How can I use an Android device running Gingerbread as a WiFi extender?

Drsunil V April 9, 2014
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How can I use an Android device ( a tablet running Gingerbread ) as a WiFi extender? Please note that the tether or WiFi hotspot option in Android tethers data , and that simultaneous WiFi and hotspot use is disallowed on Android. Is there a workaround to use Android Gingerbread device as a wifi extender?

  1. Oron J
    April 24, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    The answer is no. You need a repeater to extend a WiFi network. A tablet has only oneWiFi card, so cannot be used as a repeater.

    • Drsunil V
      April 29, 2014 at 5:35 pm

      Please tell , how come a android device repeats 3G ( by tether stock feature ) but does not tether from wifi connection

    • Oron J
      April 29, 2014 at 6:04 pm

      Although repeaters and routers (which is what tethering amounts to) both "join networks", they are actually completely different devices which perform very different functions.

      A "tethering" router connects two different networks. A WAN (3G) and a LAN (WiFi or USB). The Android device inspects every network packet it receives on either interface, reads the "TO" IP address and decides which way the packet should go (if at all), then forwards it to the correct route (that's why it's called a router). It may do some additional stuff too. For example I'm pretty sure it would have a NAT converter and a DHCP server built in.

      To extend WiFi, you simply need to repeat the signal, no routing, no bridging, nothing - it's simply a matter of receiving the signal on a receiving card, and transmitting it on the sending card. However, you do need two WiFi cards!

      Seeing as you appear to be quite interested in networking, I think you would find it useful to read an overview on the subject. There must be many good books out there, or you could try http://www.tcpipguide.com/free/t_IntroductiontoNetworking.htm . Once the fundamentals of networking (topologies, TCP/IP concepts and the basic idea of Ethernet) are there, I think the whole thing will make a lot more sense.

    • Drsunil V
      April 30, 2014 at 5:34 pm

      Thanks. I got the point. Thanks for networking link. Actually I am not naturally inclined to specific networking. I had requirement to route internet from one room to another. Your reply about 'powerline networking v/s wifi extenders' helped me to the concept of powerline. I got zyxel powerline pair.

  2. Oron J
    April 10, 2014 at 8:50 pm

    A WiFi extender, properly called a repeater actually has two WiFi cards. It receives a signal on one card and repeats it on the other. As such, an ordinary Android device would not be able to work as an extender.

    • Drsunil V
      April 12, 2014 at 5:17 am

      Thanks. Android device does have inbuilt wireless tethering capability. But it tethers data connection but does not tether wifi connection. Please tell is there a workaround to do this?

    • Drsunil V
      April 12, 2014 at 5:17 am

      hi. Android device does have inbuilt wireless tethering capability. But it tethers data connection but does not tether wifi connection. Please tell is there a workaround to do this?

    • Oron J
      April 12, 2014 at 8:40 am

      Tethering is different in that it bridges 3G and WiFi (or USB). WiFi extenders simply repeat the signal on a second transmitter.

    • Drsunil V
      April 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm

      thanks. I am confused , if android can tether 3G to a wifi enabled device , can it also tether wifi to another wifi device? If yes , what is workaround? as by default , tethering stops when I activated it with wifi on

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