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Connecting a Router to a MiFi Hotspot
November 23, 2020
10:57 am
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melissa and Bruce overbay
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We normally connect to the internet using either our Sprint MiFi800 9800 or our Verizon MiFi5510L JetPack.  I want to set-up an “in-house” network that I can connect my computer, tablet, phone and printer to which will also connect to the internet using either of our MiFi hotspots.

1.  Can I connect a router to a MiFi hotspot?

     a.  If yes, how?

     b.  Do I need any special equipment?

2.  Next, can I then connect, wirelessly, my computer, phone, printer and tablet to the router, or, alternatively, connect the computer and tablet wirelessly and hardwire the printer?

 

What I am trying to do is create an in-coach network that allows me to communicate with my printer and communicate with the internet without having to logout of one network and log into another network.

 

Thanks for any help that anyone can provide.

Regards,

M&B

November 24, 2020
9:04 am
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MrGeek
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We used a WiFi Ranger router for many years to do just what you are wanting to do. 

Yes. It can be done. You need to purchase the proper router. There are plenty of choices.

You connect all your coach devices to the router’s wifi. The router can use specific inputs and automatically switch to an active signal.

The router can see any wifi signals out there. It can even use public wifi to save your cellular data. Most can also connect to a wired modem. We did that once when we stayed at a resort with that perk.

The real experts in all things related to Internet are at https://www.rvmobileinternet.c…..leinfo.com.

Tell them the Geeks sent you!

Helping Travelers to Plan, Preserve, and Share their Travels

November 24, 2020
2:57 pm
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melissa and Bruce overbay
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Thanks, Mr. Geek. 

 

First I tried to reach out to the link you provided and got an error message that said,

 

“Unable to open https://www.rvmobileinternet.c…..leinfo.com.  The internet site reports that the item you requested could not be found.  (HTTP/1.0 404)

 

I will keep trying, but in the meantime after reading your response and looking at the WiFi Ranger link would you indulge me in a couple of follow-up questions?

 

  1. You said that you used a WiFi Ranger router for many years to do what we want to do, which begs the question, what do you use now?
  2. When you say “proper” router, what are some of the choices and which one did you use?
  • Are the indoor routers shown on the WiFi Ranger web-site the kind of routers I need?
  • Do other companies like NetGear or Linksys make “proper” routers?
  1. After looking at the WiFi Ranger link you provided, do I need both an outdoor and an indoor router, or can I get by with just an indoor router?
  2. Also, since our primary link to the internet is through either the Sprint or Verizon MiFi products, do we also need an integrated LTE modem, or can we just tether the Mi-Fi to the router?

Thank you for your time.

Regards,

B&M

November 26, 2020
10:16 am
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melissa and Bruce overbay
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Good morning and Happy Thanksgiving

We were able to log onto the rvmobilinternet site.  They are obviously the experts with years of experience.  Unfortunately, however, for reasons I fully understand, they do not offer one on one consulting and I am just not savvy enough to understand all of the options.  Do you know of anybody who can offer one on one advice?  There are so many options and some which are pretty expensive and may or may not be needed.  It would really be good if we could get some general guidance to avoid spending more than we need to spend.

Regards,

B&M

November 27, 2020
1:38 pm
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MrGeek
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Happy Thanksgiving back atcha.

I don’t know of anyone providing that one-on-one service. I expect they are out there. 

We don’t offer a hand-holding service for Internet setups. A long time ago, I was an installer for mobile Internet satellite dishes. Later we became known as experts on mobile connectivity. When cellular data became reliable enough for most people, it was clear to us that keeping up was not sustainable.

Then Chris and Cherie came along and concentrated on mobile Internet. We were thrilled. They wanted to keep up with all the complicated and ever-changing tech, we wanted to teach photos and maps and fun stuff.

The issue is that while everyone wants the same thing, connectivity, there are many variables, especially for mobile users. What works for one is often insufficient for another. You are the only person who can determine your needs now and in the future.

Helping Travelers to Plan, Preserve, and Share their Travels

November 27, 2020
1:56 pm
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melissa and Bruce overbay
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Good afternoon, at least afternoon on the East Coast.  Your answer doesn’t surprise me, but I had to ask, just in case.  If you have the time, could I take you back to the original exchange and ask if you could answer any or all of these follow-up questions?

  1. You said that you used a WiFi Ranger router for many years to do what we want to do, which begs the question, what do you use now?
  2. When you say “proper” router, what are some of the choices and which one did you use?
  • Are the indoor routers shown on the WiFi Ranger web-site the kind of routers I need?
  • Do other companies like NetGear or Linksys make “proper” routers?
  1. After looking at the WiFi Ranger link you provided, do I need both an outdoor and an indoor router, or can I get by with just an indoor router?
  2. Also, since our primary link to the internet is through either the Sprint or Verizon MiFi products, do we also need an integrated LTE modem, or can we just tether the Mi-Fi to the router?

BTW, I am watching some of Chris and Cherie’s videos and considering signing up for a one year membership.  My only reservation is that it doesn’t appear that they have a Q&A like you do.  Not sure I want to spend the money if I can’t ask questions.

Regards,

B&M

November 27, 2020
4:40 pm
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MrGeek
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When we were full-timers, 2003-2017, we had a variety of tools to connect as they evolved. Now we have a townhouse in Fort Lauderdale with a good wired Internet.

Back before cellular data became ubiquitous, WiFi was the way for travelers to connect. I tried all kinds of boosters and antennas back then.

A “proper” router to me is a box with multiple functions. It creates a wireless local area network that in turn connects to the wide-area Internet. That connection can vary. It could be cellular data from a SIM, wifi from hotspots, or a wired connection from a modem. 

There are other companies besides WiFiRanger (now a Winegard company) that have similar products. I don’t have any experience with them, though. 

WiFiRanger gave us evaluation units years ago where we helped with beta testing and reviews. They’re old and have limited functionality compared to the new units. I really have not kept up so not able to tell you anything about new models.

One of these had both external and internal components for greater range. They worked amazingly well on our big rig.

I used Rangers in the rig as our main network. It was great because I could connect it to public wifi from greater distances. That connection would change regularly as we traveled. I also used one on occasion for our seminar rooms.

Most times it was connected to our unlimited Verizon data plan on our phones as hotspots. 

We recommend a cellular WiFi hotspot for most travelers. You can get them now with multiple SIMs and auxiliary inputs. Again, there are so many choices. I don’t even try to keep up.

I cannot answer specific questions about your installation. That’s not what we do.

Start small. You only need to add equipment when what you have doesn’t work for you. We spent big bucks on tech we hardly used. Don’t do that.

When we downsized to a van camper in 2017, we got a Netgear Nighthawk cellular hotspot (recommended by our friends) on AT&T. All the devices in our little Roadtrek connected to that. We were on the road about half-time. I could put that plan on vacation when we were home. If AT&T wasn’t working, we have Verizon and Google Fi for backups. It’s not a big deal for us to change networks.

With Covid canceling all our major travel this year, I canceled the AT&T hotspot. We have Fiber connectivity here at home in Fort Lauderdale. 

When we get back out on the road, I will research the available options then. Things change too rapidly to make future decisions.

I did break out the old WiFiRanger when we were mooch-docking up near Gainesville last month. I wanted to share their wifi and the Ranger gave us a better signal out in the van away from the house. We no longer have an unlimited cellular plan we can hotspot. I’m glad I kept it in the van.

We joined Chris and Cherie to support them more than to get specific questions answered. They do have regular Q&A sessions online for paid members, though, as well as other benefits.

Helping Travelers to Plan, Preserve, and Share their Travels

November 28, 2020
3:06 pm
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melissa and Bruce overbay
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Good afternoon and many thanks for your very good response.  I have been checking out several sources since my original email.  I have watched a couple of Chris and Cherie’s videos.  I also watched a video from Changing Lanes who mentioned rvmobileinternet, although along with advice, rvmobileinternet is also a seller so their advice while being informative is pushing their products.  Thanks to what you have provided and what I am learning from the other sites, I am beginning to settle on some options.  So, again, many thanks to everything you have provided and for your time to provide it.

Kind regards

B&M

November 28, 2020
5:46 pm
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MrGeek
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Chris and Cherie do not sell anything except information. That is why we trust them. Rvmobileinternet is not a commercial site. They do accept review units for evaluation. That’s the way it works. We used to do the same. Our reviews were not influenced by that.

Let us know what you decide upon and how it works for you.

Helping Travelers to Plan, Preserve, and Share their Travels

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