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Old 09-18-2006, 10:10 AM   #1
Registered: Apr 2005
Location: Minneap USA
Distribution: Debian, Mepis, Sidux
Posts: 470

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Can I use pcmcia wifi and a router to share internet access?

Would it be possible to use a laptop with wifi card in it as a repeater for a network?

Basically my laptop can get a signal from one half of the house, but rather than run cable all over, I'd like to use this laptop's wifi to share Internet access on a switch for the other half.

The laptop should receive the signal (wlan0) and forward it on to the Linksys switch (via eth0), sharing Internet access to all who are plugged into that switch. I realize that these computers' ethernet speeds would be limited to the connection speed of the wifi, but its ok for now.

The laptop is currently running Xubuntu 6.06 Alternate (for low-RAM systems).

Last edited by lefty.crupps; 09-18-2006 at 03:37 PM.
Old 09-20-2006, 02:17 PM   #2
Registered: Nov 2004
Location: Turku, Finland
Distribution: Debian, Ubuntu, Gentoo
Posts: 388

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Short answer: Yes.

Long answer:

You'll need a wireless cardbus card that supports s.c. "Access point mode", which is also called "HostAP" mode. In addition the card's drivers (kernel modules) have to support this feature. Not all cards do. Then you'll have to configure your laptop so that all it forwards all traffic from the wifi card to the ethernet card, which in turn gets forwarded to the Internet.

I have a similar setup, although I use my desktop as the access point, and I have no separate router. Nevertheless I have a howto devoted to this issue at
Old 09-24-2006, 11:19 AM   #3
Registered: Apr 2005
Location: Minneap USA
Distribution: Debian, Mepis, Sidux
Posts: 470

Original Poster
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Thank you for the HowTo and some response! I was starting to think LQ might be devoid of activity.

Yeah I read a bit on making my laptop work as a router, which is what I wanted but couldn't think of the term for what I was trying to do ("make a router" or "routing"). Again, thanks for the HowTo!


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