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Akaihiryuu
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PostPosted: Fri May 27, 2016 11:36 pm    Post subject: Recommended wifi cards for hostapd Reply with quote

I'm currently using a RTL8821AE. It came with the board I got for my new server build. I'm getting absolutely *awful* performance. Been doing some Google searches, it looks like the driver for this card might just be very immature and not ready for general use.

It's a mini-PCIe card that I can very easily swap out though. So I'm looking for suggestions for better ones that work well with hostapd. In particular, I'm looking for one that has two radios, so I can create 2 AP's (for 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands) with one card. Unfortunately I have some equipment that only supports the 2.4GHz band, so I can't jump straight to 5GHz. Gonna need both for awhile. One card I'm looking at is this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA0ZX4424249

I just want to make sure that whatever I get is well supported, and preferably has 2 radios (as I believe that one does).
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charles17
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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 4:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

https://wireless.wiki.kernel.org/en/users/drivers/iwlwifi wrote:
* NAN, FTM and other features are planned for 8260

Guess those "new" features will not immediately be in stable versions of gentoo-sources.
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khayyam
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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 1:17 pm    Post subject: Re: Recommended wifi cards for hostapd Reply with quote

Akaihiryuu wrote:
I'm currently using a RTL8821AE. It came with the board I got for my new server build. I'm getting absolutely *awful* performance. Been doing some Google searches, it looks like the driver for this card might just be very immature and not ready for general use.

Akaihiryuu ... if you mean while acting as an AP then it may be due to a lack of entropy, perhaps try with an entropy daemon (such as sys-apps/haveged).

Akaihiryuu wrote:
It's a mini-PCIe card that I can very easily swap out though. So I'm looking for suggestions for better ones that work well with hostapd. In particular, I'm looking for one that has two radios, so I can create 2 AP's (for 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands) with one card. Unfortunately I have some equipment that only supports the 2.4GHz band, so I can't jump straight to 5GHz. Gonna need both for awhile.

When they speak of "dual band" they mean the operating frequencies. As for the number of radio's this doesn't matter as hostapd is a software AP, and can provide VAP (virtual AP's). I'm hesitant to recommend a card but Atheros are generally a good bet (as they make sure their cards are well supported under linux), you might think about something with the ath10k chipset (that URL suggests 802.11ac is supported).

best ... khay
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Akaihiryuu
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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think for now what I'm going to do is just get an external AP (connected via ethernet) to use for now. I'm going to get a reasonably good but fairly inexpensive wireless router (and just not use the router functionality). I've kind of wanted to get one for a little while, just so I would have a backup if I have a problem with my server for some reason (like when the power supply died in it a year ago). That'll get my wifi working for now, I can explore other options with hostapd at my leisure.
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khayyam
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PostPosted: Sat May 28, 2016 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Akaihiryuu wrote:
I think for now what I'm going to do is just get an external AP (connected via ethernet) to use for now. I'm going to get a reasonably good but fairly inexpensive wireless router (and just not use the router functionality). I've kind of wanted to get one for a little while, just so I would have a backup if I have a problem with my server for some reason (like when the power supply died in it a year ago). That'll get my wifi working for now, I can explore other options with hostapd at my leisure.

Akaihiryuu ... you'll probably get more practical advice if asking on the hostapd mailing list. That said a cheap AP is a good option, I've made quite a number using openwrt and you could similarly ask on their forum (openwrt uses hostapd). In my experience suitable devices can be picked up in the trash ... as ISP's hand them out with the contract (and people don't tend to understand that they can be put to other purposes once their contract expires). Personally I've never had to buy one, and as these also use mini-pci you can similarly swap out the card.

best ... khay
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bbgermany
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PostPosted: Mon May 30, 2016 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

if you are still looking for a minipcie wireless lan card, you should have a look at this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA9H43SP6393&cm_re=compex_WLE900VX-_-9SIA9H43SP6393-_-Product

Linux support with ath10k driver, wireless ac support and I think with the ath10k driver, you should get your ap running as well.

greets, bb
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khayyam
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 04, 2016 9:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Recommended wifi cards for hostapd Reply with quote

khayyam wrote:
I'm hesitant to recommend a card but Atheros are generally a good bet (as they make sure their cards are well supported under linux), you might think about something with the ath10k chipset (that URL suggests 802.11ac is supported).

bbgermany wrote:
if you are still looking for a minipcie wireless lan card, you should have a look at this one: [...] Linux support with ath10k driver, wireless ac support and I think with the ath10k driver, you should get your ap running as well.

Akaihiryuu, bbgermany, et al ... having just watched Felix Fietkau's talk at 32c3 ("wireless drivers: freedom considered Harmful?" ... an openwrt perspective on the development of Linux 802.11 support") I've changed my mind on ath10k (the reasons for which should be obvious if you watch the lecture).

best ... khay
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Akaihiryuu
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 05, 2016 11:45 pm    Post subject: Re: Recommended wifi cards for hostapd Reply with quote

khayyam wrote:
khayyam wrote:
I'm hesitant to recommend a card but Atheros are generally a good bet (as they make sure their cards are well supported under linux), you might think about something with the ath10k chipset (that URL suggests 802.11ac is supported).

bbgermany wrote:
if you are still looking for a minipcie wireless lan card, you should have a look at this one: [...] Linux support with ath10k driver, wireless ac support and I think with the ath10k driver, you should get your ap running as well.

Akaihiryuu, bbgermany, et al ... having just watched Felix Fietkau's talk at 32c3 ("wireless drivers: freedom considered Harmful?" ... an openwrt perspective on the development of Linux 802.11 support") I've changed my mind on ath10k (the reasons for which should be obvious if you watch the lecture).

best ... khay


That pretty much rules out everything though. Intel: no-go because you can't do a 5G AP. Ath10k: no-go for reasons described. Realtek: No-go due to awful drivers. What's left?
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khayyam
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2016 7:16 pm    Post subject: Re: Recommended wifi cards for hostapd Reply with quote

Akaihiryuu wrote:
khayyam wrote:
Akaihiryuu, bbgermany, et al ... having just watched Felix Fietkau's talk at 32c3 ("wireless drivers: freedom considered Harmful?" ... an openwrt perspective on the development of Linux 802.11 support") I've changed my mind on ath10k (the reasons for which should be obvious if you watch the lecture).

That pretty much rules out everything though. Intel: no-go because you can't do a 5G AP. Ath10k: no-go for reasons described. Realtek: No-go due to awful drivers. What's left?

Akaihiryuu ... I wasn't pointing to a suitable card but unulling the recomendation, specifically because by that account ath10k is very much broken at this point.

I'm quite prepared to stick with older chipsets, I'll be replacing the ath5k chip in this machine shortly, and am using a zd1211rw USB until that time.

best ... khay
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