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Ask Max: Router is a long way from the network - how to connect?

Asked on 02/27/2007:

We have a router 900 feet away from our house. We want to know how wecan connect this to a wired Mac network at our house. What are yoursuggestions?1. Can we run ethernet cable?2. Can we simply use a powerful directional antenna?3. Would a wireless bridge span this?


900 feet is near three times the practical limit of ethernet, so your first option is out. That is, unless you want to place a ethernet switch every 300 feet to act as a repeater. Your other solution of going wireless with directional antenna is possible but probably expensive. Here is a link to a great antenna store which has a product called Q-Bridge (Link to Q-Bridge). This would handle your 900 foot network jump easily. Most wireless repeaters, like Apple's WDS systems, will not work over this range without many midway hops between the two networks. In that case you may as well use the ethernet switches instead.Most professional network installers use fiber gigabit over fiber optic cable to span that distance. You would need to buy two gigabit switches that have a least one SFP port each. Then you would need to use two GBIC 1000BASE-LX FIBER SFP modules and 900 feet of 9m single mode cabling between them. This would be a pricey solution to say the least.If you try the Q-Bridge, let me know what you think about it or what you end up using.

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