Modem/wifi advice needed please

kathie6, Feb 26, 2:36am
Computer savvy peeps - I need some advice!

Currently we have a standard issue wireless router from our phone company (Orcon - NetComm Wireless NF4V VDSL/ADSL Wireless gigabit modem router). From this we have about one zillion wireless devices connected (2 desktops, 6 laptops, 7 iPads, 8 phones and a printer).

We have four teenagers, two adults and two preteens using upwards of 800GB per month. I have the router on a external timer so that I can automatically switch it off at night to keep the teens honest with sleep.

My husband and I want to upgrade the whole system to something that better suits our particular needs:
1. Must be able to cope with multiple streaming downloads (Youtube, Leauge of Legends etc)
2. Must have good coverage for a two story brick and tile home
3. Must be able to have at least two networks running (i.e. one for my husband and I and one for the kids) with the ability to have one switched off whilst the other is running.
4. Must be easy to set up and use.

I would love it if I could have separate logins for separate users and the ability to customise access times for each user. I would also love it if there is some way to easily see who is using what (i.e. number of devices any one person has connected and how much data they are using) and a way to easily boot them off (e.g. if they set up their laptop to download huge amounts of data whilst at school).

Cost is not a huge consideration. We are happy to invest in something that is going to work well for us for the next 3-4 years. Wifi access is one of the biggest trouble spots in our otherwise happy family right now - particularly when the modem goes off at 11pm and I am having a bout of insomnia!
Now I have no idea what technology is out there and what features there are so instead of wandering blankly into my nearest tech shop I thought I would ask here first!

Thank you!

king1, Feb 26, 2:56am
1. is dependent on your internet connection, plan/type etc
2. a wireless repeater or access point may be a better option if there are blind/weak areas
3. NF4V has capability for up to 4 w/less networks iirc. These are relatively easy to turn on/off if comfortable in the modem configuration settings
4. is dependent on your own capabilities

The rest afaik (separate logins/ monitoring etc) can only be got by high end equipment or modifying the firmware in modems.

Pretty sure repeaters will only repeat a single network, so repeating the multiple (you/kids) wireless signal will be no go.

Careful positioning, deciding in which area to place the modem and repeater might allow a reasonable compromise by allowing you to unplug the repeater and/or turn off the kids wireless network only.


king1, Feb 26, 2:58am
#3 works well BTW - I do this on the odd occasion when my kids are non conforming

sqidlie, Feb 26, 3:41am
Look into WiFi bridging
As part of your "network" you have control over each device on that network

kathie6, Feb 26, 3:43am
I really like the option to have up to 4 wireless networks. We have three homestay students so it would be good to have them on one, my husband and I on another and my own three kids on a third.

Signal is fine at the moment with the basic equipment that we have so I imagine it won't suddenly become an issue with new equipment. The only weak spot is in our ensuite toilet and the only person that affects is my husband :P

vtecintegra, Feb 26, 4:39am
I don't think it is realistic to expect to run that many devices and that muhc traffic off an ADSL (or even VDSL) connection with anything approaching reasonable performance.

drsr, Feb 26, 4:59am
If everyone has their own device(s) then Gargoyle ( would do all that. It has quality of service settings so you can prioritise or degrade some machines more than others when things get congested. You can see who's hogging all the bandwidth, set speed and byte limits per device, and set up rules to block access to individual devices and only allow access at certain times.

It won't control multiple users sharing the same device though.

If you haven't set up something like this before it would be best to buy one of the routers with it pre-installed.

kathie6, Feb 26, 6:13am
That sounds like what I'm looking for drsr! I'll look into that further.

Ideally the kids should only have one device active at a time but that's not enforceable or realistic. And it ends up with my husband not being able to connect to the wifi when he gets home.

loud_37, Feb 26, 8:07am
We use three Unifi AP's to do everything your after.

rz_zone, Jul 3, 4:02am
You can use Mac Filtering and have each devices to go offline at whatever time you set it to.

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