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Can somebody give any insight on how we would boost a wifi signal in a campsite for our camper trailer?

Do I get some sort of outdoor USB Antenna/NIC for my laptop, then share that connection to my own wifi router via the other NIC, and setup the other devices (ipad/blackberry) to use my own router?

We are spending a month at a place this summer with wifi included, but last time the connection was a bit shotty. Hoping to get a solid connection for voip calls, netflix, and such.

Or do I scrap anything like the above and get some sort of Roger's Rocket solution
 

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they do sell little antennas you can hook to your laptop to boost wifi signals, I can't remember a name for them but a freind of mine has one and it works well.
I'm sure a quick google search will answer your question.
 

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For all your wireless devices, I would get one of those mast mounted outdoor WiFi receivers (bridge). They connect with a Cat5E to the power injector and a regular access point/router inside, to share it with your stuff. Using a router inside, would allow you to protect your communications inside.

A cheaper way may to be to get a DD-WRT capable router, and put DD-WRT on it, and make that into a repeater or receiver. You would need to put it into an outdoor hardy case, and at least run a power line to it.
 

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A pringles/coffee can wi-fi antenna is another option. A quick search should turn up some plans. Similar devices are available commercially. They are basically directional add on antennas. Just point it at the access point antenna and it should increase the signal dramatically.
 

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You need to connect the antenna to something, and most computers and other Wi-Fi devices just do not have WiFi antenna inputs.
 

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That is what I thought classicsat.

What do we connect all these devices to on the Laptop.?
 

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It was possible with some wi-fi cards. Don't know if it still is. Do laptops still have PCMCIA slots?
 

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I thought the wireless bridges used USB (or 110V) for power and Ethernet for the connection? I remember using them a few years back on my old laptop.
 

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First you got to ask yourself if you don't have a bottleneck somewhere in your network. If your devices support wireless N by all means get a wireless router that support it!
 

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It was possible with some wi-fi cards. Don't know if it still is. Do laptops still have PCMCIA slots?
I think Expresscard is the standard now. I seem to have a slot for it on my new laptop but I've never actually seen an expresscard.
 

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Bad connection might be due to network congestion on campgrounds, or because there are a bunch of tin RV's in the line of sight between you and their router antenna?

... alternatively I've had luck in marginal Wifi situations with a "Cantenna"

You can google it. Unfortunately, I believe Pringles cans have changed.

I made one from a can from wasabi peas.

P
 

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Part of the "performance problem" in campgrounds is the speed of most service offered and then your comment of "netflix and such". One user of that kills most campground services. Get yourself a satellite service if you want TV! Just my opinion as one who can't get decent speed lately while rv'ing due to netflix users!!!! Campgrounds don't have GB service usually and there is/are more than one user who would like to enjoy the service.
One site I was at..the guy was in a tent trailer using up the bandwidth and had the volume up so the whole camping row could "enjoy" his choice of movies. Now that's camping!
 

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Modern middle of the road laptops have the network cards built in, using PCI-E at least, and built in antennas. Expresscard, I guess, is a variety of that.


Some USB adapters may support, or be hackable, to support an external antenna. Some routers also use removable antenna, and can be set to bridge mode. My Linksys WRT54G V5 does, and can bridge with DD-WRT firmware.

The Wireless bridges I speak of are mast mount outdoor varieties, and generally get their power over the Ethernet cable, through an injector.

Most of the indoor bridges you use at a network device, to use your existing home WiFi, may use USB or a direct wall-wart for power.

I hesitated to mention straight antenna solutions, because most likely, one has nothing to plug them into. Hence I suggested an active bridge or repeater device.
 

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Wifi at campgrounds

Because a camper is made of metal it blocks signal. Therefore you need to put your router antenna(s) in a window closet to the campground's wifi source. Also try to park close to the source. lol -- I do have one of those USB wifi adapter with a long antenna and a USB extension cable they work great. Search 5dbi usb wifi or if you want more power 9dbi usb wifi, remember every 3dbi doubles antenna power.
 
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