In the past we have used several WRT54GL units using them as both a wireless client (of one network/SSID) and as a wireless AP (for another network/SSID) at the same time. We have different IP ranges on the two networks and we have the boxes 'routing' (not NAT).
As our WRT54GLs are now old we just bought a WRT1900ACSv2 to replace one of the WRT5GLs which lives with one of our mobile 'rough terrain' robotic vehicles. The device provides connectivity between various This vehicle, being mobile, is sometimes unable to wirelessly connect to our 'main networks' (it may be in the middle of a field....).
1/. When the WRT1900ACSv2 manages to connect as a wireless client to our main network then the AP function of the WRT1900ACSv2 also works "reasonably well".
2/. However, if the WRT1900ACSv2 cannot connect as a client to the 'main network' (perhaps because it is in the middle of a field....) then the AP function of the unit becomes very unreliable as well. There is an initial delay of perhaps 30 seconds, then clients can connect to the 1900's AP, but then every 10 of 15 seconds they disconnect and so on and on.
We suspect this is a side effect of the 'client' attempting to reconnect and thus dropping the AP function as it does that.
Has anyone got any suggestions? Has anyone successfully used a WRT1900ACSv2 as both a wireless client and a wireless AP at the same time?
A logical combination of AP+STA mode on one physical radio allows the router to connect to a wireless hotspot/station (STA) and provide a wireless access point (AP) from that hotspot at the same time. Downside of this solution: whenever the STA interface looses the connection it will go into an active scan cycle which renders the radio unusable for AP mode operation, therefore the AP is taken down if the STA looses its association.
split the radios: use one radio solely for STA connections and the other as AP.
"The "magic" comes from the fact that the Broadcom chip really has two wifi interfaces that can be configured to work independently: one as an AP and the other as a STAtion. This functionality is only possible with the brcm-2.4 series firmware that includes Broadcom's wl driver, not with the brcm-47xx series firmware that includes b43."
Assuming that is true, that's why we got things to work fine on a WRT54GL that seem to not work on a WRT1900ACSv2...