Raspberry PI AP's

Hi All,

I've posted another question on another thread for you to get your teeth stuck in to. However this is another project, but related to my previous.

I'm rebuilding my home network (because as a geek I like a challenge) and this is another I need help with pointing to a guide. If there is one!

My property is a bit weird in that its a top floor apartment, and to use the doorbell (Amazon Ring) I'm currently using a slightly unreliable POE WiFi adaptor. I also have rooms where WiFi is unreliable due to thick walls, and I have a garden 3 floors down where the WiFi is basically useless.

I also have a drawer full of Raspberry PI's which have been retired from older projects.

In a previous job I used to deploy UniFi AP's to create a good WiFi network over a difficult area. We would link the AP's either wired, or use 5ghz to link internally and 2.4ghz as the ap. I'd like to do same in this property, but use some of my old PI's as the AP's.

Is there a way of bridging or meshing OpenWRT on a server device to PI slaves? Again, if there is a good guide out there, I'd love to get a pointer to it. Google isn't helping just now!!

Many, Many thanks,


The RPi wireless (BCM43438) is inadequate for that purpose, on the one hand it's slow (SDIO and 1x1), on the other hand the brcmfmac driver/ firmware/ hardware is quite limiting in regard to interface combinations (which would be required for any kind of repeater functionality) - before even talking about the range of its internal pseudo-antenna. Keep in mind, the RPi has only a single radio, it can either serve the 2.4 GHz band XOR the 5 GHz band - and USB wireless cards are not reliable for this purpose.

The cheapest 2.4 GHz routers would do a better job than an RPi in 5 GHz mode, but ideally you'd look for triple-radio devices (ipq4019); if you're located in Europe, the BT Home Hub 5 Type A might be a bargain for less than a tenner each - in North America, the RAC2V1K (not yet merged into OpenWrt) for roughly four times that would be an option.

I was thinking about using an external USB adaptor. I do have a drawer full of Home Hub 5's tho, just need to get soldering iron out as yet! :wink:
I have been testing BT/Sagem Home Hub 5's with PoE too which is looking promising. I do love the PI tho!

Obviously UniFi can co-ordinate all end points from one central point, do you know if this is a feature in OpenWRT? It's not something I've managed to find. To be able to log in to a central hub and control the end points?