloud key, APs, CCTV cameras, a couple  olimex esp32-poe, and a PoE-USB dongle for my toothbrush)

 

 

I guess I could go up a size and get an extra port or two for security cameras. Not something I’d planned, but my house is now the nicest in the street, so I probably should!  I’m a bit confused as to why your toothbrush would need internet?!?

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4 hours ago, joth said:

Sort of. It's actually up to the client device's wifi stack to notice there's a stronger AP available and make the change over to it. So it depends what devices you use as to how well it works.

There are a few auto WiFi switcher apps in the Android App store that claim to switch to stronger APs but I've never bothered risking trying any out. Why this is still an issue that hasn't been sorted out in the OS totally stumps me.

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3 hours ago, Radian said:

Why this is still an issue that hasn't been sorted out in the OS totally stumps me.

Possible because we are going to 5G and the idea of centralised services is rather old hat.  May need a nano cell, which an AP basically is, in some buildings, but was will all be totally wireless, just about everywhere, in the not too distant future.

I can now get a signal at Porthtowan, the hippies must hate it.

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4 hours ago, Adsibob said:

The access points! That’s the point of them I thought! Now I’m sure you will tell me there are plenty of other clever devices that can be PoE, but I don’t own or need any of those, other than some access points.

Ah, ack got it. Sorry I sort of dropped into this without reminding myself of all the back story.

 

So the flex switches are useless to you. They're intended to chain off the back of one of the full fledge or Lite switches. They don't need a main PSU and power themselves from the PoE coming down the line from the main switch.

 

For a starter I'd suggest USW-Lite-8-POE or USW-Lite-16-POE 

 

 

4 hours ago, Adsibob said:

why your toothbrush would need internet?!?

It doesn't, it's just once you start putting PoE into every room it becomes very useful. Mains sockets aren't allowed in a bathroom but an ethernet socket is fine. So that's what powers my toothbrush charger. 

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 13/02/2022 at 15:00, Rob99 said:

 

I think the difficulty with any "new" network set up is that there is a huge range of products available, with new ones being launched every month

 

So what’s been launched in the last 4 months that might dethrone Ubiquiti?

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1 hour ago, Adsibob said:

So what’s been launched in the last 4 months that might dethrone Ubiquiti?

No idea - don't have time to follow the market and I'm still very happy with my Ubiquiti set up so not looking to change.

 

If I were starting from scratch now I'd be doing a whole heap of research, as I do for most things so that I get the best solution for the price I'm prepared to pay.

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12 hours ago, Adsibob said:

So what’s been launched in the last 4 months that might dethrone Ubiquiti?

 

ubiquiti are still sitting strong in the "prosumer" category. There's plenty of alternatives but it depends if you want something (i) more professional powerful, or (ii) more consumer friendly, or (iii) more open to home tinker. Which of those is more important to you?

 

Going out on a limb I'd say consumer friendly is your priority (but of course, with excellent performance), so I'd say have a good look at Nest, Netgear and TP-Link before setting your heart on ubiquiti

 

https://www.tomsguide.com/us/best-mesh-router,review-5191.html

 

The benefits of ubiquiti over those systems is having a managed layer2 network, allowing virtual lans, flexible network segregation and firewalls, multiple SSIDs, and ability to have all wifi APs powered over the ethernet cable. Aside from the PoE which is a dream, most of those advanced features give me a some kindof headache when I use them, and I'm a software engineer that's worked on IP stacks and I've been tinkering with home networking since 1995. 

 

If your goal is really good fast Wifi in every room, a consumer mesh network with wired backhaul seems a much better bet. Go uniquiti if you want many PoE devices, run your own servers, into home automation or Homelabs etc or generally want to spend a lot of time tinkering. (Or happy to pay someone else to do that for you).

I'd say if you like Google Assistant go Nest, else go Netgear or TP-Link .

 

Edited by joth
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