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Router for WISP / ISP hotspot with captive portal authentication

Discussion in 'Wireless Buying Advice' started by Victor, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. Victor

    Victor New Around Here

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    Hey all, I'm in a basement. There is an Xfinity (ISP) hotspot in a building somewhere across the street and since I pay for xfinity service at another location, I'd like to use the hotspot. I've got a TP-Link AC750 (TL-WR902AC) on a 20 foot USB cable out a small basement window, and it does connect to the hotspot, but the connection is barely usable (0.50 Mbps download, 0.29 Mbps upload), and disconnects frequently. I typically get 4-5 bars on my laptop, so the issue is with the TP Link's range.

    I can't seem to find a router/extender capable of greater range with WISP / ISP hotspot with captive portal pass through authentication. Does anyone have any ideas? I'd consider a budget up to $500.

    Thank you in advance.
     
  2. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    Do you have line-of-sight to the building? Or, are there many obstacles in between?
     
  3. Victor

    Victor New Around Here

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    It's a direct line of sight from where I have my tplink ac750 to the apartment building across the street from which I assume I'm picking up the signal.
     
  4. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    Are there removable/replaceable antennae on it? Possibly something with more directionality and higher gain may help.

    Alternately, what does putting in a new router (RT-AC86U or RT-AX88U for more external/replaceable antennae/streams) do?

    While assuming the signal is in your line of sight, the other comments you made seem to indicate otherwise. ;)
     
  5. Victor

    Victor New Around Here

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    No, the AC750 doesn't have any antenna ports.

    Are the routers you mentioned capable of connecting to an ISP hotspot with portal identification? I didn't find anything about that in searching about them.

    Regarding line of sight, I can't exactly be sure where the broadcast router is. There are probably 30 apartments in that building. I do know that I get a signal by stringing a 20ft usb cord to the TP-Link router outside my basement window. I think it's on the 2.4Ghz band, if that helps.

    Thank you.
     
  6. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    No, none of the routers I'm familiar with can do that. You should be looking for a 'Wisp' capable device.
     
    Victor likes this.
  7. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    Have a look at this thread. Also search the forum for other "travel router" discussions.
     
    Victor likes this.
  8. Victor

    Victor New Around Here

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    Unfortunately, all the wisp devices I've found to date are similar to my tplink ac750, travel routers. They're designed for short range, and don't seem to have the reach I need.
     
  9. ColinTaylor

    ColinTaylor Part of the Furniture

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    Indeed. The few I've looked at don't have detachable antennas that you could connect a long cable to.:(

    Maybe the OpenWRT or DD-WRT gurus here will know whether they can support captive portals. If that's the case then in theory any compatible WiFi router could be used together with a couple of high gain directional antennas.
     
    Victor and L&LD like this.
  10. Victor

    Victor New Around Here

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    It seems OpenWRT has a package for a travel router called Travelmate. I have zero experience with third party router software, so I'm in over my head, but willing to learn, if someone can confirm that this will work.

    Here's the README, with much more info.
     
  11. L&LD

    L&LD Part of the Furniture

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    Maybe quicker to ask directly on their forums?