802.11s vs WDS vs OLSR

According to this 2020 paper:

OLSR is superior to both WDS and 802.11s:

It is striking how much difference there is between the technologies in terms of throughput and latency.

What is the consensus now in late 2021? Has anyone compared the relative merits of WDS vs mesh vs OLSR in OpenWrt?

The temporary brokenness of 802.11s mesh for the RT3200 (now fixed I believe) is what prompted me to look into this, when I switched to WDS.

Is OLSR well implemented in OpenWrt right now?

Hi, @Lynx,

As you know I had installed 802.11s in my APs. I ended coming back to WDS due to lack of throughput. So, might be better you test what works better in your case. In mine is was a difference of 200 Mbps.

That is an extreme difference. It's consistent with the paper above and I wonder if OLSR would give latency + throughput benefit as found in the paper?

It's not, because my network only has 1 hop! It's two nodes.

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The paper is not very rigorous.

  • Different hardware was used for the OLSR case.
  • The testing was conducted with all nodes in strong radio range of each other (in the same room), with an attempt to impose fixed routing to force a number of hops.

The authors also seem unaware that the three systems are different in how they do layer 1 channel access. Which really is the only difference being considered, since routes are fixed there is no need for a mesh routing layer. There is also no consideration of BATMAN-adv.

Some commercial "mesh" products such as Unifi actually use WDS links.

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Correct, what beats me is why they chose to implement this as a link between two hidden BSSIDs and adding more noise to the channel. Anyway, very good points, @mk24.