I want my neighbor to have Internet, just not all to herself.
June 29, 2011 4:36 PM   Subscribe

I've got a Netgear WNR2000v2 wireless router, and am sharing my DSL connection with a neighbor. My apartment uses the main network and my neighbor is on a guest network. What's been happening lately is that the Internet gets really slow, and what I'd like to do is to cap the guest network at, say, 75kBps. I don't know if she's running torrents or what, but I would like to have the fast Internet that I'm paying for.

I'm aware of solutions such as DD-WRT, but before I make the jump to custom firmware I'd like to at least know exactly how I'm going to go about throttling the guest network.

The other option (I suppose) would be to use QoS to prioritize the main network, but again this is all new to me so I'm kind of at a loss and don't want to brick my router. Any ideas?
posted by dunkadunc to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm unfortunately not very familiar with your router. This may or may not be possible with the stock firmware. Do you see throttling options? With my router, you can throttle specific computers, you just need the MAC id of the computer you want to throttle, which should be available for you to see if the neighbor is actively connected.

DD-WRT, on the other hand, will definitely do what you want. The only thing you need to know to do the firmware update (assuming DD-WRT supports your router, that is) is to make sure you're physically plugged in rather that connected over the wireless. FWIW, I bricked my router the other day but it went into a special standby mode which allowed me to reupload the firmware, which fixed the problem.
posted by zug at 5:17 PM on June 29, 2011

Sorry- the router doesn't support throttling the guest network or specific MAC addresses. Is it possible to set up a bandwidth limit in DD-WRT without having to write scripts? This sort of stuff scares me.
posted by dunkadunc at 5:35 PM on June 29, 2011

You can set up QoS for specific MAC addresses, so you could set the neighbor to low priority and see if that fixes things enough for you. The step-by-step for that starts on page 5-23 of the manual.
posted by grapesaresour at 5:53 PM on June 29, 2011 [1 favorite]

Doing QoS in DD-WRT involves checking a few boxes. Its insanely easy. However I think grapes has the better idea to just deprioritize all her traffic rather than need to worry about QoS.
posted by phearlez at 6:20 PM on June 29, 2011

You can find DD-WRT in the form of a router that is pre-flashed with the Tomato firmware for about $30-ish on Ebay. I bought a used Buffalo router and moving from Linksys to Tomato has been a joy. I control my children's wifi use with ease. They will do a lot of chores to get Youtube turned back on. It allows you to throttle bandwidth by address. So, what everyone else said.
posted by mecran01 at 7:09 PM on June 29, 2011 [2 favorites]

OK, looks like I'll just make the leap! Thank you all for your help!
posted by dunkadunc at 7:36 AM on June 30, 2011

By the way, I bought it but have not installed it yet, so I cannot yet vouch for it from personal experience. BUT, I recently purchased a Buffalo WZR-HP-AG300H. At $90 on Amazon it's not the cheapest thing you can get, but it's got DD-WRT pre-installed (which is a nice time/trouble-saver) and supports having multiple wireless bands.

It doesn't apply to my needs so I haven't investigated it, but it might be that you could provide your neighbor with her own wireless AP id (or dupe the one you're using now, name-wise, while moving all your stuff to another, making the transition seamless for her) which you could then throttle down.

Dunno if you want to throw money at the problem but this might be a one and done.
posted by phearlez at 8:17 AM on June 30, 2011

Could you ask her about what she's doing? Just thinking in case her computer could have a virus or trojan that was causing lots of traffic it would be better to do something about that first.
posted by kg at 9:43 AM on June 30, 2011

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