Longshine Access point in Client Mode

If you've got a Longshine WA5-45 Access Point you must have seen the tiny switch with the word 'Client' underneath. If you flip this switch, your AP changes from a WLAN radiator to a WLAN vaccuum cleaner! It sucks up all the (unused) bits of WLAN which are in reach.

Of course you need to have the key to the WLAN domain you want to connect to. Still, if there is an open AP (Access Point) in your neighbourhood you can just connect as is and you are an instantaneous part of that network! I tried it. It works GREAT. The laptop connected to the AP in client mode behaves as if it was connected by an invisible UTP cable! Way to go Longshine!

This section takes you by the hand in setting up the WA5-45 to be converted to a vaccuum cleaner! For this all to work, connect the AP directly to a computer (a Laptop will do fine) with a string of UTP. No switches or routers should be in between. Just the laptop, the AP and one stretch of UTP in between.

Step 1: Preparations

Now there are two possibillities:

  1. You start out with a brand spanking new WA5-45 AP. This is the easy way to go. Skip to sction 2.
  2. You have an access point that is already running in your network (as a spare access point). This is the easy way to go. Even easier than the first option above. Just skip to section 3.
  3. You have acquired a used WA5-45 (won't be easy to get one; people won't sell such a fine AP) and you need to do some adjustments first.
If you're situation is either 'a' or 'b' then you can skip the remainder of this section.

So you got yourself a used WA5-45 and you want to convert it to a VC (Vaccuum Cleaner) mode. In fact this is easy, yet you need to be able to access the AP. If you have the IP address and password of the AP you're done:

The Access Point is now running inside your network perimeter. You can now skip to section 3. All others remain here.

If you cannot log on to the AP, you need to reset it. This may be a little tricky. Most of the times it works immediately. If in doubt, consult the manual at http://longshine.de/longshine/products/wireless/WA5-45/WA5-45-manual_eng.pdf or http://longshine.de/longshine/p_wireless.php?lang=eng Anyway, you need to activate the reset circuitry:

Now the settings of the AP should be back to the factory defaults: Try to ping the AP from a suitable network site. If it responds, you have a brand spanking new AP in your hands!

Step 2: the brand spanking new AP

Congratulations. You got yourself one of the most versatile yet affordable access points on earth. If your home network is not using 192.168.1.xxx you need to adapt it to fit your IP range and netmask.

The AP now fits your IP range.

Step 3: Flip the switch

First, log on the Access Point from within your own network. And now: flip the switch. The AP needs to reconsider it's sins and after few seconds it will return with a slightly different user interface (in your webbrowser).

Step 4: Configure the AP in VC mode

From now on the AP is in Nilfisk mode. But it cannot nilfisk bits from nowhere. So it needs to log on to an available network station (another AP which is still in AP mode):

If you're not connected redo the steps above and find where you made a typo or something similar.

And this is how it looks in a graph

The setup is now easy. The AP in VC mode will connect to the running AP (which does not need to be another Longshine AP, any brand will do) with the consistent security codes. The short UTP cable will now tie in the laptop (or printer or whatever) into a kind of island in your network.

You may connect a single device to the AP (like the laptop we used for setting it up) but if you connect the AP in VC mode to an ethernet switch (any kind will do, at 54 Mbps) you can tie a complete wired network into your existing wired or wireless network.
Of course you are not that kind of man, but there are men whose spouses prohibit any kind of UTP cable in the livingroom, and they need to give in. (If they were smart enough, these men would disguise the UTP cable as a powercord for the TV set and that would make it all very acceptable, but they're not, so they need this method).

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